Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Two short films in post production. Shot the last scenes for one on Saturday - in a cemetery no less - and drove home thinking, what now? I haven't managed to line up anything as a follow on. Got home and checked my email and learned I had landed a role in Orange Juice in Bishop's Garden, Otessa Ghadar's web series about growing up in DC in the 1990s. It begins shooting Season 3 in June. Absolutely thrilled! I will play Jill Davis, the mother of Remi. Scripts to follow.

Season 2, which added parents and teachers to the cast, will be posted next week so I will have a chance to see more of the adult characters. Not to discount the younger ones. Many of the teenaged actors are from the Duke Ellington School for the Arts and very comfortable in front of the camera. Extremely talented. More on the series when I hear more.

I learned a few things this week, which made it a good week. One was the effect of costuming on movement. One of the films had me playing a detective, making my way down a dark DC alley with a prop gun and holster on my hip. The director remarked that I walked just like Mariska Hargitay of Law & Order SVU, and it was true. The weight of the gun changed my center of gravity and my walk became totally different. Drama instructors say you need to rehearse in costume; now I can see why.

I'm also learning not to try so hard to "act," which is probably part way to becoming more comfortable and natural in front of the camera. I really think that much of what I learned for acting on the stage is proving to be a stumbling block for acting in film. I need to unlearn it to connect with my character and achieve the kind of authenticity I want. When I start thinking too much about gestures and expressions I start thinking about me and stop reacting to my scene partner.

You'd think I would have learned some of this in four years as a television producer, but political talk shows are a different game altogether and I wasn't consciously analyzing what was going on as a performance, although certainly it was.

Anyway, happy, happy. To bed.