Study Session Considers ‘Beverly Hills Cop’ Event

During its May 7 Study Session, the Beverly Hills City Council spoke to representatives from Netflix about an exclusive upcoming event. In commemoration of the 40th anniversary of the movie “Beverly Hills Cop” starring Eddie Murphy, Netflix is releasing the fourth installment in the franchise, “Beverly Hills Cop: Axel F.” The Netflix event, set to take place at Beverly Gardens Park and the Lily Pond, celebrates the franchise’s roots in the city.

Patricia Betancourt, the city’s Special Events and Film Coordinator, addressed the council about Netflix’s plans. “The global streaming service feels that it is only right to pay tribute to the impact the movie franchise has made on Beverly Hills, in the city of Beverly Hills, where Axel’s tactics and funny humor have made cinematic history,” she said. The invitation-only event will take place on June 20 and include approximately 100 guests and press.

The setup will consist of a stage where the main cast, including Murphy, will be recognized. Mayor Lester Friedman will honor the cast and provide them with a chance to speak before the invitees are directed across the street to watch the film’s premiere at the Wallis Annenberg Center for Performing Arts.

Katie Crowley, a representative from the Netflix events team and the lead event planner for the film, also approached the podium to speak about the film’s strong ties to the city. “When we sat down to talk about how we wanted to launch this movie, and what we wanted the event to be, the one thing that was pretty unanimous and undeniable amongst the team was that it had to be in Beverly Hills, which has been so ingrained in the DNA of this film and of this film franchise,” she said.

Perhaps most importantly, the city has taken security for this event seriously. Betancourt outlined a plan for community safety including the Beverly Hills Police Department, private security, and closure of the park before and after the event. “I think right now, Beverly Hills is extremely concerned and aware of safety and security,” said Vice Mayor Sharona Nazarian, who congratulated the Netflix team on their security efforts. Though the event is invitation-only, its predicted large turnout could disrupt the surrounding streets for several hours to accommodate parking and transportation across to The Wallis.

Netflix’s team plans to keep the nearby neighbors updated on closures as the event draws closer.

Crowley also noted the positive impact the event could potentially have on the city. “We see a really special and unique opportunity to merge this iconic location with this iconic franchise for what we think will be a really culturally piercing moment that is going to create a lot of positive buzz both for the city and for the film and really just reinforce the legacy and the cultural significance of both,” she said.

After the discussion about the upcoming Netflix event, the council moved on to discuss the Beverly Hills Police Department’s (BHPD) Military Equipment Use Annual Report. California law enforcement agencies are required to obtain approval from their governing body before acquiring any new or additional military equipment, as well as a renewal of the established policy. The report submitted by the BHPD included items such as multiple types of drones, a long-range acoustic device with “clear warning tones,” a “throwbot” that takes the place of officers on the ground to prevent human injury, ammunition, an armored vehicle to be used as a “rescue vehicle,” rifles and carbines as well as launchers for “less lethal munitions.”

The increased use of drones and the request for more in the next fiscal year prompted a discussion about drone safety and security within the city. Nazarian brought to the police department’s attention a need for distinguishable police drones so that the community can decipher whether a device is safe or not. Though none of the police drones in the city use weapons or have the capability, there’s a public concern about privacy. Until there is a clear way for onlookers to distinguish between the police department’s inventory and unauthorized drones, Lieutenant Jesse Perez urged the community to report any sightings to the department’s non-emergency number at 310-550-4951 so that they can determine whether or not the device is city property. 

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