Filming of 'Mission: Impossible 7' in Venice halted after Italian coronavirus outbreak

Paramount Pictures has suspended filming of the new Mission: Impossible movie in Venice, following the outbreak of coronavirus.

The three-week shoot has been put on hold while health authorities in Italy deal with the largest number of cases outside China and South Korea.

Read more: Chinese premiere of No Time To Die axed

229 people have now tested positive, with eleven towns in the Veneto and Lombardy, where the outbreak began, being quarantined.

Paramount has called the decision to stop the shoot of the movie, starring Tom Cruise as agent Ethan Hunt, an 'abundance of caution'.

Cast member Tom Cruise attends a news conference promoting his upcoming film "Mission: Impossible - Fallout" at the Imperial Ancestral Temple in Beijing, China, August 29, 2018. REUTERS/Jason Lee
Tom Cruise (Credit: REUTERS/Jason Lee)

“During this hiatus we want to be mindful of the concerns of the crew and are allowing them to return home until production starts. We will continue to monitor this situation, and work alongside health and government officials as it evolves,” the studio said in a statement.

According to reports, some of the film's British crew flew back to the UK last night, and will be tested for the virus on arrival.

Mission: Impossible - Fallout (Credit: Paramount)
Mission: Impossible - Fallout (Credit: Paramount)

Seven people have died in Italy from the virus so far, the majority of whom were elderly and suffering other health issues.

Read more: Dolittle, 1917 and Jojo Rabbit releases cancelled over coronavirus

It's not yet known whether the suspension of filming will affect the release date of the seventh M:I movie, which is being directed by Christopher McQuarrie.

But it's the latest coronavirus related incident to affect the movie business, with a raft of cinema releases and premieres in China cancelled after the country shuttered nearly all its cinemas in the wake of the outbreak.

Earlier this month MGM cancelled the premiere of new Bond movie No Time To Die, scheduled for April, while the releases of 1917, Jojo Rabbit, Dolittle and most recently Sonic The Hedgehog have also been pulled.

Disney is also thought to be concerned over the imminent release of its remake of Mulan, which was expected to be a hit at the world's second biggest box office.

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