February 20, 2017, Charlene Jeter received notice that she was to Stop Work and vacate the premises at the Russell Industrial Center, 1600 Clay, Detroit, Michigan.
Charlene is a filmmaker and CEO of the Detroit Film Studios which is one of 184 artist installations which occupy the Russell Industrial Building.
According to the Stop Work notices she had received the reasons cited were for various code violations. Notices posted Monday on every door of the former factory at 1600 Clay ordered tenants to vacate until violations were corrected.
In a statement explaining their order, city officials said the owners of the center repeatedly failed to follow guidelines when erecting multiple commercial and residential tenant units. Although zoned industrial, the Russell Industrial building has been an artist enclave for the past twenty to thirty years.
Said Jeter in a Facebook post, “I’m smack dead in the middle of filming and pushed against a wall for time and money. This couldn’t have happened at a worse time…But the show MUST go on!
“I have this morning to figure stuff out, because I’m filming tonight, tomorrow and everyday this week…Excuse the profanity, this is an emotional moment for me. “
Despite orders to Stop Work and Vacate the premises, tenants showed few signs of vacating the building, with both artists and business owners taking a wait-and-see approach hoping for a decision reversal.
Jeter wrote in a subsequent post Friday morning, “My studio is in limbo as the artists at the Russell Industrial Center come together to fight the City of Detroit…I’ve been slow at packing stuff, yet every night I load up the car with more and more stuff. My studio looks bare, stripped down unrecognizable…I’m searching for an alternative space with the clock closing in on the witching hour…and, oh yeah, did I mention that I’m filming everyday this week?”
Dennis Kefallinos, his Boydell Development Co. owns the Russell Industrial through the subsidiary Clay Street Group LLC, said the city’s orders came in light of the December fire at an Oakland, California, artist collective that killed 36 people. The city gave little warning that the massive artist enclave would be ordered to close.
Resigned to comply with orders to vacate, Charlene wrote, “Detroit Film Studio is moving all weekend starting today. We can really use some support whether you come to move a box or assist with some furniture.. We are located at 1600 Clay, Bldg 2, Ste 222, Detroit, MI 48211…This Russell Refugee is getting the hell out of this place, before the warlords move in to seize my property and kill my business.”
This truck is OFFICIALLY the new temp home for Detroit Film Studio…Still got more stuff to load, but getting ready to shoot a chase scene tonight for “Love Espionage-Spy Revenge.”
“With every Crisis comes an Opportunity for something Great! Problem-solving is on the agenda today.” Charlene Jeter
Charlene Jeter on Facebook http://bit.ly/2mtVVDY
Charlene Jeter on IMDB http://imdb.to/2l8J88S