‘The Good Doctor’ Reportedly Pauses Pre-Production Due To COVID-19 Testing Concerns

Stil from the episode "Hurt" of The Good Doctor
Jack Rowand / ABC

ABC’s hit medical drama The Good Doctor was preparing to get back into production with the hopes of filming resuming by mid-August at the latest, but pre-production plans have been halted due to issues with COVID-19 testing, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

A spokesperson for Sony Pictures Television told the outlet that “there is an issue with COVID-19 testing, which we are working to resolve with the BC Council.”

Additional sources have revealed that the issue revolves around “how often individuals on set are tested.”

Reports suggest there are some members of the team who want to be tested more often than the BC Council allows. The Council itself is an amalgamation of “three different local unions.”

“One insider says that because the virus is more managed in Canada than in the U.S., the BC Council feels that testing doesn’t need to be as frequent as others think it might.”

The Hollywood Reporter reached out to them for comment, but they reportedly have not yet responded.

The publication noted that COVID-19 testing had been a “thorny issue for producers to sort through,” as has been the case for many television productions, not just limited to The Good Doctor.

Trying to determine the right amount of COVID-19 testing for those involved is a “fluid” situation, but one that must be managed to adhere to the CDC guidelines to resume filming.

Antonia Thomas in The Good Doctor episode "I Love You"
  Darko Sikman / ABC

As noted by the outlet, the ABC drama is not the first to run into issues with COVID-19 testing. Long-running soap opera The Bold and the Beautiful recently had to shut down for a few days while they figured out how to address the problem, although they have since resumed production.

The Good Doctor was renewed for a fourth season back in February, and new episodes are supposed to debut this fall. Depending on how long it takes to get the COVID-19 testing situation sorted, there is a possibility the new season could wind up being delayed.

Fans have taken to Twitter to express their frustration about the news. Most have been understanding and are happy that safety is being prioritized over everything else, but some viewers are upset they won’t be getting a promo or learning more about the fate of certain characters.

“Not again! I’m glad they are being extra careful!” wrote one fan alongside a sad face emoji and a GIF reaction.

“So sad, but I guess all the shows are doing this. Thank God for Netflix in the meantime,” said another.