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Have you ever been harassed while working? If so, why? How did you handle it?

film tv harassment

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#1 Harry Weaks

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Posted 13 November 2015 - 02:14 AM

While filming for a job, have you ever been heckled, harassed, attacked, or undesirably bothered by bystanders, young people, loud mouths, or awful strangers? Ever been touched inappropriately? Without your permission? Struck? Cursed at? Have a shot blocked? Equipment broken? 
 
Stolen? Mishandled? Anyone make lewd gestures towards you? If so, how did you handle it? What occurred? Why did it occur? Did the person ever stop? What made them stop? Know anyone who has gone through anything mentioned? How did they handle it? Did anyone harassing them ever stop? If so, what made them stop?
 
I decided to ask this question because while I watch "live shots" on news airings, I see bizarre behavior like the following from time to time:
 
Example:
 
and wanted to know if anyone here has experienced similar behavior/if anyone here knows of someone who has experienced similar behavior.

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#2 Brian Drysdale

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Posted 13 November 2015 - 03:49 AM

That was good natured stuff, I've been attacked on a few occasions and had a camera damaged once in the past. You basicaly keep on working, if it's like the incidents in the video you laugh it off as part of the fun, but other times you have to regard it as coming with the territory. News crews now get training for going into war zones (although some freelancers don't), you really do need to develop street sense.

 

You should check out Rory Peck Trust for this:  https://rorypecktrust.org/


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#3 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 13 November 2015 - 02:44 PM

I got shot at once as we were driving through a neighborhood shooting.


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#4 David Henry Brooks IV

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Posted 13 November 2015 - 05:01 PM

Dang, Adrian, that sounds pretty bad. Did the bullet actually hit you or where they just shooting in your direction?

 

Not really set harassment, but I know someone who worked on Straight Outta Compton and they said that one of the days they were shooting in Compton a guy came walking right past them dripping in blood who had just got shot next door or down the street.


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#5 Bill DiPietra

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Posted 13 November 2015 - 05:06 PM

I got shot at once as we were driving through a neighborhood shooting.

 

That's what I call commitment to one's craft. ;)


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#6 Gregory Irwin

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Posted 13 November 2015 - 05:11 PM

I got shot at once as we were driving through a neighborhood shooting.


Wow. Glad you're still with us! I had a machine gun put to my head (along with my entire camera crew), by the Mexican military when they forced our van off of a remote road in a rain forest. We had to stand in line with our hands behind our heads while several guns were aimed at us. We had to watch them tear apart our van while they searched (for drugs?) and found nothing. That scared us have to death! Does that count as harassment?

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#7 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 13 November 2015 - 05:55 PM

Worst I've had was in Amsterdam where we were threatened with all kinds of things when some bouncers decided we'd been shooting the girls in the red light district (we hadn't). I think I've described the incident on the forum before.

Otherwise, harassment by randoms as well as the police and, particularly, commercial security guards is endemic.


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#8 Gregory Irwin

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Posted 13 November 2015 - 06:17 PM

I had another incident in 1991 in Moscow, USSR when a government coupe occurred in the Kremlin and Marshall Law was enforced, all while we were in lock up in a hotel next to the Kremlin. The Metalica, AC/DC concert I was there to film was delayed for a week or so and when it actually did happen an estimated 10,000 Red Army troops showed up and started to physically beat the crowd in attendance (estimated at 1.5 million people). My international camera crew (American, British, Austrailian and South African) was stuck right in the middle of the chaos and we had trouble getting out. None of us were hurt in the end but we were seriously freaked out! There is nothing like the sound of AK gunfire or the sight of Soviet soldiers holding AK47s and aiming them at their own people or brutally beating them with batons. Some of our footage can be seen on YouTube. Search "The Monsters of Moscow" or "Monsters of Rock in Moscow '91".

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#9 JD Hartman

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Posted 13 November 2015 - 07:57 PM

Never, but I have been harassed by the Police several times, wanting to know particulars, see permits, wanting to see ID, etc.  I just send them in the direction of the nearest "above the line" person I see.


