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Strictly Come Dancing producers 'considered hiring out hotel'

Strictly Come Dancing producers 'considered hiring out hotel'
© BBC
The BBC reportedly considered basing this year's Strictly Come Dancing at a large London hotel amid the production difficulties caused by coronavirus.

The BBC reportedly considered hiring out an entire hotel in order to get Strictly Come Dancing on air as usual this autumn.

This year's series is proving a production headache thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, which will force a serious shakeup of the usual format in order to comply with social distancing guidelines.

According to The Sun, one of the ideas under consideration - since dropped - was to hire out a hotel with a large ballroom space and film the show from there, moving the celebrities, professionals, hosts and crew into the venue for the duration of the series.

The newspaper claims that the iconic Hilton hotel on London's Park Lane was one of the venues in the frame to host Strictly, but producers now believe that the show can be broadcast safely from its usual home of Elstree Studios.

"Strictly is the jewel in the crown, so they're doing everything in their power to make sure it will go ahead as seamlessly as possible," a source told the newspaper.

"Early in the stages of the COVID-19 crisis it was seriously discussed as an option to hire an entire hotel, and to have the cast and crew all live, train and film in the same place.

"It was mooted as a potential plan because it meant that if one of those involved in the show did start to develop symptoms, there would be no risk to the public in any way and they could easily self-isolate.

"Hopefully further lockdown easing will play to the show's advantage and not too much will have to change from a normal production. The BBC hopes to have more news in the coming weeks."

Regardless of the show's location, live studio audiences are almost certain to be dropped this year, while the iconic Blackpool week is also highly likely to be scrapped.

> Every name in the frame for this year's Strictly Come Dancing

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