Here’s a clip shot late one night on 10th Avenue in New York’s “Hell’s Kitchen” district–so named for its past history as a slum
environment but now home to numerous high rises, lofts, theaters, restaurants that won’t seat you, etc. In it, Andy Garcia and Emily Mortimer begin a scene and promptly stop as the camera fails to be in the right place. Emily is a tad upset and voices her disapproval by saying, quite rightly, that she was told to step wide of her mark–and now she’s being blamed for not hitting her mark. As I recall, this was the night that we had a strange, out of control Police Officer (the film commission assigns an officer to every shoot) yelling at us about what time we had to stop. His deeply unpleasant manner (this wasn’t our first encounter with him) rattled everyone. I believe a letter was eventually written, by our producers, to the NYPD suggesting that in terms of public relations between film crews shooting in New York and the Police, this particular officer might be better deployed on some other duty–like wandering the projects in the Bronx looking for crack dealers.

By the way, to those who wrote asking me what “picture lock” means: it means reaching a final, FINAL, edited version of the film that will not change any further. Locking picture enables the composer to have accurate timings of scenes, the sound editors to begin building the tracks etc. We’ll lock picture next week, making our editing period a nice, tidy eight week process.


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