What an exciting day. Long and exhausting, but lots of fun. Met the morning van on time and was delivered to the Leatherhead hairdressing trailer within twenty minutes. Before they had a chance to complete my hairstyle, we were given a rehearsal call to the set. No make-up, hair in rollers, and housecoat to cover up the lack of costume. Aaaarrrggghhh!
I was walked over to the set and then sat at the secretary's desk, waiting to be called. A gentleman came out of the meeting room and I was struck with how familiar he was to me. I knew that face, but I just couldn't put a name to it. (It was too early. Everyone was in character preparation and trying to wake up.) It wasn't until I was back with the hairdresser and he came in and took the chair next to me that I realized it was my all time favorite stage actor, Jonathan Pryce! Omigod, this was going to be an exciting movie to be a part of -- that is, if I didn't make a complete fool of myself. Turns out, I wasn't needed for the rehearsal and, at 8:40, I met George for the briefest moment, as I was leaving. There went the grand entrance.
Where is the Speech-Checker When You Need It?
While waiting for the rehearsal, one of the crew members came over to chat. He asked if I had seen George's latest movie about Edward R. Murrow, and I said not yet. He said that was too bad because the secretary who played in that movie was extraordinary. This statement was followed with an explanation that almost every secretary in every movie that George Clooney directs was incredible and that I had some really big boots to fill, and, oh, yeah, he hoped I was up to it.
Is this what he does to each new actor? How very strange, to say something like that to an actor before they go onstage. I could only stammer, "Well, George must have seen something he liked with my audition, so I'll just go with my instincts."
I spent most of the morning waiting for my scene, and, when it was over, George went out of his way to tell me that it was exactly what he was wanted, and more. Then began the multiple takes from different points of view. I'm actually in a scene with three major actors -- George Clooney, Renee Zellweger (won't be on site until tomorrow), Jonathan Pryce, and John Krazinski. I can't believe it. Everyone was so busy, I had to pinch myself!
Foods Fit for a King, Queen, and Commissioner's Secretary
They had an incredible amount of food for the midmorning break, and when I mentioned it, I was told to just wait to see what lunch was going to be. Of course, most of the crew had been on the set since seven o'clock and had worked up quite an appetite. In fact, there were trays of fresh fruit and vegetables available on set throughout the day's shooting, with another hot meal brought in around four'clock for a tired and hungry crew.
Oh, wow, lunch was incredible. A wonderful variety of hot entrées to choose from, in addition to four different cold plates, fruit trays, and six desserts. But, for lunch, I chose the fresh salmon as my entrée. Mmmmmm, cooked to perfection. These delightful repasts were available for everyone involved with the film, not just primary actors.
Pretty Heels Hurt Just as Much as Ugly Shoes
The afternoon was spent repeating the morning scene from everyone's point of view. Renée Zellweger, herself, won't be in until tomorrow. Today's scenes have been done with her stand-in and it will all be done, again, in the morning, albeit, much faster, After that, we will be filming my other one liner and then I get to go home.
By the end of the day, I couldn't wait to get to my trailer and take off my character's heels. It had been a long time since I'd spent the day in heels and my poor little toes were screaming at me. What lightened the burden is that I was able to get a picture of me with Jonathan Pryce in costume and can look forward to getting others, tomorrow.