The Rumble of the Streetcar Returns to South Carrollton Avenue . . . Albeit Pulled by a Dumptruck
A strange sound was heard at Oak and South Carrollton yesterday afternoon--the rumble of the St. Charles Avenue Streetcar Line. Unfortunately, the return of the streetcar wasn't the real deal, but instead orchestrated as a background prop towed by an RTA dumptruck for the filming of the motion picture The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. The No Parking signs showed up Wednesday on Oak and Zimpel announcing filming for Friday. The filming I saw took place along South Carrollton in front of Rite Aid and consisted of actor Peter Badalamenti hobbling towards the camera as 1920-era cars and 1920-era clothed extras provided a background setting back towards Zimpel. I witnessed at least ten takes of this shot. Carrollton traffic of course was a mess in both directions and through-traffic (minus the RTA buses which were allowed to pass) was diverted to the side streets. An extra in the film told me that morning they were filming on St. Charles near Napoleon (where the streetcar also made a towed appearance) and the disruption there was even worse and according to my neighbor the drop-off at Sacred Heart was a nightmare.
Nearly all of the neighborhood people that stood around watching the filming had the same sadness and longing for the streetcars seeing one of the Perley-Thomases on South Carrollton once again. The rumble. The hum. The vibration. We all talked about it and that same extra (a local) told me it was the same by the by-standers at Napoleon that morning. I don't know this for sure, but I assume that the 15 months the St. Charles Avenue Streetcar Line has been offline due to damages incurred because of KTMB (Katrina That Miserable Bitch) is the longest sustained absence since the line's inception.
Having digital camera issues these days--I was forced to use the camera on my cellphone. Good quality, huh?
Its been a month since I last posted?? JHC. I could have sworn it was only two weeks . . .
TAGS: Katrina, New Orleans, NOLA, Carrollton, St. Charles Streetcar Line, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button