Keanu Reeves, Jada Pinkett Smith, and…Jerry Dille?
If one were to venture out to theaters next May to see the new Matrix 4 movie—which has been filming in San Francisco as explosions tear through the Financial District and actors leap off buildings—they may see the SFPUC’s Power Enterprise Communication Line Supervisor Jerry Dille in the closing credits.
Okay probably not, but Dille has been on set the past several weekends. Rubbing elbows with the crew and actors, (Keanu is a lot taller in person, according to Dille), he has been responsible for turning on and off SFPUC-owned streetlights to accommodate the movie’s dramatic scenes in the early hours of the morning.
Responding to film crews is not new to the SFPUC’s Power Enterprise. In addition to Matrix 4, the team has accommodated the Venom movies, Ant Man, and Need for Speed. The team is notified by Film SF about a request, and Dille or someone from his team answers the call.
While the SFPUC accommodates film crews periodically throughout the year, the agency operates and maintains over half the streetlights—nearly 25,000—in San Francisco 24/7. Crews also work tirelessly to improve them, too. Just last year, the SFPUC switched out nearly all the fixtures with light-emitting diodes (LEDs)—environmentally-friendly and energy efficient lightbulbs. The conversion reduces the lights’ energy needs by 50 percent, while brightening the streets for your evening walks or bike rides. The streetlights use Hetch Hetchy Power provided by the SFPUC—which produces zero carbon emissions—and are some of the most energy-efficient lights in California.
So next time you see a movie filming on the streets of San Francisco, look beyond the celebrities to see Dille or other crew members working to bring the movie to life. You may even get lucky and get an autograph.