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Geoffrey Gould
Reports from the set/s...

As principal role Mr. Whitley for
Wide Awake
Chris Falk's independent feature

Saturday, July 09, 2005
I received a page from producer Robert Raymond, his having received my submission for his project Wide Awake via The message had been late the previous evening and my pager had not been set to ring only to vibrate. I called at 8am and left him a message. I called again at 11am and got him. He had been just about to call me, so our timing was perfect. We arranged for a 1:45pm audition, so I headed down to USC, arriving early as always.
Though the initial message was my auditioning for the roles of Whitney, and for the boss, I was only read for Whitney. Whitney is the lawyer lead's client, rambling on about his case, unware that his lawyer has phased; just glazed over and has shifted into a waking dream state for a few moments, completely ignoring his client's story. Robert sat in with me, while the actual director Chris Falk observed.
So essentially the audition was improv, which one of my specialies. Technically what the character says (or as the script indidates: rambles), being "irrelevant" as it fades away, replaced by the surreal slowing ticking of the clock and the lawyer's daydream, etc.
So I casually rambled about an actual car accident that'd happened to me about twenty years earlier back east, as though it had just happened, and I was seeking redress. Robert played it drifing away as I plowed on, and playing the lawyer, showed me out, as I comically continued to try and get words in edgewide.
Impressed, they asked after my availability: it was scheduled to shoot Monday July 18th during the day. Currently I was between day-job temp-assignments, so I assured them even if an assignment were to come up, I would be able to indicate in advance that I am Committed that date for this project.
As generally happens, I was done and out of there even before my scheduled time.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005
Chris Falk paged me to offer me the role of Whitney. Concern kicked in when his message indicated shooting my scene Sunday the 17th as well as Tuesday the 19th.
As I had a commitment during the day and another during the evening Tuesday, I called him back and some things were clarified: mostly that the Tuesday could be done on Monday, when I was available. Chris indicated his First AD Natalie Hsieh would contact me with the calltime Sunday, and that the suit I wore should be okay; his costumer Stacey Roede would most likely also be contacting me before Sunday. She did call, and I indicated that Chris seemed okay with the suit I'd worn to the audition.

Sunday, July 17, 2005
Shoot - Day One - student film "upgrade"
There were a number of interesting surprises with this project.
I arrived for my 7:45am call at 7:30am. This was due to the Red Line subway taking far longer between trains than it should have.
As I previously realized, it was the same downtown building in which was at the time my main temp agency. From its 20th floor to which we had access, I could see other buildings nearby at which I've temped.
They had set up the front reception area of the offices to reflect the law offices of the story. I met the pleasabt lead actor Dave Andriole playing Roger. David bears interesting passing resemblences back and forth between Bill Paxton and Christian Slater (not all the time — now and then the resemblence would flash over his countenance...).
I also met the very pretty Wendi Kenya who portrays Polly, the office receptionist.
Chris Falk was pleased to see me; at one point I pointed out I'd not received a copy of the script. He deligated it to be done, but it was a large-crew set and distractions kept it from being done immediately.
I was in no rush and I had no reason to get all diva about it, considering I doubted it'd be much different than the audition.
The pleasant Delany Menell showed me to the back area of the office, which was a holding of sorts. She was surprised to learn her name is not unique when I told her I'd worked with another Delaney on another project (DeLaney Henry had done make-up on The Immigrants).
A little while later Chris came back and asked if I'd gotten a copy of the script. I'd indicated that three or four pages had been given me, but apparently were not the right ones even for my scene. (I hadn't found this surprising: another director had sent me her entire script on which I found the pages for my scene, but the printer to which I sent it printed out those number pages, the scene somehow was on different numbered pages).
Chris lent me his own script, which was astonishingly and surprisingly thick. "Whoa!" I said, thinking I was joking. "How th'heck long is this movie...?"
"It's a feature," he replied simply.
I was surprised: "I... I did not know that..." I truthfully responded. I had expected a student film short subject.
So it turned out that Chris is a USC student, but understandably he wants to retain the copyright and rights to this script. So he technically he was making a "short," but would "just keep on shooting."
Meanwhile, the project is falling under SAG's Ultra-Low Budget Feature catagory.
