Patrick will be starring in the Last Cyclist at the West End Theater this May - June. Click here for info

Friday, February 11, 2011

Truths I've learned on a film set.

Just spent some time doing annoying BG work for the FX show Louie.  Great show to work on, small crew, small production, big heart.  And the people working it were very organized and fun to be around.  Even Louie himself.

I've noticed, I'm sure on past shoots but mainly during this one, a few truths about people and film-making.

1) If a scene is being filmed and there is a monitor somewhere on set to watch it on, people with be drawn to that monitor to watch the scene being performed. It's being acted out right in front of you, LIVE.  You know, almost like theater.  We're drawn to a little screen.  I watched tonight as we all collectively would watch the monitor until the camera swung around to focus on us.  I understand watching the play back...but while it's being performed live?  I don't get it.  (but was also drawn to it myself)
Maybe its the idea of looking at how it will look on TV, or maybe we like looking at things that appear to be tiny so we feel huge!  Like a Gulliver complex.  Hell yeah I just coined that.

I get that the crew...specifically the director is looking to see how it will look on the screen.  But the scene being filmed was at a rock concert.  There was a band playing.  A damn good band, right in front of us.  But instead of watching them everything squinted and craned their necks to watch a small monitor.

2)No matter how hungry anyone is on the set, they'll eat whatever is laid out from craft services.  This was a small budget shoot, so it was really just snacks.  We weren't scheduled to be there long enough for a lunch or dinner break, so there was pretzels and water, juice, coffee, tea and chips.  People still ate.  And ate they did.  I'm not faulting anyone.  It's not a bad thing.  I had juice.  But its the idea of "free food?  I'm in.  What is it?  I don't care it's free!"

3) the worst part is the repetition.  Over and over again.  Especially from my crappy aspect as just scenery.  We filmed a second scene which took place outside in the 19 DEGREE WEATHER!!  It wasn't too bad.  The standing still and waiting to repeat the scene is whats so painful.  You start to feel the cold through your shoes.  And normally, in average human temperatures it's just tiring doing the same thing over and over again. So here we are freezing and repeating. Freezing and repeating.  Wah Wah, I'm complaining, I know.  But you try it.  Did I mention we were filming in front of an open fish market?  Yeah...Now who was suffering.

4)There is always one crazy person.

5)Likewise, there is always one know-it-all who is too cool for school.  We're extras, get over yourself.

And that's all for now.  Here's to blending in to the background until I get some decent parts!