Friday, April 17, 2009

Trauma films on North Beach streets

I cannot believe the circumstances: it's been four decades (give or take a few hours/days) since I stood on the corner of Taylor and Filbert Streets in San Francisco's North Beach and watched in awe...... the filming for the movie Bullit was wrapping up one of its many scenes of the famous bouncing-off-the-crest-of-those-SF-hills chase sequence, and now I am again a more mature witness to another modern-day filming on the very same street corner.... and this time I have a camera!!!
Today it was to be for a TV pilot to be aired possibly in a month for NBC and titled Trauma. The camera crew and actors have been been filming for the past few weeks in various SF locations, their biggest and loudest being the explosion on the King Street off-ramp some weeks ago.

But I remember waaay back when, as a kid, on this very corner where I stood there was just a film crew of not even a handful of the production crew. With just a single camera, three cars (two chase scene cars and an "innocent" VW bug) and no police for traffic control.

Tonight there was at least five trucks with a work crew of at least 50, one very noisy but fast car, and even portable toilets and a food cart, plus a huge power generator... about five motorcycle policemen were utilized for traffic control, and even more!!!

Boooy, has the times changed! There were quite a big crowd of about 18 just standing around tonight in the cold wind watching ~ but I do remember as a kid 40 yrs ago, there wasn't but five watching..... and it was during the afternoon. I stood on the sidewalk at the northeast corner of Taylor & Filbert just behind the camera crew!!! :-)

Tonight this speeding car flew down the hills, skidded a little as he hit the brakes a bit too much then swung around to his right; the scene was well lit with small lights on the hill, plus a huge bright light at the very top of the street pointed south to our corner.

The last time I was here those two Bullit cars flew down the hills, screeched on their brakes and skidded to their left.... in this link to a youTube video (not responsible for any broken links but was functional when I tested while writing this) of just the movie's chase scene, the chase down Taylor Street starts at about 4mins 10 seconds. You can see Crystal Tower apartment building in the background and the little moss-green VW bug gets passed by the two speeding cars.... ;-)My, have the times changed!!here he comes DOWN Taylor street!!

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