The View From The Loft – February
‘And the Oscar goes to…’’
It’s that time of year again when the media is buzzing with speculation about who will get the next big award. We all think back to all the movies over the years that we loved and all the stars and characters we wanted to be like or maybe thought we were like. The excitement always builds when we hear the names; Julia Roberts, Jack Nicholson, Olivia de Havilland, Robert De Niro, Sidney Poitier, Sally Field, Meryl Streep, Meryl Streep, and Meryl Streep. Enough with the Meryl Streep thing!
Today we have all the content we can consume at our fingertips with Netflix, HBO, Hulu, Amazon and countless other services. I love the technology and the convenience of having hundreds of movies available at the flick of a switch, but unfortunately we have traded that for the experience of the movie theatre. I’ve seen The Greatest Showman twice in the last two weeks. Before you jump to conclusions and assume that I am either bored or that I have some affinity for tap dancing sideshow freaks, let me clarify. I LOVE the Movies. Movies are made to be viewed on a 50-foot wide screen while sitting in a recliner and sipping on a real Coke and eating popcorn and I hope that experience never goes away. It’s still the greatest date night ever even if you have to get a second mortgage to afford the popcorn and Coke.
Because of my love for the movies, I decided to give it a go since I’m retired and have plenty of time, or maybe I AM bored … oh well. The movie business is booming around here as I’m sure you know. If you haven’t figured it out yet, those little yellow signs with the three-letter code and the arrow on them are guiding crews and extras to sets all over the place.
As an extra I’ve learned that everything in that business is in code. When they call to book you for a shoot it’s always in code. No photographs, no social media, no recording of any kind that might give away the secret. I’m not sure what the penalty for breaching that agreement is but I’m sure it’s something akin to going to prison with all the people who cut the tag off their mattress.
In all seriousness, the movie/ television production business is HUGE business. It’s easy to get aggravated when the street is blocked off or you can’t park on the Square or you drove all the way to town to see Meryl Streep and they won’t let you anywhere near her, but they have good reasons for all that.
I’ve also heard comments about how the productions interfere with normal business. That’s true for a few days when they are shooting but the long lasting economic impact is immeasurable. Here are some cases in point. Tour busses are still arriving daily in Juliette, GA, between Jackson and Macon, to allow those people who enjoy bus tours to visit the set of Fried Green Tomatoes, which was shot in 1991, the zombie business in Senoia seems like it will never die and poor lost souls are roaming all over Clayton County looking for Tara. They gotta eat somewhere!
Now just imagine all the possibilities for that fabulous painted lady Victorian house on Greenville St. when that secret movie starring God knows who finally opens. See ya at the movies.
(Jim Coleman is twice retired as a financial advisor and flight attendant. A theatre geek, musician, arts administrator and preservationists, he lived a relatively obscure life until he crossed paths with Corby Winters. Jm choose Newnan as his new forever home five years ago and is dedicated to making our community the best it can be.)