ORLANDO, Fla. — Cirque du Soleil, the Montreal-based acrobatics show company that had been developing a new show at Walt Disney World, has filed for bankruptcy protection.

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The company said an "immense disruption and forced show closures as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic" has forced it to regroup and restructure its debt, which totals almost $1 billion, according to CNN, citing "multiple reports."

In March, Cirque du Soleil suspended production on its many live shows worldwide and laid off more than 4,000 workers, or about 95 percent of its workforce. One of the suspended shows was "Drawn to Life," which was set to debut at the Cirque du Soleil theater at Disney Springs in Florida just a few weeks later in April.

"With zero revenues since the forced closure of all of our shows due to Covid-19, management had to act decisively to protect the company's future," Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group CEO Daniel Lamarre said in a news release.

The company hopes to restructure its debt with help from the Canadian government and private equity firms.