The Day | Rent is Back, So are The Smurfs

Eviction Key Exhibit, Festival of Ideas For The New City, New York City 2011 1Vivienne Gucwa

Good morning, East Village.

We start with a preview of Rent’s new off-Broadway incarnation from the Observer. The musical that portrayed the drug-infested Alphabet City of the early 1990s had a twelve-year run that eventually came to an end in 2008. The new production has kept original director Michael Greif on board and will open at the New World Stages on August 11th.

Meanwhile on the big screen, the LA Times brings us a detailed look at the set designs for “The Smurfs,” which premiered last weekend. Exterior scenes were filmed on location in the East Village and the interiors were made to look like a shabby artist’s tenement from the 1960s that has survived largely untouched to the present day (a weirder concept than little blue guys running around town?) In one scene, star Neil Patrick Harris rocks out on “Guitar Hero” in a CBGB shirt – one reviewer called it “the moment rock and roll died.”

Banjo Jim’s closed last night, and EV Grieve notes that the“artisanal” cocktail bar that will replace it is now known as The Wayland. Elsewhere on Avenue C, TenEleven is also closed while it awaits its liquor license renewal, and EV Eats frets that a low-key favorite, Duke’s, is “slowly falling apart.”

Speaking of disrepair, EV Grieve has been keeping close tabs on a sink hole on Second Avenue. Previously, some good egg had marked it with a municipal trash can, but that has since been removed. One Grieve commenter has high hopes for the little crack’s role in neighborhood reclamation: “Hope it’s a large hole as all the yuppies and there [sic] poodles might not fit.”