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Filming for possible Boston legal and spy drama to take over South End street Thursday

Mike McD alerts us that CBS will be filming scenes for a pilot on Thursday on Shawmut Avenue by Union Park through about midnight.

Union Park residents are being asked to leave their lights on to illuminate the scene for the Noah Wyle vehicle that Deadline Hollywood reportsis about

the former general counsel for the NSA who, after his involvement as a whistleblower in an international scandal, embarks on a new career at a storied law firm in Boston. Once there, he must face the reality that half the country thinks he’s our greatest patriot and the other half thinks he’s a traitor.

Any residents who can't find parking because of the filming can get a pass to a nearby garage.

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Are they offering to pay electric bills?

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you can only call it Champagne if it comes from Champagne

We already got ripped off all those rizzoli and isles episodes filmed in Burbank.

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crews seemed to pop up disruptively in the South End every few months. I appreciate the fact that these folks left detailed notices yesterday of their plans, with very specific scheduling, at every building nearby.

My first experience of this was "Next Stop, Wonderland", a great little Boston-set indie rom-com from 1998 which I strongly encourage you to rent. Hope Davis! Phillip Seymour Hoffman! Jimmy Tingle! Alan Gelfant! The great Jeremy Geidt from the A.R.T.! They dressed up On the Park, a sweet little chef-owned restaurant I loved in those days (now the excellent Greek restaurant Kava), to look much fancier that it really was for a date-night scene, a series of which the film hilariously spends a lot of time on. I imagined tourists going there after seeing the film and being disappointed that it was so modest-looking in real life.

There's an early scene in "Edge of Darkness", a crummy Mel Gibson vehicle, that uses the exterior of my local small supermarket Foodies to look like a sidewalk cafe. Many South End restaurants and condos were also used as interiors for other Hollywood films in the last 15 years.

Another sequence I love: a late, pivotal scene in "Gone Baby Gone", shot at Murphy's Law, which I lived not far from in City Point and favored as a late-night last stop, that featured great exterior shots of the power plant across the street. It was clear to me watching it that once the scene moves outside, they're not in that neighborhood anymore: it goes to some spot that, if you know the environs, doesn't exist nearby. Dream logic.

Sat next to Cameron Diaz at the bar at No. 9 Park when she was shooting "Knight and Day", which I am told is awful. The staff told me she was there every night: purportedly she's friends with Barbara Lynch. I was kind of tickled, but left her alone. She seemed nice enough.

I remember another time they were going to shoot a scene right across the street from me, can't remember which film -- American Hustle, maybe? I came home at night to find an early-Seventies muscle car sitting there with all the doors taken off, presumably to accommodate shooting interior scenes. I had to work, missed the actual shoot the next day.

Then there was the time I was saw Jon Hamm at Taberna de Haro, along with Tom Werner, Larry David, Michael Keaton, and Patrick Lyons, most of them in town to shoot HBO's "Clear History". (I walked in on Lyons in the one-toilet pisser: he was so stinko he forgot to lock the door. Awkward!) I try to be cool around any celebrities I see around town, so I didn’t look at them as I walked by on my way out. But I’m a huge Mad Men fan, had to steal a glance at Hamm through the window from the sidewalk.

He caught me, gave me a big, bug-eyed, goofy grin, as if to say, “Yeah, I know you’re gawking!” I gave him a little red-faced bow back. Love that man: a very funny guy who seems genuinely humbled by his fame and success. (Brilliant work in the "Black Mirror" Christmas special: see that one, too.) For me, the real surprise was that most celebrities that visit Boston are seen dining in stupid tourist-trap restaurants, not great local places like Taberna de Haro. Just guessing, but I credit Werner for that.

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I've been going to TdH since it opened and have lived more or less across the (Beacon) street for the last ten years or so. Always loved the outside dining in the summer but wasn't that thrilled originally with most of the food, but I think it got a lot better in recent years (after Deb's split with Julio?). Though it was a treat one time when Julio brought out for me some charcuterie he said he had smuggled out from Spain (I was also cited in an Improper Bostonian article about dining out alone that included my approach to dining at TdH, but that's another story).

I'm so oblivious that I could be sitting next to Jon Hamm and be without a clue, but I thrill vicariously in any event that I *could* have been there that night, despite an underlying, contrarian WGAF streak.

I am mainly moved to comment by your reference to Next Stop, Wonderland. Saw it once, but don't remember much. Would love to see it again. I'm intrigued, in part, by the indication that Phillip Seymour Hoffman was in it, which I don't remember at all. Not surprising, I guess, since I didn't know who PSH was at the time. But Jeremy Geidt! From the start, I used to go to all the ART tech run throughs until I started feeling too old to be in Cambridge at midnight on a "school night," when I needed to get home to the Fenway.


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Having lived in LA- the notices of filming in a neighborhood were slightly less welcome than a similar note of disruptive, long-term construction- The level of star-struckedness around here whenever a big-time film production comes around makes this area look like a total "Flim Springfield"-level backwater

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