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Industry Star of the Month

Peter Basich, Department of Transportation

With background training in cinematography and commercial still photography, it was seemingly no accident that Peter Basich ended up handling requests from film and television crews, to shoot on New York City bridges. "I enjoy working with these folks; I can understand what they're asking for and we click right away," he says. Mr. Basich took on the duty of film liaison three years into his tenure at the Department of Transportation (DOT,) after the departure of a former employee. A veteran of the department, Peter has served as the Office Manager for Bridge Maintenance, Inspection and Operations, Bureau of Bridges at DOT for the past 12 years. The unit is responsible for the "care and feeding" of over 700 New York City bridges, including the Brooklyn, Manhattan, Williamsburg, and Queensboro bridges ��� and even elevated portions of the FDR and West Side Highway.

In addition to fielding requests from entertainment production companies, Mr. Basich handles general office management, serves as the liaison to the many support shops in the field which handle carpentry, electricity and ironworks for the City's bridges, coordinates the bridge crossings with the NYC Marathon and the Five Borough Bike Tour, and handles photography needs for his department. He wears many hats, but when it comes to working with film and television crews, he says, this hat "is becoming more fully plumed."

Having assisted hundreds of feature films, commercials and television shows over the years, Mr. Basich knows how to expedite the process for shooting on a bridge. Production companies are referred to him by the Mayor's Office of Film, Theatre & Broadcasting after an initial discussion and agreement on the nature of their work. Companies then need to supply a letter of intent to Mr. Basich, detailing the work planned and equipment used. He then checks the scheduled work on the bridge to avoid any conflicts with the activity of DOT tradespeople or contractors. On more complex requests, he can also arrange for engineers to meet with the production company. His major requirement? Don't block pedestrian, vehicular or bike traffic - most bridges are busy with commuters and tourists.

The Sopranos, Sex & The City, NYPD Blue, Third Watch, and the feature films Stay and The Forgotten are just some of the projects that have been keeping him busy lately. But he also coordinated the ambitious work of Kate & Leopold back in 2001, which recreated the atmosphere of the Brooklyn Bridge in the early 1880s. And as a testament to his ingenuity, he was able to arrange for the film Frequency (1999) to flip a fake gasoline truck and stage a fireball crash under the 125th Street overpass to the West Side Highway - right after the structure had been painted and rehabilitated. Having once paid the rent as a full-time photographer, Mr. Basich can also make practical suggestions with a creative payoff: "When they ask for a certain angle or view, I've sometimes suggested a better one, translating it in my mind's eye. I can fully appreciate what they're trying to do." Oftentimes he can even coordinate standby electricians to keep the necklace lights on a bridge illuminated past 1AM for certain bridge scenes. He was able to pull this off just recently for The Sopranos, when they shot the Brooklyn and Manhattan bridges from Fulton Ferry State Park.

In short, not only does Mr. Basich help to keep the City's bridges camera ready, but he is production's passport to some of the most stunning views in all of New York.

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