Coming Soon to a Promenade Near You: The Wackness

Residents along Columbia Heights received a memo from Shapiro Levine Productions, LLC, saying the are "honored to be filming scenes" for their newest production, "The Wackness", starring Ben Kingsley (who starred in "Ghandi") and directed by Jonathan Levine. Filming will take place along the Promenade at Clark Street, and on Columbia Heights between Middagh and Vine Streets, on Wednesday, July 18th.

Of particular note for locals — They are taking over parking spots today, July 17th, in advance:

As per our permit with the Mayor's Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting of New York City, we will be holding parking in advance for shoot on Tuesday, July 17th, 2007. We will be clearing some parking on Columbia Heights between Pierrepont and Orange Streets on the east side of the street, and on the north side of Clark St. between Columbia Heights and Willow St. for equipment trucks. We will also be clearing some parking on the east side of Cadman Plaza West, to stage our campers and on both sides of Columbia Heights between Middagh and Vine Streets for picture.

Also, watch out for roving bands of angry interns with clipboards telling you not to walk down the street. If you have any questions, concerns, or special needs, contact the Locations Department at 212-886-6850.

Update:  It appears that this an Olsen Twins movie. (Faded Youth via  flux de mots)

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  • ld

    Those assistants/interns are usually power mad control freaks. But when The Departed was being filmed on hicks/remsen, the people who had that chore were unusually pleasant, friendly & patient, and at least realized they were inconveniencing the neighbors. Good PR for Marty!
    (Scorcese, not Markowitz)

  • GHB

    I wonder why I can’t find any info on IMDB. Nothing under the title, the star or the director…

  • Qfwfq

    It looks like it is a very new production. They were looking for interns last month.

  • CS

    Years ago, Daniel Day-Lewis filmed Age of Innocence on Remsen also. I was fortunate enough to get his autograph from one of the PA’s…..

  • hoppy

    I also thought it strange that this was not up on, perhaps the most reliable movie info site . A movie that is presently “filming” is pretty far into its production and should be up on the site by now, especially if it stars someone of the caliber of Ben Kingsley.

  • hoppy

    While we’re roughly on the topic of movie filming in the Heights, I remember watching a movie on cable several months ago called “Without a Trace” starring Kate Nelligan and Judd Hirsch which filmed in several locations throughout BH I think about 25 years ago. As a relative newcomer to the neighborhood it was like watching a strange time capsule (Old Hungary restaurant at the site of Taze, 99 cent store at the hardware store on Montague, a butcher/meat market (!) at the Corcoran office). I’m wondering if anyone knows of other films which feature Heights locations (besides Moonstruck)?

  • cranberry

    not that it features old businesses, but “three days of the condor” was filmed in my building on cranberry…starring fay dunaway and robert redford circa 1970something…check it out.

  • Lifer

    I remember watching Without a Trace at the Heights Cinema. The Forgotten with Heather Graham was filmed between Dumbo and the heights. Moonstruck was actually in Carroll Gardens. Straight Outa Brooklyn was filed in part on the promenade. There was an old horror movie from the 70’s filmed in the last house on the south end of the promenade.i’ll try to jog my memory a bit more..many movies have been filmed in the clock building across from patsys as well, She’s Gottta Have It was filmed in the heights…There ws a small scene in Baski’s American Pop(animated) that took place on the promenade….

  • CS

    The Forgetten did not star Heather Graham. It was Julianne Moore. She was really gracious, sweet and teeny-tiny. She came out and greeted fans.

    Another movie made in 1977 is the Sentinel starring Chris Sarandon. It’s about a super model who moves to Brooklyn Heights and becomes involved in a cult of devil worshippers. This movie airs around Halloween and sometimes late at night. Worth watching for the Promenade and mansions….

  • CS

    Lifer, is that the movie you meant?

  • Lifer

    I do believe thats it CS, i think it was the house at the beginning of the promenade that was on the vhs cover. You got me on the Believers, I always get those 2 mixed up… There was a movie “They Call Me Bruce” that has a chase secene on Furman street..

  • CM

    Moonstruck was filmed in both Carroll Gardens and BH. Exteriors of the family home were of the building located at the SW corner of Cranberry and Willow. The Camerrari bakery was located on Henry St btw Sackett and Union in CG.

  • GHB

    Hoppy, the original “Sweet November” (’68) with Sandy Dennis and Anthony Newley was shot in the Heights, including the Promenade. Also “Catch Me If You Can”, “The Departed”, “The Perfect Man”, “Anger Management” and “Prizzi’s Honor” were partially filmed here. Apparently, the new film “No Reservations” was too.

  • Tim N.

