Taking It On The Chin
That thing which kept me from the film screening last week finally overwhelmed me. I stayed home the last couple days, needing rest – mentally and physically – and managed to devour If Chins Could Kill... almost completely uninterrupted.
Great book. Though a bit of an emotional roller-coaster because while part of me is so totally in love with the determination, drive and sheer ballsiness (is that a word?) these guys had in making their first feature-length film… part of me was also (in typical middle-child fashion) jealous and sort of regretful that I’ve never lived through/created anything similar.
I mean, I have experienced what it's like – forging ahead sleepless and utterly fatigued, against all odds and beyond what I've thought myself capable of all in order to finish a project I feel passionate about – enough to know that it can be wildly exhilarating… but never to that degree: Four years from conception to finish and all the weeks in between spent dirt poor and weary in the freezing cold woods while covered in corn syrup (and, subsequently, flies).
I’m sure I'll write more about it later on as it digests in my head.
Last night I managed to haul my butt to a callback for that Irish play. The first part of the callback was more step dancing. Only this time there was way less room to stand let alone dance, and the choreography was much more intricate… and without a lot of explanation. I mean, he'd stop to show you if you asked – but just once, and then he'd keep right on going.
I don't want to make excuses for my poor showing, but I know I could have gotten it with a hair more practice (and without the girl ahead of me reversing directions and nearly colliding with me on several occasions), and would definitely have mastered whatever steps for the final performance.
BUT, this was how it went. And after the dance portion, I wasn't asked to stay. Had I any energy at all left in body or spirit, I would have felt really bad. But I just half-heartedly bit back a tear, shrugged it off and shuffled home where I dove into finishing Chins.
Then, this morning, I got an email from the director expressing his “regret” that he could not cast me. "Whatever", I thought, "Thanks for the effort but we already know we got a 'No’ last night when you let us go”.
But then I noticed this email wasn’t a blind-copy – it was an email to me, specifically. Sure, he may have sent the same email to others, but that would be a lot of effort… so maybe he really means it???
Anyway, part of it reads: “I truly appreciate meeting you…Keep auditioning, as you are a bright light, and we have so few.”
It doesn’t take the sting away entirely, but it helps. I’m very grateful that he took the time to write kind words – boilerplate or not. I needed it.