Monday, 28 March 2011

Watch out for Northumbria students!

After giving up so much of my time to act in Fracture, the green scene animation, they have turned around and are trying not to pay my expenses!
As you may have noticed, I'm blogging out my anger!
I spent over £60 getting there and back so many times, and the producer is telling me that I should have asked for expenses before the shoot, (when I did) and that now they can only offer half. What'swrong with the other half!
They paid to get Clatters up from London, and took him out for meals, and he was a horrible person! Maybe I'm too nice and they think they can get away with not paying me?
Anyway, I wrote an email back, and my 6ft 4in mountain-biking brother has promised to go beat them up if they don't comply.
Surely film students rely on good natured actors giving up their time, so why take the p**s?

Anyway, in good news, I've been offered a role in the medieval film I auditioned for.
And the 50s film in Goathland (Hogsmead to potter fans) went nicely.

Rant over.

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Very neglected blog!

I feel like i should write something. This last week...

The audition in Newcastle went well, but they emailed my agent to say they were impressed with my audition, but i didn't look enough like the older version of the character they'd cast.

I went to an audition in York for a short medieval film, haven't heard back yet.

Got a phone call from Rob Earnshaw from the casting website, he told me my audition for Apples was really good and i did well, but they were looking for a 15-16 year old, and i'm 20 in two weeks, so no luck.
Wrapped filming on the zombie film, after a ridiculously long shoot out on a wasteland in Hartlepool, filming until nearly 1am.

Spent a day filming in a shipyard in Sunderland, i got to have a (fake) gun.
Experienced the Newcastle Metro.
Then met up with some film makers. I auditioned for a faux documentary last year, so now i get to play a victim at a crime scene, but i'll be in flash backs as well. I seem to die a lot in films at the moment!

Still working away at steampunk costumes, although most of the cast still haven't sent me their sizes! But i got to spend a fun day in a costume shop.

Tomorrow night i'm off to Goathland Railway Station to have an affair, in a black and white 50s style film for a student project.

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Sorry Pete, this will be paid work!

This week is the crazy zombie film week, and we're filming nearly everyday, (including yesterday until half 9pm in the freezing cold, in Middlesbrough!)
But my agent called me yesterday about and important audition today in Newcastle, at 6:15pm, and we're not meant to finish filming until 7pm. I have some crazy juggling act this afternoon/evening to make sure all the makeup is finished before i sneak away before 5pm to try and make it to Newcastle on time. 
We're filming in Hartlepool, so luckily that happens to be closer to Newcastle, but it's still at least 45mins away, and it will probably be rush hour when i attempt the drive!
I looked at getting the train, then the Metro to Wallsend, but it would be this week that they've closed that section of rail for repairs!
Oh well, fingers crossed it all goes smoothly. now i'm a costume designer/stylist?

A few weeks ago, Laura called me asking if i was interested in a costume job, and i said yes, and didn't think any more about it.
Then, last week someone from the TSU Company got in touch asking if i was free to meet him and discuss this job.
So on Thursday 10th i got myself to Mima, and was very quickly offered a job, a payed one at that!

The production is a installation-style piece, where there will be people's work displayed, films being projected, and various plays being performed with guides to lead you round, all inside The Empire in Middlesbrough. And the running theme is going to be "Steampunk". A sort of futuristic, Victorian style. If you've ever seen films like The Golden Compass, League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen, City Of Lost Children etc. you've been looking at Steampunk.

A few examples:

 I am to be dressing the 5-7 guides that will wander around, two mad scientists, an old lady and a teenager from 2050, and various other plays and films.
It's all very exciting! But it's all happening at the beginning of April, and I'm still working on this zombie project!!

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Hectic week!

I've ended up being so busy this week, and as I write this I'm on a
train to Newcastle again.
A very early train to Newcastle to film for the animation I'm doing,
all in front of green screen. I've been working in this project for
about two weeks now, and my legs are burning from all the powerwalking
through newcastle centre to avoid missing trains.

I spent the morning sculpting scars/stitches for zombie nurses, to be
cast in gelatin. These characters weren't originally in the scene
being filmed on tues afternoon, hence being unprepared!
First we started in a real kitchen, with me taking a very burnt
chicken out the oven for a fake advert, then we all (the film crew)
headed over to Ccad to the special studio kitchen, kidnapping my
friend Megan on the way for make up help.
We quickly turned the actors into zombie nurses, and the quickly done
stitches looked terrible! I was meant to be decapitated in this scene,
but we ran out of time, so it spilled over to...

