What happens when a TV production team wants to make a show set in a big-box discount store, but can’t build an entire store set because they’re only filming a pilot episode? To film “Superstore,” a new (and funny) show on NBC, they lightly remodeled a Kmart store in Burbank, California, and used it as their set… while the store remained open.
How did that work? The store’s branding and signage changed from Kmart red to the blue of fictional superstore “Cloud 9” for the 16 days of the shoot. There were signs explaining the change to customers (see above) and customers and employees alike were interested in watching the process of filming.
The manager of the Burbank store explained to corporate blog SHC Speaks that the show’s team met with her multiple times before the shoot and cleared changes with her, since setting the real store up to look like a fictional store meant moving merchandise around, as well as finding places for cameras and lighting.
The show’s cast, who were wearing blue vests that do not at all look like Walmart uniforms, were often asked by real customers where to find things inside Kmart. “They were good sports,” the manager says, “and always helped our members find something despite not working for Kmart.”
Maybe this could be a new sideline for Kmart, in addition to trying to rent extra space out to other retailers. Though we suppose there aren’t very many TV shows set in big-box stores, so the market would be limited.
Behind-the-Scenes of the “Superstore” Pilot [SHC Speaks]