'The Circle': The Shocking Amount of Time It Takes to Film the Netflix Show

The Circle is back with a brand new season and all new competitors. Since producers limit what the contestants can do on the Netflix show — including how often they can interact with each other — many fans wonder how long it takes to film The Circle

‘The Circle’ Season 2 is available on Netflix 

In January 2020, Netflix introduced The Circle. The competition series is unlike any other, turning social media into a game. The Circle reminds many viewers of other series like CatfishBig Brother, and even Black Mirror

Contestants choose whether they want to present their authentic selves to “The Circle” or play a game of “catfish.” Anyone can be in “the circle,” as long as they keep the right people on their side and prevent getting blocked. 

With $100,000 at stake, competitors take the social experiment pretty seriously. At the end of season 1, Joey Sasso was the winner. Shubham Goel was the runner-up and Sammie Cimarelli won the Fan Favorite award. 

Now, The Circle is back with season 2. Netflix is taking a hint from Disney+ and releasing episodes in batches. To date, eight episodes are available. 

Where is ‘The Circle’ filmed? 

Much like Big Brother or The Real WorldThe Circle’s contestants all live under one roof. However, since the game is about what they’re presenting on social media, the contestants won’t physically meet each other unless they’re blocked or they return for the final episode. 

The show films using several cameras in each of the contestant’s small apartments. Each iteration of The Circle is taped in Salford, England, in the now-iconic apartment building. 

How long does ‘The Circle’ film? 

In January 2020, Tim Harcourt told Decider filming The Circle Season 1 took “just over three weeks.” More specifically, The Circle contestants are confined to their apartments and have limited activities for 15 days.

Sasso says the contestants weren’t aware of how long filming would take going into season 1. “When you sign up, they tell you, ‘We don’t tell you the day, we don’t tell you the time,’” he told The Hollywood Reporter. “That’s part of the mental game of kind of losing your sh*t and trying to keep it together.” 

What do ‘The Circle’ contestants do when Circle Chat is closed?

The Circle may make it look like there’s plenty to do, especially with Circle Chat and the various games they play. But in reality, the contestants don’t have a lot to keep themselves entertained when Circle Chat is closed. 

According to Oprah Magazine, the apartments don’t have WiFi. Plus, contestants can’t bring their smartphones or laptops. They are allowed to bring books, games, magazines, and pre-downloaded music.

“They worked out, read, did jigsaws, made arts and crafts, and we even occasionally let them watch their favorite shows on their Netflix accounts,” Harcourt told Us Weekly. 

Additionally, producers and therapists were made available to each contestant. The game is all about never seeing their opponents, but the contestants still need someone to interact with.

“There was a therapist you could see whenever you wanted,” season 1 contestant Goel told Cosmo. And as Harcourt told Decider: “It’s not a test of solitary confinement!” 

New episodes of The Circle will be released Apr. 28.

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