Saturday, March 21, 2009


Monday's shoot was quite different from working on Chloe. (I must say that I was very sad to hear that Liam Neeson's wife Natasha Richardson had passed away after a freak accident during a ski lesson in Quebec. What makes it particularly sad is that it is preventable. I hope out of this sad situation that people are now aware that head injuries can seem so minor and yet, if not checked out can be deadly.)
Back to Monday:
I arrived up in Unionville, a small town north of the city, but really now almost a suburb of Toronto. I made my way to a fantastic brand new sports centric high school for a scene. This school made my old high school look like it was from another century. It had a fitness room on the 3rd floor, which was all windows and with the latest sports equipment, a rugby field, a soccer field, a football field gyms, tennis and probably a pool etc.
Just amazing.
Holding was in the cafeteria which also had a huge wall of windows on the 3rd floor.
I checked in and then waited for the wardrobe woman to check me out. This time I took my little suitcase and had on a 'soccer mom' type outfit. However she opted for the 'business mom' look and I put this on. Beside me were two young ladies in their teens. She told one girl that her clothing was too edgy and they wanted a preppy look. The girl then started changing right there in the middle of everyone! That was pretty funny. The other major difference in the extras on this show is that half of them are cops, and they really look like cops, big, full uniform, including mock guns which they received on set. It was quite important that they look real, and had their hems done to regulation too. It was a bit intimidating and at times I had to keep reminding myself that feeling like I had just got a ticket was not real. The fellow next to me had to have his haircut to regulation but other than that, not much happened. A bunch of the cops were watching movies on a laptop while waiting.

The kids were there since 6 am and doing multiple scenes. I won't reveal the plot, but the kids were leaving the school and running to their parents after an incident at school. We were the parents and the press.
Around noon they started preparing the craft service. This time everyone was invited to eat a great buffet. Two kinds of Lasagne, Chicken, Salad, rice and beans, potatoes and some dessert bars. We spent the rest of the afternoon chatting reading etc. Then around 4 we went outside to shoot the scene. There was alot of preparation of the police cars, the students, and where we should stand etc.
The scene was shot from 4 directions, and each time at least 5 takes, including moving an ambulance and loading it.
I got to choose my kid, and picked a nice Chinese boy; he decided I was his aunt.
It was pretty cool by then the sun was going down so we had a fake sun - a huge light to be able to finish the scenes. We ran to meet "our kid" and that was pretty much it.
In between takes, we huddled near the director's tent, and watched all the goings on,including a break dance by one of the stars who was pretty funny, (the costume woman got upset with him for messing up his SWAT gear).
At 7:30 we were wrapped. Signed out and headed home. During all the waiting time I worked on my Tai Chi presentation so that was good. I'm thinking about taking an ipod next time, but I had some nice conversations with interesting folks.
Stay tuned for next time....

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Preparing for Shooting

One thing a background player needs to have is wardrobe. No matter what the scene we are responsible to bring the required wardrobe to the shoot. Usually this means 2 or 3 complete changes. Sometimes because we are in more than one scene or sometimes because they want some variety in the background players.
Because when you are in the background, you want to stay just that; background. Usually that means no brights (loud colours),no stripes (makes a blurry image)and no identifiable logos (copyright infringement).
Tomorrow I'm set to work on the TV series Flashpoint. I learned last time to bring a small suitcase with wheels from a veteran extra. This will make taking my wardrobe and accessories a lot easier. It will also give me a place to put my cooled protein shakes and sandwich.
I'm excited. More tomorrow on the shoot!

Saturday, March 14, 2009


I got an email today from my agent Sherri! Monday I'll be working on the set of Flashpoint! Stay tuned for more!

Friday, March 13, 2009

First Paycheck

Today I received my first paycheck from my film work. It wasn't a huge amount of money yet it felt pretty satisfying just the same. Now I need another job to pay for the coat I purchased.... well I needed a formal coat in any case. I hate shopping, but I found a Hilary Radley Black Wool coat in my size and on sale!
I think I did very well, it was regularly $600 and I paid $189 for it.
So bring it on! I have the wardrobe now, at least for this weather!

Friday, March 6, 2009

My Birthday

So, today is my birthday, and if I was considerably younger (30)... I could have been in a scene tomorrow for Flashpoint, but, I will have to wait for a more mature call.

It was a great day, though. I shot photos at a press conference in Markham, shot photos for a website I am designing and had a nice walk with my grandson Ben and his mom Laura,in the most beautiful springy weather. Then the love of my life took me out for dinner and surprised me with a dessert with a candle and singing servers.

In the past I would not have enjoyed this, in fact when I was younger, I climbed under the table to avoid such a display, but now...well it was all rather heartwarming and the end to a beautiful day.

I may not have a scene in a movie this week, but my own life story movie, is rich, wonderful and so sweet, just like the cheesecake with a red candle and strawberries on top.