December 8, 2015 / Brooklyn news / Greenpoint / Brooklyn Is Angry

Not so Marvel-ous: Greenpointers want ban on filming

The Brooklyn Paper
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

They’re not the heroes Greenpoint deserves, nor the ones it needs right now.

Hollywood productions are turning the neighborhood’s industrial streets into a soundstage, and Greenpointers want the city to yell “cut!” An endless parade of film shoots — which recently include Marvel’s “Daredevil” and “Luke Cage” series — are blocking parking and sidewalks, say locals, and they are sick and tired of having to step around the lights, cameras, and action.

“Sometimes they’re filming on the street and they won’t even let you go through,” said Mike Hoffman, a longtime Manhattan Avenue resident. “It’s crazy.”

Someone has recently posted signs around Manhattan and Commercial avenues railing against “Ringside” — the code-name “Daredevil” uses on permits — “taking over the neighborho­od.”

Assemblyman Joe Lentol (D–Greenpoint) has now swooped in to ask the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment to declare certain blocks as temporary no-film zones to give his constituents a break. Film crews descend on the neighborhood on a weekly basis and it is affecting Greenpoint­ers’ quality of life, said a rep for the pol.

“We have a lot of constituents upset about it because their ability to get to their own homes is affected,” said Lentol spokeswoman Cathy Peake. “If you’re coming home and you’re tired after a long day and you’re trying to get to your home, if they’re in the middle of a shoot you can’t get there.”

Lentol is proposing two new film-free zones — one bounded by McGuiness Boulevard, West Street, and Commercial and Kent Streets, and the other by Manhattan, Kingsland, Norman, and Driggs avenues, said Peake.

This isn’t the first time locals have railed against too much showbiz on their streets — residents have previously bemoaned an old-timey Home Box Office production leaving Milton Street covered in dirt, and both notorious flop “Smash” and hipster comedy “Girls” creating a more modern mess.

But the mayor’s office continues to hand out filming permits for the neighborhood like candy, with no consideration for the people who actually live there, say locals. And even when it okays requested no-film zones, the hiatus is only lasts for three to six months.

“They’re really arrogant,” said resident Rolf Carle. “They feel like they don’t have to answer to anybody.”

But the mayor’s office claims it hears the locals’ woes loud and clear — it does keeps tabs on neighborhoods overburdened by filming activity, and is willing to give over-filmed areas a temporary break, said a rep.

“We work diligently with the community, local elected officials, and residents to ensure on-location filming is as seamless as possible and to balance the needs of productions that of the neighborhoods in which they film,” said an office spokesperson.

In addition to Marvel’s latest crop of anti-heroes, shows recently spotted filming in the neighborhood include “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,” “Gotham,” and “The Good Wife.”

Reach reporter Allegra Hobbs at or by calling (718) 260–8312.
Updated 10:17 pm, July 9, 2018
Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

Reasonable discourse

GP from Greenpoint says:
It is not legal for productions to block an entire sidewalk from pedestrians. Just walk on thru!
Dec. 8, 2015, 10:17 am
simon from greenpoint says:
Thank you for covering this. The city treats its streets like a piggy bank, with no consideration for its taxpaying residents. The city has purposefully made the program hard to track and make the Film permit agency accountable for its actions.

I take whatever their spokesperson says with a grain of salt.

If you block my street one more time, you wake up to slashed tires.
Dec. 8, 2015, 10:19 am
Tom from Greenpoint says:
Jeez, lighten up!
Dec. 8, 2015, 10:29 am
Sarah from Greenpoint says:
Oh please, this is part of NYC life. Welcome the money and consider yourself privileged.

Peeps need to stop considering street parking as a place to store their cars.
Dec. 8, 2015, 1:58 pm
Matt from Greenpoint says:
Had to get permission to enter my building from some crack pot film douche bags.... Yep. Ban them.
Dec. 9, 2015, 12:44 am
Alex from Greenpoint says:
Allegra Hobbs needs to get her facts straight. Hiatus lists created by the MOFTB last longer than 6 months. Some locations have been on hiatus for years, including Greenpoint. As a news reporter, she should tell the facts and interview residents on the other side of the table, including the work that is created from filming, the donations that benefit the neighborhoods that receive filming and the churches that recieve additional support from use of holdings. The street blocks and Greenpoint as a whole is thriving because of filming, without filming it would turn back in to the slums that it was prior.
Dec. 9, 2015, 10:18 am
Mike from Williamsburg says:
As a locations department representative, I personally have dealt with literally over a hundred residents who would attest to the benefits of filming in Greenpoint. Could you really not spend a few extra minutes to lend some credibility to this report by interviewing residents from both sides of the argument? Maybe some people in the industry even? (who by the way work within feet of the people you interviewed) You betray your anti-filming bias in this piece.
Dec. 9, 2015, 10:26 am
Bill from $POINT says:
Simon, I have sent your threat to the local authorities. I'm sorry your acting career didn't work out... you too, Matt.
Dec. 9, 2015, 10:27 am
Denise DeLaurentis from Eagle Street says:
Alex, you seem like a streetwise prophet of the now generation, and a historian too, when precisely was Greenpoint a "slum"? Please, we're all dying to know and tell us how you "learned" this back in Ohio, or Oregon, or Connecticut, or whatever other ——hole you came from? Greenpoint had and HAS plenty of issues, from the environment on down, but being a "slum"... well, enlighten us, "bro"!