This was meant to be my sleeping and catching up day, having not
really slept since the beginning of last week, but instead I headed
back to Ccad to be killed by a hedge strimmer.
When it was time to die, I had made a couple bottles and a bowl of
blood which we smashed peaches into for bits of flesh, so I sat behind
the table ready to create the blood splatter. Stuart, the actor, said
he knew he was in trouble when the last thing he saw was me grinning
and ready to fling all the blood at him as he pretended to hack me to
pieces. The first blood splat hit him directly across the face, and in
his mouth, but being very professional he just carried on hacking
until I was all dead (and all out of blood to throw).
Next he got his revenge on me. I had to play my own severed head, for
which I'd built a false-neck piece, and once my head was through a
hole in the table, I was covered in blood and goo to look realistic.
My hair felt disgusting, and blood kept dripping down my top!

...Was then meant to be my rest day, and I felt horribly ill on the
morning, but I had to get up very bright and early to get back to
Newcastle and more Fracture filming. But this time I had a fun new
He was the most irritating actor/person I have ever met, and everyone
felt the same way. By the end of the day he had taken it upon himself
to stand behind the director and help frame shots, which didn't go
down well.
Clatters, as the crew called him, found fault in everything we did,
for example how I walk, apparently it isn't natural at all (so how
I've been getting everywhere for the last 19 years is a mystery!)
I was told that the night previously, he had kicked off in a
restaurant and screamed and insulted the staff because they had just
stopped serving food. There are too many stories about how much we
hated him, too many to blog, but we spent most of today (now he's gone
home), marvelling at how much we hated and were offended by him.

I was unfortunately back acting with "Clatters" in Newcastle, so I
tried to not let him get to me, mostly by ignoring, or contesting,
anything he said, which probably isn't the best route to take!
I managed to get away early, I think the director was just trying to
rescue me from him.
Apparently, that night once they all got home, Clatters went a bit
crazy again and demanded money, he ended up driving one of them to a
cash point. (Even though he continuously claimed to be a millionaire.)
I hope to never work with or see him again, and the crew feel

I had promised to find the zombie film a 60s/70s car, so I asked my
dad's friends who have a Triumph Herald convertible, which looked very
good for the part.
But unfortunately, when I got to their house in the morning, it
refused to start.
Major plan-altering was required as I was due to drive the car to Ccad
where it could be surrounded with green boards, to act as a green
Instead they eventually managed to get the crew and both actors over
to my house, where I had a couple meters of green fabric, and then a
minute down the road to the car. We would be filming in a drive way.
The day ended up being a success, and my dad's friends loved that
there was a film crew at the house. The even agreed to let their
children, and their children's friends, come and play zombies next
weekend for the film.
(And the car started in the end, but no-one cared because they got to
have a go on a zip wire.)

I got picked up at half six in the evening to go to Sedgefield for a
30 second horror film. Laura had been in touch earlier in the week
looking for actors for a small film project, and the film could be
chosen to be screened before a Cohen Brothers film at the Arc in
The basic idea was to have a couple on the sofa, when they hear an
emergency news broadcast on the tv saying there is a serial killer in
Sedgefield, and that everyone should lock the doors and windows. I get
up to do so, and when the camera pans round, you can see the
silhouette of someone with an axe hidden behind the curtain. I'm sure
it will look much better than me explaining it!
He showed us a few example films, one was the inspiration for
Quarantine, a very creepy spanish film that I can't remember the name

Back filming Fracture, it should be my last day, but you never know!
I was meant to leave at half two, but we didn't start filming until
then! All done now though.

The End. (of this week...)

Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Another mad weekend caused by Writers' Block!

Towards the end of the shoot, when most people had left.
I got a phone call last week from Laura Degnan asking if I would be interested in acting on Sunday, I said of course. She then went on to ask what kind of fancy dress costumes I had.
It turned out that Laura had been asked to write a script for a cinematographer called Si Bell from Newcastle, to shoot before he moved to London. Laura was only now writing the script with just four days before they would make it and enter it into a competition.
Once i told her i had an 80s Madonna costume, she was happy, telling me i might be playing a receptionist in an office (wearing a microphone headset), and it would keep flashing back to a party the night before, where i would be dressed as Madonna. The whole film would play out like that, drawing parallels between the office and the party.
I heard nothing else about this film until the Saturday night, (but i'd spent all Saturday making zombie props).
On Saturday night i began getting my costume together, but realised on Sunday morning that they were still playing around with who they would cast for different parts. For example, when i read the cast list i was playing a tart, but they realised i was too young to be flirting with the guy dressed as the vicar, so i went back to playing Madonna, thank god!

It was a long day, we filmed all the office scenes, then headed over to the Dickins Inn function room, and we were an odd bunch!
A sexy cat, a robot, a pirate, the Hulk, two raving hippies, a tart, a vicar, a giant baby, a moose, a boy scout, and Madonna (and annoyingly my hair had stopped being curly by the time i was Madonna.).
We spent hours jumping around and dancing to the same odd little tune playing out of a laptop, with bubbles and smoke everywhere, but when we watched it back on the monitor, it looked like an amazing party! I can't wait to see the video!