So it'd be Payment Deferred — sort of. That is, I would be getting paid per day for this (and even though less than I'd make per day doing SAG background work, more than zero [particularly when unexpected] is better than zero). And as there's a third bit: that means three days (if they retain a very funny bit in the script, Chris's copy through which I was able to glance).
And, obviously, it's a principal contract role, making it a good credit for my IMDB entry.
(Among other things), this first day shooting was of my arrival at the office, and my hasty (bum's rush type) departure. According to the callsheet, this was their Day Two of twenty shooting days! (From what I could gather), this day generally was to be all the reception-area sequences.
So Roger, a lawyer, is so far into midlife crisis that he pretty much has a complete breakdown. I'm one of his clients, whose case over which Roger cares so little (as in, nill...), that as Mr. Whitney, as I relate the facts of my case, Roger completely zones it all out.
We got to my arrival scene relatively quickly. I went through make-up, and brought to set by about 8am.
The shot had Roger come up to Polly who points out I'm here. He and I shake hands and before I can really say anything, he shoos me off to his office (he'll "catch up..."), so he can have Polly cancel the rest of his appointments, and so he can get a note from her about his ex-wife having called to meet him later.
It took but a few takes. Then the lights were reset a bit for my departure. Dave as Roger politely but firmly shoves me around to Polly for me to be rescheduled. I'm all flustered but Roger continues to speak over any attempt I make to speak.
As David has very good comic timing and insticts, it should come across pretty funny.
It took a few takes. David made one good solid blooper by instead of saying, "... want to keep Mr. Whitney happy..." he said, "... want to keep Mr. Happy whitney..."
I wasn't needed for a very long time after that: about 4pm.
Pamela Salem In the back I met others in the cast for the day, including Ken Murphy (playing Roger's boss), juggler Scot Nery and Jessica (playing office staff), and the very gracious Pamela Salem playing Mrs. Burns (also one of Roger's clients who shows up, in her case not having received Polly's voice-mail about her appointment having been cancelled).
Lunchtime was around 1:30pm or so. Craft services had soda, and bananas. Not much else for my tastes, unfortunately. They had two store-bought packages of low-end oatmeal cookies. Neither package was opened (by anybody), as both were oatmeal cookies with raisins... Or, as I prefer to think of same: a crime against nature.
Lunch was brought in, but was lasgna (which I don't like), and spagetti with a ton o'very unappetizing looking stuff mixed in. Thankfully I had temped in enough buildings in that very vicinity that I knew of at least three McDonalds nearby. Two I knew would be closed as they're mainly for the business district. I got my regular meal from the one on 7th right by the Red Line Station and brought it back.
I learned there were a few who also didn't take the Offered Lunch; while our make-up girl felt extremely queasy after having eating the lasgna. I was not surprised.
Slightly resembling Sandra Bullock, Jessica was relatively new to the business, and was called the night before, requesting she come out for the shoot to help. She had given up a day's paid-work (Sunday work) to come in, learning that time-wise, she could have gone to work then come to the shoot. The day would end around 7pm. Jessica felt it was slightly misrepresentated and she left at 4pm, just before I went back to set. A shame, as she was very pleasant and spent the many hours chatting with Ken Murphy and me.
Meanwhile, we in the back learned early on in the day that the pleasant Pamela Salem was a bit more Experienced (in mainstream movie name-roles), than Ken and I combined. I hadn't recognized her name, but she played Miss Moneypenny in Sean Connery's James Bond film Never Say Never Again...!
One of Pamela's scenes was done just before my 4pm bit. She also has (at least) a second day of filming (on Wednesday), for her In Roger's Office scene. My In Office scene was to be shot the next day, at the Beverly Hills office they'd be using.
Pamela was wrapped, and I went in for my Waiting For Roger bit. It was a coverage shot, of me sitting on the waiting bench. "One Take Wonder," David said glibbly as they Checked The Gate after my sitting and looking impatient took a single take.
I said my goodbyes to Ken and to Pamela who was packing-up, and I headed in to the conference room that was essentially the production office. With my 10am calltime written on it with a large red flair, Leigh gave me (what she said was), my callsheet for the next day (it turned out to be a copy of that day's callsheet, not the next day's callsheet, actually). Thankfully it did still have the location for the next day's shoot on the Miracle Mile of Wilshire Boulevard.
