There Are Tissues If You Need Them …

We had a fantastic casting session yesterday. We need 4 or 5 actresses for our latest project,  to pour their hearts out about how bad it feels to break up with someone.  We had a steady flow of actresses come in – and boy, did they pour! I am so impressed with the level of talent we saw. Most of the actresses we saw were young, just starting out, but with solid resumes – community theatre, college drama courses, and lots of showcases and student films. They were real, honest and willing to take it to the edge. I felt honored to be watching them, and grateful that they want to work with us. Every one of them came in prepared, ready to lay it on the line. They inspire me to do my best, in putting this project together.

It’s wonderful when you feel that kind of creative energy happening in a project. I wish we could use each and every one who auditioned for us. We can’t. We are really lucky to have such wonderful choices. I’m very excited about this project, and can’t wait to shoot it!


Ready, Set … Produce!

Yay! We’re finally rolling with our newest video project. We’re doing a series of short videos to promote the book It’s a Breakup Not A Breakdown, by the wonderful Lisa Steadman. We’ve been in development with this for a while, but we’re finally in high gear and roaring along toward a shooting date. We’ve come up with a great concept we all love, we’ve got some wonderful actors in place, and we’ve got auditions scheduled to help us find a few more.

This is the part of production I enjoy. I am calm and in control. I spend quiet time fine tuning the script, and I can conduct all my correspondence regarding the project  by e-mail. Very soon that will all change.

Very soon things will get crazy and hectic and I’ll actually have to talk to real people and run around and do things. I will need comfortable shoes. I’m serving as director on this project as well, which is something I really enjoy. I started out, way back a million years ago, in the theatre, so I understand actors. I like working with them. I like telling them what to do. Um … I mean … I like helping them “discover” things for themselves.  As long as whatever they discover is exactly what I want them to discover. Oh, occasionally one might have an interesting idea of their own, but I’m sure it’s because of the wonderful atmosphere I create on set. Or maybe it’s because I cast really really talented people. Either way, I take credit. Unless the project turns out badly. Then it’s everyone else’s fault. “They should have listened to me!” But this project will not turn out badly. This project is going to be fabu! Fabu. That’s a Lisa word.

 We are working closely with Lisa on this project, and she’s wonderful. Committed, full of energy and ideas, and passionate about what she does. It’s a pleasure to help her bring her ideas into a different format. We’re all having a great time on this and we’re pumped and ready to go! (Check back with me next week after sitting through an entire afternoon of actresses emoting.)

Rick Speaks

Check out Rick’s latest blog post.

Leave Britney Alone!

Rick went out for lunch today and was mobbed by the paparazzi, all jostling and pushing each other, trying to get a picture.

 Okay, not of him. They were trying to photograph Lindsay Lohan, who for some reason was eating lunch at the little pizza place near Post Haste. Which is also down the street from the dance studio where Britney has been rehearsing for her next tour/personal meltdown. As a result, the neighborhood is lousy with photogs, making it difficult for a working Joe like Rick to run in and grab a slice. Which he shouldn’t be eating anyway, as we have decided to start “eating healthier.” Although LiLo looks to be in pretty good shape, and if SHE’S eating pizza for lunch, well, then why shouldn’t Rick? Although since I wasn’t there, I can’t say for certain that she was eating pizza and not a Caeser salad, very light on the dressing, no croutons.

I always miss the fun stuff. I also wasn’t around last week when Matthew McConaughey, bongos in hand, was actually in our very building,  at one of the other recording studios where he was putting the last touches on an album he has been making with some Reggae musicians. To my knowledge, Matt M does not eat pizza either, which is a good thing, because I can only imagine what would have happened if he had decided to run out for a slice of pepperoni, extra cheese, at the same time Brit decided to  take a break from thrashing around the dance floor and pop in for a slice while LiLo was innocently sitting and eating her Spinach salad with balsamic vinaigrette, hold the bacon bits. The paps might have gone into such a frenzy that they spontaneously combusted and an entire block of North Hollywood would have gone up in flames. Hollywood may be used to such a confluence of star power, but that’s generally not how we roll up here in NoHo.

If I HAD been there, I would have been very gracious and rolled my eyes at LiLo in a conspiratorial manner that suggested I felt her pain and shared her disgust at the paps. I know she would have “gotten” it and nodded back. Britney, on the other hand, probably would have ignored me, not because she’s an inherently crueler person, but because she would have been blinded by the camera flashes directed at her and simply would not have seen my gesture of sisterly support. So, that’s Britney’s loss, really, because I would be a great friend to go shopping with and I’d tell her the truth about the clothes she was trying on. It’s obvious Britney doesn’t have anyone around her these days telling her which pants make her look fat.

Hopefully these luminaries will all soon return to Malibu or Beverly Hills or wherever they emanate from, and leave us working folk in peace. It’s hard enough to decide what to eat for lunch without the added pressure of having to worry about spilling your food down the front of your shirt with LiLo at the next table daintily consuming her chopped salad, no cheese, dressing on the side.

It’s Not The Heat, It’s The Humidity

We’ve just returned from New York and the 123rd Audio Engineering Society Convention. Big fun.

Being a native New Yorker who moved away some years ago, I’m always surprised but not really when I go back. New York is filled with people racing down the street to get somewhere. Except for the other people ambling along taking in the sights, annoying the ones who are racing to get somewhere. The subway is loud and fast, except when you’re in a hurry, and then it never comes. The city is very much the same as it has always been, and totally different.

Rick and I were very excited to leave Los Angeles where it was technically fall but the temperature was in the 80’s and people were walking around in shorts and flipflops. We arrived in New York to find that … it was fall and 83 degrees and people were walking around in shorts and flipflops. The only difference was the addition of that famous New York humidity, which does interesting things to my hair.

The AES Convention runs for four days, and takes place at the Javits Center, located on 34th Street, way over on the west side. Conventions are a great opportunity to learn about advances in your particular field. Rick ran into quite a few old friends, and spent a lot of time talking about the latest equipment, the newest techniques, and current trends in the recording industry. He got a fabulous deal on a really great microphone, and talked to a lot of really interesting people.

All in all, it was a very successful trip to New York, marred only by the 14 hours we spent at JFK when our flight home was canceled. After five days of blistering sun, the moment we stepped onto the plane to come home, the weather changed and it started to pour with rain. We sat on the tarmac for four hours until the airline decided to cancel the flight, whereupon we returned to the terminal at 11:00 p.m. to wait for the next flight out in the morning. For some reason I have always imagined that the airport was a magical place that came to life at 3:00 a.m., with the cleaning crew dancing around as they swept the floors, and excited travelers singing of their hopes and dreams as they waited for the flights that would take them to their new lives.

I can now report that the cleaning crew does not dance at 3:00 a.m., even a little bit, and no one sings. Which is a shame because we had a great microphone with us. We did manage to snag a few pillows and some blankets from the airline and tried to sleep on the airport chairs, but sadly, there was no magic to be found anywhere.

It was a great trip, but it’s good to be back in LA where it may be hot, but at least you don’t get that horrible humidity, and my hair is once again looking normal.

Thanks, AES, for another great convention!