Coronavirus: The Only Way is Essex postpones filming

Image source, GC Images/Getty
Image caption,
The Only Way is Essex films in bars and clubs as it follows its cast's relationships

Filming of scripted-reality television show The Only Way is Essex (TOWIE) has been postponed as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.

The ITVBe show, which has launched the careers of stars including Gemma Collins, Joey Essex and Mark Wright, was due to commence filming for a new series next week.

ITV said the move was to ensure the "safety of the cast and crew".

The show often features the cast at bars and events.

In a statement on Twitter, ITV said: "In light of the spread of Covid-19, after much consideration, it has been decided that filming on TOWIE will be postponed until further notice.

"We need to ensure that the safety and security of the TOWIE cast and crew is upheld to the highest possible standard."

Image caption,
Reality TV star Gemma Collins rose to fame on The Only Way is Essex

TOWIE focuses on the relationships and social lives of its large cast of stars and extras, usually in glamorous locations around Essex, and it is understood ITV thought it was best to postpone filming in light of Public Health England advice.

It is hoped filming can begin later in the year.

The show is the latest to stop filming, with Eastenders, Peaky Blinders and Line of Duty among the casualties.

ITV soaps Emmerdale and Coronation Street are continuing to film but have reduced the number of episodes shown per week.

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