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Not everyone in Highland Park welcomes the Hollywood spotlight

By LUCY GUANUNA

HIGHLAND PARK — A two-block section along Figueroa Street will be off limits to filmmakers for more than two months following an LAPD action to reduce the frequency of film shoots.

The Eastsider has contacted the LAPD to find out what prompted the “filming respite” but has not yet received a response. However, Fredy Ceja, a spokesman for Councilmember Gil Cedillo, said some Highland Park residents and business owners are unhappy with the loss of parking and other disruptions caused by filming.

In a production alert to filmmakers, FilmLA, the organization which helps coordinate on-location shoots, said the LAPD will not accept new requests for filming in the area through April 1. It’s not clear, however, how many permits had already been issued before the freeze went into effect on Jan. 19.

The so called “filming respite” covers a relatively small but popular area for film shoots that take advantage of a large number of historic buildings. The area is bounded by Marmion Way, North and South Avenue 58, North and South Avenue 56 and Figueroa, according to a statement issued by FilmLA.

Filmmakers have been drawn to Highland Park for it iconic and well preserved  Los Angeles architectural styles, including Craftsman, Spanish Colonial and Mission Revival and Tudor Revival homes. The neighborhood has served as the filming location for such high-profile shows like Lucifer, Shameless and Too Old to Die Young.

Ceja, the spokesman for Councilmember Cedillo, said the council office has been working with local businesses to reduce the effects of street closures and lack of parking.

“We support filming in our district, so long as they work with us to mitigate the impact on our residents and businesses,” said Cedillo in a statement.

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29 comments

  1. Filming in Los Angeles provides essential employment for the entertainment trades. It’s important that they work the kinks out so filming can continue!

  2. While I certainly understand a proprietor not wanting any negative impacts on their business, it’s critical for Angelenos to support filming here in L.A. We all bitch and moan about runaway production, and then so many try to prevent filming from occurring in our home town. There are many ways to discuss how to allow TV and film production to shoot here and therefore keep production in the L.A. area. Blanket bans are terrible ideas and negatively impact one of our critical home-grown businesses: the entertainment industry.

  3. Councilmember Cedillo’s office is located at the edge of this 2-block area at the corner of Ave 56 & Figueroa. Perhaps the councilman can take the train instead of drive? Probably has nothing to do with “local business” or constituents and everything to do with Cedilllo’s office being inconvenienced.

  4. As a resident of the neighborhood and someone that is often inconvenienced by the constant onslaught of filming in the area, I applaud this effort. I get it, people feel that filming is essential to LA or whatever, but not everyone is in the industry and some people like being able to park close to their houses or walk along open sidewalks that are not blocked by industry carts and people. This is a neighborhood not a film set and should be treated as such. There’s a lot of entitlement in the film industry and I for one couldn’t care less if you guys are forced to relocate elsewhere. Deuces!

    • That’s a really small minded view. So you don’t care that people are actually able to make a living? So you can park closer to your house? Park in your driveway then.

      I’m certain there are steps Film LA can take to ease the impact on filming in what is essentially a business district. Why not start there?

      • Way to assume that I have a driveway. That’s very small minded of you, my friend. Like many residents in the neighborhood, I actually rely on residential parking to park my car near (not even in front of) my residence. So I should have to lug groceries, my infant, and anything else blocks because people need to film in my neighborhood? Your mind-set is incredible inconsiderate and helps people like me care less about what happens to your “living” if the industry leaves. I get nothing from your presence.

        • Lol, yes, let’s freeze LA’s #1 industry and economic powerhouse that employs the vast majority of the city so some guy who can’t even park in front of where he lives can have an easy time parking. The only entitlement here is you, thinking your small time problems matter.

          • Do you really think that the vast majority of the city is employed in the film industry? That’s hilarious! Clearly you live in a bubble.

          • Hey “Thank you!”, you have a kid, maybe you should focus on getting a better job so you can help him and out and be able to park in front of your own house. Less time making internet comments maybe? I’d recommend looking at openings in the film industry 🙂

          • Tatas for breakfast

            For your info, the film industry has allotted money for parking.

            They were filming a block away and I was reimbursed $200 a day.

