Wednesday, February 02, 2005

"People Keep Telling Me It's Bad for My Health, but Kicking Back Don't Make It"

"I never thought my life would be
anything but catastrophe,
but suddenly I begin to see
a bit of good luck for me."

There's something to be said for Newton's Laws of Physics, my friends, especially the one that says that for every action there's an equal and opposite reaction. That's why after nearly two years of sitting around, leading a steady but unremarkable existence, I suddenly find myself busier than I've ever been before. So busy, in fact that I've been going to the gym four nights a week to keep my strength and energy up. On Tuesdays, I walk a mile. Wednesdays, a mile and a half. Thurdays, two miles. And two and half miles on Fridays when I can. I've got to look good for the "Pink" premiere, you know. But first, the filming.
This past weekend I drove up to Oxford once again to film three more scenes. Our first shoot was at Old Venice Pizza Company (my favorite restaurant in Oxford) at 8:00 on Saturday morning. That means we all had to be awake and over to Gregg's house by 7 for a quick rehearsal. Some may find it difficult to be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at that hour, but I'm a notorious early bird. And besides that, Ashley Dunn and Becky Delius (the actresses featured in this particular scene) both drove several hours to be there - Ashley from Huntsville and Becky from Nashville. So, I figured the very least I could do for them was to show a little early morning enthusiasm. The guy who acted opposite them, Jeremy Skupien (I hope I'm spelling that right), didn't show up for rehearsal, which had us all afraid that he wasn't going to make the shoot. But, when we got to Old Venice, he was there in the parking lot waiting for us. Isn't it nice how those sorts of things turn out?...The scene, I'm glad to say, went brilliantly. Ashley played the perfect nice girl (or should I say that she was "SOOOOO" perfect? hehe *inside joke*) and Becky managed to elevate man-hatred to an art form. Gregg, Kelly, and I all agree that our cast has been flawless thus far.
On Saturday night we filmed a scene starring Sarah Fineout and Joey Miller as Mindy and Michael, one of the movie's only happy couples. I can't really go into a lot of details as to what their scene is all about, but I CAN say that at one point we all needed a good five minutes to stop laughing before we were finally able to film it properly. I'll take that as a good sign. And once again, our actors were flawless. Joey, I must say, has absolutely NO shame. And Sarah, quite impressively, improvised a full five minutes of dialogue that re-invented itself with every new sentence. A director can't ask for any more than that. As a sidenote: one thing I really liked about this particular scene was the way it was shot - a combination of stills, steady-cam, and anchored shots. I've noticed that as I get more comfortable with the filmmaking process, the more elaborate we get with the angles and style of each scene, and I think that's a good thing. It challenges us to be more inventive and, I believe, will prevent the movie from becoming boring.
Sunday morning saw me up and at it once again, starting with 8:30 Mass and then another shoot at My Favorite Shoes at 10:00. This scene was a variation on another scene we shot last weekend (the scene I ended up acting in), only this time I was working with Annie Gaia (i.e. Leisa). She and I were cramped up in this little room, bouncing dialogue off of one another, and as anyone who knows either Annie or myself could attest - that's a LOT of ego for one little room. It created a nice tension. Originally, we were going to shoot at Uptown Coffee, but there was too much crowd noise and Annie ended up getting pissed at the girl who worked there. So, we re-located to the shoe store, which ended up working better anyway. There's something to be said for serendipity, no?
Lunch at San Francisco Bread Company (very nice, and like half the cast was there...including Marta Dees, whom I focus all of my passion for black-haired girls on now that Jac's married), then I started off for home. Got back to New Orleans a little after 8 p.m. that night and, ever since, I've been tied up with phone calls about cameras and scheduling and re-writes and blah blah blah. Yes, my life is finally hectic..but I wouldn't want it any other way. Quite honestly, my friends, this may have been the best weekend of my life.
"Never guessed it got this good. Wondered if it ever would."

Goodnight, all.


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