CORONATION Street will have a time-jump in July as coronavirus kicks in, show boss Iain MacLeod has confirmed.
The ITV soap resumed filming earlier this week after the ongoing pandemic halted all soap production back in March.
Bosses have been rationing pre-recorded episodes to just half of the weekly amount to ensure that they don’t run out, with the new episodes set to hit our screen next month.
Although Corrie has narrowly avoided going off air, Iain has revealed that they faced a “tricky editorial conundrum” due to the extensive time away – meaning that they have several unfinished episodes in the bank.
When asked if the new episodes will have a time-jump, the showrunner explained: “In a manner of speaking, yes.
“What we faced was a tricky editorial conundrum really, which means the unfinished episodes were written and mostly shot before the pandemic existed.
“Therefore there was no acknowledgement of the pandemic on the page. So the remaining scenes, the ones we have to complete when we return will be shot in strict adherence to social distancing and rules and measures will be put in place.”
He continued: “Fictionally it would have resulted where half the scene of people before the pandemic and then the other half with people acknowledging the pandemic. So it will be strange as they will be making no references to them on screen.
“One episode which will broadcast on the 24th July, those are the first ones I think that have been written and designed after the pandemic hit. So it will be like a day and night transition really.
“We were agonising whether this was the right way to go, but I couldn’t see any through it and I think the audience understands the circumstances which relate to these episodes, and they will go with it.”
Admitting that he expects some confusion, Iain added: “There might be a few comments on Twitter about continuity errors, which of course I understand, but there wasn’t any other way of doing it.
“We’ve got a mature audience and they understand the world we live in.”
He also explained how the show will be “lightly” referencing the pandemic, but it won’t be a focal point of the soap.
Iain shared: “We wanted to have a sprinkling of it in dialogue, rather than have every scene be about that. The most noticeable thing that people will see is the social distancing measures that have been put in place.
“You will see people washing their hands, and people washing their hands who aren’t from the same family.
“A lot of our businesses will be operating as takeaways, which in the real world might be happening.
“It’s better for viewers to see the new world that we live in rather than talk about it. We have talked about the pandemic and nothing else but the pandemic. I don’t think people tune in to see more people talking about it.”
Earlier today, photos of the socially-distanced set were revealed as filming resumed, with all of the cast and crew at least two metres apart while filming on the cobbles.
There is also yellow tape forming a barrier between the stars and crew, with limited staff on set – and cameramen using extendable equipment to avoid getting too close to the cast.