Director Connor Lang, left, looks at the display showing what cameraman Sam King is seeing during the filming of Walk With Me in Cawston on Oct. 7. (Brennan Phillips - Keremeos Review)

Movie filmed in Okanagan suspended following positive COVID-19 test

Health authorities say there is no risk for locals

The production of Walk With Me, a short movie being filmed in Cawston, has been suspended following a positive COVID-19 test.

Production was stopped after a crew member’s family was informed of a positive test result on Wednesday, Oct. 7.

The crew member was immediately put into isolation and tested. The result of her test returned positive on Friday, Oct. 9.

Following that test result, the BC CDC began contact tracing. The four subsequent tests including a crew member who shared accommodations and those in direct contact with the positive crew member have all returned negative as of Sunday, Oct. 11.

READ MORE: Okanagan non-profit helps small businesses hurting under COVID-19

The Fraser Health Authority analyzed the production’s safety measures and found that there was no need for the entire crew to isolate or any of the locals, who came onto the set during the filming.

The safety measures on set for the film were planned with broad precautions and department-specific precautions and were approved by both general health authorities and industry-specific authorities.

In a teleconference with film’s producers on Oct. 11, producer and lead actress Aletha Sholomenko noted that the film’s schedule meant that the crew member who tested positive, had minimal interaction with the public.

“Because of the nature of what set-life looks like, this crew member came to set and went to straight to accommodations each day without stopping in any local businesses,” said Sholomenko. “She was contained to just her accommodations wherever we were on set.”

The suspension of the film was a difficult decision to make, but one that everyone on the crew would make again, said director and producer Connor Lang during the telecovnerence.

READ MORE: 100 films in 80 years says Cawston filmmaker

“No film or business project is worth putting the local community at risk,” said Lang. “Right now, our priority first and foremost is to ensure the safety of the local community and our crewmembers.”

The date to resume the production of the film is not yet scheduled.

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.


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