I was following my normal route to work yesterday when an unusual white tent caught my still groggy left eye. Parked betwixt several large trucks on a busy midtown avenue was a small catering hub, a veritable what’s what of perishable breakfast goodies. You had your carb station, your fruit station, of course you had your coffee station. And while the smell of bacon and lemon danish filled the air and drool dribbled down unnoticed onto my business casual short-sleeved sweater, I shot back to life knowing full well I could not partake in this tremendous feast that lain before me. You see this feast is called craft service, and it is only available to a lucky, lucky few.
Every (note: not every) New Yorker worth their salt knows that where there’s smoke, there’s fire and where there’s craft service, there’s a film shoot a ‘brewin. Whether it’s a TV show, a commercial, a music video or a MAJOR MOTION PICTURE is not the point. What’s really important is that we normals get to see a real, live video production in the flesh! And if you’re lucky enough to find yourself smack dab in the middle of a film set, you might even get to see some celebs! If that’s your thang, make sure to follow these easy steps:
Step 1. Tear your eyes away from the croissants at that beautiful white tent and search for the closest street sign/lamp post/totem pole sticking out of the ground. Affixed to that very sign/post/poll will be a bright colored piece of paper, known as a permit. This permit is your ticket, this permit is your friend. You know why? It tells you what you’re looking at! Legally, the production has to tell you what they are shooting, and this little neon token is the only thing that will tell you. So instead of chasing around a PA wearing a headset and a frown who will inevitably tell you they are shooting Law and Order: Hawaii 5-0 instead of The Dark Knight Rises, go find that sweet, sweet colored paper and move on to Step 2.
Step 2. OK so you’ve sidestepped craft service (without stealing anything) and located the neon paper of dreams. It’s now time to whip out your smart phone and IMDB the crap outta the title that’s scribbled on the permit in black Sharpee. How else are you going to text your friends that you saw the set for the new Ben Stiller movie when you didn’t even know he was shooting The Secret Life of Walter Mitty? In other news, if it’s not on IMDB, that means it’s probably a student film and that means you should move along, there’s nothing to see here, folks.
Law & Order: SVU
Person of Interest