Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Show biz

Featured in this story: Danny (click for pictures)

I was just doing some boring paperwork when the phone rang. It was Danny.

“Hi”, he said cheerfully. “How are you?”

“Fine, how are you?” I replied.

“Oh, I’m having the time of my life!” he laughed. “I’ve just finished shooting a nice little indie flick. ‘My life in slow motion’. It was great! I had three days of shooting. And for once I wasn’t just ‘Someone # something’ but I had a real part with a real name!”

“Great”, I said. “What name did you have?”

He paused. “Ashley.” He paused again. “I was supposed to be British.”

I chuckled. “Sounds fantastic!”

“Yeah”, he sighed. “I had to talk with a British accent. I even had an dialogue coach… Well, the set dresser lives in Scotland and she taught me. But it was just like having a dialogue coach! And the best thing about the whole movie was: I didn’t have to take my shirt off! It was real acting…"

Danny sighed again.

“I’m so happy for you”, I said, looking at my watch.

“Wow, I can’t wait to do another film like that. Those people are so nice. We had a great time on set! And I met another actor who wants to do a short comedy film. He said that maybe I could get the lead role!”

“Hey, your career is really taking off, hmm?” I said.

“Yeah, finally…” Danny cleared his throat. “Erm, listen, Alex, there’s something we have to talk about…“
I was silent. I sincerely hoped that the sudden meteoric rise in his career didn’t mean Danny wanted to quit his job here at our website.

“This comedy short is really important for me…” He paused. “And the whole crew is taking a very serious approach to it. We were thinking of… you know… the whole ‘method acting’ stuff and so on…”
I wasn’t quite sure what Danny tried to tell me. What was he trying to tell me? Was he going to quit his ballbusting day job to experience life as a monk?

“The film is going to be called ‘Rocks/Off’”, Danny explained. “And it’s about four guys who keep getting hit in the nuts throughout the film. On the surface it’s lowbrow comedy but we want to make it a masterpiece, especially in regard to the acting….”

I grinned. Thank God Danny couldn’t see me.

“So I thought, you know, we could have a little workshop at your studio. Just the four of us. We could have a look at the videos and perhaps we could do some nutshots, too. I’m pretty experienced in that field – that’s why they consider me for the lead. But the other actors are greenhorns. They have been racked once or twice, but that’s it. And that’s not enough to pull it off convincingly, wouldn’t you agree?”

I refrained from laughing and said in the most earnest voice I could summon up: “Sure. Do you think you’ll need an assistant?”

Danny thought about that for a moment. “No, I can do it to the others. After all, I’m a professional ballbuster by now…”

“Okay, fine”, I grinned, “when do you want to do the workshop?”

“What about next week?” Danny asked.

“No problem. When?”

“It’d be best if we had a whole day. There are always some slow learners…”

“Okay, I’ll think about it and then I’ll call you.”

After Danny had hung up I went over to the kitchen where my cameraman Chad was smoking a cigarette and drinking a cup of coffee. I told him about Danny’s plans.

Chad nearly spit out his coffee and looked at me in disbelief.

I shrugged.

Chad laughed. “You can’t say he’s not taking his acting seriously.”

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