Greenpoint Goes Bang: Filming Explosions Scheduled For This Afternoon in Greenpoint (6/26)

MacGruber fireball, ©2010 Rogue Pictures
MacGruber, ©2010 Rogue Pictures

In case you hear some loud bangs or explosion noises going off in Greenpoint this afternoon, it’s due to scenes being filmed for Netflix’s Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. The planned explosions will be happening on Freeman Street between Franklin and West. It’s poppin’.

Acording to the Greenpoint Post, “The event will consist of air cannons breaking candy glass windows, and rubber debris dropping from roof level, police say. NYPD and FDNY will also be on site.”

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Manhattan Ave Ticket Trap, Bearded Burglars, & Williamsburg Hate Crime — The Hook-Up 4/17

14th Street Reimagined - via TransAlt
14th Street Reimagined – via TransAlt

The L Train shutdown could totally transform 14th Street as we know it.

Think twice before you try parking on Manhattan Avenue between Huron and India. It’s a “ticket trap”.

Shooting so many movies and TV shows in Greenpoint and Williamsburg is both a blessing and a curse. It makes our restaurants and shops more popular, but isn’t always the most convenient. Continue reading

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Brooklyn’s Katy Perry, Gentrification Thoughts, & de Blasio on Colbert–The Hook Up 7/18

Catey Shaw is Brooklyn's own Katy Perry knock off #livinthedream


If you want to be irritated, watch this cringe-worthy music video, which is basically a knock off of California Girls, sung by a party girl who dances around Williamsburg in a Nets hat.

Bill de Blasio played it cool with Colbert this week and denied being a socialist (even though we all know he’s a communist spy infiltrating the city to spread universal pre-K).

Both GIRLS and Boardwalk Empire are shooting in the hood today.  Speaking of which, have you heard of Film Complaint 11222? Local resident, Rolf Carl, is Greenpoint’s own film shoot monitoring vigilante, removing tape from irresponsible crews and keeping 311 on speed dial.

The NY Times finally publishes a thoughtful piece on gentrification from a writer who has lived in Brooklyn since the 70’s.  Continue reading

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Kickstarter Alert—Reel Works Teens’ Original Feature Film

"72 Hours, A Brooklyn Love Story" by Reel Works Teens ©Reel Works

Heads up, Brooklyn! There are just 47 hours left in this Kickstarter campaign to support a made in Brooklyn production—an original feature length film called “72 Hours, a Brooklyn Love Story,” created by Reel Works Teens and their professional mentors. The comedy will be an interweaving series of narratives revolving around a boy whose infatuation leads him on a three day journey across Brooklyn. Filming will start in August 2014, with teens integrated into a professional crew and teens acting side by side with professional actors. The film will premiere in January 2015. Show your support!

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Greenpoint Filming The Knick: Horses on Milton St – Today!

An awesome reader tipped me off that Milton St is covered in dirt for a movie shoot so I stopped by on my way to the office. I know some of us feel inconvenienced by film shoots in Greenpoint, but this one is way cool. Not sure about you but I’m a total sucker for period pieces and people are walking around like it’s 1906 and covered in crazy head wounds and dressing. Continue reading

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Brooklyn Community Board #1: Meeting 10/5/11

Girl Talk - Williamsburg Waterfront
© Bao Nguyen

Coverage of Brooklyn Community Board 1’s Public Hearing & Board Meeting 10/5/2011

Waterfront Concerts
The waterfront concerts by Open Space Alliance for North Brooklyn, was a main topic. The concerts will move north, from the state-owned East River State Park to a paved lot owned by the NYC Dept. of Parks and Recreation (Kent Ave @ N 11th & 12th)  The new location has several benefits, including fewer residents and since it’s city-owned more of OSA’s revenue ($90,000/year more in state licensing fees) will go towards improving CB1 parks.

New waterfront venue
Paved Lot, New Venue For Waterfront Concerts

The concerts stir up strong emotions on all sides but OSA has local support because it engages the community board and is proactive when addressing neighborhood concerns. Neighbors raised specific concerns about the events that followed this summer’s Widespread Panic show, where NOX-peddlers and unruly crowds were the last straw for many locals.  Previous complaints of littering on side streets have been addressed by offering volunteers free tickets in exchange for neighborhood clean-up after shows, and this practice has been successful and will likely be continued next season.  A call was made for access to OSA’s accounting to see how revenue goes toward local parks.  Another public hearing regarding the concerts will be held on 10/20 @ Swinging 60s Senior Center (211 Ainslie) 6:30.

