Lights, camera, (not-so-much) action!
Thinking I ought to be pictures, I headed to Denver last week with a former co-worker to be an extra for the sci-fi action-thriller “Ink.”The first reaction to this idea was, “What kind of ‘movie’ is this April?” It was legit, at least the Internet told me so.If the movie was titled “Pink” I may have been a little leery.This former co-worker we’ll call her “Mo” had heard about the need for extras through a promotions company. They had seen her head shot and knew what to expect.She is fairly tall with blond hair and blue eyes. I’m a short brunette with hazel-green eyes and glasses. And I’m 12 years older.Think Barbie and her sister Skipper with the ages reversed.
I was pretty much along for the ride, ready to stand in where needed. I’m think Mo had bigger aspirations. I didn’t quite get my 15 minutes of fame, but I’m not complaining.I still hang on to the fact I was an extra in “Hoosiers.” And I won’t let anyone forget it.Hey, it starred Gene Hackman and Dennis Hopper, at least.Construction on westbound Interstate 70 made us about a half-hour late, so when we arrived things were pretty much rolling. Our first order of business was to show the production manager what we had brought to wear. We were asked to bring dark-colored clothing that resembled business-casual attire. I don’t think he was too impressed with my selection.In hindsight, I should have gone shopping.Or on a diet.The thought of the camera adding 10 pounds makes me shudder.
We changed our clothes and were kind of standing around talking to some other extras when, before I knew it, Mo was picked to be the bartender in the remaining scenes shot that night.If only they needed the reporter/librarian look …I was definitely excited to be behind the scenes on a film shoot. The nuances involved for the perfect take and the number of takes required are extraordinary. The process can almost be painstaking. But the actors, director and film crew seem to know how to have fun, laughing along the way.Like watching an episode of “The Hills,” I wanted to be part of the Hollywood magic.Instead, I stood on the sidelines waiting patiently to be chosen for scenes. The process was reminiscent of being picked last for kickball teams in elementary school.It’s amazing how those memories stick with me.As scenes were shot, I quietly spoke with OK, more like listened to one aspiring actor-model who told me about how he had posed for Playgirl.
That’s one way to get a head in the business.I couldn’t match that, so I just dropped the “Hoosiers” thing again from like 20 years ago. That actually caught the attention of the director, Jamin Winans, who lived in Indiana in his younger years but made his way west just like me.Unfortunately the “Hoosiers” name drop did not lead to my big break. I was invited to stand in for one scene hopefully not out of pity with about seven other people. We acted out a celebratory scene cheering on one of the lead actors.That scene may or may not make it into the final cut. But if it does, I’m the one wearing the business-casual, purple-and-black number.That’s better than not wearing any clothes at all.April E. Clark is probably more of a behind-the-scenes, screenwriter-type movie person. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and 945-8515, ext. 16601.
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