Hoboken Is Safe: No ‘Jersey Shore’ Spinoff for Snooki and JWoww
The city of Hoboken, New Jersey just denied a shooting permit to MTV that would have resulted in a Snooki and JWoww-centric spinoff of Jersey Shore. Hallelujah!
Citizens of Hoboken, New Jersey, breathe a sigh of relief: Your illustrious town has denied MTV a permit that would have allowed them to shoot a Jersey Shore spinoff starring Snooki and JWoww on your lovely streets. Thank goodness! Dodged a bullet there, didn’t we?
According to NJ.com, Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmerman shot down an idea proposed by Jim Bianco of 495 Productions for a reality show we can safely assume is the aforementioned hypothetical Jersey Shore riff. A document sent from the City of Hoboken Local Film Commission to 495 Productions described the project as Bianco (who, by the by, is Jersey Shore’s head of production) proposed it:
“He explained that this is a ‘reality based’ series of programs that would require about 700 hours of film to produce a single hour of broadcast programming. The production would require that filming both interior and exterior locations take place on an ‘ad hoc’ or unscripted and unpredictable basis and would follow the daily activities of two well-known reality television celebrities through the City of Hoboken. It would include an apartment where the two would reside, and crews would follow and film them throughout the day and evening.”
Though Jersey Shore itself isn’t named, Bianco had explained to the committee that his company had prior experience in New Jersey, Miami, and Italy, so by default, that can really only mean that he’s referring to one thing. The difference, however, between Hoboken and the Jersey Shore locales is that it’s a very small city, geographically speaking—which would make having a high-profile television production hanging around all the time a little problematic.
But wait!, I hear you say. Isn’t Seaside Heights pretty small, too? Well, yes; but it’s also primarily a vacation town, which means it’s more or less overrun by tourists who are unlikely to be disrupted by the filming of a reality program. Hoboken, on the other hand, is a place where people actually live and work year-round, and it’s pretty obvious that shooting such a program there would make daily life difficult for its inhabitants. The committee pointed out that the proposed 24-hour filming permit would violate a Hoboken law which prohibits filming after 11pm in a residential area). Additionally, all of the places in the city that Bianco proposed as filming locations are in the middle of residential properties, which means that “the commercial production of this scale would take place on the very doorsteps and beneath the windows of our citizens, unnecessarily degrading their quality of life.” And finally, Hoboken has a pretty active nightlife scene, so the constant presence of an MTV crew would probably prompt huge crowds to gather wherever they happened to be each night, causing traffic issues, noise, and (again) “an unacceptable lessening of the quality of life for the local residents and businesses.”
And the plot thickens, as well, because a second letter stated that the meeting about the permit “raised some serious concerns.” Apparently 495 Productions as filmed in public areas without a required permit in the past; the production company replied that they may not have had an official permit, but that they had “informal verbal agreements… involving payments to individuals.” Shady? Juuuuuust a bit. Mayor Zimmerman wrote that she was putting 495 Productions, MTV, and parent company Viacom “on formal notice that there will be zero tolerance for this kind of approach in the City of Hoboken. Any attempts to film in a manner that is not permitted without a permit will be dealt with immediately and aggressively by the City of Hoboken.” To which I say hear hear, Mayor Zimmerman!
So alas, Snooki and JWoww will have to look elsewhere for their next paycheck. Preferably somewhere they won’t destroy life as we know it for us normal people.
Lucia Peters is BettyConfidential’s associate editor.