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Old June 21st, 2003, 01:30 PM   #1
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Fake gun in public.

Hey, I remember reading something from someone awhile ago about how they have a fake gun in public making a video or something, and he ended up getting fined like $700, that had me thinking. I'm going to be doing the driveby stuff of this stupid short this week (i'm doing some of the stuff today), and we are planning on using a airsoft BB gun. I'm wondering if anyone would call the cops because they think it's real or whatever reason, and if the cops do get called out, what would happen? It would be pretty stupid if we got screwed over a airsoft BB gun.

I've only made one video where the cops weren't involved, and it was in the middle of the night. On one of them, a bank called the cops because we were on their property skating (because it was a part of the video, it was a ad for some crap we had to do for school, a soft drink that made you do everything better) and the cop guy came out and was all cool about it, he seen my camera and crap and just told us to keep off their property, and that was fine. Then was when I got in the crap with the mall cops....so I don't know if that chain will keep continuing, heh.
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Old June 21st, 2003, 02:33 PM   #2
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I would make a phonecall to your local police, notifying them that you are going to make a video involving a fake driveby shooting. Tell them where and when this is going to happen, so that if they get a call from some bypasser, they will know that itīs just a videoshoot. Hopefully, theyīll just be glad that you show some responsibility, but there would be a risk that they wonīt let you do it, or that they need the notice some time in advance or something. I really donīt know what the rules are in the US, but I would give it a try, itīs far better than getting fined anyway.

At the shoot, have the camera visibly displayed, and you could also have the rest of the crew hanging around, so that bypassers wonīt easily mistake you guys for scary criminals with a real gun.
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Old June 21st, 2003, 02:42 PM   #3
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Alex,

Laws for each State, and countries for that matter, are all different. As far as I know, as long as you notify the police of what you are going to be doing, and also notifying the people in the area, you shouldn't have a problem.
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Old June 21st, 2003, 03:03 PM   #4
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Several years ago, some young guy was running from the police, here in Vancouver. It was night time (and dark). The police told him to stop and turn around. He did, with a large cell phone in his hand. One cop shot the teenager dead before the teenager could say boo. So contacting the police would be a healthy idea.
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Old June 21st, 2003, 03:38 PM   #5
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I do a lot of shooting where acting students are staging a scene from a movie as their final acting project. Many chose scenes with weapons.

We've found that just informing the local police doesn't go far enough. Whenever we use (always fake) weapons outside the studio, we put up signs stating that this is a student film project. We also get PERMISSION from each merchant that might be effected by our presence.

This reduces the problems one always can have with the one or two officers that weren't paying attention during lineup and/or didn't read the day's event sheet.

It only takes one to screw up your life.

Personally, I'd somehow disable the BB gun. If you can, wrap a bit of blue tape around the butt of the gun too. That frequently signifies a checked and safe gun at a range or SWAT exercise. The local PD can tell you what color to use.

Better yet, paint up a length of broomstick, use it quickly for the shot and then put it on the floor of the vehicle. Doesn't look like a gun. And tell the actors to drop all items that look even somewhat like guns if they even think the police are around. And keep their hands visible.

Today it's just fundamental safety.
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Old June 21st, 2003, 05:01 PM   #6
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We all know people who have been raided by cops because they had fake guns. It's a bad experience. The guy I know had his house raided because his neighbours saw him rehearshing inside his house through a window. Go above board, dude.
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Old June 21st, 2003, 05:23 PM   #7
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Ouch, that doesn't sound too good. I don't want to get into any trouble like that.

We should make big signs and put them around eh? We decided to do this in a park behind a school, where no one is ever at, so that might help...
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Old June 21st, 2003, 06:15 PM   #8
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I once took a picture of a trainstation that wasn't completed yet. After 3 minutes there was this guy complaining about me being on industrial private property. Then had to hear his story about me being very lucky that he was surveilling because his collegues would probably have called the cops and I would have ended up in jail for photographing and being on private property without permission. Not to mention that my camcorder would have been taken...

The guy itself wasn't soo bad after all, but things are sometimes so overreacted upon.

I dunno what would happen if you're running out with a soft bb gun and a bag over your head, but you'll probably face lifetime impisonment. Not to mention that your cam will probably being beaten to tiny peaces :)
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Old June 21st, 2003, 11:35 PM   #9
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There was an amateur/independent film production in Canada a while back where a couple of guys utilized fake guns including a huge rifle made out of plastic and PVC pipe. The crew forgot to inform the local police about it and the crew soon found themselves on the floor surrounded by the SWAT team. You can see some video here about this (http://www.rewindvideo.com/2003/watch_various.shtml) click on INFINITI BUST at the bottom of the page. You probably have to hit SAVE TARGET AS... in order for it to work right.

The good thing is that this incident generated A LOT of media attention and they soon found themselves selling their film product like hotcakes.

On another note, today I was helping a production company stage their big gunfight scene in downtown Brownsville, Texas, (a Mexican border town) and there were guys running around with rifles and guns like they owned the place. The locals didn't mind it--I guess they are used to seeing it like this on the other side of the border...and the cops enjoyed watching the production...especially since there was an endless supply of donuts.

Make the movie you want to make, but be sure to notify the cops beforehand. Most cops won't mind sticking around--just be sure to give them some food:)
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Old June 21st, 2003, 11:49 PM   #10
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Heh, good advice thanks.

Too bad my cousin just got fired from his job at a gas station (for punching some moron that came in there), because there was a krispy kream (cream?) donuts place inside of it, and he used to give away all of the donuts that were never sold everyday, and there would usually be like 4-6 big boxes he could take for free, I bet cops would love that, heh..
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Old June 22nd, 2003, 12:43 AM   #11
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Nick,

Were you involved in the making of The Alamo? Or the making of the web site?
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Old June 22nd, 2003, 12:52 AM   #12
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Both:)
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Old June 22nd, 2003, 01:23 AM   #13
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Well, now...I'm intrigued. As a Texan and film buff, I'd love to know more about this film and what you did or are doing. Would you mind opening a thread and telling us more?
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Old June 22nd, 2003, 02:25 AM   #14
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Quote:
There was an amateur/independent film production in Canada a while back where a couple of guys utilized fake guns including a huge rifle made out of plastic and PVC pipe. The crew forgot to inform the local police about it and the crew soon found themselves on the floor surrounded by the SWAT team.
I seem to recall something about this on the news a while back. Did this happen in Vancouver?
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Old June 22nd, 2003, 09:42 AM   #15
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Yes, I believe it was Vancouver....

Sure, I'll get an ALAMO thread going.
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