Thursday, May 29, 2008

Why ask for advice?

I ranted and raved about this subject already, so I decided to delete what I wrote. LOL

Sorry guys.

Monday, May 26, 2008

When pirates ruled the world!

Last summer, everyone where I work was invited to go on a pirate cruise. It was a 3 hour cruise around Lake Pewaukee, about 10 minutes from my house. Of course I said yes! A friend and I spent about 2 weeks working on the best costumes we could come up with for cheap, instead of buying one from a costume store. We searched through goodwill, vintage shops, and our own closets. We bought materials to sew onto vests, and belts....hats, and boots. We changed our minds so often that I didn't think we'd get it done on time. My friend Sylvia came through in a flash, and spent a lot of time on our costumes for the cruise. She did a great job. There was to be a contest for best costume, and I thought we would win hands down!

(This is me...trying not to laugh, the next one is Sylvia)

We arrived on a Sunday afternoon to the local bowling alley, which was the "pick up point" for the cruise. Everyone was wearing a costume, but we still looked the best. Everyone was awing over us as we walked up to them. It was quite funny at the time. A shuttle bus picked us up, and we headed down to the marina. We found quite the pirate crew waiting for us, including a Jack Sparrow look a like....down to the "black spot" on his palm. We were instructed to speak like a pirate would speak, act like a pirate would act, and to search the ship for "buried treasure". Everyone immidiatley took off in search for hidden bottles around the boat. I found 5 of them, and was very chuffed with myself. Inside each bottle was a quote from the Pirates of the Caribbean movies, and if we could tell them (in a pirate voice) who said it we got gold coins. I was helping everyone out with their quotes, since for some reason I was looked at as the "expert"! (Again thought that was funny) There were other ways to get gold coins.....find them in your drink, sing a pirate song, have a sword fight, drink some rum, etc...... and whoever had the most gold coins would win a prize at the end of the cruise.

Every time another boat would go by, everyone drew their swords and shouted "ARRRRGGGG", which made the passing boat either speed up to get away from us, or laugh hysterically. Sad to say, I didn't win the best costume prize, and neither did my friend. This led us to start saying "we was robbed!" The prize went to a girl who had a black blazer on with a sword....and her hubbie dressed up a slave.....said she was a slave trader. Oh well......can't win them all. (but we should have)

We had a great sunset at the end of the cruise, so that made it all worth while. It was fun to dress up like a pirate for the day.....would do it again in a heartbeat!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Thanks to Columbus, WI

Sorry guys ..... long blog with pics!

There are very few times in life when you can say " Oh my ...... I can't believe I just did that! This was the best time of my life!" I had the oppurtunity to say that several times over the past few weeks.
I have gotten a few emails asking me to post some pictures, and my account of what happened to me in Columbus this past week. So here it is:

Public Enemies was set to film in Columbus a few weeks ago. It was to happen on a Tuesday, and that day just happened to be my husbands birthday. I got the day off from work to spend with my hubbie is Columbus, but to my dissapointment the shoot was cancelled. We decided to go up anyway, and get a tattoo at the local shop, and take a look around. I was immidiatley in love with the town. It has such a lot of history, and you just can't appreciate it until you've seen it. I snapped a couple photographs, and had some of the city hall framed for my house. Sadly we left Columbus and headed back home.

A few weeks later, I was told that the filming would be a "go" for this past week in Columbus. I couldn't make it up for the Monday shoot, but I did get up there for Tuesday. I left work at 6pm, and arrived in Columbus around 7:30pm. The streets were closed, the cobblestone was down, and there were lots of people walking around the movie set. My friends and I headed back to the tattoo shop where we looked at pictures of a meet and greet with Stephan Dorf the previous day. He had stopped in at the shop to look around, and sign some autographs. I went about the town taking some black and white photos, and then went down to base camp. All was quite there (except for all the onlookers) until about 10pm. The trucks started to arrive, people were asked to leave the set, and the security got tighter.
My camera wasn't working well in the dark, so I was getting frustrated at not being able to get good photos, but I soon got over it as I saw the famous SUV everyone had been talking about. I am not sure if Johnny Depp was inside at the time, but it pulled into base camp right behind a trailer, and someone got out. JD??? I don't know. I couldn't see. Another hour went by with golf carts driving in and out.....trucks coming and going...but no sign of Michael Mann or Johnny. I decided to head back up to the tattoo shop to rejoin my friends. As I arrived at the top of the hill, I noticed some extras pulling chairs out of the back of a truck, and having a seat not 5 feet from me. They were well inside the baracades, so I let it be for the moment.

An hour or so later, I was getting bored so I headed back down to base camp. I made it just in time to see Johnny Depp come out of his trailer, and get into the SUV and drive to the set. My camera and I missed the whole thing. Knowing that Johnny had already left for the set...up I went once more to tell my friends (who had been dying to see JD) that they had missed their chance for the time being. Boy were they mad! At 12:30am I was sitting on the side of the road at the top of the hill, and I heard "Quiet on the set....rolling......" and off they went. Scene after scene. I decided to get brave, and went past the baracade and up to the extras. (No one stopped me) We chatted for a little bit, and I took some photos. Turns out they had been asked to go to Chicago over the weekend for filming. The drivers of the cars were very nice, and posed for a photo. I was a little puzzeled at the time since they only seemed to be in costume from the waist up. But I quickly realized it was because they were in the cars, and no one needed to see what kind of pants they were wearing hee hee. I hung around the set near the top of the hill until my friends decided to go back to base camp. We were just about to leave when a girl came in with photographs and videos of JD. She was a friend of one of the girls I was with. She had taken a photograph/video of Johnny between scenes from somewhere (dont know where), and Jerry (JD's manager) had saw her.

Down at base camp, 2am, all was still quiet. They were just finishing the last scene, and people had started to regather in hopes of a meet and greet with Johnny. Johnny drove by in his SUV at 2:30am, and dissapeared into his trailer. Jerry came by and made sure that the railings were secure. Nancy, the major, and Julie from the local coffee house came by with hot chocolate and danish for everyone a few minutes later. We all really needed that was nice. Thank you! It started to rain as we all stood outside for the next 1 1/2 hours waiting for a sign that he would be coming out. Finally at 4am, he emerged from his trailer, and everyone started taking photographs. Johnny spent a little bit of time taking pictures with a few people in base camp before coming out to the crowd. He was not able to give any autographs though. I managed to get a few photos with my small camera before he got to me. He had a somewhat british accent, and I was not expecting that. He got to my friends, hugged them, and came over to me. All I could say was " Can I have a hug too?" He smiled, and said " Of course you can darling!", then leaned forward and gave me a big hug. Afterwards, he stepped back and waited for a moment before winking, and going on to the next person (which happened to be the friend that took the earlier photograph).

"I was the one you caught taking the picture" she fessed up. "Ohhh so that was you. Very sneaky! We had a good laugh!" Laughed Jerry. "Hey, I don't have a problem with it at all. But Jerry....hes' a stickler! Was all in good fun! " Laughed Johnny.

Then he moved on. I was kicking myself in the head about not posing for a photograph, or even saying thank you to the man. After all, it was incredibly nice of him to come out at 4am to say hello. Everything kinda happened so fast. I wasn't sure what I could do....and what I couldn't do. All I knew at that moment was I had finally met the man who I admire so much. I didn't get home until 6:30am, much the anger of my hubbie, but it was all worth it.

A BIG THANKS to Columbus for being such a great town full of wonderful and friendly people. Another big thanks for all the folks over at PECB for being so generous, and friendly. One day we will have to meet.


Sunday, May 18, 2008

Public Enemies Film

Public Enemies is a film about the bank robber John Dillinger, set in the 1930's. It stars Johnny Depp, and Christian Bale...amoung other outstanding actors. It is being filmed in Wisconsin, Illinois, and Indiana.

My experience started when I went to audition for and extra part back in early March. Auditions were to be held from 4-7pm on a Friday afternoon. The casting call stated that women should have their hair in curlers the night before, and come with the curls brushed out. Also all women should wear 1930's style skirts or dresses, and an overcoat. Since I have short hair, I knew that the curling idea would be hard to do, so I had a few practice runs before I finally twisted and rolled my hair into what I hoped would be a perfect fit. (Sadly it did not look that great when I unrolled them the next day.) I got the day off from work, had some pictures taken, and garbed up in my "make shift" 1930's clothes. I headed down to the Italian Community Center (ICC) in Milwaukee, but got stuck in a traffic jam along the interstate. I arrived at the ICC at 3:55pm, only 5 minutes prior to when the casting call started. The line was so long that it went out the door, and 6 blocks down the street. I thought to myself, oh well this line will get moving when they open the doors. HAH!

I dont' know why I thought we'd be waiting inside, and from the look on everyone elses faces, I could see I was not the only one with that same thought. It was only 15 degrees outside, and here we all were in dresses, stockings, med-high heel shoes, and tiny little coats on. What made it worse was that the sun was fading quickly, and the wind was bitterly cold. I stood in line with a group of girls that were just wonderful. I made some small talk with them, and found out that 2 of the girls had previous acting experience and they both had agents. One of them had modeled for playboy, and the other had been in a few commercials and tv shows. I thought that they were both shoe-ins for the movie. They just looked great!

