Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Dear Kevin Spacey,

Dear Kev,
You used to be my most favorite actor.  Note the operative "used to be."  I'm upset and I think that I have a right to be so.  Most of it is your own fault.  I still love you, just not as much.  And my "love" will now always be tempered with a caveat. 
So "poag mahone"- and I know that you know what that means.  But I say it kindly.
I became inordinately fond of you when we first met- in the t.v. series, "The Wise Guy."  You were the PERFECT villain.  Really detestable!!!  But with excellent writing AND acting, you were sometimes human- in other words- not all bad with some redeeming qualities.  What fun that role must have been!
You were a not so nice guy to loveable actor Jack Lemmon in "Glengarry Glen Ross." BTW, Nice tribute to him on my all-time fav channel- Turner Classics.  And what a magnificent piece of work in "The Usual Suspects."  The last minute of that film is quite remarkable in a rather confusing plot, to say the least.  The only comparable I can come up with is some of those exquisite actors in the old silents.  Not a word & we "get it." Such a piece of acting!  You were once again truly EVIL.  
While it's true we've never had a face-to-face, we almost have & that works for me.  A few years ago when I was a Newporter (RI., of course), you were honored & rec'd an award there. My exercise pal, Mrs. Nuala Pell was presenting it (spouse of the famous R.I. Senator Claiborne Pell, father of Pell Grants). I could have gone to the reception & met you, but I demurred because of the $- son beginning college & all that.
But I digress- when they started advertising a need for extras for the Balto. based production of Netflix's "House of Cards," I pondered, then thought, why the heck not?  My uncle was an extra in "Mystic Pizza" filmed in New London and kept telling us the set talk was about this new young actress- Julia Roberts (He could have been in more films if he'd owned a tuxedo). So I applied- one more item off the bucket list.  He had said it was a lot of sitting around.  Hey, I could do that. After all- I have northern European white girl flat ass syndrome- perfect for lounging.  Hah!!!
So I excitedly said YES when the casting call came.  I was to play a military wife in a party scene.  Dress appropriately (booooring). Be there by 7 pm.
By 9:30 after being fed & watered and shuffled about, I had spent a lot of time sitting.  And that's where the good news ends.  About ?120 of were shuffled up to the set for the party scene- standing only, of course.  So there I was with Robin Wright (co-star from "The Princess Bride" & "Forrest Bump") & two ? other major actors not 12 feet from me.  Of course, it was mostly your back I saw, but it's a FINE back.
Take 1, take 1, take 3, take 500.  I lost count.  A few lousy lines. We ALL had them memorized.  Maybe 60 sec. of usable film.  We were there until 6 a.m.  SIX AM!!!!  Hello!!!!  On our feet!  We had no stand-in's- unlike yourself.  I'm 60 (well, that's what I told casting & I'm sticking with it).  My body is not made for this!!
With a bunch of young kids (assistants, aides, interns, who knows?) hollering at us- look lively!  Stop talking!  Mime!  Don't drink what's in your glasses!  Freeze!  Places!  Blah, blah, blah, yacketty, smacketty.  I could easily have taken any one of them on.  Quiet!  Then there was the ass't who spent a lot of his time scratching his balls (really, why do guys do that?  Checking to see if they're still there? jock itch? twisted underwear?).
We women were in heels and sitting whenever, wherever we could.  We learned not to believe anyone when they said they were filming immediately if your stand-in was there.  Duh.  Why so many takes?  Only a few involved camera/lighting changes.  Are we not human?  Do we not bleed?  Yeah, our pay is lousy, but...
I finally figured out who the main director was- older dude (like unlike many of the PAID others- an ADULT).  I could have slapped him silly. Kill the director!  I did see you having a few words with him.  I know what I would have told him- what the fuck?  how many times do you have to film the SAME thing?  are you an idiot?  We're TIRED!  You were likely more... diplomatic.  After that talk the end was near. 
And where is my pay?  I still haven't gotten it.  Evidently there were a few Union members there, but not we lowly extras.  Your union wants no more members.  Mine- NEA is a LOT friendlier.  No special meals, seats, etc. for us.  And btw, I THINK  the pay for an extra and a substitue teacher in this state is about the same- LOUSY. You'd think they'd pay subs a tad more, but...No-o-o-o-.
Then a half hour waiting to fill out my pay voucher (Union first) which I still have NOT yet rec'd (did I mention that?).
Another hour to get home- rush hour & all- lucky me going the opposite way most of the time.  I dragged myself to bed leaving a trail behind me- a shoe, another shoe, watch, etc.- still wearing my dress & with hair & make-up done (that was fun- I looked extremely elegant, if I do say so myself- and I do!)  My curly hair was pulled back so tightly in a French twist that it was instant face lift (this is NOT a complaint). 
Then- three days- Advil and PAIN.  Chiropractor.
When the casting company called later to hire me to continue the scene- NO!!! I'm now a SIT DOWN extra only!!! Thank you for calling.
So, Kevin, baby.  Get me on that other list.  Better yet, I'll be your stand-in.  Or your go-fer.  Yes, you & Robin had one.  Sigh.  
You owe me big time!  I'm waitin'.  Call me, hon.
I'll still strongly dislike you, but I'll take out some of the stuff I said.  Like the part that I think you were wearing a rug.  Maybe.  I don't know.  It depends on my mood.  If you ever think of killing the director, though, I'll testify as to justifiable homicide. 
BTW, did I mention I have NOT yet been paid for work 3-4 weeks ago.  So, dahhh-ling, you know where to find me.  The phone book for Cecil County will do it.  Under pissed off, where's my beef, or cross that one off the bucket list.  Too bad you are no longer a shoe salesman- revenge could be very sweet.  
Good actor, though.  Heck, I don't even have Netflix.

Hugs & kisses,
Eileen
YES, I meant to close my eyes.  
PS. Just rec'd my huge salary of $85.  Whooppee! Substitute teaching pays slightly less for a day. Still waiting to hear from Kevin

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