Superstorm causes major entertainment disruption

Production of at least nine well-known TV shows were affected

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David Letterman didn’t get many laughs for his monologue on Monday — “The Late Show” host told his jokes to a mostly empty Ed Sullivan Theatre.

Jimmy Fallon taped “Late Night” without an audience, too, as Hurricane Sandy disrupted a wide swath of the New York area’s bustling entertainment industry.

City officials said that all film permits for Monday and Tuesday were revoked because of the hurricane and associated safety precautions.

“There will be no city authorized outdoor filming within the five boroughs,” read a statement Monday from the Mayor’s Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting.

Production on at least nine shows was affected, including “Gossip Girl,” ‘’Person of Interest” and “Elementary,” according to the Los Angeles Times. “The Daily Show” and “The Colbert Report” also took Monday night off, and each of Broadway’s 40 theaters will be dark through Tuesday.

The storm forced Focus Features to cancel the New York premiere of “Anna Karenina,” which was set for Tuesday. A studio spokeswoman said they will reschedule.

Concerts planned for New York and New Jersey were cancelled or postponed, including performances by Journey, comedian Louis C.K., and the “Freedom to Love Now” show featuring Rufus Wainwright and fun, which is now set for spring of 2013.

Radio City Music Hall was shuttered until Wednesday. Carnegie Hall postponed concerts planned for Tuesday. Off-Broadway shows and even national tours of Broadway shows like “Anything Goes,” currently in Wilmington, Del, closed their doors.

It was the most detrimental storm for the theatre community since the threat of Hurricane Irene in late August 2011 prompted producers to cancel matinee and evening performances on both a Saturday and Sunday.

East Coast charity galas were also cancelled, and fashion designer Prabal Gurung postponed the unveiling of his anticipated collection for Target until next week.

Some network schedules were shaken up by the widespread power outages cutting into the available TV audience in the East.

CBS planned to air repeats instead of new episodes Monday of “How I Met Your Mother,” “Partners,” “2 Broke Girls” and “Mike & Molly”. A CBS News special on Sandy was to follow at 10pm EDT, pre-empting “Hawaii Five-O”.

The CW also was set to air repeats of “90201” and “Gossip Girl.”

ABC said it was sticking to its schedule of new episodes of “Dancing With the Stars” and “Castle.” Fox was to air a previously scheduled rerun of “The X Factor,” which had been planned if the San Francisco-Detroit World Series ended, as it did, in four games.

NBC did not immediately respond concerning the status of its Monday schedule, which included “The Voice” and “Revolution.”

“Good Morning America,” the “Today” show and “CBS This Morning” were expected to air live as usual Tuesday with extensive storm coverage.

Sandy took a toll on the movie box office even before it made landfall. Ticket sales were down more than 11 per cent compared to the same weekend last year, said Paul Dergarabedian, box-office analyst for This weekend’s top film, “Argo,” collected $12.1 million. The top film during the same weekend in 2011, “Puss in Boots,” earned $34 million.