The only problem with standing outside in near to freezing temperatures (with a dress and open toed shoes) is begin to get cold! And cold we got!! After about 2 hours of waiting outside, people started to leave. The line was not moving forward, and the sun had dissapeared from sight. I begged one of the girls to stay with me, but she could no longer feel her feet, and left. For that matter, I could not feel anything from my knees down. Every step I took was excruciating, but I plodded on. Three hours into it, I was about 10 feet from the front door. The line stopped again. I knew it was only a matter of time before they stopped letting anymore people inside. It was aready 7pm....the time that they had listed as the end of the auditions. A lady pulled up a van next to the people waiting in line, and said that we could get in to warm up if we wanted to, and she would hold our place! How nice was that! However....I couldn't get in there fast enough, and was bum rushed by a mob of freezing girls. So I waited outside....freezing.....picking up my feet to keep the circulation going. No more than a few minutes went by when an ambulance pulled up to take somebody to the hospital for hypothermia. IT WAS THAT COLD!! A seat finally opened up in the van, and I jumped in. Two seconds later, the line started moving again, and I got pushed out of the van. So much for that.

I got back into line next to this nice lady and her daughter. The line kept going and going...and I thought THIS IS IT! I am finally getting inside. stopped. Ugh....what now. I couldn't take the cold anymore, and I hobbled up to the front door, and the nice man from the casting agency let me in. I fell onto the floor, and someone came and covered my feet with a pair of snow pants. It was just at that minute they made an announcement:

"Sorry folks....Casting calls are over. We cannot let anymore people into the building. You can fill out a card and mail it in with your picture."

I could not believe it. I had just made it in. I got to my feet and followed the instructions to file into the hallway. I was surrounded by people dressed up in their 1930's outfits, and some that seemed like they just walked off the street. There was a very nice man that had come from Australia to audition. His wife lived in Wisconsin, so they were here for a few weeks, and they thought it would be fun. (I'm a sucker for a nice accent since I am from England) We waited another hour in the hallway before being shuffled into a large room where the casting company were set up. We all listened to a speech given by Joan Philo, and her assistant about what it was like to be an extra. Long....sometimes boring....sometimes fantasic.....learn to talk to the other extras.....don't ask to gome home or when you can eat....and then they apologized for how long it took to get us in the room.

I don't blame them at all. The casting company were incredibly nice, and each one of them greeted us as we split into 3 lines. We were put up against a white background, held a number in front of us, and asked not to smile. Then they took the picture.......and it was all over. I was happy about the whole experience....even though I thought at one point that I was getting frostbite. The entire time I was there I thought about how great it would be to be able to do this all the time. I don't mind waiting out in the cold....I don't mind line after line.....I don't mind making new friends, and have a blast. I just wish I would have brought myself a different pair of shoes to wear! hee hee!

Sadly I did not get called to be in the movie, although I do know quite a lot of people who did. So it makes me happy, and proud to wish them all good luck.


From Then to Now

What is a blog? Up until a few months ago I had no idea. My "blogging" experience was limited to fooling around with my friends on myspace, and facebook. Of course, it was mainly a way to make people laugh, or to vent my frustrations on the day to day comings and goings of my life. I rarely used it, and eventually lost all interest in it. Earlier this year, I was reading the paper, and saw that a movie called Public Enemies would be filming in Wisconsin. Not only would this movie be starring Johnny Depp, but it would be holding casting calls for extras in Milwaukee. I thought to myself....What a great oppurtunity for not only me, but for the people of Wisconsin. There hasn't been a blockbuster movie filmed in Wisconsin for quite sometime (with the exception of Mr. 3000). I planned on trying out for one of the extra parts, but I was nervous about what the audition would be like. The casting agency had already held auditions in other parts of the state. I decided to do some research online to see if anyone could tell me what it had been like for them. I came across a blog written by a nice man who explained, in depth, what he had been through in Madison for the casting call. It made me feel much better about going down to try out. (More about that in a later blog)

I have been back everyday to read his blog since March, and met a lot of wondeful people through the site. In fact, If it were not for that blog, I would never have been given the oppurtunity to watch the filming for public enemies, and to finally meet Johnny Depp. However, that is not the reason I decided to start my own blog. I believe that the purpose of this generous man's blog was to inform and entertain, and that is what I wish to do. I enjoyed reading his blog so much, that I wanted to write my own thoughts down to share with everyone.....regardless if anyone actually reads it. It is an outlet to vent, entertain, inform, peak interest, and to help others.

Thank you to Rod.....and everyone over at PECB!!!!

When I started reading blogs, I never had the intention of starting my own. I find myself now addicted, and wanting to write all the time. I love writing, and I have a new found respect for it.