TOMS RIVER - A New Jersey actor and comedian is facing charges after getting in trouble for having a fake gun while filming a movie.
Carlo Bellario says he was filming a low-budget, independent movie in a residential area of Woodbridge last November.
“I was playing a bodyguard for a drug dealer,” Bellario says.
The scene the group was filming depicted a car chase with the actor pretending to shoot a gun out of the window of the car. Bellario had a realistic-looking, unloaded airsoft gun as his prop.
Neighbors were unaware that a movie was being filmed and called police.
Bellario says several police officers responded to the scene.
“They rolled up hot. There was eight of them. They got out. They were all charged up, 'who's the guy driving, where's the guy with the gun?'” he says. “I said, 'I'm right here, we're actors, we're shooting a movie.’ I'm in character still. It was in my waistband. I pulled it out slowly because I don't want to make the wrong move."
The producers of the movie did not have a permit to film in the neighborhood, so police did not know they would be there. They also did not have a permit to film with replica firearms.
Bellario was arrested and charged with weapons possession. He spent four days in the Middlesex County Jail trying to raise the $10,000 bail because he says that the producers refused to help.
Bellario says that he is restricted from leaving New Jersey and is losing money on missed out-of-state performances. He is raising money online and will hold a benefit comedy show to help pay for an attorney.
If convicted on the charges, Bellario could face up to five years in prison.