At Heeia Pier Tuesday, workers pieced together the fuselage of an L-1011 jet to be used in the TV pilot episode of "Lost," about the survivors of a plane crash on a deserted island.

New TV show
‘Lost’ is found
filming on Oahu

ABC's most costly pilot ever uses
plane wreckage as its exotic backdrop


Monday, March 22, 2003

"Alias" and "Crossing Jordan" are ABC television shows. They were incorrectly identified as NBC shows in a story Thursday on Page A8.

The Honolulu Star-Bulletin strives to make its news report fair and accurate. If you have a question or comment about news coverage, call Editor Frank Bridgewater at 529-4791 or email him at

The L-1011 jet scattered near Mokuleia beach looks like the aftermath of a crash but is actually a backdrop for the most expensive television pilot in the history of Walt Disney Co.'s ABC network.

ABC transported the scuttled jetliner to Oahu last week in 18 shipping containers to use as the set for its two-hour pilot, "Lost." The television movie begins filming here Monday through April 30, with about 24 days of production.

ABC will announce May 12 if "Lost" has been picked up as a series.

"Lost" is about the first few days spent by survivors of a plane crash on a deserted island, where they must learn to live together despite their different backgrounds. In the pilot, an unknown force makes one of the survivors disappear. The person's remains are found later.

Items at yesterday's filming at Mokuleia included a jet turbine.

The cast includes Matthew Fox ("Party of Five"), Harold Perrineau ("The Matrix Revolutions"), Malcolm David Kelley ("Antwone Fisher"), Naveen Andrews ("Mighty Joe Young") and Josh Holloway ("CSI").

Six containers of aircraft material, including the nose and a wing, are at Heeia Iki on Windward Oahu, being reassembled and set in place as if it crashed.

The remaining plane parts in 12 containers are being set up on a Mokuleia beach, along the makai side of Farrington Highway, the show's primary crash site.

The Heeia "plane" is easily seen from Kamehameha Highway, though filming will be done farther back, out of view. There is also a Nuuanu location.

A "Lost" producer in Honolulu referred questions to ABC's Los Angeles publicity department, which did not provide information.

Items at yesterday's filming at Mokuleia and a row of plane seats, below. The show, filming here through April 30, features Matthew Fox and Harold Perrineau.

According to sources, "Lost," written by J.J. Abrams (NBC's "Alias") and Damon Lindelof (NBC's "Crossing Jordan"), is the most expensive pilot in ABC/Disney history at more than $5 million.

Shipping the aircraft pieces from the mainland was the production's biggest single cost: $250,000, sources said. One of the three 3-ton jet engines was transported to Mokuleia on a truck with a police escort.

Members of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, including two from Los Angeles, have been putting the aerial puzzle back together since last Thursday.

At Mokuleia they are rebuilding the structure of the bottom of the plane's fuselage, then installing steel ribbing to hold it together while patching a 4-foot gap with aluminum sheeting the length of the fuselage. Reconstruction will continue seven days a week until the "crash" set is ready for filming, said crew boss Dale DeStefani.

Airplane debris became TV props at Mokuleia yesterday during filming of the show, "Lost."

A few feet away is the fuselage's upper, or passenger, section -- minus the seats -- which after being reattached yesterday was lifted by crane atop the lower section. A crane will later stand up one of the 80-foot-long wings next to the rebuilt fuselage.

The airplane's seats -- removed for shipping -- will be reinstalled. Locally purchased used luggage and other typical passenger items will be charred to look like crash site remains. One scene features a wing crashing, burning and blowing up after being dropped from about 70 feet in the air by cranes.

At the Heeia site, teams of welders are reattaching the cockpit.

Filming at the Mokuleia and Heeia sites might not start until the first week of April when the crash sites are ready.


E-mail to City Desk


Text Site Directory:
[News] [Business] [Features] [Sports] [Editorial] [Do It Electric!]
[Classified Ads] [Search] [Subscribe] [Info] [Letter to Editor]
© 2004 Honolulu Star-Bulletin --