Episode 02 In The Can

My lines are done for “The Lab” Episode 02. It wasn’t as ‘bad’ as doing the lines for Episode 01, but now I know why actors take so many drugs. There’s a positive high that comes with ‘wrapping’. There’s also a negative drain on your system as you release the character you were portraying for the last however-long. In my case, it was ‘only’ an hour. It was an hour for Episode 01 also, but for different reasons.

Last time, I had no idea about the process I was getting involved in and just jumped in, resulting in the max-headroom-esque video style that I used to edit sentences out of various takes that I did over the course of the hour. This time, I knew what I was out to do, so I had notes ready and I had spent the better part of the day before writing, practicing and revising my lines to match what I already had from Brainy and selecting more clips to bridge from my comments to hers.

Anyway… When I was done with my lines, I was simultaneously elated and depressed. That was after only one hour of being in character. From what I hear, some people do 16-hour days as actors. I can’t yet imagine what it feels like to come back to reality after ‘being under’ for that long. I’ve edited for 16 hours straight… more than that, even… but I don’t have to “be somebody” while I’m editing. Actually, the thing about editing is that you have to “be NOBODY” and devote yourself to the process. After a full day (or double) of editing, I feel like I haven’t been myself in HOURS. I recognize now that that’s a different feeling from “being someone else” for hours.

The reason I call it “being someone else” is that you’re not talking to ANYBODY AT ALL! NOBODY! You’re looking into a lens and remembering to deliver lines AS IF you’re talking to someone, perhaps someone in particular. You’re delivering lines AS IF you think this clip is amusing that you already saw 85 times when you were deciding whether it goes in the piece or not. You’re delivering lines AS IF you just watched the clip, so you’re basically working off of memory and emulation of having seen the clip. I’m reminded of “300”, which I saw @ the IMAX and was really good, if you’re into warrior-type stuff. All of those backdrops were bluescreened in. The actors had to PRETEND that there were ships being destroyed in the water and that there were thousands of guys rushing them with swords and axes. All they were looking at was a blue screen, and MAYBE some actual terrain under their feet.

Anyway, I’m glad that’s over. Now I get to try to load my scenes and finish the piece in the next five hours so I can meet up with Masako and head over to Bre’s party.

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  1. You’re welcome, Jonny. I think it’s important. I figured the tough part was going to be setting things up. I hadn’t considered what it would take to actually shoot it… to actually start saying my lines… to actually get into character and stay there and be somewhat believable.

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