After actor Arjo Atayde and nine other members of his film crew tested positive for COVID-19, Mayor Benjamin Magalong announced on Wednesday (August 17) that he had launched an investigation into their suspected health protocol violations.
According to Magalong, Arjo's crew was given permission to shoot, but they were told to stay in a bubble and were not permitted to leave the city throughout their filming.
“They were already in the city since last month before the implementation of enhanced community quarantine in the National Capital Region,” Magalong said in a statement.
Magalong, however, claimed that several crew members had gone home and returned to the city without going through the triage.
The mayor added that the group also failed to meet the required monthly testing they committed to.
“For some reason, Mr. Atayde left his group yesterday (Aug 16) without informing us, although I’m trying to reach out to him to instruct him on what to do with his group left in the city,” Magalong said.
For nearly two months, the actor had been filming a new film called "Hey Joe" in the city. With Atayde's departure, the crew of over 100 has been ordered to isolate in one of the city's hotels.
Feelmaking Productions, Inc. has already released a statement on the issue, confirming that Arjo has indeed tested positive for COVID-19 and was already “rush[ed]” to the hospital on the agreement of the production house, the doctors and the actor’s parents.
Meanwhile, Magalong said that Baguio City would no longer host film production crew, particularly after the Delta version of COVID-19 was discovered in the city as early as July.
Ana Catalina Paje is a development journalist passionate about grassroots communication geared towards genuine social change. She also writes about showbiz, lifestyle, and all things Pinoy pride. The views expressed are her own.
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