Fausta's blog

Faustam fortuna adiuvat
The official blog of Fausta's Blog Talk Radio show.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Extra traffic

TCM was playing Captain Kidd and it's been a while since I did an old movie post so I thought I'd look the Captain on the Internet Movie Database and post on it.

I was reading the IMDB information when suddenly I read a sponsor link that filled me with dread: Wanted: Movie Extras in Princeton.

I've lived in Princeton since 1989 and during that time two movies have been filmed on location here in town: the dreadful IQ and the very good A Beautiful Mind. (No, House isn't.)

Both movies had open casting calls in town.

I didn't go to the IQ casting call since I'm not interested in becoming an extra, but it was held at the Westminster Conservatory. That was memeorable because the day of the casting call I didn't know that's what was happening and ended up spending a long time stuck in traffic gridlock less than a mile away from my own house.

After the movie started filming on locations all in or near Princeton traffic was backed up for days to no end. It didn't matter where I had to go, IQ was there to tie up traffic, or so it seemed.

Streets were blocked, traffic was detoured all over the place - sometimes without directing us which way to get back to where we wanted - and one time I ended up having to stop and change the baby on someone's lawn because traffic was stuck and the baby needed changing.

It was a disaster.

A friend insisted that I go with her to the casting call for A Beautiful Mind, which was on the Princeton University campus at McCosh Hall. We went on a very cold day, and traffic was backed up, of course. Hundreds of people were standing in line in the cold. Fortunately by the time we got there the line was moving and we went in right away.

The gentleman who was in charge of the casting that day (and whose name doesn't show in the IMDB credits) had the uncanny ability of picking out of a large crowd people who are the same types.

Much to my surprise, I ended up on the podium with five other women. We looked more alike to each other than what my sister and I look alike: same height (give or take two inches), same coloring, same build, probably the same age (give or take five years), and even the same type of clothing (and shoes!).

One of the ladies and I were wearing glasses and we had the same taste in eyeglass frames, too. All of us wore variations of the same hairstyle.

Anyone who harbors any fantasies about their own uniqueness should go stand on a casting call stage for five or ten minutes with five other strangers who not only look like you but even dress like you.

A week or so later I did get called for a job as an extra but turned them down.

By then I was fully prepared for any traffic delays that might come from the Beautiful Mind filming around town. Surprisingly, they managed to film everything on and around campus without having to block any streets. One time I was waiting for a traffic light in the Borough and watched the real-life John Nash cross the street from where Russel Crowe was playing the fictional John Nash. That was the longest I had to wait in traffic because of their filming on location.

But back to this morning's ad on the IMDB, I breathed easy when I saw that it was just an ad.


Today's WSJ Five Best Books, on essential books to keep in mind for Holocaust Remembrance Day on May 2, selected by Robert Rozett,


Today's shoes: Delman Women's Manda-P Ballet Flat in coral berry.

Nobody does flats like Delman's.


It's Sunday, so Pat has the Carnival.


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