    I cannot believe they took all but two blocks of CH, as well as blocks of Clark and Pineapple on a day when everyone is moving their cars!!! For a straight-to-DVD piece of cinematic junk that is nothing more than a payday for Ben Kingsley? Screw them. When you need that much space and that much gear you either have too much money or a director/producer who doesn’t know what the hell they’re doing (or both). I’m all for shooting in NYC, but they could have worked this out a lot better, like shooting it on Tuesday when those spaces would be empty anyway.

    I can remember when She’s the One was shooting in our neighborhood in the West Village, I tried to park in one of their spots, a PA came up to ask me to move, I mentioned that I lived there and she gave me a voucher for a garage for two days while they finished. And I went out of my way to see that movie (it wasn’t very good) when it came out. Should this film ever see the light of day, I’ll be sure to go out of my way to avoid it.

  • Passing Through

    I’ve googled both “the wackness” and “Shapiro Levine Productions” and pretty much nothing came up. In fact, for both searches this very BHB was among the top hits.

    Smells like a hoax, don’t you think?

  • Qfwfq

    that would have to be pretty involved hoax, since there were “No Parking” notices and traffic cones all along Columbia Heights, and that memo posted on every door.

    If you search for “Shapiro Levine Productions”, you will find a few job postings for them.

  • T.K. Small

    Perhaps this is proof that my mind is full of useless information, but I recall two movies that were not mentioned. “Taxi driver” with Robert De Niro had a scene that was filmed in Brooklyn Heights when he purchased a collection of guns.

    Additionally, there was a Woody Allen movie called “Bananas” that was filmed on the promenade. Woody Allen was playing a phony central American dictator visiting New York City and he was being interviewed by the left-wing reporter that he was trying to impress

  • brooklynite

    They don’t always use the real production name while filming, and often they don’t even have a title decided on until post production.

  • Tom

    “The Sentinel” ends with the building on the Promenade being torn down. I was yelling at the screen, “That gateway to hell is landmarked! You can’t destroy it!”

  • GHB

    It’s no hoax. Even though I can’t find it listed on IMDB, I went down to watch the filming and Ben Kingsley signed my Gandhi DVD package. He was very nice about doing it too. When I asked him to sign, he said “I’d be delighted”, which sounded really cool with his accent.

  • ChrisC

    You saw Ben Kingsley?! I’m so jealous:) And yes, this whole “no parking” thing is no joke — was walking down Henry St., and trucks and orange cones were easily taking up a good two blocks!

  • GHB

    ChrisC…Yes I did, and he was wearing a long grey wig for the role.

  • nabeguy

    I recall watching the Valachi Papers being filmed on Cranberry Street in the early 70’s. The scene was shot between Hicks and Willow, and involved some mug being machine gunned in front of the garage spaces on the south side. I distinctly remember a dopey friend of mine ruining the shot when he screamed out “Oh, gross, look at all the blood!” You can still see the patches in the wood of the garage doors where the explosive squibs were placed.
    P.S. to Homer…the weather sucked, so here I am.

  • Homer Fink

    Nabe — are you web surfing on vacation?

  • nabeguy

    Nah, I’m back in town actually. I was so deep in the woods, I couldn’t even get satellite, a situation that led to an early withdrawal (and withdrawal symptoms!)

  • james

    just saw them filming the movie outside my work on 47th street in manhattan, kingsley had long hair and was wearing a floral shirt, also there was a cop wearing a baby blue nypd uni, perhaps indicating the movie takes place in the 70s/80s.

  • NigelNigel

    I interviewed Kingsley once – he kept referring to himself in the third person, which was odd.

    There are plenty of other movies that were shot here – Two for the Money with Pacino (they had an actual elephant on Columbia Heights). Hide and Seek with DeNiro. A Sex and the City episode shot down in Dumbo. Was the end of Tom Cruise’s War of the Worlds done here (or was that Park Slope)?

  • Dink

    Anybody have any idea if they’re still going to filming in the area? I heard they moved over to the West Village

  • sarah o’Brien

    there are pictures of mary-kate olsen on the set of wackness already, so it is not a hoax, and it is not an Olsen twin movie, only mary-kate is going to be in it i believe.

  • anonymous

    I just wanted to inform you that it is PAs not interns who ask you not to walk into shots and who block off roads. As a past intern, I can tell you that they do not pay interns and thus they do not pay them enough to be yelled at and shoved into by angry people. Actually they don’t really pay PAs enough either but someone’s got to do that crappy job. And beleive me, no intern ever thinks they have any power or control. You run errands, you pick up coffee, you don’t get paid. Nope, no power control delusions at all.