Hollywood calls for Solent Stevedores
Following the completion of a successful season handling Canary Isles tomatoes, Solent Stevedores staff at the Western Docks Fresh Produce Terminal were asked, at very short notice, to provide facilities for filming of the well known TV series '24: Live Another Day' starring Keifer Sutherland (as Jack Bauer), Chloe O'Brian (Mary Lynn Rajskub), Cheng Zhi (Tzi Ma) and Steven Fry as the British Prime Minister.
There were a number of challenges which the staff at the Terminal had to face, amongst them ensuring that suitable space was provided without adversely affecting preparations for the very successful Seawork Marine Exhibition which is held annually in the Terminal.
However by working in close co-operation with the Seawork organisers and the Location crew of the TV series, it was possible to provide the required undercover space for a scene which involved blacking out part of the Terminal and building a set in and around an articulated lorry trailer.
Up to 200 film crew and actors were involved at any one time and filming went on long into each day on site with security very tight.
Whilst it was a demanding yet interesting time for the Solent staff involved, there was a slight sense of disappointment that no job offers were forthcoming to aspiring performers on the company's books. Apparently those interested in a career in front of the camera were told they were more suited to radio!!
The TV episode was broadcast in the UK on the Sky 1 Channel on 16th July 2014
"Sorry for my delay in responding to you all, it has taken a while for the effects of last week's night shoots to wear off.
That being said, my memories of how wonderful you were to us have become firmly cemented. Every one of your team is a credit to you, Perry, Sally, Lee, Louis, in fact all the lads in Perry's team are a credit. Each request we made was met with enthusiasm, cheeriness and a great willingness to help,
Each one of your team at Solent Stevedores were more accommodating than we could have ever imagined or hoped for, and your team made my job so much easier, and for that I am eternally grateful.
I hope that if ever we are in Southampton again, that our paths may cross."
Many thanks to you all.
Location Manager - For 24: Live Another Day