Thursday, March 21, 2013

What's the Angle?

I shot new headshots today with Adam Sheridan Taylor. An INTENSE man is he. He sports a seemingly tireless, skittish energy that goes in your face and then up to your side all snuggly-like and then around the corner to make faces at you.  In other words, I like the guy. Totally wears his freak flag high and mighty the way many of us wish we could.  Just sayin', I'm excited and overdue for an updated look. Not that I don't cherish the meticulous work of Dana Patrick and admire her continued use of film over digital, but I need some photos that reveal my warmer side, both literally and figuratively.

I'll post'em when I gots'em.

On to TONIGHT - a workshop at The Casting Network with Ally Bader, top associate at Bialy/Thomas (Breaking Bad.  I may or may not have been slightly inebbriated when I purchsed a large credit at TCN on my phone because I need to get back in the workshop cycle something fierce. Damn you, Technology! You make everything so easy! It's so easy to COMMIT to things that will better me and my career! Wait, that sounds like a great thing...hmmmm, maybe it's not a guilty wine-induced purchase after all. Maybe I make better sense when I've had a glass or two. Maybe that's not a good theory to draw from this and instead I should just be happy that I can take at least four more workshops at TCN in the near future.

Done and done.

So Ally - what a kind and approachable lass. Used to work for Nancy Nayor and other esteemed CDs - has loved casting since her senior year of high school when she began interning. I'd say she has a knack by now, especially working alongside Sharon Bialy and tackling this year's hottest pilot for AMC "Halt and Catch Fire". Noticing a trend here? From previous blogs? I auditioned for that show as a series regular!  Me! Me! Me! And I didn't get it, but YAY for progress and pushing the ol' chops.  Instead, H & CF went all out with their regulars $ and Name-wise - Lee Pace leading the way. I cannot WAIT to see this show once it actually airs - it is going to feed those of us going through Breaking Bad withdrawal, clawing at our televisions and feening for more Walter White goodness.

Here's the skinny: I went to see Ally in order to put my mug in front of her mug a la "Remember me?" style. She mentioned only working on Halt and Catch Fire right now. She also mentioned that they are casting mainly out of Atlanta for guest and co-star roles where they are filming next month.  She also mentioned spending a huge piece of budget on their 6 series regulars and hence why Atlanta is an easier, cheaper pool to cast from. So why are we there taking a workshop there tonight if there ain't no work? Um, this is the hard part about workshops. Sometimes the only thing you can do is try to leave an impression.  There's no role for you, there's no show for you, there's only the spotlight, the stage and your skills and the crossing of fingers that Ally Bader remembers you when something comes her way that you happen to fit the profile for.

It's tough love, but it's all the love that Ally could give tonight.  She gave everyone sides of her choice, paired us up, and I performed a scene from "He's Just Not That Into You". Haven't seen it myself, but that makes it better for my original interpretation.  There's a confident girl at a bar hoping to see a guy that has not yet called her since their first date. Is she confident? She puts on the airs. But there is desperation there. And in the center of that desperation is a strong, valiant hope that this guy is GOING to call her, or perhaps has lost her number or a relative and there must be some reason that he hasn't.  Because it can't be her. She knows she has something to be secure about and this guy not calling her becomes a wolf at her door.  It could possibly shake her for a looooong time. She doesn't WANT to believe immediately - or even a week later with no contact - that he doesn't like her. Why wouldn't he like her? But of course, his bartender friend finds out what she's up to and gives her the 4-1-1. He tells her that this guy, indeed, doesn't really like her, just as everyone else would've suspected by now.

Oh so sad.  Sweet that she hopes so hard and admirable that she believes in herself too much to accept what might seem blatantly obvious. I can completely relate to her. COMPLETELY.  You can see that she is giving this guy the benefit of the doubt!  She put herself out there and will wait out there until she's sure. She's being brave, not egotistical. But in the world of dating, experience (often coupled with cynicism) will lead to quicker clarity when reading the signs under these kind of circumstances. Duh.  But the problem is not to become a groundhog and scamper away quickly when there's a little shadow. People come to guard their hearts so quickly and so thoroughly that they never take a RISK.  They become too afraid of rejection or of being the vulnerable one.  It takes true courage to wear that vulnerability before a stranger - or even a not-so-stranger.

It's tough that someone can't just come out and say "Hey, you're cool but I'm not interested."  Many would argue that they would NEVER want to hear that. I argue that I would. Don't leave people wondering for ages causing small psychological eruptions and inflating new pockets of insecurity that have no true origin!  If I find a genie and a lamp, one of those three wishes will be for people to handle truth more wisely.  I have a hard time speaking the truth myself, but I told a guy the other night that I wasn't into him. He was quite flabbergasted.  I ask - well, why? Isn't that possible? Isn't that the reason for a date? And I already knew I wasn't into it. It's my choice to continue on or not - as well as his. I acted first because I already knew. And I was polite about it, but up front.

The best part was when we parted ways, he asked "Well, are we ever going to see each other again?"

Uuuuuuuuuuuuuuh what kind of question is that? I just said I'm not interested and I'm sorry but thanks for the date. A friendly and matter-of-fact "nope" was my answer. And he let out the most cartoonish snort of disbelief, I almost thought he'd been born in Oxford and his name was Sir Charles Billingsworth the III. 

I know.  Some of you might wish to speak in the defense of this young man. But if he were telling his side of things, someone would want to speak up for me too. There are no rights or wrongs in dating, or in this industry for that matter. There are only risks and choices and hopes. Maybe one day I'll find a great guy. Maybe one day I'll find a great role. Focusing on the latter first, but hey...the universe works in mysterious ways and I am NOT interested in stopping that.

