Rumors of a toxic working environment on the set Euphoria have been swirling even before Season 2 began, and now, background extras are coming forward with detailed accusations of a “hellish” shoot thanks to creator Sam Levinson‘s “off the cuff” shooting style. According to a new report, Levinson would often arrive at work with no shot list, which would result in extras being left sitting for hours, often in the cold, as he constantly reset the cameras and rearranged scenes. Making matters worse is that the extras would allegedly not be allowed to use the restroom and they began “dropping like flies” as the production continued to rack up SAG-AFTRA violations like not providing them meals on time or having 18 hour workdays.
Via The Daily Beast:
“I understand that I’m doing background work,” one background actor told The Daily Beast. “I’m not the most important person there, I know where I am on the totem pole. But it got to a point where I was like, I’m still a person, I’m still human. Please let me go to the restroom, don’t tell me I can’t go for 30 minutes or tell me I can’t get a snack when you’re not going to feed me and it’s 4 a.m. It just very much felt like we didn’t exist as people.”
As Euphoria continues to be the most-watched show on HBO, the network defended the on-set conditions and cited COVID protocols as a potential cause of things not going smoothly. Otherwise, HBO said the production was in full compliance with union mandates.
“The well-being of cast and crew on our productions is always a top priority,” HBO said in a statement. “The production was in full compliance with all safety guidelines and guild protocols. It’s not uncommon for drama series to have complex shoots, and COVID protocols add an additional layer. We maintain an open line of communication with all the guilds, including SAG-AFTRA. There were never any formal inquiries raised.”
(Via The Daily Beast)