Monday, April 23, 2018

Blind Item #12 - Stranger Things Have Happened - A Himmmm Blind Item - Part 5

Buddy was about to come unglued.  Many in crew and cast were in disarray.  I got with the Director and the Unit Production Manager and heard them vent, rail, explode, and rage.  Even the craft services and boom operator were about to walk out.  They all vented spleens at me.  The two Producers on a conference call with us went apeshit.  They said if I wanted to open some checkbooks, (call in my "Step-Daddy" they mockingly said) – or do a negative pickup outright? They'd be happy to.  But they then revealed a secret which changed everything – and would have unforeseen consequences for us all.  The producers said that the film was already behind schedule, and they'd leveraged it to the max.  They had already signed contracts with distributors; and like a shell game they were bluffing to buy more time. They could only afford to shoot one more week – but had TWO more weeks worth of shots to get!  HOLY HELL. 

The only hope they had was selling it to a single big distributor – like Paramount, and blow out these multiple smaller contracts.  These were veterans who were scared, and would be ruined if distributors backed out or we missed the film market deadline.  The older producer said I'd earned a rep as a whiz kid who could "out-think" problems and make things happen.  I took the challenge; bearing in mind that sink or swim I'd still not benefit from the movie.  But my buddy and our plans were on the line – and I'd NEVER let him down.

That night, Buddy and I did what any professional would do in a crisis.  We got very drunk.  We grabbed some rum and went out to Wrightsville Beach, NC.  We sat there at 3am drinking, smoking, and talking as we dared the sun to come up.  Trying to brainstorm our way out of this problem others had put us in.  A little over a week left to shoot with two weeks worth of shots to do.  Our dreams were about to tank.  So we drank.  We staggered to a darkened, small pier; and made our way down the beach near a motel called Breakers (or Sands or something beachy).  We sat in the sand, talking about tasting success so close while so young.  He broke his allegedly monk-like diet and we indulged in cheeseburgers and Marlboro Lights.  We talked about his wedding plans…and possibly my own.

He said he knew I'd been with Nin.  Their Mom ratted us out.  Buddy said I should help Nin with her blossoming acting career, and protect her since he was too busy.  He said he trusted me but told me (with a laugh) that I'd have to marry her – make an honest woman of her.  I told him: "Stranger things have happened". He slapped me. What neither of us knew at that time – was that his kid sister, my secret girlfriend whom I dearly loved – had our love growing inside of her at that exact moment.  She'd not told me yet, wanting to wait until the upcoming wedding/birthday trip we had in a couple of weeks.  Buddy and I sat on the dark beach and laughed, cursed, cried, yelled at the moon, and even nearly drowned in the waves.  We both felt better, and got a ride back to his place.  Just in time to shower, clean up, and make it to the big production meeting that morning.  I think I had an idea how to save this movie the same way he and I always lived life: to "turn it up to 11".


Unknown said...
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Sal Salington said...

This is how every low-budget film ever feels during production.

Still, this is going somewhere much worse than usual. :-/

Velora said...

Agreed, Sal. A shiver just went through my entire body.

SkittleKitty said...

Probably the Blockade Runner (hotel).

lucy said...

it is so refreshing to read a good story. truly riveting and has my complete attention. so sorry for all at the inevitable ending :(

it really is , if any consolation, to bring to life and otherwise humanize a character only known to me from a TV screen to such a warm and intriguing fruition. so sad

Dusty Fairy said...


More Cowbell said...

This is so well written! But I can't get over the Marlboro lights. Camel Lights were the only way to go then! :)

Frankie goes said...

I remember everyone smoking Marlboro Lights! But Camel Lights were always on sale! I smoked them ;)


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