Delany provided me with Chris's information (as being Production Information), in case Unemployment wanted it.
I signed out the time sheet (in at 7:45am, out at 4:15pm), and I departed, heading to the Red Line station.
As I crossed the street, from behind I was honked at big time. Hearing my name, I turned to see Pamela drive up alongside me and offer me a ride home in her open, white covertable. Always open to a ride home, I hopped in and we chatted briskly about this and that on the way back to Hollywood.
Another surprise awaited me: as we got closer to my place, and we passed Best Buy and Target, we got to mentioning how Low Prices generally get negated by sales tax. Pamela indicated that while California sales tax (at that time), being about 8.25%, in England, their VAT is 17%...!
I was aghast, indicating it'd probably not pay for me to get Dalek items right in England. Pamela seemed momentarily surprised I knew about Daleks. I told her I'd been a Dalek fan since the second feature Dalek Invasion Earth 2150 AD, starring Peter Cushing was released in England, which I saw as a boy when my family visited, so that I was also a fan of Doctor Who years before it ever hit America and "became fashionable" for American science fiction fans to watch and enjoy it.
Then I got another real surprise.
"I was on Doctor Who," she casually told me. It turned out Pamela originally auditioned to play Leela, and she was cast in the first two Tom Baker/Louise Jameson classic stories — as the voice of the computer Xoanon in Face of Evil (though at the time she couldn't recall the story name specifically), then on screen in the subsequent story, Robots of Death, and as Professor Rachel Jensen in the Sylvester McCoy story Remembrance of the Daleks...
When she said Robots of Death (one of the better stories), she was quite impressed when I realized, "You were Pilot Toos...!" I mentioned I was surprised she'd not yet been a guest for the local annual Doctor Who convention, GallifreyOne. Pamela told me she had heard of the convention, but she had not yet checked it out. She already had my contact information: she emailed me and I forwarded to her the information, particularly as the following year Louise Jameson was a major guest. Pamela had relayed that she and Louise were still good friends. As it would turn out, with the information I provided her, Pamela's publicist was able to get Pamela as a Confirmed Guest at the following February's GallifreyOne. She got to do Q&A panels with Louise Jameson, a one-on-one interview in the main event ballroom. Any time I dropped by her autograph table in the dealer's room, she made sure everyone knew that I was the reason she got the gig. (I even gave a helping hand when I could; getting change for smaller bills for Pamela's pleasant husband Michael O'Hagan.)
Earlier in the day at the Wide Awake shoot, I had asked Pamela if she knew Carolyn Seymour, with whom indeed she is friends. I told Pamela how Caroline and I had met at a few auditions, and how she and I met again at a callback for the shoot Careful What You Wish For, and I requested she relay Hello to Caroline next time they speak, should Caroline even remember who I am.

Monday, July 18, 2005
Shoot — Day Two
After stopping by the MTA Customer Service Center at Wilshire and La Brea (restocking my supply of then updated bus route schedules [as though any MTA bus drivers actually follow said timetables]...), I arrived at 9:30am at the location on Wilshire Boulevard near San Vicente for my 10am calltime. Upstairs they were using a set of vacant offices. On my arrival Chris was on a phone so we exhanged silent Good Morning waves as I passed him.
Following the thick power cables, I found the outside patio on which was being setting up a shade-tent roof over the craft services, which was substantially better stocked than the day before. It was still early in the day and it was already quite toasty out.
I met the lovely and pleasant Lenora Chu, who was also to play one of Roger's disserviced clients. Not yet SAG, she had moved "locally" from San Francisco with her recently wed husband. As he works in Orange County (and as acting work is up here), they Split The Difference and are domiciled in Long Beach. Still, that's a lot closer than for other actors friends of mine who casually come to do acting work from San Diego and Bakersfield...
As gaffers were taping a large white sheet of paper over the window of the office for uniform lighting, suddenly from another door a brusque man emerged, resembling Larry Drake, and being about as pleasant as was Drake's Durant character in Darkman...
With a strong hint of an Austrian or German accent, he demanded of Lenora and me as to who was in charge. We were a bit taken aback and quickly indicated towards the door next to the craft services, as we thought either Delany or 2nd AD Leigh Oaonessa were under the craft services shade area at the moment.
