Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Steel Town

For the last 2 weeks I have been working as a background actor (we are not extras) in a movie called Steel Town. It stars alot of well known actors including Maggie Gyllenhaal (The Dark Knight), Holly Hunter (The Firm), Ving Rhames (Mission Impossible), Rosie Perez (Untamed Heart) Viola Davis. I listed my favorite films these indivduals appeared in. Sorry Viola.

One comment that I would have to make would be about Maggie Gyllenhaal. Prior to me being part of this movie, I never thought of Maggie Gyllenhaal as anything special, however after seeing her in person. Wow! She is one person that the camera does not enhance. She is just incredible looking, very tall, long, well built and just amazing. She could walk into any nightclub in America and all eyes would turn from the other women to her.

Also, Ving Rhames is just an incredible actor and seems to be Shakespearian trained. He is just a commanding presence (though a lot shorter than he appears on camera -i.e. Tom Cruise.). Holly Hunter (incredibly fit), Rosie Perez (looking as she did almost 20 years ago in Untamed Heart and very hot in a blue dress), and Viola Davis seemed very very nice.

The shoot was not as pleasant but that is the reality of movie making. You are there for 8-12 hours for a 15 second to 2 minute scene shoot. No wonder movies take so long to make. It is very very hot because of all the lighting on the set and somewhat boring in between takes.  What I did not realize were that scenes are shot from many different angles thus causing the actors (including the background actors) to replay their scenes over and over again.

I also found it interesting that the assistant director does all the communicating with the actors and the director is more in the background. A shout out to Donald Sparks, the assistant director who had a great repore with the background actors and Daniel Barnz who seems kind of young to be a director.

The movie might not be everyone's cup of tea (it is about parents trying to get their kids into new elite charter school, giving them a better chance to succeed), i.e. no special effects, violence and bare naked ladies but it could be a feel good type of movie. I had a good time working, and urge everyone to go see Steel Town when it comes out (scheduled for 2012).  

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