The film, tv and tv commercial crews are scumbags, "funny" too how 99% of the time the only black or Spanish people you'll see around them are the stoned dudes sitting in car or van the night before with their —— orange cones surrounding.
Dec. 9, 2015, 5:32 pm
William Rohan from Milton Street says:
Thank u for writing this article. They even tow the handicapped peoples cars when they film. There are half a dozen such permitted people on this block. No one tows but movie people.
Dec. 9, 2015, 7:55 pm
Phyllis from Greenpoint says:
If you were not born and raised in Greenpoint and if you don't live here now then keep your comments to yourself. As for the people who said welcome the money and get over the parking, Grow up. If you had a car you would complain. The film industry is saving spots for themselves and not just for the trucks. As for the money,some places might be benefiting but not the local businesses that are hurt by the filming. The food trucks do not stock their trucks from local businesses. We have been told that the local studios buy from some of the stores. The local merchants are not getting the money you think they are getting. The major point from all the residents being affected is our Quality of Life is being impacted. Filming is done pretty much everyday somewhere in the neighborhood which disrupts traffic and businesses.
Why is it our neighborhood has to put up with everything and why aren't we allowed to complain just like everyone else. The residents of Greenpoint are sick and tired of everything getting shoved down their throats - we got the waste stations, homeless shelters and now we have to put up with filming on a weekly basis. Their are over 8 shows filming in this area. Give the residents of Greenpoint a break.
Help find a solution or a compromise instead of the other nonsense like grin and bare it.
Who ever said Greenpoint was a slum never lived here and should keep quiet about a place they never knew about until the film industry got here and disrupted a quiet family oriented neighborhood.
Dec. 9, 2015, 9:15 pm
John from Williamsburg says:
The truth is these film crews contribute NOTHING to the neighborhoods they film in, apart from what BS the city would like you to believe. Thanks to the city, they get to treat our streets as if it were their own private studio backlot. I for one am tired of the countless productions that post notices on the north side without end. Sick of it all.
Dec. 14, 2015, 10:17 pm
Rolf from Greenpoint says:

It’s still a secret how these temporary’ no-film zones’ are established. My Community Board hasn't been part of this private discussion. These moratoriums don’t include TV series that are already into their production season, which is the majority of the filming in my neighborhood.

The City claims all NY'ers benefit from film shoots. The film industry claims they are an economic godsend to depressed communities. Why then do just a few neighborhoods get all the filming over and over, angering residents by turning neighborhoods into Hollywood Back Lots?

My solution: Spread the wealth! Let all NYC neighborhoods get their share of film shoots and the claimed wealth that comes with it! Make a community board district film free for two or three years, not a month or two in the winter when nobody shoots anyway.
Dec. 17, 2015, 5:12 pm
Pat I. from 70's Brooklyn says:
That is, of course OK if the film stars Lena Dunham.
July 20, 2016, 12:43 pm
Chicoistheman from GP says:
The only people complaining are entitled white spoiled brats.the tv people are constituents too. There will slways be someone against progress.
July 21, 2018, 3:33 am

Comments closed.

First name
Last name
Your neighborhood
Email address
Daytime phone

Your letter must be signed and include all of the information requested above. (Only your name and neighborhood are published with the letter.) Letters should be as brief as possible; while they may discuss any topic of interest to our readers, priority will be given to letters that relate to stories covered by The Brooklyn Paper.

Letters will be edited at the sole discretion of the editor, may be published in whole or part in any media, and upon publication become the property of The Brooklyn Paper. The earlier in the week you send your letter, the better.

Keep it local!

Stay in touch with your community. Subscribe to our free newsletter: