Commercial Shoot on Union Avenue

Filming on Union Avenue, Knoxville, November 2012

Here’ s a fun little happening that my new reporters stumbled upon and sent out via the Urban News Wire Service. Urban Brother and Urban Niece visiting from the rural hinterlands took in quite a bit in one day of walking and running in the city. They visited The Tree and Vine, Mast General Store, Pop Culture, the Sun Sphere, World’s Fair Park and the Candy Factory.

While walking about they ran into a crew filming on Union Avenue and Urban Niece popped out her camera to record the event. Apparently, the commercial is for Home Federal Bank and the star of the shoot is a red rocking chair. In various shoots around town, it has sat beside a stream and on a basketball court and now on the street.

Equipment for filming, 500 Block of Union Avenue, Knoxville, November 2012

A professional film crew worked the street from one end of the 500 block to the other. KPD officers on hand blocked the street from traffic while the Knoxville Fire Department representatives hosed down the street in order to get some sort of effect desired by the filmmakers while instruments to the side simulated dappled sunlight or reflected light to the desired spot for shooting.

Extras walked and re-walked the sidewalks on each side of the street for multiple takes while a convertible drove down the street, backed up and drove forward again multiple times.

Extras walk and re-walk for filming, 500 Block of Union Avenue, Knoxville, November 2012
Filming, 500 Block of Union Avenue, Knoxville, November 2012

It will be interesting to see the final cut of the commercial in order to understand the concept. Perhaps the idea is that we feel at home wherever we are around Knoxville. Still, why a rocking chair and not a recliner? Is all of Knoxville our front porch? And why doesn’t anyone ever actually use that rocking chair? Is the color red significant? And what does this have to do with banking or money?

For me, the most interesting part of the story is that Union Avenue has become a spot of significance in Knoxville. If the premise behind the premise is that these are special, important or otherwise noteworthy places for the people of the city, that’s a  powerful statement for a place that included an abandoned building on one side of the street just three short years ago.

Car driving and un-driving for commercial, 500 Block of Union Avenue, Knoxville, November 2012
Director and Cameraman, 500 Block of Union Avenue, Knoxville, November 2012

I’ll have another piece, soon, that is a bit more personal which will include footage shot on Union Avenue. In the meantime, if you see something interesting on the street and have a camera in your hand, document it and send it to me. I’ll give you credit and you can become a celebrity photographer for the Urban Family, just like Urban Niece without whom this post would not have been possible.