Chris was retrieved and as they passed us, we heard the "Larry Drake guy" loudly growling at Chris about how "this" (apparently how the crew was setting up stuff) was not to what he'd agreed, at which point they vanished into the other office. That didn't look good. Fortunately throughout the day they were able to keep "Drake" either placated, or at least out of the project's hair.
After a bit, Lenora and I met fellow cast members Alan Rabnowitz and Dennis, who would be playing Roger as an old man (as Roger visualizes this while I'm speaking to him).
Lenora and shortly Alan each went in, did their bit in a take or three, and were wrapped. Lenora reported she had been told it would probably be over a year before she receives her DVD copy. We each exchanged contact cards and said our goodbyes.
I was brought in to the office they'd set up as Roger's. At first it was all medium and tight shots on my face speaking directly to Roger. To my surprise, my diatribe regarding my car accident was recorded, so all or some may (or still may not) be used on the soundtrack.
Amusingly, Chris occasionally had David ask me (as Whitney) a few Clarifying Questions regarding my story. Even Chris asked an unhelpful Clarifying Question or three. Eventually it began to come across like a Bob & Ray comedy interview on their old radio shows, in which the questioner (Ray or [as Wally Ballou], Bob), clearly was not paying attention to the person he's interviewing and/or actually saying.
I maintained a straight face as the occasional questions kept on about the unnamed bit of "access road" I had used, as that was all the police ever called it on the police report at the time. David as Roger (and probably as David) wasn't Getting that it was part of the public road itself, and so the questions began to become hilariously obtuse, as though the lawyer was insisting I may have been on a private road where I shouldn't have been.
At one point Chris or David asked something so odd, essentially asking me about something about which I Had Just Said Already regarding the other driver, that I replied with a hint of annoyance, "He was too busy hitting me..." It got a good laugh from a few of the crew and I think Chris.
Lunch was all Mexican food, so (not knowing this area of Wilshire enough for me to go forage), my lunch consisted of Ritz Crackers.
During this time I did ask DP Max Gutierez how often people noted his somewhat strong resemblence to a young Quentin Tarantino. He said a few has said so. I also felt he had a passing resemblence to Joshua Jackson but while I didn't mention that as well, shortly later someone else mentioned it.
After lunch they brought in Dennis, as the Old Roger, during Roger's hallucination. These were tight on him (some just of his eyes), as I stayed in the room to do my story retell. Eventually David came back and he had to listen to me go on and on again. Chris occasionally had me shift my spot in the story. I never got beyond the actual accident (nothing about the hospital). Soon instead of my seeking redress of the other driver, the focus shifted to my wanting the car replaced rather than repaired; that the insurance should sign off as a loss, as it'd cost far more to repair than to replace.
I was "picture wrapped" and signed out.
Earlier I had asked Natalie where I could procure today's callsheet, and she told me Leigh would do so at the end of the day. As I was signing out, Leigh said she wasn't able to accomodate me with a copy of today's callsheet as she was printing out the next day's callsheet for the crew. Probably not as patronizing as it came out, she told me I should have asked earlier (notwithstanding the fact I shouldn't have to ask for it). I decided not to point out that while the many pages were being printed that she could just stick the One Copy of today's callsheet into the print queue, so I just asked of Dennis's surname (as earlier I neglected to ask him for it). Despite accepting such a request could have taken less than it took for her to "explain" why she couldn't (e.g., wouldn't), I chose not to point this out either. I figured I could find out at the screening and/or when I was sent my DVD copy of the finished project. Ironically in most cases, too many times I have had the nonsensical "Don't tell me how to do my job" reply thrown at me (by people who, based on results, don't know how to do their jobs).
All in all at the time I felt quite honoured to have been a part of this project. I hoped The Third Bit within the script would be done as well, not only putting a button on my character's scene, but a good reflection on Roger's demeanor.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005
Quick drop-off
I had burned for Pamela a DVD disc of my student films, at least the ones of which I'd received my DVD copies. On our ride to drop me home the other day, Pamela had previously indicated being needed for Wednesday, but Monday during the shoot day I was hearing hints of her being filmed Tuesday. I figured I'd split the difference. Reliable Delaney had promised that if I dropped off the disc the next day/Tuesday, she would see to it that Pamela received it.
