By Sabina Mollot
Last Wednesday evening, residents of Waterside Plaza got a sneak peek of the upcoming film, “Sully,” when director Clint Eastwood and actor Tom Hanks shot a scene at the property. Between the hours of 4 and 7 p.m. the scene was shot between 40 Waterside Plaza and the Water Club just north of the complex.
Hanks is playing heroic pilot Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger, who calmly saved his entire crew and over 150 passengers during a crash landing in the Hudson River in 2009 after the plane’s two engines failed. The incident became known as the “Miracle on the Hudson,” and the film is based on the autobiography, Highest Duty, by Sullenberger and Jeffrey Zaslow. The scene at Waterside called for a newly white-haired Hanks to jog alongside the East River.
Following the one-day shoot, a post about it appeared on the Waterside blog.
The post read, “The film crew used our Community Center as their green room so remember next time you visit for an event, you could be sitting in Clint Eastwood’s empty chair!”
Some residents also reported getting to meet the star of the film about the miraculous water landing, which also stars Laura Linney and Aaron Eckhart.
Waterside owner and developer Richard Ravitch, who happened to be in the office on Columbus Day, told T&V he hadn’t been around during the shoot. However, he recalled being present the time another Hollywood legend — Cary Grant— visited the property.
This was shortly after the opening of Waterside over 40 years ago, when the English Speaking Union dedicated a plaque to the property to commemorate the presence underneath Waterside’s buildings of rubble that came from bombed out coastal cities in England. It had been dumped there after ships had used the rubble as ballast before loading up on food and supplies to bring home during World War II.
Ravitch noted that at the dedication, the English-born Grant described having family members killed in bombings in Brighton.
“When (the English Speaking Union) asked if it would be okay if Cary Grant presided over the event, I said I’d be thrilled,” recalled Ravitch. “I was jealous of the way he kissed Grace Kelly.”