Jennifer Hudson, Common, M Night Wraps Servant and the Epicness of BEY Sheila Watko

Hello Sunday, August 7, 2022. Yes the middle of the summer already, the dog days for sure with all these heat waves back to back. Did you know the definition of a heat wave is three consecutive days of 90F weather. But for me honestly, I love the summer, the heat, outside and a great summer dress like this gal on the motorbike has on. She was kind enough to pose for a shot I will be posting on my Instagram series, WhatPhillyWore weekend edition, later today.

It’s a wrap for M. Night Shyamalan’s Apple TV series SERVANT, which I am a big fan of on and off the screen and I’m sad.

It’s bittersweet for me as it’s been so fun to photograph the series as it’s been filmed in Center City, specifically Fitler Square, but also in Rittenhouse Square as well as a custom studio Night built in Garnett Valley specifically for the show. It was a complete replica of the house on the 2100 block of Spruce Street. The street was also replicated but on a much smaller scale.

Who can forget the notorious car crash scene, filmed in the first season. They brought in extra trees to make the park even more leafy than it’s beautiful self. Because of the secrecy of the filming, people walked by the accident scene all day long capturing stills and reporting the accident. Then that evening Lauren Ambrose and Night were on the scene filming the accident for her TV news report.

Set in Philadelphia, Servant follows a wealthy area couple who lose a newborn child and subsequently use a lifelike doll to help cope with the trauma amid more sinister, mysterious events. The series’ first season premiered on the Apple TV+ streaming service in November to generally positive reviews, earning an overall rating of 85% on review aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes. (Inky)

I think everyone’s favorite scene was when in Servant Season 2, the 2100 block was turned into a winter wonderland in October, when Philly was in second summer, and the the temps were hitting 80s.

I was so excited to photograph one of the last episodes shot for the series, a few weeks ago. An epic rain storm. Thanks to M Night, and the production for always allowing me to get the shots I needed to share the stories with you, mostly just that they were filming. I have photographed a few of Night’s parties (one at his house, and three M Night Shyamalan Foundation Shyamaween in October), and assured him I wouldn’t reveal “story lines” which I did well, this one was a little tough but I only showed the storm, didn’t get into what was happening. It definitely was a great experience for me as a paparazzo.

Jennifer Hudson films a scene from her new movie Breathe at City Hall in Philadelphia

As I wrote in June, Fresh from her EGOT achievement, Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony award winner Jennifer Hudson is coming to Philadelphia to film her next movie “Breathe”. The story follows a mother named Maya (Hudson) and her daughter, who are forced to live underground after Earth is made uninhabitable due to a lack of oxygen.

I got a hot tip that Jennifer was spotted near City Hall filming a scene inside the courtyard.
I arrived and a PA assistant asked me not to take photos. I said I just need a few, and then she walked away. She called her boss over, who then called Jennifer. Jen gave me a nice wave in once scene, and during the break I was able to capture this shot. And then I left. Thanks to my two tipsters. One who told me this filming was going to happen, the other who told me where they were filming. It’s people like that who help keep us in the know to what is going on, what is filming in Center City, Philly and in our area.

On this particular day, Common wasn’t on set. But later in the week I read on deuxmoi IG stories: Jennifer Hudson and Common are in Philadelphia filming a movie. The Chicago natives are filming a new action/sci-fi film titled, Breathe. Someone took a photo of the two and while it is hard to tell if it’s just two friends having a good time or two people really into each other, it is evident they are happy. The source of the photo states, she was cozy and flirty with Common. Lots of cuddling and giggling.

Most of the filming for the sci fi movie is being done in Sun Center Studios in Aston Pa, but don’t be surprised if you see Jennifer Hudson walking around Center City. She’s no stranger to our town.

Cheers to Sheila Watko for the acknowledgement from Bey’s mom Tina Knowles with her seal of approval on Sheila’s tribute to Bey’s song collection.
We all fell in love with Sheila for her vivacious spirit delivering the traffic reports at NBC10 Philadelphia, Then in 2020 she paid tribute to
Taylor Swift with a traffic report peppered with song titles every Swifty fell in love with; and NOW Queen Bey’s epic delivery, without a teleprompter, just from memory and fandom. So fun!! THANK YOU SHEILA!!