May 16, 2011

Hooksett shines for Hollywood (Candia & Manchester too!) – Part 2

Day 6 – 5/10/11
Today is our first day of recreations. We’re headed to Candia and to Car World and a nice farmhouse location. I arrive a bit early and begin to wonder where everyone is when they call to let me know that their GPS took them a bit out of the way. So in the meantime I start setting up the junk cars we need for our first scene.
Once the crew finally arrives things appear to be going well, one of our actors arrives and we get a third PA (hooray!). Bob our director stages the junk cars to his liking and he and the DP start blocking out camera moves, etc.
We are twenty minutes past call time and our second actor has not arrived so I call him. He claims to have called the L.A. office to beg off, says he had an emergency. Hmmm… no time to get a replacement so what does the director do? He puts the sound guy and me in as actors!
Meanwhile we’ve sent our third PA to FedEx to return a costume to L.A. (yes it HAS to go today!) About an hour later we get a call from him, he’s by the airport and has just totaled his car. Seriously.
The costume we have for the first actor is a laughably bad cross between a bellhop and an Air Force officer. He’s supposed to look like a cop.
Okay then, let’s move on!
Once the camera starts rolling things go well, we get some good stuff, break a car window (nobody is hurt) and we get the use of an elevated platform from ATS Equipment for FREE!!!
We break for lunch and a company move. I order from Pasquale’s (across the street) and the crew heads down Rt. 27 a few miles to our farmhouse location.
After lunch we’re set for the shooting scene by the bulldozer. Our other three actors arrive and the day has smoothed out greatly. The homeowner has pretty much given us the run of the place; he provides bulldozer and welding equipment and even shows one of the actors how to weld so we can do close-ups.
We kill our Danny several times over the next couple of hours. The actor is a good sport and tosses his body about with gusto, has blood spilled on him and CPR done to him.

Day 7 – 5/11/11
Back to Candia and a long day of recreations.
Surprisingly all of our actors show up and on time. It is a long day, and the director’s determination to make the most of our location, our cinematographer and our actors pushes us into the evening. No complaints here, I’m still having fun!
We have two non-actors with us today, Lou Mariano of Hooksett and Bob Martel of Candia. Both, by the way, are involved in Boy Scouts, so it’s no surprise that they would volunteer their time and efforts to help out a friend.

Day 8 – 5/12/11
We’re in Manchester today.
A friend of my wife has volunteered the use of her house, and every producer loves “free.” It’s a late start as we plan to be there until after dark.
Bill Shackford proves again to be a real trooper as he is tasked with playing himself in our recreations. Bill I know it was long, hot day – Thank You!
All our actors again show up and have fun with their roles. It helps a lot when the talent is willing to work as hard as the crew to get the job done.
A certain black Honda Pilot makes its on camera debut as we shoot a murder for hire conspiracy scene. The lighting takes a while to set up and we go 30 minutes over our schedule. Many, many thanks to Judy and her husband for allowing us to stay so long!

Day 9 – 5/13/11
This is it, the last day of shooting.
Heading back Candia and the farmhouse. Another late start and another long into the night shoot. This time we need to thank Bob and his wife for their continued patience and indulgence.
The director needs to stage a fight scene with two actors who have no fight experience. And ya know what? It works! Again, actors who are game to try new things and work hard to get the scene right make for a fun (although VERY hot) morning of punching, swearing, sweating and falling.
To be honest we did so much on Friday I kind of lost track of time. The actors come and go, time cards are filled out, meals are eaten and coffee is ordered. Before you know it we’re shooting the last scene and wrapping. It takes us about an hour to load all our gear and put the house back together.
I return to the hotel with the crew and collect several boxes of props that need to be returned to L.A., and with that its over. I load my car, shake hands, say my good byes and head home.

And baby, am I tired!

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