Sunday, 16 August 2009

My handmodelling career will just have to wait

I've been doing more filming. Or I have been filming. I'm being a verb construction pedant - sorry about that. It comes with having to type more slowly - it's giving me too much time to think about what I'm writing.

And that's not necessarily a good thing.

Anyway. We were aiming to finish off the filming that had started back in June. You may recall I wrote about this, and the injuries that arose, at the time.

Today we were at an abandoned industrial estate somewhere in the Worcestershire countryside. The perfect place for a gritty crime drama, if not quite right for an Edwardian romantic comedy. Luckily we were doing the former rather than the letter.

Today it was planned to film one of the big set-piece fight scenes. Lots of extras, heavy duty weaponry and fruity language. They're clearly not going for a 15 certificate, put it that way. In fact, looking back at some of the ad-libs, I think 18 might be pushing it a bit.

There was a great shot of three of us, me and two fully tooled-up lackeys, walking towards camera on our way to the shoot-out. If Chris, the director, doesn't put it in slo-mo for the final cut I'll be very distressed. I can't do 'macho' in real-time, it always looks a little more 'churlish/dyspeptic'.

The plot called for me to receive a knee to the groin from the heroine. She was very good, and treated me gently, so I acted-up being the recipient of her tender mercies. Basically, rolling around on the floor and grimacing always works, I find.

What was supposed to happen next was that I'd get up and run for the van, the heroine being distracted by the desire to shoot the living bejesus out of a dozen or so extras.

The getting up bit worked well. No problems with getting up. I can get up with the best of them.

The 'stumbling over' bit definitely wasn't in the script. Neither was 'falling head-first into a muddy puddle in your best suit' part of the deal. Especially the 'breaking your fall with your forehead' aspect.

There was a silence. Chris was heard to mutter: "Bugger. I have no insurance."

Assorted cast members gathered around to lift my prone form to a standing position. First aid kits were offered. Mud-caked and bloody, I was. Which is not the ideal way to spend a Sunday afternoon, I'm here to tell you.

Then a thought occurred, and I went over to the cameraman. "Did you get that?" I asked. He ran the footage through. "Yes, here it is."

"Ooh. That looks good. And look, I'm all bloody and mud-caked. You'd spend a fortune on make-up to get this look. Let's go with it."

So Chris did a little re-writing to suggest I'd taken a non-lethal shot to the back. This allowed me to look suitably windswept when I faced the heroine a little later. Everyone was happy. Well, at least, we were until we realised we needed to shoot a whole batch of dialogue from earlier in the scene. Some careful editing might be required, I feel.

Sitting here, it turns out that the part of me that didn't use my noggin for deceleration instead used my right hand. Eighteen stones of morbid obesity and cynicism landing on one small part of me. I can't actually grip right now. And typing is a bit hit-and-miss, too. Which is, I think, where we came in.

I've said it before, I'll say it again. Steven Segal just does not have these problems.

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