Singing and Dancing on Roncesvalles
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Singing and Dancing on Roncesvalles

Sure, we all know John Travolta’s in town after the notorious man-kissing episode at Hamilton Airport two weeks ago.
But he’s not here for the film fest. Instead, he joins Queen Latifah, Christopher Walken, Amanda Bynes, and Michelle Pfeiffer as part of the cast of Hairspray, a 2007 remake of the 2002 Broadway musical remake of the original 1988 film comedy. (Whew! We recycle the past quickly, don’t we?)
Torontoist went to see the gigantic set last night. They’ve transformed almost 100 storefronts on Roncesvalles, south from Bloor to Howard Park. It’s quite impressive — all the faux fronts create a movieland interpretation of ’60’s Baltimore, complete with dozens of old cars and pastel-coloured signage.
When we visited, they were midway through filming an extensive singing and dancing scene with tons of extras. The set was in lockdown and an army of assistants kept close watch on all gawkers. Our attempts to scope out the transformed streetscape and chorus of dancing girls were foiled by an army of film flunkies who shunted us along the street. Cameras were a definite no-no. (We still managed to shoot a couple of quick clandestine shots like the one above, but it’s hard to conceal a zoom-lens SLR!) Still, it’s well worth checking out.
Throughout filming, TTC streetcar service in the area is a bit of a mess. The set cuts straight across the Dundas streetcar line, and as a result, TTC vehicles are being awkwardly re-routed via High Park.
Thanks to fellow Torontoist Beth for the tip-off!