Saturday, April 3, 2010

Hoo, Boy, Am I Tired

Should you ever think it might be a good idea, I do NOT suggest doing two long shooting days back to back.

If you have been following me this week (and if you have, stop it - that's just creepy), I had a late running birthday party on Wednesday - and went to bed at midnight. I then proceeded to get up at 3:30 in the morning on Thursday and do a long shooting day, getting home at about 7 pm. I got to bed around 10 or so, and slept until 7...and then decided to sleep some more because of the upcoming night shoot. So I eventually got up at 11 and read the papers and whatnot and got my location bus at 3:30 pm. If you add up those hours, you will discover, as I did, that there's a whole lot of not enough sleep in there.

We thought we would DIE last night. Even though it wasn't as warm as it was supposed to be on Thursday's shoot, we did get a lot of sun, and at one point in the afternoon it got really warm. But last God.

Remember, we're still in VERY early spring. And our set is on the edge of the river...the East River, that is. And on top of that, there are fans which blow directly on us at some points on the set which are there to make the awnings flutter realistically. And it got down to about 42 degrees last night. AND we're filming a SUMMER night on the SUMMER clothing. LIGHT summer clothing.

You have never seen more people simultaneously shivering in your life. We had our coats, which the production assistants collected from us just before the actual shot each time, and they also handed out those chemical heat patches. I had one planted on my chest, which was some help, but not in the least enough help. I would have killed for the shoe warmer patches, but my boots were A. much too tight to allow me to get anything in them (including, with any comfort, my feet), and B. laced all the way to the knee, which would have taken for-friggin'-ever to undo and do again. Arrrgh.

However, two things happened yesterday that made it all worthwhile. The first one was that when I was in the bus heading toward good old Greenpoint, Brooklyn, my phone rang, and it was dear sweet Sarah from Grant Wilfley announcing that they wanted me for a costume fitting on Monday for work April 18th on Mildred Pierce! Yay! I've been submitting for this one ever since it was first posted, and I'm so glad to get it. I'm moving ten years's set in the 1930's. Now I have to look up 1930's female underwear on the internet, and pray that there are no corsets involved...I don't think there were...please God, tell me there weren't...shit. I just looked. It was (as I feared) the start of the panty girdle. Crud.

But the second thing that happened is really enough to reconcile me to the upcoming panty girdle and even the frigid air last night. The SAG rep came in at dinner time (my union sends reps to all big shoots to deal with any complaints on the spot, which I think is deeply neat) and informed us that Good Friday is considered a holiday. A HOLIDAY!

That was capitalized because I am indeed shouting - with glee. What it means is that every single one of those 14 or so hours I worked last night is DOUBLE TIME. Yup. Double time. In layman's terms, that is...wait for it...$33.50 PER HOUR.

Now Boardwalk Empire shoots long days, and I usually take home at the very least 200 bucks for the day. But when you put together a full day (oh, all right - a full night) of double time PLUS the night differential, you come up with a gross of around $500 for the day. You know, you can do a LOT of shivering at those rates.

I do dearly love working this show. Last night was the sixth time I've worked it, and it's now at the point where some of the crew knows me by name and greets me when I turn up, and there are a fair amount of people who are regulars like I am, and it's beginning to feel like family around there. What's really nice is that when I was saying goodbye to various people on the crew last night, all of them said, "Oh, we'll see YOU again!"

Now this is VERY important in background work. If you get a reputation as being pleasant and fun and easy to work with, the crew DOES have an impact on whether you will be hired again. You can be a total annoying diva, and the makeup and hair and costume people, and the background wranglers and assistant directors, will go right back to SAG or the casting agency and say, "I do not ever want to have to work with that bitch again," and they are listened to. It's essentially the crew who makes a movie happen, and you'd better NEVER forget it. Get in with them, and you WILL be hired again. Trust me on this one!

So Monday will be an interesting day. I have a 9 am fitting for Mildred Pierce out at Steiner Studios, but thank God they've got a van from the subway station to the studio (it's right across the street from the fitting place for Boardwalk). That means I only have to take the bus from my place over to 6th Avenue and catch the F train to some damn where or another...York Street? I've got it written down. Unfortunately, before I got the movie, I accepted a temp job for Monday. It originally was for noon, which would have been fine...but now they want me there at 11 am. It's going to be just a tad bit I emailed the temp people to tell them that I might not be able to get there until 11:30. And Richard the realtor is coming at 2 pm to drag some other unsuspecting victim through my house. The fun never stops!

Love, Wendy


Anonymous said...

Whoa! For an "officially old" person, you have some incredible stamina. Admire/envy all your productivity... work, house, family, etc. And wishing you a most happy birthday week:)
Your # 1 fan,
Texas Beth

wendyfromencore said...

Thanks, Beth!

Love, Wendy