Explosive scenes at government HQ as Transformers filming coincides with HKTV protest
Explosives were detonated outside government headquarters in Admiralty yesterday, sending plumes of smoke and dirt into the sky - but it had nothing to do with angry HKTV staff.
Hollywood director Michael Bay and his crew were having a blast shooting scenes for Transformers: Age of Extinction - the fourth instalment of the alien robot Hollywood franchise - at Tamar Park and the Promenade.
At the same time, there was a real-life battle scene playing out nearby. The thousands of staff and supporters of Hong Kong Television Network who have been protesting outside the government offices for the past week packed up camp yesterday. But a handful have remained to keep pressure on the government and show they had not given up.
On the movie set, director Bay had a 2014 Chevrolet Camaro - also known as autobot "Bumblebee" - and a green 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray racing down the park's sloping walkways, which are usually reserved for pedestrians, with the Hong Kong skyline in the background.
The crew then moved to the West Kowloon Corridor to shoot more scenes. They will wrap up filming in the city today with some scenes in Statue Square.
Bay says it has been an enjoyable experience shooting the film in the city, writing online: "My crew and I have been having a great time in Hong Kong despite what you may have read about us being 'rocked by a second extortion attempt'. Totally untrue."
He said neither an earlier extortion incident nor the protests had ruined his experience of the city.
"We're in the middle of busy streets, in businesses, and even in people's homes, and everyone we've met has been very accommodating and generous. It's been a once in a lifetime experience we'd all consider doing again," he wrote.