By Duane Barbati
Alamogordo Daily News
Actor and filmmaker Clint Eastwood was at Holloman Air Force Base shooting footage for the upcoming movie on the story of American pilot Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger Dec. 2.
Sullenberger is a former U.S. Airlines pilot who safely ditched his passenger airplane on the Hudson River after the plane struck a flock of Canadian geese. All 155 passengers on board survived the landing.
Holloman Director of Media Relations Arlan Ponder said Eastwood and his crew were out at Holloman filming for a movie.
“We participated in the filming of a movie,” Ponder said. “It was our opportunity to highlight some of our aircraft out here. We can’t discuss any specifics on it until the movie is released. It’s part of our production agreement. It was a one-day shoot out here at Holloman. We had two days of preparation for the shooting. They shot aerial footage. It was completed during normal training operations. They went with us on a training flight.”
He said it started around 6 a.m.
“The whole crew and everything were off the base by 2 p.m.,” Ponder said. “It was awesome. We’re incredible happy to have taken part into this process. To be given the opportunity to have taken part in this, says a lot for the status we have with the Department of Defense and the U.S. Air Force Entertainment Office. It’s the first time of actually filming at Holloman since “Stargate Universe” came out with the television series in 2009. We filmed the pilot here. We did some sound work for the “Star Trek into Darkness” movie.”
Alamogordo and Cloudcroft residents were able to meet Clint Eastwood while he was out at Cloudcroft’s Western Bar & Cafe and at Johnny Carino’s Italian restaurant in Alamogordo Tuesday.
In lieu of her tip, Carino’s waitress Kirsty Ramirez asked Eastwood to have her picture taken with him while he was at the restaurant Tuesday evening.
“It was pretty exciting,” Ramirez said.
“He was real nice. He was surprisingly really nice. I really didn’t ask him anything because he was having dinner. I am a really big fan. I did ask him if I could get a picture rather than a tip. He just laughed and said of course. It was a really great experience. He was really nice.”
Daily News Staff Writer Tara Melton contributed to this story.