Editors Note:


EDITOR'S NOTE: Fresh off a three year managerial stint, your friendly neighborhood lenslinger is back on the street and under heavy deadline. As the numbing effects of his self-imposed containment wear off, vexing reflections and pithy epistles are sure to follow...

Monday, April 09, 2007

Mooning for Clooney

Clooney Goons TwoPlease Lord, let Leatherheads wrap. The George Clooney vehicle has been shooting in and around the Piedmont for weeks now and quite frankly, I'm growing weary. Why? Every other morning I walk into work, some show producer accosts me with a road map and an 8x10 glossy of the Sexiest Man Alive. This, I can do without. But ever since a newspaper picture of Rosemary's nephew overpaying for lemonade hit the stands last week, there has been a fatwa of sorts on the actor's visage. Today that image jihad struck your local lenslinger and before I could check my station e-mail, I was dispatched forty minutes down the interstate, late for a sorta-date with that dude from 'Syriana'. God, how I hate Mondays.

My mood improved when I spotted the logo. Until then, I wasn't sure I would get anything. But when I saw the News 14 truck parked by the entrance to the Transportation Museum, I knew I wasn't the only one on Operation: Overgroomed Goose Chase. Aaron Mesmer already had the museum's PR chick framed up when I sidled up beside him. A one man band himself, the young reporter and I exchanged cowboy nods as the lady with the name-tag prattled on for our cameras. Yes, Clooney and crew were just beyond the gate and no, lowly TV types like ourselves were NOT invited to come in and do Botox with them. No surprise there. I knew before I ever left the parking lot that I stood a better chance of running over Osama Bin Laden somewhere outside Thomasville than score any onscreen time with Mr. Dimples. So I eyed the perimeter for other prey...

And then I saw them. Like birds on a wire, they huddled close in the shadows, heads bobbing in unison with the glimmer of every distant gaffer's laminated backstage pass. Balding father-in-law types with birdwatcher lenses, thug-wannabes sporting Unabomber hoodies and shiny camera-phones, grinning grandmothers with lawnchairs and homemade signs - just the kind of homemade paparazzi that could help fill the ninety second void that would go between the anchor intro and outro I'd already written. Aaron noticed them too, and five seconds after the PR chick stopped talking, we were engaged in an awkward foot-race as we hauled glass toward the clamoring crowd. Mistaking us for friendlies, they foolishly cheered our approach.

That's when things got blurry. Like a scene from the Matrix, Aaron and I dove into the throng all slow-motion like - separating the chatty from the drifter, pinning tiny microphones to the lucid and the cute, fending off those who thought we wielded authority - instead of zoom lenses and silly questions. Mere minutes later, young Mr. Mesmer and I had worked the crowd of Clooney goons for every angle and entendre that sprang to mind. Even the extras dressed in itchy 1920's garb across the street looked form the craft services tent, stretching their per diem necks to see what was going on over in the cheapseats.

TV news, that's what. Mr. Million Dollar Grin may be whining and dining flight attendants in his trailer somewhere, but I got a slot to fill. If that means televising giddy housewives instead of pampered matinee idol, so be it. I'll still eat at home tonight. Of course, the suits will probably send me back here tomorrow, so if you could just pass Mr. Clooney my card, I really would appreciate it. If you need me, I'll be over in the park, trying to get an interview with that guy berating the big oak tree. Hey, I know my place on the food chain...

4 comments:

jwr0721 said...

*Junior* producer? JUNIOR producer? That's not very nice...

Anonymous said...

Wait until they send you out to the Leatherheads set out in Donnaha in NW Forsyth Co. It takes about an hour to get there and you'll have to park about 1/2 mile from the set.

newmediajim said...

he he, i know that awkward footrace. Sort of like Olympic fastwalking..always just on the verge of the full-on foreign press corps, full-on sprint!

robot said...

Ha! We just got rid of Leatherheads down here in Upstate South Carolina!

Life is getting back to normal, and you can actually go to the restaurants and bars downtown that were "clooney hotspots" - filled with stalkers and skanks, hoping to get some Clooney action.

And our morning meeting no longer has the report from our junior producer, updating us with all kinds of Leatherheads filming minutia.