What’s Going On in the Background?

So what’s going on in the background?  Well, it hasn’t been the most exciting lately to be honest.  You already know about me not being used when I last worked on Chicago Med.  That was the first time I have ever worked and not been used at all in a scene.  Guess what? It happened again!  Yep, I was so excited to work on Empire because that was a new show for me and I sat there the whole day and was not used at all.

So after never happening, now it was twice.  I can’t really complain though.  Who wouldn’t want to be paid while sitting on the side of a television set with an abundant amount of really delicious snacks?  I had been told that Empire was one of the worst for how well they feed us.  I have to say that I did not find that to be true.  I began early with a great breakfast in holding.  On the set, there was a huge table with all sorts of stuff; donuts, croissant sandwiches, candy, chips, just about any snack item you can think of, it was there.  Then around lunch, they wheeled in fried fish, onion rings, and fries.  This is not so great when you’re trying to lose weight and you’re bored.

What's Going On in the Background Henri
La belle Ahnree

With all that food around and not having a lot to do, you can bet I cheated a bit (well, maybe a lot).  Then it was time to check out around 2:45.  We headed back to holding and I was told I needed to eat again as I had arrived at 6am!  I explained that I did not want to eat as that was all I had been doing all day but they wouldn’t check me out until lunch was over.  It did look good; spaghetti, meat balls, garlic bread, salad.  But I couldn’t even possibly eat one more bite.

I was able to see a lady I had worked with back in September on Redline, Ahnree, and it was great to see her again.  Click here to read more about this upcoming show starring Noah Wylie. We worked a great scene together in which they were only filming us and 3 other extras.  We are hoping that the scene will make it into the show.  Stay tuned!  If you are watching Red Line when it opens in April and you see some ladies dancing at the end of a fancy gala scene, that will be us.

Brief Glimpses

What's Going On in the Background Proven Innocent Glimpse
Here I am on the set of Proven Innocent!

I spotted myself, briefly, on episode 5 of Proven Innocent.  You can see my face in the scene on the court house steps.  Well, it was supposed to be the court house but it was actually filmed at the Field Museum on the back steps.  I was hoping for a better view in the debate scene when Bellows, played by Kelsey Grammer, is debating his opponent for Attorney General.  But they didn’t show much of the audience at all and all I could find was the back of my head.  Oh well, that’s how it goes in the background!

What's Going On in the Background Proven Innocent Glimpse 2
And here too.
What's Going On in the Background Proven Innocent debate scene
Proven Innocent debate scene

Mixtape Marathon

I also worked last week on Mixtape, a new show for Netflix.  Click here if you’d like to read more about this upcoming musical drama.  It’s set in Los Angeles but filmed in Chicago.  So how did it go?  Hmmmm, it was a very, very long and boring day.  My call time was 4:48 am.  Yes, in the morning!  I hate that but if that’s what it takes, I’ll do it.  They did not use me, or any extras for that matter, until about 5 pm.  So they were paying for a room full of about 40 to 50 extras to sit there all day long.  I was finally used in one angle of one scene.

This show stars Madeline Stowe and I have to say, at age 61, she is one of the most classically beautiful ladies in film and television.   I was impressed.  After this scene, we were all wrapped (that means finished) and some hadn’t even been used at all.  I clocked out at 6:48 pm so it ended up being a 14 hour day with very little to show for it.  But that’s why everybody can’t work in the background.  You have to be prepared for days like this and approach it with humor and patience.  If not, you’d go nuts!  So sit there, read, play games on your phone, talk to the others, and eat or whatever can keep you occupied because the days in the background can be long, long, long.

I’m booked for this Friday again on Mixtape and I’ll let you know if the day goes any better.  We’re supposed to be filming a fancy Hollywood party scene and we’re heading to an upscale suburb to do so.  I won’t reveal which suburb because locations are supposed to be kept under wraps and I don’t know the exact location either.  Not that I would tell!  But it has me wondering exactly where we’ll be filming, maybe one of those fancy mansions?  Perhaps this is why I like working as a background actor.  It’s always something different and you never know what to expect.

That’s all for today.  Thanks for reading about what’s going on in the background.

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