Roy Gudka was faced with an interesting dilemma. He was approached by a location manager for a production company called Partizan. They offered him a location fee of £1,500 if he would close his shop on either a Tuesday or Wednesday in late May for 12 hours, from 7am till 7pm, while they filmed an online advert inside.
He asked me if I had ever heard of the company. I hadn’t but Partizan has plenty of online presence so I was sure it was pukka.
But then we had a discussion about the pros and cons of shutting for a whole day. Roy’s store, The Toy Box (it used to sell toys, now it’s a newsagency) trades in a residential estate in South London’s Greenwich.
The film crew would be minimal, 15-20 people, with camera, tripod, lights and so on. Any changes they made to the shop would be put right when they had finished.
Roy had to decide whether it was worth him warning his regulars about the closure or turn down the offer.
I am sure he would never make £1,500 clear profit on a week day, but equally he had to consider loss of goodwill. If customers have to find another store they may make a permanent move. Then he had to think about short-date items, perishables such as papers, the electricity bill (all those cables) and heat generated by filming in such a small space. In the end Roy decided against it.
I can see where he is coming from. Small stores are expected to be open every day. The continuity (as the film people say) is smoother that way.