HughE Dillon One-Shot: Colin Farrell Strolls Philly

Plus: Why doormen do not need to protect the actor.

Yesterday, I finally had time to get a shot of Colin Farrell. He’s here filming the movie Dead Man Down. For the past week, I’ve been tweeting up a storm about sightings all over town and how he’s just blending into the fabric of Philadelphia, going to the gym, walking around town, bike shopping, and eating out, but I never had any time to get a shot of him. On Wednesday, my two photographer friends (photos you’ve seen of the actor in national media this week are their work) and I caught up with him and his trainer as they walked on Chestnut Street toward the gym. Earlier in the day, I tried to get a shot of him leaving the movie production office, but it was rush hour, the sidewalk was packed, a rain cloud passed by and threw off my camera readings, and it was a tough angle (because when you photograph a celebrity you don’t want to interrupt their walk or draw attention to them from others). Then I caught up with him at his temporary Philly residence as he arrived in his SUV (that means even though I’m a tad out of shape, walking briskly I can beat an SUV driving six blocks in rush hour traffic!). There, the doorman of the building created a whole lot of drama.

Well, dear Mr. Doorman, Mr. Farrell lives in NYC and L.A., where there are dozens of paparazzi photographing him daily. I know, because I photographed celebrities in NYC for five years. We’re not shooting him through his bedroom window, we’re just shooting him walking in the door. We strive to be as professional as we can to get our job done. Calling the police on us is not a deterrent. We have press passes, and you do not own the sidewalk as much as you stated you did. I don’t know if you saw when the police came by on their bikes, but they waved to us and we exchanged pleasantries; as photographers, we often get to know the police officers, as we sometimes wait for hours to get the photographs that the public consumes daily online and in the celebrity mags. The only person you are going to scare away with your tactics will be Colin Farrell. He’ll go somewhere else to live, and we’ll go with him. After that drama of the doorman, I started packing my gear, thinking Farrell was in for the night, but my friend told me to wait, that Farrell would come back out, and we would get the shots we needed for the day. Sure enough, 10 minutes later, he calmly walked out, heading toward Chestnut Street. We got our shots there—one of us even got a shot of him smiling with eye contact (that’s the brass ring). We then called it a night and went home.