I arrived on set today to find that we were shooting a breakfast scene - on the verdant back patio - with my mom and step-dad. This included pancakes - fresh from the griddle pancakes, in fact. I'm told - by the cook, no less - that she used Bisquick, yogurt, and cinnamon in the recipe. The pancakes, it will not surprise you, I'm sure, were delicious. It all sounds quite picturesque, and I assure you it was. :)
3 important lessons learned from today's shoot:
1 - Be on time. We waited for almost an hour for one of the actors to arrive. That's just inconsiderate. All of our time is valuable, and for one person to be that late is inexcusable. "Traffic" is not an excuse. You live in LA. Plan for it.
2 - Be prepared. Mom and Dad were both actors in their late 50's, early 60's and had a bit of trouble with the dialogue. They've had the script for days, possibly weeks. If you know (and I have no doubt they do) that you have more trouble remembering lines than you used to, then you need to take it upon yourself to put in a little extra time so you don't hold everyone up.
3 - Listen. I was quite surprised by how many times Ed would give an adjustment, the actor would say, "Okay" and then fail to do what Ed had asked. Ed would re-word it, or find another way to clarify what he wanted, and the actor still wouldn't change anything. Listen people. If you don't understand, then ask for clarification. In the end Ed, in all his patience, just found a different way to get what he wanted with some creative filming.
These three lessons are things I hear over and over again in this industry. They may be the only three things you'll consistently hear from professionals. The other being, "Be nice," but I didn't include that here because everyone so far pretty much has that one down.
This was actually kind of a bizarre day for me because the scenes we shot were some pretty intense, emotional scenes. Following the shoot I had an audition, then a rehearsal, then a show, so I was in 4 completely different places emotionally today and that can kind of mess with you.
Lunch: Fried chicken and potato salad from Ralph's (the California version of Smith's or Kroger's). This was after having eaten probably 6 pancakes.
Wrap Time: 3:30ish