Transformers 3, directed by Michael Bay and produced by Steven Spielberg, is set to begin filming in the District this September. There have been plenty of camera crews around D.C. recently, but this Paramount Pictures and DreamWorks film is allegedly causing much more commotion around town with their production requests than ever before.
A D.C. parkservice spokesperson, Bill Line, was quoted saying the producers "have asked to do some things that simply are not done on the National Mall," such as fabricating a car race along the Mall's gravel walking paths. Line fears "The National Mall is not an area in which Americans come to see high-tech action movies being shot" and "A lot of this could be more appropriately shot in a Hollywood studio."
With an extremely lengthy estimated filming time in D.C. of 14 days, plus additional weeks for production needs, the filming for the third installment of the Transformers blockbuster series has amounted to "a lot more than D.C. has ever been accustomed to in terms of scale and impact," said Kathy Hollinger, director of the D.C. Office of Motion Picture and Television Development.
Not all is negative, however, with the Transformers 3 filming in D.C. The film production is said to have an enormous economic impact on the city, more so than any other movie previously filmed in the District. With hotel, meal, equipment rental, crew, and taxi budgets, Transformers 3 is estimated to spend over $200 million in D.C. during production. Also, 50 D.C. residents will have the opportunity to serve as production assistants for Paramount and DreamWorks in coordination with the D.C. Office of Motion Picture and Television Development.