“New York On Location” gives Queens families a behind the
scenes look at how movie stunts are performed at Kaufman
Astoria Studios. Photos by Jackie Strawbridge.
BY JACKIE STRAWBRIDGE
“New York On Location,” a free event presented by the Museum of the Moving Image, Theatrical Teamsters Local 817 and Kaufman Astoria Studios, displayed the art of on location film and TV shooting for thousands of visitors on Sunday.
The Museum of the Moving Image originally presented this event in 2007. According to Carl Goodman, executive director of the Museum of the Moving Image, the museum was glad for the opportunity to revive it now that there is increased space from their new courtyard and the Kaufman Astoria Studios backlot, both of which opened in 2013.
Throughout the day, spectators saw movie weather demonstrations, watched stuntmen perform high jumps and street fighting, visited star dressing rooms and wardrobe trailers and examined technical equipment, among many other activities.
Mike Burke performed stunt driving in a parking lot neighboring the Kaufman Astoria Studios backlot. Burke has been stunt driving for more than 10 years, and has been working in motor sports for more than two decades.
“I’m living the dream,” Burke said.
Of “New York On Location,” Burke said, “it’s great to get everybody aware of what we do in the film business, especially in New York, that we’re a big market, we’re a big player in the game.”
Visitor and Astoria resident Amy Sauer said, “I’ve lived in the neighborhood for about 10 years and I’ve been very curious about the studio.”
“We went through the star trailers and saw how celebrities live on set. That was fascinating and much bigger and more impressive than we expected,” Sauer added.
“[Addison] loves films and stuff like that so I thought she’d enjoy behind the scenes and seeing how they do things,” Squillari said.
Addison added that her favorite part of the day up to that point was the makeup demonstrations at the star trailers.
Volunteers at “New York On Location” ranged from young and emerging craftspeople to veterans of the business. Tim Gallin, an event organizer and stuntman, said that he particularly wanted to include stuntpeople new to the industry for the opportunity to network and show off their skills.
“It was just a chance to see things on the next scale up of how we are already starting to make our own films,” Ritz said. She also noted that she was looking forward to “getting to talk to the people who do this every single day and get an idea of what their experiences are and why they do this.”
“I think it’s kind of a cool community thing for people to see the beauty of what happens behind the scenes, because it’s easy to look at something on the screen and think, ‘oh, I can do that,’ or ‘that’s easy,’” Ritz added. “But when you see it like this, you see all the intricacies of behind the scenes. I think it makes it a little bit more special.”
Reach Jackie Strawbridge at (718) 357-7400, Ext. 128, email@example.com or @JNStrawbridge.