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Show filming in Amsterdam

AMSTERDAM — Residents in Montgomery County may have noticed roads blocked off more than usual as a pilot episode for a “Almost Made” was in production this week.

Filming began on Monday for the for the pilot episode of “Almost Made” a television show co-written by Amsterdam native and former Montgomery County sheriff’s deputy James Glorioso Jr. and Renaldo Mancini, and directed by Roger Tully.

“It’s a mob comedy based on a guy who just got out of prison,” Glorioso said.

The mob comedy centers around the main character Carmie, a wanna be mobster, who returns home from prison and puts together a group of guys who want to prove to the real mob they have what it takes to be made, but things go wrong in comedic ways. The group of men face a series of comical mishaps that land them in trouble.

Glorioso said comedy also shows the struggles and issues someone goes through when coming home from prison.

Glorioso and Mancini wrote eight episodes, but are only filming the pilot episode that they will pitch to networks that will hopefully lead them to film the other seven episodes with a bigger budget.

Acting in the comedy are some well known artists who have had roles in movies and series that can be seen on Netflix and other streaming sites. Those actors include Jackie “The Joke Man” Martling, a comedian known for The Howard Stern Show is playing the role of Sax; Joseph D’Onofrio known for roles in “Goodfellas”, “A Bronx Tale” and more will took the role of Mouth; Louis Vanaria also in “A Bronx Tale”, “Kirk” and “The Irishman” is playing Squeaks; Glorioso is playing the role of Jimmy along with being the executive producer; Mancini is the lead role, Carmie; and Paul Borghese known for “Once Upon a Time in Brooklyn” and several other movies and TV shows is playing Louie.

Other cast members in the show include Yury Tsykun, Kathrina Miccio, Alain Bin Naim, JoAnn Robertozzi, Jermaine Wells, Kat Harley, Samantha Jones and more.

“We have some well known and other not so known but are good professional actors and actresses,” Glorioso said.

Not only are there some familiar faces in the show, but there are also some familiar locations in the comedy with scenes filmed in Amsterdam at Federal Street, Locust Avenue, the Riverfront Center, Parillo’s Armory Grill, some inside scenes inside Glorioso’s home and the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office.

“The opening scene is at the sheriff’s office,” Glorioso said. “Sheriff [Jeff] Smith and his partnership with has been top notch, he’s professional and very helpful.”

Crews started filming on Monday and finished filming late Thursday night into early Friday morning.

“Filming is going great,” Glorioso said.

However, “Almost Made” wasn’t almost made, as the production dates continued to be push back due to COVID-19 guidelines and restrictions. The show was originally scheduled to start filming in April, Glorioso said, but had been pushed back several times. As the Mohawk Valley entered into the fourth phase, is when they began making plans working with the health department to allow them to start filming. Glorioso has used his safety training skills from his former position as sheriff’s deputy and corporate regional loss prevention manager to come up with a safe plan to make them eligible to start filming.

Not only did COVID-19 cause the dates to be pushed back, but the safety plan requires cast and crew to follow certain guidelines, had put a financial strain on the production and changed the style in which they film. Glorioso said they usually do a buffet style to serve food on set, but are unable to do that, everything has to be disposable including coffee and drinks, and the actors have to refrain from interacting too closely with community members and cannot shake their hands.

“We can’t have Jackie shake someone’s hand and potentially infect the whole cast,” Glorioso said.

He said they did everything they could do to start filming immediately and believes they were the first union production in New York to start filming.

“I’d like to thank Amsterdam City Mayor Michael Cinquanti and the city residents for opening up their arms to us,” Glorioso said.

He said he’d also like to thank members of the Montgomery County Legislators, the town of Glen and the Amsterdam Police department for their help and cooperation.

“They helped make this happen. Thank you to everyone,” Glorioso said.

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