Ask Mayor Bloomberg’s Office of Film, Theater and Broadcasting about the inundation of shoots for movies, TV shows and commercials and you’ll get this response: “The industry provides high-quality jobs in an era when low-paying service jobs have become the norm.” The Boston Consulting Group, meanwhile, released a study in May reporting that NYC’s film sector is the strongest in history, generating $7.1 billion in 2011, while employing 130,000.
But some residents of brownstone Brooklyn have a different take, saying that they’re paying the price for the boom. According to a story in The Brooklyn Daily Eagle, with “the streets of historic Brooklyn Heights clogged with film trucks on a regular basis, local businesses and residents are fuming.
Andrea Demetropoulos, who owns Rocco and Jezebel pet shop at 89 Pineapple Walk, has launched a cease-fire petition, and tells the Eagle, “Filming is out of control. Please tell people to call the Mayor’s Office and tell them, ‘If you knew how difficult it is to do our job with all this filming.’ Three customers and the UPS guy this morning told me they couldn’t park anywhere. They’re killing the people who live here. It does interfere with local businesses and residents.”
She adds that some production companies are blocking off parking spaces they don’t even use during shoots: “They’re all over the place… Columbia Heights, Clark Street, Hicks, Henry, and they take over the streets a day or two prior to shooting. This entire neighborhood is only 5 by 13 blocks. There needs to be a moratorium.”
Judy Stanton, Executive Director of the Brooklyn Heights Association, notes that she’s beginning to lose count of the multitude of shoots around the neighborhood, saying that filming for “Delivery Man” is taking place at Plymouth Church, on the Promenade, at the Historical Society, at Heights Kids and on Henry Street: “How many blocks? No answer. I think it’s excessive. More consideration needs to be given to little neighborhoods like this one. Multiple shots at one time is unfair. Last week ‘Law and Order’ and a Lottery commercial were shooting at the same time. The Lottery trucks blocked Montague from Court to Henry street. That really did affect merchants.”
The Brooklyn Eagle counts more than a dozen major films and TV shows being shot in the area over the last two weeks: “Delivery Man,” “Smash,” “Law and Order: SVU,” “The Angriest Man in Brooklyn,” “Noah,” “Golden Boy,” “Zero Hour,” “Orange,” “666 Park Avenue,” “Carrie Diaries,” “Person of Interest,” “How to Be a Man,” “Infamous” and “Made in Jersey”—along with a number of commercials, like the New York Lottery spot being filmed on Montague Street. Much more in the Eagle piece here.