Hey look, it's Tom Cruise! He and a bevy of other stars are lurking around Fort Lauderdale's Himmarshee Village filming the jukebox musical Rock of Ages, and you might just be tempted to whip out your camera for some celebrity shots as you walk to get a frosty beer.
But the production company in charge of the filming has posted signs -- and moonlighting city police officers -- to intimidate you (and the tabloid paparazzi) from taking any pictures. The signs read:
"PHOTOGRAPHY OF THIS AREA IS PROHIBITED - STRICTLY ENFORCED BY FLPD"
They cite city ordinance 16.1. The Sun-Sentinel looked up the ordinance, and found that it has nothing to do with trespassing or taking pictures. In fact, the city said it couldn't determine which ordinance (if any) would govern the situation, and spokesperson Matt Little said they were having trouble reaching their attorney for issues relating to filming.
Meanwhile, Fort Lauderdale police officers are taking in extra pay for patrolling the area along with rent-a-cops, and the National Press Photographers' Association sent a letter to Police Chief Frank Adderley decrying the situation:
"Photography may not be restricted in a public place to accommodate the whims ofHollywood or the desire by your officers to please their 'second-job' employers," wrote the group's attorney, Mickey H. Osterreicher.
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Perhaps the production company could have tried citing Florida Statues chapter 943.02, which a Boynton Beach cop used last month to throw an iPhone-camera-wielding Cinco de Mayo reveler in jail.