So there is this new movie coming out soon: Battle: Los Angeles. Sure we will see lots of familiar places like Downtown’s skyscrapers and the Santa Monica Pier with it’s landmark ferris wheel, right? Yes we will! The weird thing about it is: the movie has been shot in Louisiana.
“Because it was less expensive to replicate the Pier in the Golf of Mexico than to film the shots at the original place,” explained Todd Lindgren, VP, Communications and PR for Film L.A., a private company that coordinates film permits in the city when I was researching how many movies are still shot in the Entertainment Capital of the World. Los Angeles is up against strong competition luring movie productions away to other states and countries, Louisiana with strong film funding and tax incentives being one of the strongest competitors. But the city has a few aces up it’s sleeve to prove it is still a mayor player in the game for making dreams become a big screen reality: “We can make the impossible possible”, says Lindgren with a proud smile. Like what? Remember the car chasing scene through Downtown Los Angeles in Inception involving motorcycles, a locomotive and lots of rain? That scene has been shot in Los Angeles. Even though it doesn’t rain here a lot! And even though there are no train tracks in Down Town Los Angeles “What we helped accomplish was the positioning of rain towers on every building top of a six block area!” explains Lindgren. They also blocked a major street for two weekends, created the illusion of a locomotive on tracks and all of that without computer generated effects. Pure MOVIE MAGIC! Still it’s a struggle to keep movie jobs in Los Angeles and retain the image of being the world capitol of the movie industry. This year Hollywood got some impressive help. Superman, X-Men and Batman sequels are filmed on the streets of Los Angeles, reports Lindgren. “The super heros are rallying to the local industry’s defense!”
listen to Todd Lindgren, VP Communications FilmL.A. www.filmla.com
Titlepicture: Columbia Pictures