BUFFALO, N.Y. — After 14 months of waiting, one of the first major films to have its release delayed by COVID-19 will finally hit theaters nationwide. And a lot of it was filmed in Western New York.
Hundreds of actors who played extras in John Krasinski's "A Quiet Place Part II" have been waiting for almost two years to see their work on the big screen. Crews shot the movie throughout Buffalo in summer 2019.
About 150 of them will gather at the Aurora Theatre in East Aurora for a mini premiere Thursday night, with a red carpet and all. Tammi Meidenbauer is organizing the event. She shot scenes with her blue pickup truck in Akron and Tonawanda.
Meidenbauer says the background actors got really close during the long days they spent together on set, and have stayed in touch.
"It's pretty exciting and a little surreal," she told 2 On Your Side. "There's people from all different backgrounds, some people, this was the only thing they've ever done, some people, this is their life. To come together, all those different people, to watch it and after waiting all this time, it's pretty exciting. We don't know what scenes we're in, because we don't know what they cut and how they edit it. So we don't know until we see it, just like everybody else."
The 7:00 pm screening is open to the public and tickets are still available here.
While it's hard to miss Western New York landmarks like the Grand Island Bridges and Main Street in Akron in the trailer for "A Quiet Place: Part II," many of the interior and more intimate scenes were filmed here, too.
That part of the process took place on the sound stages at Buffalo Film Works. The facility in the Clinton-Babcock neighborhood was home to hundreds of crew members for months. They constructed sets there before the actors and camera crews came in to make movie magic.
Buffalo Film Works also served as a central hub for the crews while they were shooting on location.
"They told us, you know when you shoot in New York and L.A., and you shoot on location, you have to call 15 or 20 different people to get the roads shut down," Owner-Partner Jennifer O'Neill told 2 On Your Side. "Here, they can park all the trailers at Film Works, go out to location, there's no issue."
"It's nice knowing that we facilitate these movies coming in now that couldn't have shot here before if they didn't have the soundstages to work on," said Owner-Partner George Pittas. "So it's a good thing all around."
Pittas and O'Neill say about half of the crew base was local for "A Quiet Place Part II", but with all of the other films being shot in Buffalo, the local crew numbers grow.
Buffalo Film Works was also involved in filming for "Nightmare Alley," directed by Guillermo del Toro and starring Bradley Cooper. They just wrapped their first production since the pandemic, a Paramount Studios movie that they couldn't yet reveal the name of.