By Allen Henry
After having dinner with a friend Thursday night, I realized as I reached my second-to-last Metro stop that I had left my bag at our table. Panicked, I jumped off the train and phoned the restaurant to see if my bag was still there. Thankfully, it was. As I rode the escalator to the top of the Dupont Circle exit to hail a cab, I heard a man repeatedly yelling for people to “either move to the left or the right!” Unwittingly, I had stumbled upon the set of “Captain America: The Winter Soldier.”
“We’re filming a movie!” he shouted, putting an emphasis on “movie” that implied great importance, little patience and a hint of Hollywood magic.
I maneuvered behind the barricade placing myself in front of hundreds of spectators I hadn’t noticed earlier just as someone called “ACTION!” Captain America himself, Chris Evans, rode past on a motorcycle, as extras walked along the well-lit sidewalks, holding hands and creating a peaceful, neighborhood scene.
“CUT! Resetting!” a crewmember called out over a bullhorn, as applause and cheers erupted for the brief yet exciting scene they just witnessed. I began to walk toward the edge of where filming was taking place so I could hail a cab and get to my bag. It would have been nice to stay and watch more, but my phone was about to die and my phone charger was in my bag. Like most 20-somethings, I find being without my cell phone, even if just for the night, unacceptable.
As I reached the corner of 20th and R streets NW, I witnessed a red car attempting to merge into a lane, just as a white car was slowing down as the driver observed the filming in the rear-view mirror. The unmistakable sound of two cars colliding replaced the murmurs of the crowd, followed by blaring car horns ands gasps. Crew members shouted expletives, realizing their night just got much longer. I ran to the side of one of the cars and snapped a few photos before my phone finally lost power. I realized with no bag, I also had no notebook. “This could’ve been a great article,” I thought.
Police officers, already there because of the movie shoot, directed traffic away from the film set and tended to two people stuck in the car. D.C. police said Friday that no one was seriously injured. I ran from the scene, remembering my original problem: my bag. Slightly out of breath, I leapt in the first available taxi.