          • Lol forever if you think the entertainment industry employs “the vast majority of the city.” I get it, there are a lot of jobs in the entertainment industry but that’s extremely hyperbolic. It’s an important industry, sure, and there are a lot of jobs in it (even if many of those jobs are extremely low pay). Even at that it’s probably well under 10% of jobs in the city. Tech, energy, and import/export all probably generate more money and the service industry definitely employ way more people.

            I’m not usually too perturbed by filming but it does suck to have a basically unpaid PA tell you that you can’t walk down a public sidewalk because they’re doing additional takes for a very important car commercial right now. Like, “Get outta my face Scorcese!”

          • LOL @ TheRealMonty, is that the best comment you can come up with?

          • lmao… “Thank you!”s kid won’t even be able to afford to go to community college, and he’ll be asking “why dad, why, did you spend all your time making internet comment instead of getting real job… why???!” And he’ll probably still have to walk 5 blocks to get back to the “house” he lives in.

          • LOL @TheRealMonty Looks like you got me there ?

          • I agree with The Real Monty. Why are you wasting your time going online complaining about times being tough and having no money? Go get a job or a second one instead of wasting your time posting crap.

          • @Snaky Who complained about times being tough or having no money? My gripe is with lack of parking and sidewalks being clogged. You may want to read again, my friend.

          • @TheRealMonty
            You sound like you should take your own advice ?

        • Honestly, the entertainment industry stops in LA because you have a kid and need to carry groceries? The entertainment industry may not employ he vast majority of residents but it is a major sector in the economy and keeping that work in town benefits…… even you!

      • I’m not sure that the residents in that area are benefitting from the filming at all. Maybe if production companies offered a few production-assistant positions to local high-school kids or agreed to donate $500 to a local cause for every day they film on that stretch of Figueroa, they might win the support of the community.

        • I think that’s a great idea! It would also help to cut down on parking and traffic congestion by employing locals for these projects. I’ve lived along Fig for a bit over a decade now and it’s gotten worse over the years and the sense of entitlement has gotten stronger.

    • God forbid anyone in this city be inconvenienced by those who are trying to make a living…

      “can’t park my car in front of my house, better call the polices!”

      When do we start protesting the fruit carts on the sidewalk for impeding your ability to walk by?

      • God forbid the filming industry causes folks to relocate to another city to work!

        At least the fruit carts serve a good use to the community! I’d much prefer them to block the sidewalks then some entitled industry person who thinks they’re doing something great by gracing the neighborhood with their presence.

      • The problem is, you already have. In the last several years, as Highland Park has (I hate to use the word) gentrified, newer residents have frequently complained about quality-of-life issues such as loud music or illegal vending. When the same folks who have been complaining about such issues disrupt the neighborhood with a film shoot, they get defensive and annoyed that anyone would dare complain.

  5. LOL at “lack of parking.” If you’re driving to this part of town, there is TONS of parking; city-owned surface lots behind each stretch of shops, on top of metered street parking, and productions are only allowed to use half of each city lot when they film here. Highland Park has been popular for filming since long before anyone spoke about gentrification. Up in Smoke? Reservoir Dogs? Throw Mama from the Train?

    God, Cedillo is such a dinosaur. I’m still pissed that Joe Bray Ali turned out to be such a troll, because I was ready for a changing of the guard.

    • LOL @ there being tons of parking. Those days are long gone. With the influx of new businesses attracting tons of lookie-loos and the influx of new residents, parking has become a scarcity in many parts of Highland Park and definitely along the stretches of houses that line the streets behind Fig & York. And why should residents have to park in lots while others park in residential streets?

      Yes, Highland Park has always been popular but these days it’s a bit overdone. All of these comments just prove the mentality and lack of consideration from film folks and why these filming respites are necessary.

      • You can also thank your local councilmen getting rid of an extra lane or commuting and also for parking instead for bike lanes.

        • How does a bike lane and where does a bike lane affect parking?

          • Well my friend let me educate you. By removing a lane to make it a bike lane you are adding to congestion. Also, don’t forget about the road diets in Highland Park, which could have been used for parking as well.

      • If you’ve lived off Fig for only 10 years how can you tell? Don’t you know only people who have lived in HLP since around 1850 get to have an opinion about such things? Thank you!

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