2013-09-13 / Community

Playland Motel on The Small Screen

By Dan Guarino


An early morning production crew preps the Playland Motel’s restaurant and bar to shoot a brand new commercial. Photo by Dan Guarino An early morning production crew preps the Playland Motel’s restaurant and bar to shoot a brand new commercial. Photo by Dan Guarino Eight trucks rolled up to the corner of Beach 98th Street and Rockaway Beach Boulevard before 7 a.m. on Friday, September 6th, and a full crew began getting the Playland Motel ready for its television commercial debut.

Crews worked from very early setting up equipment, running cable and prepping the ground floor restaurant and bar area, while others set up cameras, monitors and sound equipment.

In the motel’s backyard pebbled ‘beach’ area, actors studied lines, extras waited and props people went through boxes of bright plastic glasses, mounted fish wall hangings, nautical lamps and other objects.

In the inside bar area, flat screen TV’s were taken down as it was transformed into a ‘trendy’ bistro. Windows were masked to create an nighttime effect inside; what is known as ‘day for night’ in the trade. Standing in line for breakfast at the on-set catering truck, one actor noted the surprisingly chilly Rockaway morning temperatures.

“I was just in California, where it was around 100 degrees,” she said, rubbing her arms. “So I packed all light clothes.” She and about two dozen extras in fashionably relaxed costume attire and make up, trouped in to fill out the background bar crowd.

Shooting went on for much of the day.

Rockaway has become a popular destination for film and television productions, with episodes of both HBO’s Boardwalk Empire and CBS’s Unforgettable shooting here within the past few weeks.

Although due to contractual reasons the commercial’s advertising client could not named, look for the Playland Motel to make it’s appearance between shows on a television near you.

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