Friday, September 13, 2013

Welcome to Level 7 Part 2 a terrifying descent into low pay, long hours and bad craft service.

So I show up to Linda Vista hospital on two and a half hours of sleep at 4 am. Life sucked at that moment and it was only going to get worse. So the first thing I noticed when I arrived at Linda Vista was how dark it was. Turns out the generators we rented were to power this place! I don't do well in dark places, I am very terrified of the dark. It's a fear that never went away. So here I am in the basement of a reportedly haunted 1940's hospital. Welcome to art department Jason Parker! Within an hour though and before the real sun was up Linda Vista was bright and alive. For the laymen art department are usually first on set and last to leave; with AD or producer being the exception. After that I was driving the cube truck to east Hollywood to pick up silver with diamond star laminate. This was going to be laid down on the floor of an elevator. When I got back it was already lunch. Driving any where in Los Angeles always takes forever. If you have a job where you drive in LA you are going to get a screaming call once a week asking "where are you!!!!" from your boss. It helps too have thick skin. Well lunch was crap, the only plus was a cute pixieish lawyer with a vintage bob stopped by the shoot to see me. My boss wasn't actually too happy about that but hey no harm no foul, lol. After lunch I helped a friend of mine do props in the laboratory scene. The usual day on a shoot is 12 hours, due to some problems this day went 17 hours!!! Yeah 17 hours sucks but I can deal with that, I grew up in Alaska, if you didn't work you didn't make it. The problem was the craft service was awful. Cheap generic cola, one kind of chips, no tub of red licorice(every craft service table has a tub of red licorice) couple apple & oranges that only looked good from one side. This was a day that tested everything I was made of. The guys I really felt bad for were the aliens. They were in full costume for at least 8 hours straight; I don't know how they did it. Well day 1 of 3 ended. I also found out later that I was only getting paid a 100 dollars a day, HAHA well that's the film biz!

Now imagine this at night, creepy!

Can you find this creepy looking place in the movie? I spent 12 hours in this room. Longest day on set for me.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

[WELCOME TO] LEVEL 7, the beginning of my troubles

Welcome to Level 7 was the first job I worked on where I was doing art department. For those of you not aware of what art department is I'll explain. First there is a production designer, he designs the look of the project, he then has art department and set decorators make his vision. This story starts a week before the shoot, I got hired as art coordinator. My job was to call different rental houses, give CC info, rent trucks and even pick up some stuff. I had just picked up a giant fog machine when my power steering went out about 15 miles from home during rush hour the night before the first day of shooting. Well some how I limped back to Eagle Rock and my awesome mechanic stayed 45 minutes late and fixed it, thanks Budtho!! Well the next day the shoot started and I became the low man on the totem pole, art PA(production assistant). Our day started at 4am, oh by the way we were filming at Linda Vista hospital, a reportadly haunted hospital. Stay tuned tomorrow for the 2nd half of this story.

Welcome to Level 7, a terrifying descent into low pay, long hours and bad craft service.

Linda Vista, my favorite haunted hospital in Los Angeles