Euphoria Season 2: This is How Toxic the Set Was, Sources Say

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In response to recent concerns about working conditions on Euphoria Season 2, HBO has issued an official statement stating that no "formal complaints" were received during production and that the safety of cast and crew members was paramount.

According to the most recent complaints, the set was a toxic workplace and background actors were mistreated. The allegations especially mentioned director Sam Levinson's lack of preparation and alleged disregard regarding COVID-19 safety requirements throughout last year's production.

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Multiple Claims of Toxic Work Conditions on the Euphoria Season 2 Set

Numerous insiders stated in a scathing story by The Daily Beast that the set of Euphoria Season 2 was a toxic work environment. Several background performers, in particular, allegedly had to endure 18-hour days. As a result, a SAG-AFTRA union representative was sent to the set.

Many of the background actors said that if they were given the opportunity to return for the next season, they would decline unless significant changes were made.

According to one insider, "creatively, it must be a dream" for the Euphoria stars to work with creator Sam Levinson and his habit of showing up on set without a shot list and randomly picking what to shoot. However, logistically, it was a nightmare.

“It was the most disorganized set that I’ve ever been a part of because I don’t think anybody knew what was going on,” a source shared.

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HBO Officially Responds To Euphoria Season 2 On-Set Controversy

According to Variety, HBO made an official statement in response to charges of mishandled safety requirements and Levinson's behavior. While HBO acknowledges that the production of a show like Euphoria can be "complex," it claims that any formal complaints to SAG-AFTRA have been filed. Said HBO:

"The well-being of cast and crew on our productions is always a top priority. The production was in full compliance with all safety guidelines and guild protocols. It’s not uncommon for drama series to have complex shoots, and COVID protocols add an additional layer. We maintain an open line of communication with all the guilds, including SAG-AFTRA. There were never any formal inquiries raised."
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What’s Next for Euphoria?

Disagreements regarding what happened on the Euphoria set raise concerns about what is going on under Levinson's guidance. While HBO denies any issues with SAG-AFTRA, they do not address accusations about Levinson coming up without a shot list, which has led to unsafe working conditions for some performers.

While the series appears to be addressing COVID-19 appropriately, it is unclear whether HBO is supporting Levinson's directing technique, which has fans worried about what is going on behind the scenes.

The second season of HBO's Euphoria delves deeper into the dramatic, aggressive, and even violent stories of East Highland's youth. Levinson is in charge of not only the more visceral sequences but also the intimate and nude situations in which the actors are put in a vulnerable position.

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If the show's popularity grows, HBO will have to address the criticisms surrounding Levinson in order to allay viewers' fears about the performers' safety. Maintaining a healthy work environment is one thing, managing the set in accordance with SAG-AFTRA is another.

If the network wants to keep Euphoria on pace to become its most-watched show of all time, it will have to explain clearly what happens on set and address the rumors regarding Levinson's behavior.

Euphoria Seasons 1 and 2 are now playing on HBO Max.