An upcoming dramedy television show produced and directed by Valley Stream native Edward Burns began filming on Rockaway Avenue last week.
Epix picked up the series, called “Bridge and Tunnel,” for six, half-hour episodes Deadline reports. Filming took place both in the interior and exterior of Larry’s Pub on the corner of West Valley Stream Boulevard and Rockaway.
The project had been previously titled “Gibson Station” Dateline also reported, a likely reference to Burns’ childhood. According to previous Herald reporting, Burns grew up in the Gibson section of the neighborhood, a block away from the train station, he said.
“Bridge and Tunnel” is reportedly set in 1980, and revolves around a group of recent college graduates who have returned to their hometown as they weigh the next steps in their lives and careers. According to a synopsis, many of the characters in the series have a connection to both Manhattan and their Long Island hometown.
The allure of New York City while growing up in a nearby Long Island suburb has been a recurring theme in Burns’ work, and one that he said was a major factor in his becoming a filmmaker, he previously told the Herald.
“The proximity to Manhattan definitely helped,” he said of his hometown upon the release of his film “Fitzgerald Family Christmas” in 2012. It was also filmed in Valley Stream. “My folks both went to high school in Manhattan, and our entire childhood they were constantly telling us that Long Island is a great place for your childhood, but your dreams are going to come true across the river. The fact that I grew up a block from the Gibson train station, and that from the minute I was 14 years old my parents let me go into the city and explore was a definite attribute.
“I always felt the pull,” he added, “and the minute I got a taste of the city I got in there, and I think my films kind of reflect that back and forth, the push and pull of the Long Island suburbs and the excitement of Manhattan.”
In addition to “Fitzgerald Family Christmas,” and now “Bridge and Tunnel,” Burns filmed his 1995 directorial debut “The Brothers McMullen” in Valley Stream, in which he also had his first credited acting role. Since then he has played roles in film and television such as “Saving Private Ryan,” “She’s the one,” “Purple Violets” and “Mob City” among his 38 acting credits.
The ensemble cast for “Bridge and Tunnel,” Dateline also reports, includes Sam Vartholomeos (“Star Trek: Discovery”) who plays Jimmy, an aspiring photographer; Caitlin Stasey (“Reign”), who plays Stasey, Jimmy’s ex-girlfriend who is seeking to become a fashion designer; Gigi Zumbado (“9-1-1”), plays Tammy, who is waitressing while she awaits the start of business school at Columbia University; JanLuis Castellanos (“13 Reasons Why”), who plays Mikey, an accounting student weighing weather to pursue a career in the arts; Brian Muller (“Madame Secretary”), as Pags, the character of the group who dreams of attending law school; and Isabella Farrell (“The Good Fight”), as Stacey, a party girl pulled between her boyfriend in Manhattan and her roots on Long Island.
“Bridge and Tunnel” is set to premiere on Jan. 24, 2021.