Film crew rides off and thanks the happy townfolk

October 13, 2006|By Michael Sragow | Michael Sragow,Sun Movie Critic

Two weeks ago, movie crews snarled downtown Baltimore, but Tuesday saw a pleasant addition to the street scene - and it's here to stay for a couple of weeks. 20th Century Fox draped a banner above the intersection of Light and Lee streets reading "Live Free or Die Hard - It's a Wrap! The Movie Thanks Baltimore For Your Patience and Cooperation During Our Filming Here."

"The banner was something [the movie company] wanted to do," said a delighted Hannah Lee Byron of the Baltimore City Film Office. "They knew on one of the days they caused inconvenience for a lot of people, so this was a way to thank them."

The banner wasn't all 20th Century Fox gave to the community. Byron estimates the production generated $3.5 million for local business during its eight-day stay.

Other contributions included food for the Maryland Food Bank. And the area around City Hall and War Memorial Plaza may look a little more festive for the next patriotic holiday. Dressing the location for a Fourth of July scene, the movie crew fixed triple brackets on the lampposts to hold flags. They left behind the brackets and 24 Old Glories.

MICHAEL SRAGOW

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