"Dr. Phil" has had to shut down production at a location for a popular segment of the show, after angry neighbors waged a revolt. It seems the cocaine addicts and others who were holed up in the house didn't go over too well with residents on the block.
Every Monday, "Dr. Phil" features guests who live together for a week in the "Dr. Phil House," a home located in the mid-Wilshire district of Los Angeles. Peteski Productions, Dr. Phil's production company, purchased the residence last June. The inside was gutted and remodeled with the help of Phil's wife, Robin. We're told 45 cameras were installed in the home, and a brain center was built in the pool house, dubbed "video village." Miles of wires were run throughout the inside and outside of the house, much to the dismay of complaining neighbors.
But neighbors say the unsightly wires were nothing compared to the nonstop noise and ear-shattering arguing coming from addicts, racists, misfits and others who populated the house. Tom Griep, who lives next door, told TMZ he was none too happy when "two crack cocaine addicts were yelling at each other for all to hear."
Griep adds "Dr. Phil" violated the city's ground rules by taping past midnight many nights and starting up again before 7AM. Griep says some of the production staff were rude and uncooperative. He also claims the staff cut his hedge down. Griep and other neighbors allege the show constantly violated parking restrictions on the street and created an extreme eyesore with cables and all. Neighbors also claim the low-life clientele in the house caused several disturbances.
Neighborhood residents contacted the LAPD and other agencies on a regular basis, complaining that the show was turning their lives upside down. As Steven and Susan Jamerson put it, "Our once-peaceful neighborhood has now turned into a studio backlot." Griep says a production executive told him the taping would continue for several years.
Seventy-six residents signed a petition protesting the production and after a meeting last month with city officials, production was shut down. FilmL.A., the agency that processes permits for shooting TV shows and movies, has been instructed by city officials not to issue future permits for the house in question.
City officials tell TMZ the show had requested eight additional shoots, each lasting between five and nine days, but the request was rejected. An official for FilmL.A. tells TMZ that "Dr. Phil" was trying to turn the house into a studio, and that violates the city's zoning laws.
In a statement to TMZ, a rep from "Dr. Phil" said, "Our primary objective has always been to be extremely respectful of the neighbors and we have accommodated their requests whenever they have arisen." The spokesman says the show has received a lot of neighborhood support.
The spokesman adds that production vehicles did not park on the street and taping was limited to inside the house.
To read the entire "Dr. Phil" statement, click here.