‘On the Road’ filming begins in SF

The latest good news for The City’s film industry is the decision by director Walter Salles to shoot scenes this week in San Francisco for his latest film “On the Road,” based on the novel written by Jack Kerouac.

At least one actor in the film was out enjoying San Francisco on Tuesday night. Kirsten Dunst was spotted at the recently remodeled Nob Hill neighborhood bar Zeki’s, located at California and Leavenworth streets where it looks out onto the Cable Car lines. Dunst is playing Camille.

The production is shooting this week at 23rd and Carolina streets, the Bay Bridge, and Filbert and Leavenworth streets. Filming wraps up Friday.

Even though Jack Kerouac’s “On the Road” is rich with San Francisco scenes, most of the film was actually shot in Canada, where many productions opt to film to the detriment of San Francisco’s film industry. In recent years, The City has attempted to try and revive the industry with incentives.

But just the few days of shooting is seen as a positive. And a driving-away scene being shot this week in San Francisco is said to likely end up as the final scene in the film, which is set for release in 2011.

“It’s wonderful. We’re really happy to have them here. Every little bit helps,” said Susannah Robbins, executive director of the Film Office.

Other recent highlights for the San Francisco film industry include Gus Van Sant’s “Milk” starring Sean Penn. 

jsabatini@sfexaminer.com

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