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August 5, 2000 - Tammy Twotone & Deirdre the money woman

Indie film actorI had a weird experience when I was dating back in my early 30's. I had placed an ad in the Boston Phoenix that was almost exactly like the personal ad John places in this movie. ("I'll take anyone from a transvestite nympho to a lesbian biker chick.") I thought I was being clever by indirectly stating how open-minded I THOUGHT I was. I had met a woman through the ad who I wasn't too sure if she WAS a woman, or recently BECAME a woman. Obviously it wasn't going to work out, I wasn't attracted to this person, but I would've loved to ask her if she ever WAS a guy. If I was right, it would've made for interesting conversation, if I was wrong, I'd probably get punched in the face. (So much for being a nice guy.) :-P

I've always wondered about this..even years later. So I wrote this part of my life right into the movie. Originally the scene plays out with a "is she or isn't she" attitude. I was hoping to find a real life transexual or transvestite who was very androgynous. I wasn't expecting that they would be able to act, but I'd work around that by having a dialoge with the other characters talking about this person. Lauren Verge knew of a transgender comic called Tammy Twotone, a transvestite who worked her lifestyle into her act. Tammy passes very well from a distance. (A few of the woman on the set thought that she had better legs than themselves!) But upclose, it's apparent she has masculine features. Tammy was very comfortable in her chosen "skin", and wasn't at all shy about how she is perceived by others. In fact, she had no problems cracking jokes about her lifestyle.

Instead of having the transgender person be a very passive individual, I figured we could get more laughs out of having JOHN the one who is uncomfortable with the situation. By the end of the scene, Tammy wants to tear John a new asshole for "deceiving" her character into having this meeting. I kinda like the idea of a man dressed as a woman who is ready to beat the crap out of someone who doesn't approve of their lifestyle. Tammy has pointed out that she was a Marine at one point, so I wouldn't doubt if she could. :-) Side note for those of you who are wondering: Tammy is heterosexual and has a wife and kids. So much for preconceived notions.

Indie film actorNext came Deridre Williams, the expensive computer date John pays $900 for. I had explored a dating service a while back and thought the concept was great. (Sort've like Geoffs ultimate computer dating list.) I would've joined if it weren't for the ridiculous amount they wanted to for services. It came out to be something like $100 a date. At that price, I would not have been able to relax during the in it went into this indie film.

I initially was going to cut this sequence because (I think) it borders on a filmatic clique. (The ol' "we see a characters imagination through their eyes" bit.) Others who read the script liked the sequence, so I left it in. Someone mention that the TV show "Ally McBeal" does this type of thing a lot. I've never seen Ally McBeal ever, nor do I intent to. :-P

Indie film actorWhen I wrote the sequence, I wasn't thinking about how much of a pain in the ass it would be to MAKE a money dress. (Or even a money wig.) Therse Chase and I basically slammed it together earlier in the week. We weren't too keen on copying a whole bunch of Federal Reserve notes as is, so we changed the picture and some text on the twenty dollar bill we scanned. We only printed stuff on one side of the paper, just to make sure we weren't entering the realm of counterfeiting. We had the money dress sitting on a chair near the front window of the Wonderbar. You could see the homeless people walking by and staring at it...while salivating.


Bond boys

Cara at table

Cara vogues

Deirdre money wig

Gabriel looking

Johnny Shitsabush

Outside Sports Depot

Deirdre & John



August 6, 2000 - The big ending with Cara

Indie film actorWell, another late start today. I'm fantasizing about the day when a P.A. drives me to the location, I can cut in line at he craft services table (I'm the director of course) and load-up on croissants, then quitely sit in my directors chair. Instead I settled for a cold Egg McMuffin and a small coke while I paced outside for an hour and 20 minutes, waiting for the dude to let us in.

First thing we did was a short scene where Johnny aproaches the Mystery Girl (Cara O'Shea) after being goaded by the guys at his table. We then proceed to witness the worst pick-up job ever, then watch Johnny slink back into his seat.

We then shot the entire final sequence starting with Geoff Briggs, Lara, Sparky and Cara O'Shea. I'm kind of pleased the way the concept of the final sequence happened. (Haven't seen the rushes, but I couldn't think of a better ending.) When Geoff leaves, we see him pass Lara, who John thinks is his final personals date. I initially wanted to screw play with the audiences expectations here. Since everything has been going wrong for John all through out this movie, we would expect this final date to blow up in his face.

I initially wanted a fat woman to come into the coffee shop and head straight for John, but I had a personal problem using a fat woman as a butt of a joke. I kind of thought this woman would walk past John and just start talking with somebody. My friend David Schendell in San Francisco suggested that SHE ends up kissing another fat guy, thus, there's somebody for everyone. The only fat guy I knew was Sparky Schneider. Bingo! Sparky has a large girlfriend...they would be perfect! Thus, Sparky and Lara have the only legitamite on-screen kiss in a movie with the word SEX in it's title.

Right at the end of the day we grabbed Johnnys close up reactions to Deirdre's talkitive sequence. By then the entire kitchen staff wanted to turn on everything which made noise in a four block radius. They literally yanked a couple of plugs out of the wall as I was trying to grab a last digital photo of Cara in her fishnets and party dress. ("Yea yea, yer makin' a movie...well I'm makin' get the frig out!")

Nothing like a trying to shoot a movie in a 5 hour block of time. I think we did 10 set-ups total (we moved the camera 10 times and re-lit), and this includes the time it took John and Cara to learn their lines while on the set. (We didn't have a chance to do a rehearsal.) Well, at least the endings done. I haven't been moving this fast and hard since I played offense AND defense on my football team back in highschool. Do directors even SIT in their directors chairs?

Cara & John

Cara CU

Cara MED

Sparky & Dan

Wonderbar LS


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