Critical Role is set to return on July 2nd after a lengthy hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In a YouTube video released on their main channel, Creative Director and actress for the show Marisha Ray (Fire Emblem: Fates) gave details on the new measures the cast and crew will follow in filming the show.
Critical Role is traditionally filmed as a live stream, however, the show will be pre-recorded for the time being. In addition, the actors are usually sitting together at the same table. To socially distance, the actors will be sitting at their own individual tables which are 7 to 20 feet apart. A select number of necessary crew members will also be in attendance for filming. Weekly or bi-weekly testing is mandatory for the cast and crew, but exact dates are dependent on the shooting schedule.
Ray explained that the show rebuilt its studio and designed these measures in accordance with the Hollywood White Paper. The document outlines several precautions and standards in order to safely filming during the pandemic, and was written in accordance with the CDC and WHO. In addition, Ray emphasized in the video that “if at any point in time our local government deems that it is unsafe to continue working, we will pause production and let you all know immediately.”
Critical Role is a Dungeons & Dragons campaign turned web series. The series began in March 2015, when Dungeon Master Matthew Mercer, a prolific voice actor known for roles in anime such as Naruto: Shippuden, began to livestream the sessions. Mercer is joined on the main cast by several other notable voice actors: Laura Bailey (Dragon Ball Z), Liam O’Brian (Naruto), Taliesin Jaffe (Hellsing), Ashley Johnson (The Last of Us), Sam Riegel (Ace Attorney), Travis Willingham (The Legend of Korra), and Ray.
Critical Role‘s first campaign ran until October 2017, ending with a total of 115 episodes. The second campaign began in January 2018 and is currently still running, with 99 episodes released so far. The series is streamed on Twitch every Thursday at 7 PM PT, with video-on-demand available on Twitch immediately after and YouTube uploads the Monday after.