July 11, 2010
Hollywood pays a visit to Red Holman dealership
Hollywood came Wednesday to Westland and movie buffs turned out to watch.
“I was excited to get a glimpse of Gerard Butler,” said Amy Alstermark of Redford, who was with her niece Lola Tomsett at the dealership. “I was driving by and saw nothing, so stopped, got out and walked over. We held out for 45 minutes, but I couldn't sacrifice her to the heat.”
Butler was filming scenes from the upcoming release of Machine Gun Preacher, based on the true story of Sam Childers, a missionary in southern Sudan who has made it his life's work to defend and protect the innocent children of the Sudan region by any means necessary.
Alstermark, who had been babysitting her niece at her mother's house in Canton, wasn't upset about losing $20. It was the price she paid to get a just a glimpse of the Hollywood hottie.
“I'm not taking it as a loss at all,” she said.
Westland Mayor William Wild had announced that MGP Productions was shooting a scene from the movie at Red Holman at Tuesday's city council meeting.
“It's a closed set, so we can't get in,” said Wild. “There are more 100 people on site. We appreciate them using Westland. They will use local restaurants and hotels.”
The announcement caught the attention of Bud Somerville who was at the meeting. The Westland resident has had a bit of exposure on the big screen. He was an extra in the Rob Schneider-Jenna Dewan movie American Virgin and can be seen in two scenes in the movie, which was filmed in Detroit a few years ago.
“The reason I went was because it's rare for any studio to film in Westland, so I jumped on it,” he said. “I was there for about 3'ªø1‚-2 hours. It was interesting to watch.”
Somerville stood outside the dealership for about 3'ªø1‚-2 hours waiting for Butler and was able to snap pictures of him as he arrived. Ironically, he used the camera he won from being an extra for American Virgin.
Somerville had taken a couple of shots from across the street and then walked over to the dealership. About 15 minutes later, a grey Suburban pulled up with Butler in the front seat.
“They wouldn't allow any pictures to be taken, so I walked across the street, put the super zoom lens on and got the shots,” he said. “I also got to shake hands with him. He was pretty nice. I told him I loved his movie, Law Abiding Citizen with Jamie Foxx.”
Butler is playing the role of Childers in the film, which is directed by Kite Runner and Monster's Ball director Marc Forster.
Scenes also were shot at the Schoolcraft College's Radcliff Center in Garden City.
— By Sue Mason