Stephen Colbert is shutting down his Zoom station and returning to “The Late Show” in front of a live studio audience … as long as they are all vaccinated.
The announcement from CBS came early Monday morning as Colbert and crew will return to the Ed Sullivan Theater in New York on June 14, and prepare for the studio to once again be filled with fans.
“After more than a year and 205 episodes produced without a live audience, THE LATE SHOW is looking forward to safely welcoming fans back to The Ed Sullivan, which features the largest studio audience of any late night or sketch comedy series,” a statement read.
Stephen Colbert is definitely looking forward to returning to a sense of normalcy and thanked his crew for the tireless work in transitioning the show from studio to home and back again.
“Over the last 437 days, my staff and crew (and family!) have amazed me with their professionalism and creativity as we made shows for an audience we couldn’t see or hear,” Colbert said in a statement.
He added, “I look forward to once again doing shows for an audience I can smell and touch.”
During the pandemic, which appears to be coming to a close, Stephen Colbert and his team dubbed “The Late Show” just “A Late Show” and began producing episodes remotely from his home.
The first episode featured a monologue from the host while in the bath, and 205 episodes later Colbert continued to produce segments from home, with 16 of them actually being live episodes.
Returning to the Ed Sullivan Theater won’t come without a lot of work from both the crew and audience, as a lengthy protocol list makes it clear what is needed to safely attend a live studio taping.
“The plan to return to the theater is consistent with New York State’s adoption of the CDC guidelines for fully vaccinated individuals and has been reviewed by the State,” a release for Colbert’s show reads.
It continues, “Guests will be required to show proof of being fully vaccinated prior to entering. Face masks will be optional. All staff and crew members will continue to be tested prior to commencing work on a regular basis, as well as screened daily for symptoms. In addition, a COVID-19 compliance officer will be on staff to monitor and enforce all health and safety COVID-19 protocols.”