This week a blog had been posted about group of WWII vets that were visiting the graves of their fallen comrades at Pearl Harbor at the same time a scene was being filmed for the show “Hawaii Five-o”. Click here to read it. Now, I get the idea of how these things work. The director has total control of the crew. The crew does what the director says or their fired. In Hollywood if your fired off a set there is a blacklist you could get put on.
From one of the comments made by the Executive Producer, Peter Lenkov, it sounds like the Director didn’t know about the vet’s ceremony happening until they arrived and had already started setting up. Instead of taking the hit and moving on to a different scene that day he decided to press on and film. There is a great story about when Rodney Dangerfield was filming “Caddy Shack” about how never having been filed on a set before and talking to a crew member how he thought that he was bombing because nobody was laughing. This crew member said that it doesn’t work like that, everybody has to stay quiet because the mics pick up everything.
That having been said, it was a poor choice to film on that day. If you look at all the responses in that post obviously emotions are running high and rightly so. The Director being under a tremendous amount of stress has a deadline, and the vets had a better reason to be there that day. The people who ran the grounds should have stepped in. The fault of this whole situation should fall on the people who scheduled the film crew to be there. I don’t know if it falls on the grounds keepers not informing the film scheduler of the ceremonies ahead of time, or the scheduler not relaying that information to the Director. Either way had all the information been in place before hand I’m sure they would have not been there at the same time.
If it were me directing, I’d use the situation as if the vets were extras instead of having a scene where it looks like no one ever visits the real heroes. Who knows if the Actors were ever asked if they wanted to say hi to the vets? I’m sure just as a matter of PR for themselves they would have. Then again, I don’t know them personally.
UPDATE: Hawaii Five-0 Issues apology;