Melissa McCarthy and Ben Falcone’s Netflix comedy series God’s Favorite Idiot has wrapped up production earlier than expected in Australia—and now, we know why.
The Guardian reported on Tuesday that just eight of 16 episodes originally planned for had been shot, when production came to a halt. This apparently caused concern for many on the production because, while cast members were reportedly paid out for the entire 16-week shoot, members of the mostly-Australian crew, who abruptly found themselves out of work, were only paid for the shooting days they’d already completed.
According to a spokesperson close to the show, though, there is no need for concern, as all 16 episodes will eventually be shot. The reason that production wrapped early is that Netflix has decided to shoot the series in “two batches of eight” episodes, “rather than all at once.”
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“We’ve wrapped production on eight episodes of God’s Favorite Idiot, which will premiere next year. Australia has been so welcoming to all of us and we’re thankful for their hospitality,” said Netflix in a statement. “We’re grateful to our creative partners Ben and Melissa, along with our amazing cast and crew for their hard work and dedication to bring this show to life.”
“We are so sad to leave Australia, as it has truly felt like home to us this past year,” added McCarthy and Falcone in a statement. “We were so lucky to have had the best, hardest working Australian cast and crew. We are so proud of God’s Favorite Idiot and cannot wait to share it with everyone.“
Starring McCarthy, Falcone, Usman Ally, Leslie Bibb, Kevin Dunn and more, God’s Favorite Idiot centers on a tech-support employee who becomes the unwitting messenger of God. McCarthy and her husband Falcone are exec producing the series, through their company On the Day, alongside director Michael McDonald.
Production on the series kicked off in New South Wales in March. While it was initially expected to continue through November, it’s not yet clear when and where the second set of episodes will be shot.