Roll em – Day 2

Me as a prima-Donna
Antonio coming to a stop as Floyd does a wheelie. Antonio is later filmed with an expression of “What the heck is that?”
Day 2 of the TV commercial shoot. Alarm at 5:15, out at the truck at 5:30 and off to the base camp by 6:00 am. The 1st assistant director and I have issues. Friday he a few of the film staff and I see a few “Sets” and look at two of the tricks/stunts to be done. After the recon we return to the hotel to talk a bit more and get my call sheet (list of EVERYONE’S phone number — along with the daily pick up time in the morning). He asks me if I am going to bring the truck to each base camp/set. It really was not a Q. But, I said no. He asked if I could get all my stuff in the van to the set, I said yes.
Saturday morning’s set he asked for water bottles. I had none and had not planed on bringing them. He asked to send someone to get them out of the truck. If any of you know me, that was NOT going to happen. No one goes into my truck unsupervised much less some unknown production assistant I’ve never met till now. So he/we went without bottles.
So all day Saturday he and I went back and forth on the issue of bringing the truck to the set. I did not want to “Close up shop” and drive there as that takes a solid hour to an hour and a half to put it all away and drive and set it all up again. I wanted my personal base camp at my hotel and bring the necessities.
Saturday evening he called me to confirm the trucks arrival at base camp on Sunday, AM. I asked once more and his answer annoyed me further. His response was “I’ll ask the director who makes final decisions.” I took that as, he did not want to tell me what to do and would ask the director to hand down the decision. If he would have said something like “I’ll try to convince him we don’t need the truck there” I probably would have been happy with the decision. Nope. Bring it the main director said.
So, I was not too happy. Sunday AM I show up at the set. I’m greeted by the 2nd assistant (number three on the totem pole) and immediately go into prima-Dona mode. In about 20 seconds in rapid succession, I gave him a list of 10 or so demands. Make me bring the truck and I’m gonna make you do a bit more too. I want a water hose with water to wash. I want a power cord plugged into this outlet (in my truck) I said to him. I did not even want to lift a finger bringing either of those two things I already have out. I was not going to unroll my hose and power cord. I was gonna make them get those things and physically hook it up. I could see him boil a bit but he couldn’t. It was his job to get things done for who ever to get the shoot complete.
It was raining and cold as hell but the show had to go on. I felt something for the riders who had to wear short sleeve jersey and shorts for the shoot and only those things. No leg warmers and no arm warmers, and no jackets. Continuity and a look of natural anytime average weather needed a look of normal jersey and shorts only. Damm they were cold. Today was two tricks/stunts. First was Antonio coming to a stop at an intersection as Floyd rode by doing a wheelie. Antonio’s expression was one of “What was that?”. Add to that was the rain and a bit of wind and it made for a hard trick/stunt.
Here I am in Criterium mode. Holding Robbie because he has to ride a very short distance to the receptionist desk and give her mail without stopping, then continuing riding away down the hallway.
The second trick/stunt was Robbie and Kenny racing down an alley way, hitting a ramp as cars and pedestrians zoomed by. Sort of like a game of Frogger but at really high speed and cars and pedestrians instead of logs etc. But with the smoke and magic of film they had no danger at all. They filmed the two jumping the ramp, later they filmed the cars zooming by and then finally the pedestrians. In post production they will add all three to come up with a scene of total danger as they exit the alley into the street. Interesting to see how it is all done.
The afternoon session was relatively uneventful as they shot scenes of them riding in groups over head and from behind. At the start of the day, I was unsure if I could do this for 3 days straight. The film industry can go on all day until they get what they want on film. Unless daylight prohibits the shot. Tired but hungry we do a team dinner at a great Mexican restaurant. Big ass plates of food as my choice was the Elvis Combo. No fried bananas and PB but a big ass plate of grub. A little foggy on the details but supposedly this was the place where the Bush daughters were caught drinking if I believe correctly. Good margaritas so who would blame them. 😉


Owner of and long time professional race mechanic.