Saturday, June 25, 2011

Rights of the Public and the Press - Court Rules For Photogs

I've spent my fair share of time on movie sets. Sometimes, I was the unit photographer, and in other instances, I was tasked with covering the news going on in the community. One of my early assignments had me covering Tom Cruise one Halloween in Georgetown, a tony part of Washington DC, when he was filming a scene for A Few Good Men. Then, myself and a colleague were met with blankets and scrims tossed up in-front of us as Cruise moved about the street, causing us to have to head to a second story window amidst an ongoing Halloween party and some kind revelers who let us "hang out" and make images above the scrims.

On June 24th, Photo District News reported 'Judge Orders Ft. Lauderdale to Allow Photos Near Movie Set' which followed up on their original article 'Ft. Lauderdale Photo Ban: Bought and Paid for by Hollywood?' where photographers were literally banned from places that the general public was allowed to walk freely upon.

The press enjoys not only the full rights and privileges of the general public, but also an expanded right as guaranteed by the first amendment. Thankfully, a judge found on behalf of the press in this emergency ruling. If only I had known about things like emergency rulings way back then, my images of Tom Cruise might be that might better.

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