The Grand Tour Producer On Lochdown Filming During Pandemic: “It Was A Torturous Thing”


The Grand Tour Presents Lochdown has been on Amazon Prime Video for weeks now and fans have been very happy to see Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, and James May on their screens again. And while reviews have been quite mixed for the new Scotland-based episode, it’s a surprise the episode was able to be released at all after Andy Wilman explains that filming during the pandemic was “torturous”. 

The show was set within the UK due to limits on travelling, but there was also a host of other things the crew had to do to be able to create the show during a lockdown.

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 “Once all the Covid protocols were established, you were then free to do as you would do. So didn’t have to compromise that in any way.

“It really was because that is outside our skillset. And that water was 30-foot deep.

“That was tricky. Not technically tricky technically filming but tricky to do,” he said about the ending of the episode.

Andy emphasised to The Express that they had to start filming again to maintain an income for the production company.

“So we got stuff to do, to keep the lights on in the office, give ourselves something to do and give the fans something to watch.”

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“It was all pragmatic in that way. Then once we decided we were going to do it and Amazon gave us the green light and the money, it was then a case of how?” Andy added.

“Because Covid wise, everything was a nightmare. You couldn’t get any insurance for film shoots at this point.

“So if one person gets Covid in a group, and the shoot shuts down, everything you spent has gone down the bog.

“There was nothing you could do. So, there was a sort of list of protocols that Amazon had come up with that you had to follow.

“They were incredibly strict to keep you on the road, they still weren’t going to give you insurance, but it was your best chance of getting to the finish line,” he said.

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– Prime Video

“And they were was so complex. Once I got in a car on our convoy, that’s my seat and that’s it for the rest of the shoot.

“I can’t go in anybody else’s car, can’t go near them, can’t touch anyone else’s door, all that kind of stuff.

“You had to take the whole hotel out wherever you went and we had to build a mobile Covid testing unit that came with us, and they would test all 50 crew.”

“And then you’re waiting and it never happened. We got through to the end. So it was a torturous thing and quite a stressful thing in that way,” the executive producer added.

“But the film was a great thing to make. Separating from all the practical stuff it was great, it was a great experience to do.”

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