Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Oyster Bay stands in for the Hamptons in TV show

BY SUSANA ENRIQUEZ | susana.enriquez@newsday.com
10:33 PM EDT, May 11, 2009

Oyster Bay residents watched in wonder Monday as someone was rushed from an ambulance into the emergency room of "Hamptons Heritage Hospital" - what on any other day is known as Oyster Bay Town Hall.

The scene played out several times during a taping of "Royal Pains," a new USA television series starring Mark Feuerstein as a private on-call doctor for the Hamptons elite. The series is scheduled to debut June 4.

With the addition of a few signs, 75 crew members and about 25 extras as doctors, nurses, patients and security guards, town hall took on the appearance of a hospital.

Oyster Bay resident Donald Altieri had finished taking a stroll through nearby Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Park when he stopped to watch the crew and extras milling about.

"I'm amazed how they set things up and make it look real," said Altieri, 71.

Earlier in the day, the crew turned a nearby pedestrian alleyway into a bustling farmers' market - replete with women in summer dresses and their small dogs - and the deli across the street into an upscale coffee shop.

Supervisor John Venditto said the filming - coming on the heels of several Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie sightings around town - has created a buzz in the community.

"People are having a lot of fun with this," Venditto said. "This is good stuff."

The one-day shoot was the first on town property this year; last year, the town clerk's office issued six permits for TV commercial and movie shoots.

The production company paid $500 to use the town's property and agreed to reimburse the town for public safety officers and for shuttling town employees who had to park in a remote lot.

Town Clerk Steven Labriola said he could see why the hamlet, with its tree-lined streets and quaint architecture, was deemed Hampton-esque.

"This could be a street in Bridgehampton," he said.


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