My back-east friend Dave was in town, so we stopped by the location and I headed up with the disc (while he made sure his rental car didn't get ticketed).
Stepping in from the patio was Pamela. "Ah, you are here," I said as she smiled upon seeing me.
She accepted the DVD happily, provided me with her email address with which to forward to her the GallifreyOne convention information for 2006, and she even asked if I needed a ride home (as I would presume they were nearly finished with her shots). I thanked her profusely, but noted that my friend Dave awaited me without. I did relate to her that on his own Dave had remembered her name and had been able to list correctly the Doctor Who and Never Say Never Again work.

Thursday, July 21, 2005
Leigh had called me to notify me they needed a "pick-up shot" of me. Originally to be Saturday, it almost immediately shifted to Sunday, at noon, at the fountain outside the main SAG offices on Wilshire.
I got a rush call of sorts from Amy Soto for the film that eventually would be titled Tripping Forward, the project on Monday to which I couldn't go as I was working the second day on Wide Awake. She had gotten my name from "James Carmel" as she put it, and was calling to see if I was available to come down and work on their film. When I called back it turned out she did in fact mean Jason Connell of Strictly Background. I figured I'd do her (and Jason) the favour and go do it, literally as I had nothing else to do. On the way, I called Jason and let him know about the shoot, and that it'd be at the Herald Examiner downtown, where I'd "worked" a day on the film Collateral (that is, I was in holding all the live long day, being sick as a dog that whole day notwithstanding).
I arrived at 2:10pm for my 2:30pm calltime, and was led up to where they had holding. Due to the extensive heat outside, I changed to my "upscale casual" attire to play the background as a Detective.
As I waited, my pager went off. One of the Wide Awake producers, Johnny Asunćion, asked me to call back "about the Sunday shoot."
I called back to learn there was "no money in the budget" to pay me for Sunday. He would completely understand if I wanted to blow it off. I assured him my job was To The Project and certainly to Chris, and that I'd be there, and they could Pay Me When They Could, and that I would be paid when they could do so. Almost oddly, he seemed to be surprised at this, but that may have been the cell-phone connection. As it was, the phone was not the place to negotiate: it was clear they were fully able to Not Shoot My Third Bit. I figured on Sunday I'll stress to Chris that down the line when he's directing full-on mainstream SAG films, to Remember Me for other contract roles for which it'd take a day or five to film.

Sunday, July 24, 2005
The Producers
Leigh had paged me late last night (10:30pm), stating that my "one o'clock calltime" had been changed to 2:00pm. I called her back to thank her for the update, as I'd not been told anything other than twelve noon.
So Sunday I arrived at Museum Square in front of the SAG offices by 1:40pm.
Clearly the crew had only just arrived themselves, and were setting up. Chris later told me they'd run extremely late last night, so to avoid the turn around time, everything had had to be pushed.
Delaney and a few others erected a tent to shield craft services from the sun. Apart from a goodly amount of soda, the craft services were even more meager than the first day on which I worked. This makes sense under the presumption that if they had no budgetary resources to pay me for the third day, how could they afford munchies? (At one point later during the afternoon, Natalie let me head over to the nearby Ralphs so I could get some munchies of my own I could eat.)
A new make-up girl was there today, the smilingly pleasant Chika Morkana, who did my make-up shortly after doing make-up for David and David's wife Cindy Dolenc, who is portraying Roger's ex-girlfriend Kate. Cindy agreed I am not the first person to see a strong resemblence in her to Ashley Judd. Later as we swapped On What We've Worked, she related how her First Job was as a waitress for Eyes Wide Shut.
Wearing very comfy clothes, such as a white sleeveless tank-top, I was greeted by Johnny Asunćion, the producer with whom I'd spoken on the phone while at the Tripping Forward location. He graciously and sincerely thanked me again for coming out today. I stressed I'm committed to the project, my acting work ethic, et al, and he agreed he would count on me for future projects, including SAG mainstream projects for Day Player and higher credited contract roles. He also agreed with my Long term Thinking; that once this film sells, I do get paid, for three SAG Day Player Contract Role days. I learned Johnny would be the casual passer-by who notices Roger has had a bird dropping hit his jacket, and point out such as being good luck. He changed into a snappy looking business suit, which (now covering his arms), almost belied how he obviously does a lot of working out.
