Working with Van Sant: “There’s a hand down there.”

From time to time I snag a few moments onscreen, for one reason or another. The other day I found myself at a Van Sant shoot with a line to say. I had spent a night in jail in place of the producer’s son, and he gave me the bit, which paid scale, as a thank you.

I was to look down into some steampunk gearworks and say, “There’s a hand down there.’

We were outdoors. I took up my position.

“Camera.”

“Speed.”

“Mark it.”

“Scene twenty-one, Hand, take one.”

“Aaaand, action,” Van Sant said.

I looked down into the gears.

“There’s a hand down there,” I said in horror.

“No,” said Van Sant. “Not like that. Do it again.”

The crew ran through the setup again. I looked down into the gears.

Take two.

“There’s a hand down there?” I said in disbelief.

“No,” said Van Sant. “You see it, you’re not horrified, you don’t doubt your eyes.”

Take three.

“There’s a hand down there,” with a hint of a chuckle.

“Are you trying to annoy me?” Van Sant said.

Take four.

“There’s a hand down there.” Flat. A statement.

“Do you know what I can do to you if you make me mad enough?” Van Sant said.

Next to me, the slate girl had fear in her eyes.

“Don’t make him  mad,” she said to me in a whisper.

Take five.

“THERE’S A HAND DOWN THERE!”

“DO THAT AGAIN AND I’LL BREAK YOUR F**KING FACE!”

Take six.

“There’s a hand down there,” with a sort of a sob.

Van Sant sighed. He came around behind me and knelt down, out of the shot. He reached between my legs and grabbed my testicles in an iron grip. Began to squeeze.

Take seven.

“There’s… nnngggh… a hand… nnnngggghh… down… there… nnnggghheeek.”

“Cut,” Van Sant said, standing up. “Print it. Next setup.”

Life in Hollywood: overhearings, herself, house, always, expect

Again, I’m ready to write about my life in Hollywood, but upon what subject? I downloaded a pdf of “Pride and Prejudice” and this time took the first word that was more than five characters long on pages 11, 21, 31, 41, and 51. These should lead me to my subject: overhearings, herself, house, always, expect.

My TMZ contact called me yesterday:

“What have you got for me?” she said. “I’m desperate for anything on The Dark Knight Rises. What have you heard?”

“My overhearings cost money, especially when they’re overheard from Anne Hathaway herself. I’m not your house negro, Dafna. You can’t always expect me to cough up pearls for you over the phone. To mix my metaphors. I need an understanding.”

“What? Are you talking to Gawker again? Is Gefen after you, that bitch?”

“No. It’s all for you, Dafna. But I need an arrangement. I’ve got obligations.”

“Are you going to India with the crew? Can you score me some obligations over there. I hear you can buy absolutely anything ten steps off the set.”

“I doubt they’ll call me over.”

“Pittsburgh?”

“Probably not.”

“How much dialog are you writing?”

“Crumbs under the table. But I’m spending time at Warners, so I hear things. I see things.”

“Give me something, Baby. Anything. Christopher Nolan. Bale. Caine. Oldman. Anybody… You mentioned Hathaway?”

“You want to have dinner?”

“Jesus, are you hitting on me? What next? What have I got to do to get something out of you? Don’t answer that. I’ll meet you at The Roost for a drink at five.”

“Perfect. I’m at Warners now, so I’ll just come around the park.”

“I don’t want to hear about the Catwoman costume.”

“Listen,” I said. “I’ve got a source who follows every female star into the bathroom. Please bring cash. I’m a little short and I’ve got some serious bills to pay.”

“Shut the front door! Give me a hint. Is this about undergarments? A birthmark? Disease?”

“I’ve got sound.”

“Was she in there with somebody? Or on the phone?”

“No.”