Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Shuttered Forest Park Carousel GetsTurn for Better After Landing Film Role in 'The Sitter' by Lisa L. Colangelo - NY Daily News

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William Adee of Local 52 cleans a Forest Park Carousel horse as film crews get set to shoot 'The Sitter' at shuttered treasure Farriello for News

Fans of the Forest Park Carousel were thrilled to see a glimpse of the shuttered treasure during a flurry of activity at the site this week.
But they shouldn't get their hopes up.
The workers cleaning and fixing the 100-year-old carousel were part of a film crew shooting scenes for "The Sitter."
The movie, starring Jonah Hill of "Superbad" fame and Sam Rockwell, has been described as a loose remake of the 1987 comedy "Adventures in Babysitting."
"It's a major set piece for us," Peter Silbermann, the film's publicist, said of the carousel. "We're shooting in Forest Park for four or five days."
The city-owned carousel has sat dormant for two years while the Parks Department searches for an operator to run it as a concession. Elected officials originally said it would reopen this past summer. But negotiations with a possible vendor appear to have fallen through.
The Parks Department is still actively searching for a concessionaire and plans to issue new request for proposals in January, agency officials said.
Civic leaders have pressed the city to move quickly, worried that the hand-carved masterpiece is deteriorating.
The carousel underwent a top-to-bottom restoration in the late 1980s. But previous operators have done few repairs or attempted historically accurate maintenance of the characters, which include 49 horses, a lion, tiger, deer and two chariots.
"The residents of Woodhaven are excited that our carousel will be showcased in a Hollywood film," said Ed Wendell, president of the Woodhaven Residents' Block Association.
"However, we really hope all this attention will translate into having this carousel open for the children of Queens next summer," said Wendell, who launched a "Save the Forest Park Carousel" page on Facebook.
The city charges movie companies a $300 permit fee to shoot scenes on city property, including streets and parks.
Parks officials and Silbermann said extra care was taken when working with the historic carousel. Some scenes were filmed on a soundstage with replica horses.
"We're not compromising the structure or the horses," Silbermann said.
In addition, 20th Century-Fox, the film's production company, made a "substantial" donation to Forest Park, he said.