NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Local News

September 4, 2013

Rain pushes 'Equalizer' filming to Friday

SALISBURY — Even Hollywood has to change its filming schedule when Mother Nature fails to cooperate. That’s what happened yesterday at Salisbury Beach when Columbia Pictures had to postpone shooting for the Denzel Washington film “The Equalizer.”

As a result of the rain Monday and forecast calling for more bad weather yesterday, production officials postponed shooting the Salisbury Beach scene until Friday, according to Salisbury police Chief Thomas Fowler.

Crews were supposed to build the movie set from midnight through 7 a.m. to prepare for the all-day shoot on Broadway, but that didn’t happen, disappointing many. All was quiet on Broadway at midnight yesterday with only a heavy mist filling the air instead of the sounds of hammering.

“They pulled the plug (Monday) night because of weather,” Fowler said yesterday. “They told me they’ll now shoot the scene on Friday at the beach center.”

Under the new plan, that could mean that crews will build the set starting late Thursday night, Fowler speculated, continuing throughout the night so all will be ready for the actors on Friday morning.

Expected to be released next September, the movie has been filming in Massachusetts over the summer, using a variety of locations for backdrops. The production company has shot in Haverhill, at Groton House Farm in Hamilton and at the Crane Estate on Castle Hill.

Salisbury Beach was chosen for the background of an amusement park scene, location manager Mark Fitzgerald told selectmen. Salisbury Beach Center had been the director’s favorite place to shoot the scene “from the get-go,” Fitzgerald said in June.

“The Equalizer” plot is loosely based on a 1980s television series of the same name. It starred the late British actor Edward Woodward, who played a middle-aged, retired CIA-type named Robert McCall, seeking redemption for his past bad acts. Placing ads that read: “Got a problem? Odds against you? Call the Equalizer,” McCall helped protect society’s underdogs by getting them out of trouble for free.

In this film, Washington is cast as McCall. According to published reports, in the movie, McCall defends a teenage prostitute, played by Chloe Grace Moretz, from a Russian mafia archvillain, played by New Zealand actor Marton Csokas. Other co-stars are David Harbour, Haley Bennett and Melissa Leo.

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