The cancellation of NBC’s Trauma series is upsetting many EMTs and regular viewers. Apparently the San Francisco economy is going to miss it as well.
Trauma follows a group of first responder paramedics in the San Francisco area. The high-action medical drama stars Derek Luke, Cliff Curtis, Anastasia Griffith, Kevin Rankin, Aimee Garcia, Billy Lush, Jamey Sheridan, and Taylor Kinney.
The show’s been struggling in the ratings from the start and NBC announced last week that the network wouldn’t be ordering any more episodes, cancelling the series.
Though many shows have been set there, Trauma is the first show to be completely filmed in the City by the Bay since Nash Bridges went off the air in 2001. Before that, there was Midnight Caller and Streets of San Francisco. As with many out-of-town productions, the filming of Trauma hasn’t all been smooth sailing.
Plans to film the series in San Francisco nearly got derailed after the pilot. Productions can typically get rebates from local government to entice shooting in their area. The San Francisco Board of Supervisors reportedly changed their program so that rebates went to film productions. The Trauma pilot was ineligible and NBC was none too pleased after spending $8 million on it.
Things eventually got worked out and the network okayed local production of the 12 additional episodes. Around that same time, Mayor Gavin Newsom came under criticism for taking campaign contributions from an NBC exec. Later, the city had to spend an extra $270,000 for a big annual convention that’s usually held in a facility that was rented out for Trauma.
Despite some extra expenses and inconveniences to the locals, Trauma has very been good for the local San Francisco economy. It’s estimated that $3-4 million per episode is spent in the area. That comes from payments of crew, police overtime, permits and catering. There are 150 people employed on the full-time crew, as many as 300 guest actors, extras, and other local labor as well.
If the show had continued, many of the actors who were renting apartments had been talking about buying houses in the area. But now, with the show ending, all of the extra revenue to San Francisco will be stopping as well.
NBC has said that they plan to finish production on all of the previously ordered episodes. It was initially announced that filming would last until mid-December but it’s unknown if the show’s cancellation will curtail that.
What do you think? Did it make a difference that Trauma was actually shot on location? Does seeing a city like San Francisco on a TV show each week entice you to want to visit?
Image courtesy NBC.