Lt Milton Maldonado, head of the NYPD movie unit assigned to feature films, is turning in his badge and retiring after 25 years. Talk about dismantling the unit several months ago proved to be merely rumor, but Buzz hears continued cutbacks are on tap, with one proposal to let regular cops police movies on weekends.

Maldonado confirmed he’s leaving after heading the unit for three years, but wouldn’t comment much beyond that. “The writing’s on the wall,” he said. “There are budget cuts, and I reach 25 years as of July 30, and feel it’s time to move on.”

He said the department has distinguished itself recently on major shoots like the John McTiernan-directed actioner “Die Hard With a Vengeance.” “The nice thing is we were in and out, people hardly knew it and nobody got hurt.” That included blowing up a building and staging a chase scene on the FDR Drive, which they managed to do without closing the roadway.

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