Hollywood unions, studios reach deal to return to work amid coronavirus pandemic

The agreement outlines safety protocols including testing procedures

The film and television industry has taken a significant step toward the return to normalcy after being all but shut down for several months due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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In an effort to help slow the spread of the potentially deadly virus, many major film and television productions temporarily halted, but now, studios and unions have reached an agreement that will see employees of the industry head back to work.

Agreeing to the deal were the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP), the Directors Guild, SAG-AFTRA, International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) and the Teamsters.

'TENET' TAKES IN MORE THAN $250M WORLDWIDE AT INTERNATIONAL BOX OFFICE

AMPTP has been squabbling with unions since June over a handful of safety protocols, specifically the frequency and type of COVID-19 testing that will be performed on employees, sick day compensation, financial responsibility and more, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

"Tenet," starring John David Washington, was expected to help movie theaters rebound from coronavirus shutdowns, but the film has performed poorly at the box office. (Associated Press)

The new agreement specifies testing procedures, paid sick leave, personal protective equipment -- i.e. masks -- as well as more industry-specific details such as serving meals in individually wrapped portions.

The extended negotiations have resulted in Warner Bros. and Universal's TV productions delaying filming plans, the outlet reported.

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Television shows and movies slowing production in response to the virus outbreak have included Disney's "The Little Mermaid," the "Avatar" sequels, "The Morning Show" and more.

The upcoming "Wonder Woman 1984" is among the Hollywood blockbusters rolling the dice and hoping audiences will return to theaters by its Christmas Day release date. (Associated Press)

The move comes just weeks after the release of "Tenet," which was to serve as a test of whether audiences would return to theaters to see a film.

The movie's box office numbers failed to impress, however.

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On the other hand, Disney's live-action "Mulan" moved to Disney+ for an additional fee, but has underperformed over all as well.