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#10 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 13 November 2015 - 10:49 PM

They just fired in our direction, and we just floored it on the van and went.  I had another run in in Mauritania when i crossed illegally into the country by mistake (unmarked boarder) and got arrested by a military patrol. Not as bad as the shooting incident. It was a pretty bad neighborhood in Philadelphia, though.

I've had a few incidents in LA so far, mostly when shooting in DTLA with some homeless, which normally is nothing too bad, just basic being yelled at, and often I'll just go grab a bunch of water bottles and granola bars from crafty and give them to them.

I find, normally, the best way to deal with it all is keep cool, treat people like humans, and try not to show how frightened you actually are.


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#11 Freya Black

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Posted 14 November 2015 - 09:25 AM

I got shot at once as we were driving through a neighborhood shooting.

 

To be fair sounds like you shot first!

 

Freya


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#12 Freya Black

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Posted 14 November 2015 - 09:34 AM

Well I never had you down as the drive by neighborhood shooting type Adrian!

 

Weirdest one was when I was out on the outskirts of East London far away from anything much but a motorway and a distant hotel.

I had hardly set up when some police appeared out of nowhere. This was very impressive as there was nowhere obvious for them to have come from. They came right up to me and asked what I was doing. I explained that I was making a music video and was expecting some talk about terrorism or something but the police seemed a bit bemused. They told me that they had been called out by someone at the hotel in the distance who thought I was making a snuff movie. When I suggested that snuff movies were an urban myth the police insisted that this wasn't true at all and hadn't I seen on youtube?

 

Really wish the camera had been running at the time. I've had some odd experiences while filming but that was the wierdest I think.

 

Freya


Edited by Freya Black, 14 November 2015 - 09:35 AM.

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#13 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 14 November 2015 - 12:22 PM

Bear in mind the police are not above making up any random story they feel like in order to justify their position. They can lie to you, and it won't prejudice any future court case. Naturally, woe betide you if it's later shown you lied to them.

 

I think even the dullest plod is starting to realise that endlessly bleating about terrorism is starting to wear a bit thin - even in current circumstances - so it doesn't particularly surprise me that they're trying for other things.

 

My position has always been that what other people may or may not be doing is their affair.

 

P


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#14 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 14 November 2015 - 03:06 PM

You know i had a producer one beat up on my car and yell at me and curse my out for a bit on this really crap feature. Wasn't having that, at all, so myself and the crew just walked.


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#15 Freya Black

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Posted 15 November 2015 - 02:35 AM

Bear in mind the police are not above making up any random story they feel like in order to justify their position.
 
P


Only thing is these were quite friendly plods and once I told them I was shooting a music video, they were like "Very good, carry on then..." and left me to it.

Freya
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#16 Doug Palmer

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Posted 15 November 2015 - 06:26 AM

Only thing is these were quite friendly plods and once I told them I was shooting a music video, they were like "Very good, carry on then..." and left me to it.

Freya

I think they were hoping to be in your video Freya :)


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#17 Freya Black

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Posted 16 November 2015 - 08:52 AM

I'd love to have them in a movie! Think of the production value! I bet they even had a Panda car!

Freya
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#18 Michael LaVoie

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Posted 16 November 2015 - 07:31 PM

One time production reversed the call when some bystanders started deliberately making noise during takes.  So we'd yell cut when we meant rolling and rolling when we meant cut.  It actually worked.  


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#19 Satsuki Murashige

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Posted 16 November 2015 - 08:49 PM

One time production reversed the call when some bystanders started deliberately making noise during takes.  So we'd yell cut when we meant rolling and rolling when we meant cut.  It actually worked.  


Hah, that's brilliant. I worked on an Uber commercial earlier this year where an angry Lyft driver heckled us take after take from his living room window. Good thing we were MOS...
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#20 Lance Soltys

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Posted 17 November 2015 - 11:55 AM

Well this isn't really harassment, but it's kind of funny.  I was working on one of the Bob Newhart incarnations set in Chicago, and we were set-up to do a night exterior of what was supposed to be his town home.  Had the whole street lit up and everything.  Well, the guy that actually lived in said home had not yet received his check from the producers, so he puts up a Pink Floyd poster on the window.  That did it, it kept us sitting there until the money issues were worked out.  Freezing cold that night, too.


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