Until then, I'd like to agree with ol' Jack Nicholson in that most people just can't handle the....well, you know.  But remember that it will also set you free. I'll take the latter of those two statements as well.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Spring Breakersssss

I have been a terrible film student as of late. The only film I have seen (finally!) is SPRING BREAKERS directed by underground king, Harmony Korine. My roomie was talking my ear off about this flick for weeks - and I had no clue it was directed by the Harms - who also famously wrote "Kids" elevating a young Chloe Sevigny.  But the film's marketing confused and intrigued me. Four college girls - two of which are well known Disney darlings (Hudgens and Gomez. sidebar:  WHY IS SELENA ON THE COVER OF EVERY MAGAZINE ALL THE TIME. Blech I say.) - and they are all kinds of sexed up and controversial. And James Franco.

I started reading a little bit about the film here and there - a threesome with James Franco? James Franco being wigga'd out for the role and looking a mixture of freaky, ridiculous, and awesome all at once? Warnings of hard drugs and alcohol abuse shown? James Franco with a grill? The guy that wrote KIDS? James Franco?! What. Is. This. Film?

So naturally I ran to the theater with some friends. And luckily, Harmony came out before the flick with the ATL Twins (who are these people?!) and said a few words that really prepped me for what I was about to see. He said "Consider this film to be a kind of pop poem. Let the physical experience kind of wash over you and don't think about it." And that is exactly what I did. 

It's got the exact imagery one would picture for the most stereotypically wild SB experience. I, being the good child and going to a religious college, never even TRIED to think of having a Spring Break like this. But I wouldn't want to. I do not want my rack out and about for all to see with beer being poured over every crevice.  Naturally, I would be sunning under an umbrella anyway with #100 sunscreen on drinking something much classier. Anywho, the music is fitting and truly adds to the experience. Franco - who I usually don't love - is wonderfully entertaining, somehow pulling off a delicate (almost ingenious) balance of ridiculous and dangerous at the same time. His scene with Selena gets creepily great. His scene in the bedroom with Hudgens and the blonde chick? Even better - the movie takes twists and turns that surprise, delight, and fright - moving sweetly between real and unreal.

Good unconventional fun.  I wonder what a meathead would say if I asked him his opinion of it? I'd like to know. Pardon me while I run over to the nearest frat.

Wash Rinse Repeat

Whoa, I just bit into the most delicious ginger snap cookie in the universe.  But it was more of a ginger mush since they popped that sucka in the microwave.

Hey folks - how ARE you? It's been a moment. And what has happened in those moments? Many many things. Are any of them roles that Eva Swan performed flawlessly in? Um, no. In fact, I have only been out ONCE this pilot season but it was for one of the hottest shows in town "Halt and Catch Fire".  Yes. The one being produced by the bad ass of Breaking Bad, Mark Johnson.  (He's kind of great at his job.)  I was fortunate enough to audition for one of the series regulars, Donna Clark, the wife of Gordon Clark - a misunderstood genius low on the totem pole at work.  This pilot is one to watch out for. Talk about shows that have excellent, slow food style writing (Madmen, Breaking AMC in general?) - this will be the one to watch out for and get hooked on. 

Enough said - I auditioned for Sharon Bialy herself.  She was nothing but kind, courteous and complimentary.  Feedback? She was impressed, she thought I was lovely, and she said would cast me in a series, but perhaps not THIS series (such was the case as the role of Donna went to the lovely Kerry Bishe from ARGO). So all in all - good feedback, a great opp to meet Sharon and I was proud of my work. Never TOO proud but you know how hard I can be on myself. High standards: cursed with them.

Speaking of, I am seeing Ally Bader (top associate of Bialy/Thomas) tomorrow night for a workshop at The Casting Network in Valley Village.  I need to stay on their radar. It's tougher than a piece of shoe leather in Antarctica to be an actor among millions of actors in this town when all people see is an ocean of thumbnails and if you're lucky enough to be clicked on, you might even get to have your reel watched and even THEN, does your filmed work have any similarity to the role they are looking to cast?  It's a gamble. This entire career is incredibly high-risk. My parents probably have the most excellent pores in the world because their daughter's pursuits have made them sweat on a somewhat permanent basis.

SO, where I am currently: I have to get the reel in shape. Yes, I shot things for it recently in January. Yes, I am totally unhappy with it - only because a reel has to reflect where you are in your skills TODAY, and that one does not. In its entirety, anyway.  So Eva is going to shoot more quite soon, oh yes. The reel is an ongoing project until I can present something stellar.  You hear me?! STELLAR!!!! STEL-LAAAAAAR!!! (Eva having a Marlon Brando Streetcar moment.)

Don't worry about me though, kids, I AM getting out there commercially (thank the good Lawd) and I recently auditioned for Serta, Bank of America, and Liquid Plumr.  At least that side of me is getting oiled on a regular basis and I get to go out and improvise for fun commercial spots. Me likey doing that. But I am overdue to book another, so let's do something about that, mk?  Getting new headshots tomorrow for partially this purpose.  I want my thumbnail to punch you in the face, Casting Directors!

Lastly, other things I am doing: casting a feature film for a good friend (so excited to do this), sprouting a tail and becoming a gym rat, drinking kombucha on a regular basis and balancing all this acidity, redesigning my bedroom (I found the most awesome Marimekko duvet for cheap, yeeeeah), and considering a Macbook Air because this old girl PC I have right now? She is about to expire like a milk carton in the desert sun. 

Love to everyone and signing off.  More to come.