Filming for Mel Gibson's latest blockbuster Hacksaw Ridge starts today in Richmond

And action: Crews make changes to Richmond's main street for filming of Hacksaw Ridge
And action: Crews make changes to Richmond's main street for filming of Hacksaw Ridge

I’ve got to admit, when I first heard of Mel Gibson’s plans to film part of his latest project, Hacksaw Ridge, in the heart of Richmond – in the street of my office to be exact – all I could think was, “great, well, where the heck am I going to park?”.

And I wasn’t the only one. From the point of the restricted parking notices going up, a number of folk raised gripes. Most fearing they’d end up getting booked in the course of their disrupted working day.

With even greater fears, were a group of the street’s business owners, who went so far as to meet to discuss their collective worries of a decline in business during the shooting period.

A couple of days later, with time to take in the news, my parking fears at least have diminished, replaced instead by a genuine buzz of excitement.

It’s not every day that Hollywood comes to town!

And it’s certainly not every day that your town is given such a great chance to have itself put on the global map.

I certainly hope the film is a smashing success and that folk want to visit the locations long after it has done its time at the box office.

It may seem far-fetched now, but who knows. Something such as this has great potential for trickle on economic effects.

And if we prove to be the fine and accommodating folk I know us to be, who knows, other directors may indeed consider our delightful locale for future shoots.

At this point I must admit to being quite a fan of Mel’s, specially his portrayal of Max.

In fact, the original Mad Max is a film I’ve watched so often that I have the dialogue encoded on my subconscious.

Needless to say, I did not feel any shame for having hung around the set for the past couple of days with a copy of the said DVD and a Sharpie in hand hoping for a chance meeting.

Nor will I apologize for the following abuse of editorial power:

Hey Mel,

If you read this, feel free to walk a 100 or so metres down the road from the set and drop in at the Gazette office for a cuppa. The drinks are on me.

Matt Lawrence