Johnny's scene was shot first, as he had to leave early. Once he was complete, Johnny provided me with his mailing location so I could mail him a copy of a DVD I could burn with my to-date aquired student films. While he got I can do comedy all but second nature, he almost mischeivously suspected I could do Dark Roles, and I assured him that in at least one of the shorts on the DVD I would send him, I played the villain.
Curiously, despite the camera positioning for Johnny's walk-by could easily be the same angle for my walk-by, they spent the next sequence with David and Cindy (as Roger and Kate) with the young actor playing their son (who name I did not obtain, as again, no callsheet was provided me). Some of this was delayed a few times due to the sun going behind an occasional stubborn cloud.
My own bit, which I guess could clarify as a pick-up shot as it was a single angle, took two takes.
Literally two to five minutes in front of the camera.
And I wasn't in front of the camera until 7:30pm...
During the long warm day (thank gods for a breeze), things got a little... weird. For one thing I had noticed that throughout the day Delaney was not the happy person she'd been the previous two days on which I'd worked. While I figured she was busy and/or the long schedule might be getting to her a bit, I literally only noticed her smile once the entire day, and that was to a set of people walking by who most likely had asked what was being filmed. But when she'd arrived she acted as though I was invisible and never said hello. And then later while I was reading, a few hours before I was needed, she sat down next to me and had paperwork for me.
"I already filled out the paperwork to reflect all three days," I pointed out, having done so on the first day downtown.
"Yeah well," she said with what almost seemed like a growl. "As you wouldn't fill out these," she exagerated, referring to paperwork I had indeed already filled out, and properly so. "You have to fill out this."
She handed me what suspiciously implied I was not a Day Player, which my role is (particularly if the feature is sold).
I could almost agree up to a point. Almost. I did get a page from a Theresa at the project's payroll company, A.R.T., but she gave a long distance number that I couldn't reach. Expecting her to call again, I updated my outgoing message to include asking Theresa for A.R.T.'s hardcopy address, so I could forward to her clarifying documentation she hinted at needing (as apparently she couldn't understand and/or comprehend the concept of someone who's studied enough law as to assert his own rights).
I never heard back from her.
Before he had left, Johnny and I discussed that aspect, and he did state he saw check (or checks) made out, so I will (or should) be getting paid for the other two days.
Considering A.R.T. has no paperwork regarding me consenting to any withholding for my agreed-upon compensation of private labour, it should be interesting to see if Theresa lets the project pay me for the first two days, or whether A.R.T. would commit theft of service (they would, and did).
But now Johnny had left. Had he been there I'd have inquired about it with him.
It did not directly state I was "atmosphere" or "background" or even "featured background." I made sure I'd added the term Day Player at least twice in connection with my name, and with my regular legal name I use — Geoffrey Lawrence: Gould — and stressed that my Screen Credit Name being Geoffrey Gould and that (as a Day Player), I was playing Mr. Whitney. As always, in case A Fast One was being pulled, I made sure (twice) to add the term All Rights Reserved, so as not to prejudice such rights, relying on the California Commercial Code (CCC § 1207), (this private-sector work being done within the California state Republic an'all [not at all to be confused with the ficticious entity corporation/s named CA and/or STATE OF CALIFORNIA]...).
Without thinking, I handed the completed form to Delaney before asking her for a photocopy. "We don't have the facilities to do that here," she said automatically, which at the time I believed, due to the outdoor location, and it being a Sunday. I suggested the copy be mailed to me, and she muttered rather non committedly as she walked away from me. No matter what word had come out of her mouth, the tone was clear: Don't Hold Your Breath.
This seemingly uncharacteristic attitude concerned me greatly.
When Delaney returned from handing in the form, I pointed out that as there was a Staples within walking distance, and that I certainly had time with which to do so, I could have it photocopied and they'd have the original and I would have my owed copy for my records.
