Friday, October 24, 2008

Movie Magic in Acadia National Park

ACADIA NAT’L PARK — Otter Cliffs was abuzz with activity Tuesday, as a crew of 50 cameramen, caterers, crane operators and others descended on the area in preparation for several days of filming for “Ashecliffe,” a new Martin Scorsese movie due out from Paramount Pictures next October.

The lower spur of the Park Loop Road atop Otter Cliffs has been blocked off for the duration of the filming, which is expected to last into Friday. Automobile, bike, and pedestrian traffic can still pass freely through the upper portion of the road there.

The “second unit” shoot does not involve the director or any of the big-name actors who star in the film. Paramount Pictures crews are using a crane and a boat to get shots of a stuntman on the cliffs, as well as scenic shots that will be incorporated into the movie, said executive producer Chris Brigham.

The movie, based on the Dennis Lehane (“Mystic River,” “Gone Baby Gone”) novel “Shutter Island,” stars Leonardo Dicaprio and Mark Ruffalo as two U.S. marshals in 1954 who investigate the disappearance of a murderer from a hospital for the criminally insane. Well known actors Max Von Sydow, Ben Kingsley, and Michelle Williams also star in the film.

Crews were busy rigging the area for the shoot on Tuesday, with filming expected to take place on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, said Lea Girardin, director of the Maine Film Office. The crews are made up largely of people from Boston and New York, with a small portion of people traveling here from Los Angeles, Mr. Brigham said.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Buy a lobster - Save a fisherman

The Associated Press October 14, 2008

STONINGTON — Thousands of people showed up at a lobster bake to get a good deal on Maine's signature seafood while extending a helping hand to the beleaguered lobster fleet.

To show its support for the local lobster industry, the Penobscot East Resource Center organized the "Eat a Lobster, Save a Community" lobster bake Sunday that offered cooked or live lobsters for $3.50 each on the Stonington fish pier.

The Maine lobster industry is under pressure with lobstermen getting low prices for their harvest while coping with high fuel and bait costs.

The lobster bake was one way to give support to the Stonington-Deer Isle lobster fleet and send a message that communities along the Maine coast can help their local fishing communities, said Annie Tselikis of the Penobscot East Resource Center.

"People are still thinking of lobster as a luxury item, but when it's cheaper than steak it's not. Right now it's cheaper than hamburger," she said.

Nearly 5,000 lobsters were sold at the event, with proceeds going toward fuel credits for the local lobster fleet, she said.

The wholesale price of lobsters has plunged in recent weeks as consumer demand has fallen and orders from major processors in Canada have dried up. Many lobstermen have talked about tying up their boats and dealers have suggested they haul fewer traps to get prices back up.

The price lobstermen get for their catch has fallen to about $2.25 a pound in Stonington, Tselikis said. Lower prices have been reported elsewhere.

In contrast, lobstermen got more than $4 a pound on average in each of the past four years, according to the Department of Marine Resources. Prices in the low $2 range are reminiscent of what fishermen were getting in the mid-1980s.

The Penobscot East Resource Center, which works with fishing communities in eastern Maine, also organized a community meeting in Stonington today to discuss the lobster market and how the community can respond.