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Netflix boots

“On the Swedish set of Lisa Langseth’s romantic comedy ‘Love & Anarchy,’ the directors in May even pulled off what would be near impossible in most of virus-wracked Europe: a screen kiss (albeit with all the spontaneity of two weeks in actor quarantine). Touching lips are a true screen miracle these days. “There were so many brains around the world turning on this,” says Kelly Luegenbiehl, who oversees Netflix’s international productions. Set by set, shot by shot, the global entertainment factory that is Netflix is reawakening from its pandemic slumber. Few big broadcasters or studios shut down faster than the streaming company after the risks of the virus became clear. As the industry figures out how to operate in this strange new era, few can match its deep pockets and continent-spanning footprint to restart at scale. By the end of September, Netflix hopes to be back to near normal, with more than 20 dramas filming across Europe and the Middle East alone, including ‘The Witcher,’ ‘Sex Education’ and ‘Sky Rojo.’ Most are supposed to be streaming on screens everywhere next year — that is, if all goes to plan. For Netflix and the whole production industry — from big-budget Hollywood movies such as Mission: Impossible 7 to broadcasters churning out soap episodes — the pandemic has meant a root-and-branch rethink of how filming is done, actors dress and interact, and all those extra costs can be funded.”

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