Her faced filled with mysterious concern as she waffled about that being difficult or so. I always wonder why people have such a problem simply doing what they're supposed to do: someone being deliberately obtuse just baffles me. Why is it when something is to be done a certain way, more time is spent arguing why it can't be done, taking longer time than it would have taken just to do what should be done in the first place?
Delaney did suggest maybe I could talk to Her Producer about it.
"Which one?" I said politely and smiling. I'd noted actually a few producers attached to the project (even beyond those I'd met), listed on callsheets that at least at which I could look. There was Robert Raymond, Johnny Asunćion, Ian Bounds, Larry Bryant, BP Cooper...
"Ian," she said simply. She led me over to the street corner facing the La Brea Tar Pits, where a corner of the restaurant patio there was something of a paperwork HQ. I was introduced to smiling Ian Bounds who pleasantly shook my hand. He politely listened to my practical and helpful suggestion how to acquire my owed copy of my paperwork, and he seemed to become surprisingly evasive. As I had time before I was needed, and more than enough time to get it copied and return, I was surprised that he suggested I wait until After They'd Filmed Me, at which time I could get my copy of the paperwork.
"Excellent!" I said, having acquired his Word I'd get what I should receive anyway and for which I shouldn't even have to ask. And a person is only as good as their Word.
At 7:30pm, once I was done, I returned and Ian kept scooting back and forth to the location. I had honourably brought over my blue bag to suggest it be "collateral" that I'd return the original form when suddenly I noticed something unsettling. Right next to Ian was a functioning multi-purpose printer.
One that photocopies.
One that would have had my owed copy in my hands moments after Delaney had given the original to Ian. It had been there before too but I was more focused on Ian than really looking at the printer, or I'd have pointed it out when he and I had first met.
Delaney had spoken so quickly that there was no way a copy could be made for me at this location, that I would err on giving her the benefit of the doubt she was not actually lying to my face: she may not have been aware of the printer, or that it could photocopy right here on the spot.
But why would Ian not correct me about my Staples suggestion, clarifying that once I was filmed he could photocopy the paperwork Right There and give it to me? He actually had not said that he couldn't, but with my Staples suggestion, his glaring omission of the facts at hand were disquieting.
Ian did photocopy my paperwork and gave me my copy, immediately indicating how/that I "couldn't change anything," as though I would or that there would be any point to changing or altering a photocopy when they had the original anyway. Perhaps this was first time doing this (filling a producer position)? Maybe I was the only worker he'd ever met who is either professional and/or honourable (and Ian wasn't expecting honour and/or professionalism)? Was Ian suggesting, hinting or warning that someone in production might at some point alter or change the original...?
As it was, I reassured Ian of the actual and true facts at hand: the paperwork copy is for my records, and Ian and I diplomatically concurred we were both Covering Things by his disclaimer and my having my owed copy. I had already discussed my status with Johnny previously (that if the project sells, I'd have three day's SAG pay [not just two] coming to me as a Day Player Contract Role), so I chose not to add (to Ian) that the paperwork copy is being retained to prove I had worked this day, in case (as he may have implied), anyone (in production) choses to... prevaricate... (that if the feature sells), that falsely I was only Featured Background or such this day (instead of still being the principal role of Mr. Whitney, finishing my scene)...
Fortunately, apart from the slightly odd taste that all that strange backstory intrigue left in my mouth, I am still quite honoured to have been a part of this project.
Chris Falk's vision and passion for this project is contagious. He's calm, cool, collected (at least, I never saw him otherwise), and I see a good film making career ahead for him.
As David said his goodbyes and thanked me again for my coming in today, he told me my reaction for my shots were hilarious and spot on for the bit. Chris assured me I would be invited to any and all Wide Awake screening(s) later that year or early 2006.

Saturday, June 25th, 2006
A few months earler I came across Dave Andriole on the Chasing 3000 shoot, in which he was an ER doctor (as was I, though while I was background, he was a Day Player). We chatted during breaks and lunch, and he informed me that our scene for Wide Awake would have to be re-shot (the lobby scene). Apparently it was a case of Good Gate, Bad Lens.
(There was still at that time, no IMDB entry for Wide Awake, btw.)
