Blame it on the Eight-Foot-Cockroach
Putting oneself on tape is always tricky. You know, for that exciting project on the other coast or overseas ... or the one half a mile from your apartment that you just can't physically get in for. I've done a couple of these in the past few months, for each of the above mentioned reasons, and I find the process to be exciting and extremely terrifying at the same time. Much like getting a radically new hair cut from a brand new stylist. Or attempting any one of the body-contorting positions in the Hot section of Cosmo.
Perhaps I'm being a touch dramatic.
But regardless. Every time I go in to do one of these things with a new scene, as a new 'character', in a new situation or environment, the challenges are different. Thus far I've done a just-been-kidnapped-twenty-seconds-ago scene, been right smack in the middle of a Viennese Waltz (and talking, for some reason) scene, and having just crash-landed on some "god-forsaken planet" (and still being hotly pursued by the bad guys) scene.
Needless to say, putting the above on tape and attempting to make it look realistic has been a challenge. You know, without the gag-in-mouth and gun-to-head, actual dancing, or being chased by giant cockroaches from the year 2600 and fighting them off with ray guns. I'm not kidding. I did put that one on tape yesterday.
So how to do you recreate an environment that's essential to the scene? I've tried tying my hands (kidnapping scene), which actually worked quite nicely for the sense of realism. I'm bribed an actor friend of mine with scones to read with me (Waltz scene), and he subsequently stood there as I 'fake' danced with him (it didn't come out as ridiculous as that just sounded, so don't laugh). However, the crashed-on-planet-in-middle-of-nowhere-eight-foot-parasite-scene didn't really take off (no pun intended) like the other two did. I'm still trying to figure it out. Is it the difference in the style of writing (Sci Fi certainly has a distinct tonality of it's own, and don't get me wrong... I'm as large of a nerd as they come... but it's less along the lines of Hamlet), or was my 'game' just totally off the day we taped it?
I think perhaps it's a combination of the two. But regardless, I'm frustrated with the results, and I'm likely gonna re-do the thing in the next couple of days and see if I can 'bring it' a bit more. Without, of course, the near-homicidal-cheerleading-squad undertones that firmly accompany that phrase.
After all, who wouldn't wanna do a movie where you get to fire a ridiculously futuristic weapon at gargantuan man-eating insects?
-- Ashley Avis