Tropical Alki: ‘Ira Finkelstein’s Christmas’ movie crew brings palms

April 23, 2011 at 1:16 pm | In West Seattle beaches, West Seattle news, WS culture/arts | 11 Comments

The sun, the sand, the surf, the palms, the … snow-capped mountains!

As previewed here yesterday, the crew of the movie “Ira Finkelstein’s Christmas” indeed showed up today to shoot at Alki Beach – and brought the perfect props to fulfill what they’d told neighbors, that Alki would be doubling for Florida. Pull back the shot a little, of course, and the palm’s pot is revealed:

And somebody had to cart ‘em around:

The crew was packing up by late morning:

Notices handed out to neighbors said they’re expecting to be back Monday; they’ve been shooting elsewhere around the city/region too, with Leavenworth playing the role of “Christmastown, Washington” – here’s a “rough cut” clip we found online:

Our story from yesterday explains what they’re doing in Seattle and why Florida figures into the plot.

11 Comments

  1. And the Oly’s in the background really scream Florida!

    Comment by jwws — 1:44 pm April 23, 2011 #

  2. I was just wondering/thinking the exact same thing. I am sure that they will be magically cropped out. Or what ever the new term is to “erase” them from the background.

    Comment by coffee — 2:54 pm April 23, 2011 #

  3. No pics of Elliott Gould?

    Comment by Fairmounter — 3:06 pm April 23, 2011 #

  4. If the cast was there, they were there a lot earlier than we were.

    Comment by WSB — 3:52 pm April 23, 2011 #

  5. i’m curious, is the movie based on the East coast of Florida or the Gulf of Mexico. The sand on the Gulf is white and the water is more aqua color/much clearer. I assume they’ll use CGI to get rid of the tankers, tugs, barges, ferry’s, islands, Olympics and such.

    Comment by Mike — 4:45 pm April 23, 2011 #

  6. wow, that palm tree just screams “low budget”

    Comment by melissa — 5:38 pm April 23, 2011 #

  7. Most of the comments above make the same assumption that the wide shots provided by WSB match the line- up and placement of the movie production camera(s). This is highly unlikely.
    -
    The entire scene within this movie could easily be framed, shot and exposed so as to eliminate the erroneous elements (mountains, ships, ferries color of sand etc.) all without the additional cost of CGI.
    -
    Imagine the WSB tight shot even tighter showing only overexposed sand (white), blue sky, a bit of palm frond, and distant water with no ships, mountains or other Seattle reference points.
    -
    At some point during the production a small crew (often a “second unit”) might be dispatched for just a day or two to Florida to capture the wide establishing shots.
    -
    This has been the common practice for the last century of “movie magic.”
    -
    The cast, and crew, “call times” are often at or before sunrise so as to avoid the harsh and uncomplimentary mid-day sun.

    Comment by Nulu — 6:49 pm April 23, 2011 #

  8. Sand color – wrong (hide those large pieces of PNW driftwood – not to mention the mountains/islands with more hills than FL ever saw), sea color wrong (either coast of FL) topography -all wrong – and where is Jimmy Buffett and that Margarita?

    Just saying – being a Parrot Head! ;-)

    Comment by jwws — 6:59 pm April 23, 2011 #

  9. We’ll just have to all see the movie and see if we can figure it out … I believe iMDB mentioned a potential release date of November. To Nulu’s point, don’t know which way the cameras were aiming, as they were packing up by the 10 am hour, when we went by to see how things were going. If they are still planning on returning Monday, I hope they’re ready to simulate a Florida cloudburst, as the forecast still looks fairly soggy as of this writing:
    .
    http://www.atmos.washington.edu/data/city_report.html
    .
    P.S. In previous web searches, somehow I missed the fact that our friends at CapitolHillSeattle.com had covered some interior shooting there a week and a half ago:
    .
    http://www.capitolhillseattle.com/2011/04/13/chs-pics-ira-finkelsteins-christmas-on-19th-ave-e

    Comment by WSB — 7:05 pm April 23, 2011 #

  10. This is awesome! I, too, would like an Elliott Gould sighting. David DeLuise came into our restaurant last week as part of a group celebrating a birthday party. He was incredibly nice, moreso than I’d expect a celebrity to be. It’s the little nuances that set him apart.

    Comment by Mary — 9:55 pm April 23, 2011 #

  11. How about bringing in some real white sand too.

    Comment by lost coyote — 10:11 pm April 23, 2011 #

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