© Serious Eats

The Charleston
If you been at The Charleston or within blocks, you know it’s frequented by people who enjoy drinking, smoking and not using their inside voices.  A few community members would like to see the renewal of their sidewalk cafe permit (which allows tables out front) denied.  They presented legitimate concerns: the sidewalk is already narrow by bike racks and trees, so the space in between is frequently occupied by smokers overflowing from the table area. This raises concern for sidewalk permits for bars in general, even those that are more considerate. It would be a surprise to see the tables in front of The Charleston much longer as they didn’t show up to defend their permit renewal.

The corner of Greenpoint & Humboldt will be given the honorific name of “Cosimo’s Way” to honor the late Cosimo Tristani’s service to the community. The presentation given by Andre Aviles, his friend from ages seventeen to sixty-three, was moving and heartfelt.

© Brooklyn Paper

More controversial was the talk of street redesigns concerning the Greenpoint Ave. bicycle lanes.  Specifically, the transportation committee voiced strong disagreement, backed up by a contested motion from the community board as a whole, not to support a street redesign proposal for Greenpoint Ave. from McGuinness to the bridge that would involve the loss of all parking on this stretch, about 50 spaces.  It should be noted that this proposal, made by DOT, was preliminary and discussions are ongoing. It was recognized that the current layout is dangerous to both cars and cyclists and changes must be made.

As someone who bikes regularly on Greenpoint Ave,  something needs to be done on this stretch. The most serious dangers are speeding drivers who swerve into the bike lane to avoid waiting for car ahead making left turns.  However, it is important that the redesign protects the bikes lanes better without sacrificing all parking or loading zones for businesses.

Redesigns are also planned for the Greenpoint Ave Bridge and the Queens side of Greenpoint Ave, which is plagued by double-parking and a headache-inducing traffic pattern.

Filming in Greenpoint
Greenpoint is well-known as a filming destination and the community board seemed united in its criticisms of the burdens of filming on the neighborhood.  The main complaint stems from the loss of parking, especially for businesses on Manhattan Ave. Specifically, complaints were raised about the tendency for crews to clear streets hours prior to shooting, leaving locals wondering why businesses lose loading areas for 12 hrs in order to shoot a ten-minute shot.  If you film in Greenpoint, a word of advice is to meet the community board and explain your position.  The board spoke very favorably of one company that approached them prior to filming. The film industry creates good jobs for Greenpointers and New York, so the “go back to Hollywood” sentiment expressed by some was lacking nuance.

Brooklyn Community Board 1 Website

Upcoming dates:

October 20, 6:30 pm (211 Ainslie Street)  Public hearing regarding Open Space Alliance and waterfront shows
October 25, 6:30 pm @ Community Board (435 Graham) Land use committee meeting, including a discussion on expanding the Greenpoint historic district.
October 27, 6:30 @ Community Board (435 Graham) Public safety meeting.  More detailed info on local safety issues and liquor licenses.

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I Just Want My Pants Back, Tommy

Reader and friend from the ‘hood Marisha emailed me this hysterical little tidbit from The Wall Street Journal on a new MTV show being shot almost exclusively in Greenpoint and how a bartender at Tommy’s Tavern gave them shit – which is pretty awesome.

Another forthcoming series, MTV’s “I Just Want My Pants Back,” a comedy about four recent college graduates, will be filmed almost exclusively on location in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.

“Setting it in a place like Greenpoint was really important for me because a key aspect of the show is that you have these two different groups”—trendy 20-somethings and longtime Polish residents—”vying for the same airspace,” said co-executive producer Doug Liman, whose previous work includes directing “Swingers.” “The friction between those two groups is something I was passionate about getting on screen.”

The show’s other executive producer, David Bartis, who is based in Los Angeles, recalled the enjoyable unpredictability of filming on location in New York. He described an incident in which they called the police on an intoxicated bartender at Greenpoint bar Tommy’s Tavern, where they filmed the pilot. The bartender refused to leave the premises, Messrs. Bartis and Liman said, making it impossible for them to continue filming.

Reached by phone, the owner of Tommy’s Tavern, Thomas Kaminski, said their account was inaccurate, though police records confirm that police responded to a call at that location concerning a bartender who was “intoxicated and making threats to crew members.”

