One of the best things about living near Hollywood is the film shoots that take you completely by surprise. Sure, it’s a pain every now and then when major streets are shut down and you’re stuck in your driver’s seat, lamenting that movies were even invented in the first place. But mostly, it’s just something neat you catch out of the corner of your eye.
Case in point, I was headed through Chatsworth this morning when I spotted a big crew setting up some elaborate effects at a Burger King. (A note to those outside of CA, Chatsworth is roughly 25 miles away from Hollywood and also the exact distance it takes for local residents to truly not care about movies any more than any other American town. This is why studios do tons of test-screenings there.)
Probably because their marketing works, the first thing I associated Burger King with was “Iron Man” and wondered if the actual restaurant might be the set piece for an action scene from the now-filming sequel. I immediately checked Jon Favreau’s Twitter, only to find that he was at an Air Force base today. Second unit, perhaps?
As luck would have it, the Burger King was directly across the street from Collector’s Paradise, a comic book shop that told me that the crew was on it’s second day — and that yesterday featured a number of explosions.
Closer to the scene, I found that things were already being broken down and that the shoot was over. An artificial extension had been built outside of the restaurant, allowing for an enormous break in the building’s bricks, as if something were smashing through.
A few more questions to people in the area, though, and I learned I was wrong to think “Iron Man”. But right to think “Paramount” and “Wall-Smashing Robots”. It seems that this was all part of a “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen” TV spot.
As explained to me by a cop on the scene: A robot bursts through the restaurant’s wall and upturns a car, shaking money out of it. (That’s right kids, I’m spoiling a Burger King commercial. Sorry.)
If you’re interested, check out the pictures of the shoot. Though the explosions were real, the robot will be, apparently, 100% CGI and there wasn’t even a frame on-set.
Burger King seems to be the go-to tie-in for Paramount. With “Iron Man” and “Indiana Jones” last summer and “Star Trek” and “Transformers” running this year, we’ve got a bright future of cinematic Whoppers to look forward to.