ShinAwiL Productions are devastated that they will not be in a position to bring back Dancing with the Stars in January 2021 to RTÉ television.
It had earlier been announced that RTÉ will not be broadcasting the competition next year due to ongoing restrictions relating to Covid-19.
The statement from ShinAwiL highlights the issues of safety and welfare for crews and celebrities. "We worked closely with RTÉ and BBC Studios over the past three months to explore the feasibility of producing the show in a safe environment," said Larry Bass, CEO ShinAwiL and Executive Producer of Dancing With The Stars.
"While we had a robust plan to deliver a different but spectacular series in 2021, regrettably, Ireland continues to grapple with the ever-changing impact of Covid-19 and the risk to the show and everyone involved remains too high."
The CEO explained that the loss of Dancing with the Stars was devastating for ShinAwiL, '(a company) that has tried to grow over the past 21 years, employing 150 crew members 'who work so tirelessly to make the show what it is.'
"Over the past four seasons, we've become one big happy working family," added the glitzy show's Executive Producer. "Consequently, the burdens and uncertainty that comes with the loss of jobs and incomes is something that deeply affects us all.
"Some of our suppliers are small businesses that rely on one or two major contracts per year to survive as do we. The future is now incredibly uncertain for us all and our families."
He appealed to the government 'to take seriously the value of our fantastic creative industries that are now suffering not from a virus, but from lack of correct support or any certainty about the future.'
"The financial and mental welfare of tens of thousands of creative professionals may flood our health and welfare state more than any virus could if no action is taken. When will we ever learn to value our culture in this country properly??"
Bass also expressed heartfelt thanks to everyone who made the show what it is, from hosts Jennifer Maguire and Nicky Byrne to judges Julian Benson, Loraine Barry and Brian Redmond, the celebrity dancers and professional dancers and producers.
He also expressed his gratitude to the RTÉ commissioners, researchers, production and stage managers, co-ordinators, choreographers, set designers, set builders, electricians, painters, art directors, camera, sound and lighting crew, editors, stylists, wardrobe, hair and makeup artists, photographers, press teams, digital teams, graphics, caterers, drivers, cleaners and security.
"We have been heartened by the many messages of support from the public who helped make the show such a pillar in the RTÉ schedule. Your thoughts and wishes have really quantified what this show means to so many people.
"We will continue to work with RTÉ to devise new productions that can help kick-start the TV production community and hopefully bring some cheer back into people’s lives. We will also work closely with RTÉ and BBC Studios to try and bring back Dancing with the Stars in 2022."
The Dancing with the Stars CEO concluded his statement with a message to all to 'please stay safe and well and think of thousands of out of work professionals who only want to fill your world with food for the heart and mind. Support the live entertainment world please.'