Industry Star of the Month

Frank Gribbon, FDNY

Frank Gribbon July 8, 2010 - When a production wants to add authenticity to a scene depicting the FDNY, they know to reach out to the department itself. Frank Gribbon, the FDNY’s deputy commissioner of public information, has been overseeing the agency’s work with the film and television industry since 2002.

During his tenure, there has been a steady interest by filmmakers and videographers in the Fire Department, specifically in its greatest resource - the dedicated men and women who protect and serve New Yorkers. From fictional TV series and feature films to serious documentaries, the industry has been assisted in myriad ways: from small parts in “Law & Order” episodes, TV series such as “Rescue Me” and “Third Watch” that revolve around firefighting and EMS work, feature-length films like Chuck & Larry, to serious documentaries that focus on the exciting life-saving work of fire and EMS professionals.

Individual requests span the entire spectrum of industry needs: costume (protective firefighting gear), equipment (special tools, fire trucks and ambulances), locations (firehouses, training academy), and, of course, personnel and their technical expertise. “We review each request and make every effort to assist in the production, while ensuring that there's no interruption in the day-to-day work schedule of our personnel,” said Gribbon. “My colleague Jim Long has been the FDNY's primary liaison to the industry and currently handles all film and TV requests.”

The first major productions Gribbon managed were documentaries that were taped or underway at the time of the World Trade Center terrorist attacks. Producers of a planned TV series called “The Bravest” spent months with several of the department’s specially-trained rescue companies. “Numerous firefighters who were interviewed subsequently died on 9/11, and some of their comments were foreboding - even haunting,” remembered Gribbon. “While I had serious doubts concerning the appropriateness of airing it after the tragedy, the producers, to their credit, altered their plan and - with the support of the families of those who died - created instead a tribute to these heroes.”

Gribbon also remembered a major documentary that was in progress at that time, that of French filmmakers Jules and Gideon Naudet, who witnessed and captured on video the terrorist attacks. Their work, which included extensive footage inside the WTC buildings both before and after the building collapses, ultimately became a two hour CBS special that aired on the first anniversary of the attack in 2002.

“For those of us in the FDNY who have worked closely with members of the film and television industry, it is both interesting and enjoyable to participate in the planning and creative process that brings the world of firefighting and the lives of those who belong to this noble profession to the screen,” he said.

Industry Star

Margarita Acevedo, Mayor's Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting
John Battista, Mayor's Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting
Tom Reidy, Madison Square Park
Steven Holtzman, Canal Creatures Productions

Jennifer Lenihan, Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting
Lynne Meadow, Manhattan Theatre Club
Thomas O'Donnell, Local 817
Katy Finch, Brooklyn Workforce Innovations
Meredith Conti, Grand Central Terminal

Gino Lucci, Picture Cars East
Habibah Ali-Love, OFTB
McCord Fitzsimmons, Former OFTB Intern
Lis Pearson, New York Public Library
Veronica Miles, EcoSet
Lisa Rubin, Hudson River Park Trust
Mari Jo Winkler, PGA Green
Michael Super, Coney Island, Parks and Recreational Manager
Caroline Stephenson, NYC Economic Development Corporation
Lisa Lucas, Tribeca Film Institute

Harriet Taub, Material for the Arts
David Moy, OFTB
Fred Cerullo, Grand Central Partnership
Marge Feinberg, DOE
Nate Grove, Marinas
Frank Gribbon, FDNY
Jeffrey Sangrund, Brooklyn Bridge Park
Javonne Parker, Staten Island Ferry
Justin Green, Build It Green! NYC
Tom Ross, "Law & Order: Criminal Intent"
Eric Peterson, Randall's Island
Connie Fitzgerald, Department of Environmental Protection

Joey Violante, Technicolor
Stephanie Argamaso, OFTB
Vito Turso, DSNY
Elizabeth Rapuano, Governor's Island
Estelle Cooper, Flushing Meadows Corona Park
Alvah Holmes, Former MOFTB Intern
Dana Kuznetzkoff, Line Producer
Eva Radke, Film Biz Recycling
Karen Meyerhoff, Guggenheim
Meredith Rothstein, Roseland Ballroom
Charlotte St. Martin, The Broadway League

The Artists Company
Celina Sze, OFTB
Sharon Jensen, The Alliance for Inclusion in the Arts
Terence Gray, New York Television Festival
Sam Levy, Summer Play Festival
Wes French, General Services Administration
Tom Maiorano, Brooklyn Navy Yard
Joan Cooney, South Street Seaport
Jeannine Marotta, Staten Island Economic Development Corporation
Brooke Smy, Tishman Speyer
Elliott Kerman, Tax Credit Accountant

Matthew Kania, Assistant Location Manager
Lieutenant Joe Lassen, Movie/TV Unit
In Memoriam - Nancy Littlefield
Ivory Henderson-Robb, Department of Transportation
Jack Powers, New York City Economic Development Corporation
Robin Forst, Lower Manhattan Construction Command Center
Kitty Preston, CUNY Locations
Liz Carollo, Greenmarket
Donna Masly, Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation
Sean Jones, New York City Department of Corrections
Sheila Greene, NYCHA

Ralph Musolino, Parks and Recreation
Rick Cotton, NBC Universal
Joe Fontao, Location Manager
Gretchen McGowan, HDNet Films/Open City Films
Tim Tompkins, Times Square Alliance
Erika Feldman, Theatre Row
Vin Lenza, Staten Island Development Corporation
Tristan Assent, "Made in NY" PA
Denise Motta, New York City Economic Development Corporation
Terry Lawler, New York Women in Film and Television
Monty Ross, 40 Acres and a Mule

Pat White, Local 764
Michelle Byrd, Independent Feature Project
Matt Miller, AICP
Kyle McCarthy, MTA Metro-North
Jeannette Pinero, Department of Correction
Bambi Brook, Dawn Animal Agency
Andy Nagy, NYCHA
Juan Rosario, HPD
James J. Claffey, Jr., IATSE Local One
Mac Brown, Producer
Cheryl Hodge, VTU
Llewellyn Wells, Executive Producer
Lawrence Major, Parks and Recreation

Ken Konfong, Economic Development Corporation
Whoopi Goldberg, Actress/Producer
Caroline Baron, FilmAid International
Thomas O'Donnell Sr., Local 817
Drew Jiritano, Special Effects Coordinator
Carla Rajj, Location Manager
Al Cerullo, Film Pilot
James Lauer, FDNY
Dan Mercado, Parks and Recreation
Rebecca Seale, DCAS
Alberteen Anderson, MTA
Joseph Ellis, NYPD
Peter Basich, DOT
Richie Silverman, NYPD