Today was a day off.
Yesterday we completed the second week of shooting on One Hour Outcall. We’ve done six-day weeks, in one location in downtown Los Angeles, just me and my co-star in a funky church-turned-apartment. We’re shooting day-for-night, so the windows are blacked out. The neighborhood where we’re shooting is, to put it charitably, a dystopian nightmare, so when I emerge outside after each day’s completed, it’s dark and spooky and depressing. The scenes we shoot melt together, the election seems light years in the past, and I’ve lost track of what time of day or even what day it is. During the day, it doesn’t seem like it’s tiring work. Then I walk outside to the car after the day’s wrapped, and I’m exhausted. It’s a good kind of fatigue, but it’s fatigue.
But today was Sunday, and a day off. Technically, a day off. Because when you’re making a micro-budget independent film, relying on a crew of four, without a car in L.A., even days off are not days off. I spent the day walking around the Valley, running errands, picking up props, sending emails, preparing for when we move to the next location. Our time in the church/apartment ends Tuesday, and though we’ll be off for essentially four days through Thanksgiving, we’re in a restaurant next Sunday night. Independent film production seems like laying down train tracks as quickly as you can before the locomotive runs off into the sand. So even Sundays aren’t Sundays.
What I realized, however, was that we’ve shot 12 days. We’re scheduled to shoot 23. That means theoretically, principal photography for One Hour Outcall is more than halfway complete. Which amazes me.
We’re getting there. And we’re having fun doing it. Now, I’ve made a conscious decision that no one needs my neurotic ass looking at the footage as we go, so this isn’t first-hand knowledge, but our director, line producer, and on-set editor seem to be pleased. I feel more comfortable every day, and my co-star and I are connecting, professional, and efficient. It will be interesting next week, when the rest of the cast joins us. A different dynamic, perhaps, but more people to enjoy the fun.
We’re getting there. And it’s exciting. And it’s worth “working” on Sunday. Though I’m not going to lie, four days off for Thanksgiving aren’t going to be bad, either.