Mattituck Airbase is usually a hot and empty airfield this time of year — not exactly the place you’d expect to see TV stars. But a crew from the USA series ‘Royal Pains’ was there today to shoot an upcoming sequence for their eighth season.
Today’s scene, involving an airplane repo man with a mysterious medical condition, won’t even be seen for an entire year — that’s how far in advance most television series are shot, according to producer’s assistant Maria McIndoo.
“Television shoots months in advance. On average, we shoot six to seven pages a day, while movies shoot about two to three,” McIndoo explained. “So while it doesn’t seem like a lot, we’re actually shooting a lot at once.”
A native of Huntington, Long Island, McIndoo is very familiar with the East End, and much of the crew are also from the region. Royal Pains creator Andrew Lenchewski hails from Roslyn.
Today’s shoot brought at least 100 people to the area, from actors to camera operators to stagehands to makeup and hair people all the way to those setting up food for the crews. Huge mobile bathrooms running on generators were on hand, as were drivers ferrying people back and forth in large vans.
And today was not the show’s first visit to the North Fork; four years ago, the series shot a scene on Love Lane, right outside Love Lane Kitchen.
A good part of today involved rehearsals and set up for a scene involving series star Reshma Shetty, who plays Divya Katdare. Shetty plays assistant to Mark Feuerstein’s character Hank Lawson, an unfairly discredited surgeon, who ends up working in the Hamptons as a concierge doctor for the rich and elite.
Along with his starring role in the series, Fueurstein was also directing this episode.
Writer Woody Strassner was thrilled to be on the set to see his script come to life for the very first time.
“It is very surreal, but it’s also very exciting and we have a great crew, great cast and a great director for this episode as well,” he said.
Royal Pains will return next summer. For more information about the series, visit www.usanetwork.com/royalpains