Students cast as extras in series finale of 'Treme'

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More than 30 students from the Department of Music Industry Studies at Loyola University New Orleans recently worked as paid extras in the series finale of the HBO hit drama, “Treme.”

The finale, which will air as episode five of season four in fall 2013, features a Mardi Gras parade, led by the Society of Saint Anne and Loyola students. Jim Gabour, a seasoned film veteran who is also artist-in-residence and extraordinary professor of video technology at Loyola’s College of Music and Fine arts, accompanied the students on set.

“Producer Laura Schweigman has been very good to both our Loyola kids and the local Saint Anne marchers,” Gabour said. “They wanted to end the series on the quintessential New Orleans day, Mardi Gras. It was very cold, especially shooting down by the river, but the experience was well worth it.”

The students, who were each paid standard scale for their 10 hours of time on set, were treated just like the other 125 extras and had to sign employment paperwork, including waivers in quintuplicate and proof of residency credentials (because the production company gets tax credits for every Louisiana resident it employs) before beginning the shoot.

Created by HBO veteran producer and writer David Simon, “Treme” premiered in 2010 and recounts the trials and tribulations of musicians, chefs, Mardi Gras Indians and other New Orleans residents as they try to rebuild their lives, homes and unique culture in the months after Hurricane Katrina. The series stars notable actors Melissa Leo, Steve Zahn and New Orleans native Wendell Pierce, among others.

Photo: Loyola sophomore AJ Camero poses with Steve Zahn and Kim Dickens of "Treme."

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