9.07.2008

Edge of Hotness

For 12 hours yesterday, I played a prop.  I've been a prop before.  At my high school we did an avant-garde production of The Crucible (read: we had no money).  In one scene, when I wasn't playing Mercy Lewis, I played a tree in the forest.  Some of the other actors helped populate the forest, too.  Yesterday was more exciting--I was a moving prop.  A commuting businesswoman, to be exact.  I'd put myself on a list to be considered for some background work on the new Mel Gibson movie being shot in the area, Edge of Darkness, since I had the day open.  I hardly ever do extra work, but a little "mad money" is good every now and again. 

Conveniently, as I mentioned previously, I was called to work.  Great!  One of the downsides?  I had to get up at 3 AM.  Yes.  You read that correctly.  3 AM.  My call time was 5 AM, camera-ready and with props in tow.  So, after about 4 hours of sleep, I got up, made up, dressed up, collected my previously packed bags and made my way out into the remnants of hurricane Hanna which would hit the Boston metro area off and on all day. 

It was a long day.  And I have to give it to the PAs: they did a good job wrangling 300 people in a public and active train station.  However, the weather (84 degrees and humid), the number of rehearsals per shot (10? 12?), the number of takes per shot (15? 18? 23?), and the fact that we were dressed for a cold and wet autumn day (I was wearing a collared blouse, a cashmere sweater and a trench coat) made it almost unbearable.  I was hot.  And I don't mean sexy.  We were all hot and it was visible on everyone's faces.  Even Mel Gibson was shvitzing.  (Is that ironic?)

However, I think most things went well yesterday.  The CD had called for professionalism; everyone was professional.  The director had called for a quiet set and everyone was quiet.  I was a tired girl at the end of it, though.  Being a prop is not always challenging and it can be very repetitive.  There can be very little acting involved.  But once in awhile doing so is a nice reminder of where nearly everyone starts: as a nameless, faceless, sometimes blurry or unseen individual at the bottom. 

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