Film shoots

We continue to monitor Film Shoots on the block and their impact. Several recent film shoots occurred without the mandatory 48-hour notice being posted on lamp posts. Not only is the notice required by law, but it gives us an opportunity to contact the film company and ask them to follow our “good neighbor” practices. The Mayor’s Office of Film Theater and Television also has its own Code of Conduct for film companies.

As one example, there’s no need for the film trucks to wake up sleeping residents by running their noisy generators too early. In another case, the film company and police prevented UPS from delivering needed heart medicine to a block resident. While some shoots are well behaved, we’ve had our share of film companies that disrespect the block and its residents.

We’ve also looked at the number of shoots on 45th Street compared to other local blocks. While we can’t conclude definitively, we are seeing a pattern where our block is suffering more than its fair share of disruptive film shoots. Despite our requests, the Mayor’s Office of FTB is not being forthcoming with more accurate data.

While one shoot in itself may not be overbearing, the number of shoots are. In addition to the seeming disproportionate number of shoots on this block, the adverse impact must be seen in the context of all other problems we experience, such as the out-of-control crowds at the Al Hirschfeld Theater, the constant Broadway and double-decker buses, pedicabs, tourists blocking the sidewalks, people blocking sidewalks in front of restaurants with sidewalk cafes and on, and on, and on.

The impact is cumulative. Many of us on this block work in film or in the theater. We recognize the need for entertainment production in this city, but there’s too much of a good thing, and it’s not being effectively regulated.

Now, if you caught Law & Order SVU last week, you would have seen the detectives catch the bad guy in a chase across the rooftop of the Whitby (325). Click each photo for full-size view.