Saturday, October 15, 2011

My Career as a Reluctant Unpaid Extra

If we're friends on Facebook, then you know that my status right now is:

This may be the only chance I ever have to make a statement like this: I've left the kids in the street and gone to the bar.

The reason I ditched the kids (just one of mine, and a friend of hers) in the street and went into a bar was that they'd committed to hanging out on the corner hoping to catch a glimpse of Zac Efron long as it took. I stuck it out for three hours before walking the half-block to a local bar/restaurant where I often have dinner when Tori is out with friends. I drank coffee and ate cheese garlic bread and chatted with the regulars and the bartender about what a long night it was going to be.

My daughter and her friend were herded off the street onto the lawn of a nearby building, from which they couldn't see a darned thing. I watched Zac Efron shoot about a hundred and seventy-five takes of the same scene while the girls huddled around the corner and wondered whether they were ever going to see him...and then a DA pulled me out of the bar and asked me to be an extra.

Fortunately, in the exact moment that I was stepping out onto the street, the girls showed up at the back door of the bar (a family-owned pub attached to a restaurant) and asked for me, and so ended up watching the final takes of the movie from a perfect vantage point directly across the street from Efron while I stood and chatted silently with a couple of other extras and the owner of the bar.

Yes, chatted silently. Turns out all those people you see talking and laughing in the background on the street aren't making any sound. It's kind of tough to do. Fortunately, they only shot "my" scene four times.

The crazy thing is, this is the second time this has happened to me in the past 90 days. My kid's interest in the film industry isn't playing out exactly the way either of us intended.

See that silver car in the background? Zac Efron was totally in that car. We saw him. And they let Sydney touch it.

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