Kenneth Branagh Play Cancelled As UK Covid Cases Soar

Kenneth Branagh has been forced to cancel a significant UK theater production due to an “increasing number of Covid-enforced absences”.

The play was a revival of The Browning Version by Terence Rattigan and was due to be staged at London’s Riverside Studios next month. The venue sent a note to ticket holders explaining that the production was “no longer viable” and that refunds would be issued. Producers said a number of the team had tested positive, some of whom were symptomatic, despite Covid protocols being observed.

This is the latest in a string of Covid-enforced closures. Deadline revealed today that HBO has been forced to shut down the UK shoot of its its Game of Thrones prequel House of the Dragon due to a positive test, while we also had the scoop that Netflix’s Bridgerton had been shut down twice, and the streamer’s Matilda is also suffering similar disruption.

The Browning Version was due to be staged to raise money for the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts. The Kenneth Branagh Theater Company will instead make a donation to the organization.

The UK is recording close to 50k coronavirus cases a day, but PM Boris Johnson is pressing ahead with further lifting of restrictions as of today (July 19).

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