A few weeks ago I was contacted by Chris Falk and Johnny Asuncion about the reshoots, giving me the tentative weeked date of June 24th-25th. I asked if this meant (as her scene was shot the same day), if this meant they'd be needing Pamela Salem as well? She and I had become good friends since the shoot (so I looked forward to seeing her), and when they discovered this when I mentioned it, what with their apparently having realized they had managed to misplace Pamela's information (!), I was able to contact her for them.
I was only needed for Saturday the 24th. Pamela and I were each thrilled to see each other. She relayed that her husband Michael was then-currently in China playing the aged and dying Marco Polo for the Hallmark miniseries. Pamela is about to head to England for about a fortnight as a guest at a James Bond convention of sorts, at Pinewood Studios.
When we got to it, my scene was done relatively quickly, within about a half hour. Dave and I just did what we had done previously, only this time the office was a reception area within the Department of Water and Power building downtown, nearly directly across from the Disney Concert Hall.
Pamela had offered me a lift home, but there was more to her scenes to shoot after lunch, which was quite good, so we parted with hugs and I headed on home via the nearby Red Line station.
So now I had no idea when it would be that this feature might be finished (though today and tomorrow were the final days of filming), nor any idea of a screening and/or release date. I learned they needed a couple of background people for Sunday; the only person available was thankfully the one I knew to be the most reliable, Terry Berkin, who I learned was used rather quickly (one cross for one angle), but she'll get copy and credit, which (for non-SAG), is not a bad deal.

Thursday July 17, 2008
Official Site and other updates
This site, actually. With so many on-set reports, I have been working at adding recent and current project reports, slowly reformatting project reports from my geocities pages, so their content is uniform here.
Pamela and I remain friends. While she is pleased to have worked on Chris's project, mostly as she gained me as a friend, she is understandably put off by the fact that she and have heard nothing on the project's progress from them since that time, as of this date over two years previously.
No screening, no provided DVD copy; as of this entry date, still no IMDB entry, no contact, no word.
And no payment for the reshoots, neither of us.
I guess I wasn't the only actor that got stiffed on Wide Awake. But otherwise I'd have not met her nor her husband; in years to come I would (and continue to) attend Pamela and Michael's theatre group stage productions at the (haunted!) Melrose Avenue Matrix Theatre, as well as assisting her getting a gig as an official guest at the 17th and 22nd annual GallifreyOne conventions.

Wednesday May 25, 2016
Somewhere... out there...
A month or two after my mail matter rental box changed its location, I stopped by to check it, and found a rather odd envelope from SAG-AFTRA. Considering the pink paper with ny name and address in the window, I suspected it was a reminder I still had to pay my April dues (which thankfully was one of the errands I was running that day anyway). I opened it to be sure and found a surprising "Foreign Royalty Statement," indicating nine TV airings (or video rentals/purchases), of my The Practice Day Player episode The Chosen, in Demark (one airing), Spain (three), Sweden (four), and Switzerland (one). Towards the bottom was also listed two airings (Sweden and Switzerland), of Wide Awake, of all things.
It'd been so long since Wide Awake that I literally could not recall precisely which project it was. At first I thought it may have been a student film, a la Santa Croce: the AFI student film that I know was "sold" overseas and for which I'd once received a small residuals check.
Speaking of small, the nine Practice airings and thw two Wide Awake came to a few cents shy of twenty-four dollars.
I went to the IMDB on my phone, but Wide Awake was not to be found (at least not that project, under that title, until years later), even under director Chris Falk or producer Johnny Asunćion's credits. There are same-name titles, even around the same time, but those are other projects
According to the statement, there are companies overseas that collect these royalties, but it makes me wonder how this film never got an IMDB entry. It's bad enough Pamela Salem and I never did get paid our 24 July 2005 shoot day, we never received our contractually obligated DVD copies, but if it was ever locally screened or premiered, neither of us were ever notified. But it's somehow showing, or available on DVD, overseas?

Sunday 25 February 2024
The loss of a good friend
I was watching a retrospective video on YouTube on Never Say Never Again, when in the comments someone posted "RIP Pamala Salem." I was aghast and hastily looked up to learn Pamela had indeed passed away six days earlier, on 21 February 2024.
I posted my thoughts on Instangram.
The audio radio-drama company Big Finish did a tribute to Pamela, on X aka Twitter, and on Instagram as well.
She will be sorely missed.

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