Headquartered in a warehouse in Pembroke Park, film crews have been working for months on a new TV series set in a fictional South Florida town on the edge of the Everglades.
"The Glades," a cops drama, began filming in April, and is set to debut this Sunday on A&E. Creator and executive producer Clifton Campbell, known for his work on "White Collar," "Profiler," and "21 Jump Street," grew up in Hialeah. He spoke to the Juice about South Florida's unique charms.
Why did you decide to set the show here?
"The script in the series is very specific to that part of the world, a part of South Florida
that most people aren't familiar with," Campbell says. Western Broward County, "where the ocean meets the swamp," usually loses out to the Hollywood fascination with South Beach. But "there were some terrific stories to be told in that world," he says. "Every weird crime you see
on the news always seems to happen in South Florida.
"How many locals have you hired so far to work on the show?
About 15 department heads are imported from Los Angeles. "Everybody else, to the best of our ability, is a local hire." Campbell estimates the total number of employees -- including caterers and the extensive support system needed to fuel and feed the crew -- exceeds 100.
Watching the show, are there places that locals will recognize?
"Absolutely...we're capturing the world out there." Campbell says they do most of their filming outside of the sound stage in Pembroke Park, which means the scenery includes lots palm trees and flat, swampy greens. One episode involves a murder that takes place during the Muck Bowl, the wildly popular annual high school football match between Glades Central and Pahokee. It wasn't filmed in Pahokee, but former Florida State University Coach Bobby Bowden makes a cameo.
Has it been difficult to film during the intense summer heat?
"I'm used to it and other local hires, while not happy, are used to it," Campbell says. As for the L.A. imports, "it's definitely weighing on them."