Stephen Amell could work as a stunt performer if he didn’t have a job already as the star of Arrow. His Oliver Queen/Hood stunt double Simon Burnett did the jump and running sequence first in Gastown — jump from the roof of the grey van in the alley over a semi-trailer piled with plywood crates onto the street, slide over the trunk of a yellow Starling City cab and run into the other side of the alley. Camera crew let me stand behind them to watch three or four takes with Simon Burnett and then the last one with Amell himself. Amell did the exact same sequence as well as Burnett but instead of coming to a halt just past the camera, Amell blasted by me down the alley. I could have snapped one more photo but risked him running right through me. Automatic set ban? For sure. This is not to take away anything from Simon Burnett. He’s the one who jumped from the Hotel Gastown roof to the top of a parkade. And he’s the one who smashes through candy glass windows feet first as the Hood. But Amell is simply amazing.
As streets began flooding in the real Manhattan yesterday morning and the east coast braced for Hurricane Sandy’s full impact, Fringe filmed scenes in a NYC taxicab in cloudy, wet Vancouver dressed as Manhattan under Observer Occupation in 2036. It sure put our rain in perspective.
I didn’t find the set until close to lunchtime and not long after Fringe wrapped and returned to studio for the rest of the day, so I don’t know if there were scenes other than John Noble’s Walter in the cab along with an unexpected guest star from seasons earlier. I won’t spoil the identity of that guest star until the producers choose to, because one of the joys of the final season is the way Fringe brings back or echoes former cases and characters. After the guest star wrapped, a Flex star car picked up her and Jasika Nicole’s Astrid, who must have been in that very crowded cab as well. I can’t imagine the risk they took talking in a cab with all those background Observers and Loyalist soldiers walking past. And on one of the background cabs driving by — a Reward Wire rooftop ad. Remember the creepy-good Captain Windmark-voiced Fringe teaser, Wanted: Peter Bishop, ahead of the season premiere?