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Cop’s Funeral Filmed without Permission

NY- The makers a new movie starring Hollywood bad boy Colin Farrell filmed the funeral of slain Bronx Officer Eric Hernandez without his family’s permission, the young cop’s father revealed yesterday.

“I didn’t even know who Colin Farrell was,” Efrain Hernandez told the Daily News. “I found out after I buried Eric.”

“I don’t know how I feel about this. At the time I said something like, ‘Wow, even in death Eric is still at the center of things.’ I don’t know if I would have approved or not.”

Hernandez denied claims by the NYPD football team manager that the cop’s family had given its blessing to Farrell’s attendance prior to Monday’s funeral in White Plains. Hernandez also said he did not agree to allow a camera crew working on Farrell’s movie, “Pride and Glory,” to film portions of the procession as NYPD football team manager, Edward Gardner, had said Tuesday.

He said he first learned about the movie shortly after the funeral when members of the NYPD football team took his family out for lunch.

“My son, Michael, had said he had seen the actor, Colin Farrell, at the funeral. I didn’t know who he was,” the father said. “That’s when they started talking about the movie, and how Eric was going to be an extra in it.”

“A movie, or complaining about it, seems pretty insignificant compared to everything else.”

Eric Hernandez, 24, a star running back on the NYPD football team, was mistakenly shot by a fellow officer on Jan. 28 after being beaten by six hoodlums inside a Bronx White Castle. He died nearly 11 days later.

Gardner told The News that Hernandez was supposed to appear as an extra in “Pride and Glory,” which tells the story of a family of New York police officers torn apart by corruption.

But Hernandez’s dad said his son never mentioned the movie, which also stars Edward Norton and Nick Nolte.

“I would have thought he would be excited about being in a movie, and say something to me,” the father said.

Farrell, co-star Noah Emmerich, a few other cast members and Detective Richard Tirelli, who is a consultant on the film, stood outside St. Bernard’s Catholic Church as a camera crew filmed the procession. The footage will be used to guide production crews when they re-create a police funeral in the movie.

Farrell could not be reached for comment. Tirelli said his role as a consultant was limited to ensuring the movie’s authenticity, and he had no role in planning the filming of the funeral.

Eric Hernandez’s mother, Cynthia Salichs, who is separated from his father, and the cop’s aunt were also surprised to see Farrell. His aunt called the film crew’s presence exploitative.

Yesterday, Gardner said he loved Hernandez and meant no disrespect to his family. He confirmed that it wasn’t until after the funeral that he spoke with the cop’s family about the film.

“The idea was to honor Eric,” Gardner said, adding that the film’s producers will include a tribute to Hernandez at the end of the movie and pay for his headstone and an honorary plaque in his stationhouse.

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