HBO Shoots Michigan ‘Girls’ at Jimmy’s Pizza, Mamaroneck
24 May, 2012
By Jacqueline Silberbush
Reader Michael Geary writes in,
“Have anything about all the scenes from last night’s HBO show “Girls” being filmed in Harrison & Mamaroneck: (such as) Jimmy’s Pizza on Mamaroneck Ave across from A&P?
Watching HBOs new show Girls last Sunday night I noticed a familiar place. I turned to my friend and asked her where I had seen that before when we both realized it was on Mamaroneck Avenue. In a scene where the main character Hannah comes home to what is supposed to be Michigan, she gets asked on a date by a boy that lives in town and he takes her to Jimmy’s.
Olga Kapakos, who has owned the store with her husband Jimmy since 1975, explains that one Monday morning in the beginning of July, a man came in to take pictures of the store, but at the time she had no idea he was from HBO. Two days later 2 guys came in and looked at the place without saying a word.
Two weeks later about 30 guys came in and said they wanted to film in the restaurant because it looked like a college town in Michigan.
“It’s no easy job!” Jimmy says. The director had him serve the pizza to the actors again and again, and told him not to say anything, even “you’re welcome.” He went back and forth from the kitchen several times before finally landing it (unfortunately that part was not aired.)
Two girls who worked for the show measured every square inch of the restaurant–tables, chairs, and the lights that had to be changed to be softer, the place was totally shut down for the day. There were people working outside with large TVs and they put black curtains on the windows. Olga said friends were calling in to ask if Jimmy was alright.
There were approximately 180 people working outside for a place that maxes out at 20. Jimmy says they had to shut off the refrigeration and AC because the video cameras were so sensitive they might pick up the sound so HBO set up their own AC unit to cool the place down. They also took down everything on the walls including pictures and signs.
“Now I know why tickets cost so much at the theater”, Olga says, “because so many people work, I can’t imagine how much money it costs to produce these things.”
Overall both Jimmy and Olga agree, “really nice young people, they were very, very, very nice wonderful people to know, not just work with.”
Check the link to watch a short clip on HBO.
Story and photos by Jacqueline Silberbush