“It’s probably one of the reasons why you shoot in New York—because you want to live in a reality that creeps into your production,” Mr. Liman said. “If you look carefully, I’m sure you can see him in the background.”

I couldn’t find any info on when the show is actually going to begin airing, though it sounds like it will either be thoroughly entertaining to laugh at the hipsterificness of it all or infuriating…

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Blog Buzz: Barbie Cars, Chocolate and Shia LaBeouf

Greenpoint gossip from people who are better bloggers than I.

Someone lost their friend on Devoe. The really strange thing is I was born on Devoe and my last name is Carroll. Though there is no relation, I sincerely hope this guy isn’t dead.

Although not actually in Greenpoint, Ikea is opening June 15th. You can get there via the B61 which runs through Greenpoint. And hey, we need cheap furniture, too, ya know. – Only The Blog Knows Brooklyn

This Saturday you can take a Bike Tour of The (Future) Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway. The 10-mile ride at a family pace begins at Newtown Creek in Greenpoint to the spectacular waterfront in Red Hook. I’m guessing ‘family pace’ means it’s not going to be Lance Armstrongs and the spandex mafia.

The Fashion Skool of Hard Knocks featured some Greenpointers (and I use that term loosely) dressed in true hipster attire on the corner of Greenpoint and Manhattan Aves. Though I gotta admit I am a little in love with that purse chick number three is carrying.

I cannot believe that someone owns this car in Greenpoint. Please, please tell me there were California plates on this whip. Malibu, even?

As someone who loves, collects and sells vintage for the last ten years it makes me really sad to hear about this. Just think of all those Etsians who could have made trinkets and things with all the potentially amazing vintage stuff in there.

Ever wonder what Winthrop (McGolrick) Park looked like in 1913? You can spy PS 110 in the right corner, too.

Bette Midler came to McCarren Park to plant trees for Arbor Day. Did The Divine Miss M come as C.C. Bloom? Or maybe she sang The Rose? Ok, I’m all out of planting puns.

The Greenpoint Hotel is apparently now a Bed & Breakfast. Does everyone who stays there get a free vial of crack, too?

The trials and tribulations of Studio B and their roof deck has been all over the blogosphere. They were hit with a stop work order last week which I imagine might put a cramp in their May 2nd debut. The locals are *really* pissed with this place. The last thing you want is a bunch of people organizing themselves for a good ol’ fashioned lynchin’. The hipsters and the locals alike are getting involved in this. Since the place never has anyone I want to see, I personally don’t give a rats ass what happens to ’em. Between them and Club Exit, the only people who would be missing them are the makers of glow sticks.

The Greenpoint chocolatiers aka the Mast Brothers have snagged themselves a Williamsburg factory to make their bars. I have yet to try them myself, but I am a big fan of expensive chocolates… It makes you eat less when you have to pay more.

And if you’re home and not doing anything right now – hangout along Franklin Street between Greenpoint and Kent to see some stars filming New York, I Love You. I have an unnatural affection for Shia LaBeouf so I’m heading out to stalk – er, I mean observe, him.

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It’s Raining Production Assistants

Something has been pissing me off since I’ve moved in. I feel horrible even complaining about it considering other residents are dealing with bedbugs and toxic molds, but it just drives me nuts.

The people who live upstairs from me – the same people who allow a bathroom leak to get so bad that it caves my bathroom ceiling in – throw stuff out the window. Actually they pour stuff out the window. I have no idea what it is, but it pisses me off to no end. Why would you need to throw any liquid out of a window is beyond me, but they do so at least twice a day. I hope and pray that it’s water.

Yesterday it sounded as if they were moving furniture, actually a lot of the last week it’s sounded like that. The Super had mentioned he thought they were moving out. Then last night in the courtyard there was a ruckus, people down there doing God knows what. Drilling going on upstairs at midnight. Then it all started up again at 6am.

Then this morning I left for work only to see a dozen people and a breakfast buffet outside my front door. They’re filming something. This happens a lot around here. At least once a month there’s some sort of crew right on my block. And more often than that I see some sort of movie, television or student production going on somewhere in the hood.

I’ve yet to see anyone famous but I also don’t look too hard. I’m sure if I hung around these locales, I’d be able to spot a celeb or two. But ya know, as a New Yorker you gotta be cool and act like you can’t be bothered.

I wonder if they’re filming in the courtyard or maybe doing something in the apartment upstairs. Doubtful, but as long as they don’t throw liquid out the window, they’re ok with me.

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