"My work as an actor on location/set
is to have the Producer's and Director's visions
up on the screen...!"

- - Badger

Badger Acting Work [with Mom]

The following are a few projects on which I worked while still domicled on the east coast (a few of which included working with my mother, Jeannette Gould):

Illuminata

Thursday August 14th (1997) I spent the day as a 1905 theatre goer for the John Tuturro film Illuminata, being shot in Jersey City. I'd had a costume fitting the week before, having me look either like a banker or a mortician. Early the week of the shoot my mother got a call as well and had her costume fitted. Thursday morning we arrived for our 8am call. We got our costumes around 8:30am, but hair and make up took a bit longer; so much so we missed out on some of the morning filming. Other extras who'd been prepared, went down first. In fact, a large contingent did not filming at all (my mother and I included) until after craft services served their idea of lunch. I must learn to bring mine own sandwiches At least I'd had the foresight to bring our own sodas.

The set, the auditorium of a Christian School, was blisteringly hot, mostly with suana-like humidity. While my mother and I did get moved about to various seats, mine own actual "entrance" has me coming down the aisle to a row in the balcony, and taking a seat. Later mom and I independently were moved to a row directly in front of the camera. On the stage of the play we are viewing, a character collapses. Tuturro's character takes advantage of the mishap by announcing another play (that he has written) will be performed there the next night. When he first comes out, the crowd reacts with the mixture of "Who is he?" and "Let him speak." With me directly "in front" of the camera, someone (Tuturro?) bonked me from behind, hissing, "Let him speak," indicating I should really say it. So I leaned a bit forward and blared, "Let him speak!" Later as I was signing out, one of the primary ADs indicated I'd having done "a good job," and that I was well seen.

Jeannette Gould in her 'Illuminata' costume
Jeannette Gould in Illuminata

Tuesday September 16th was shoot day number two for Illuminata, the exterior (of the "theatre"), using the Montauk Club on 8th at Lincoln Square in Brooklyn. This day shows the arrival of (we) theatre patrons, as well as the well known (and much hated) theatre critic, being played by Christopher Walken, in top hat, cape, and yellow suit. Accosted by a woman as he leaves his coach, he gently tells her off, comes up the stairs and enters. I am right by the door next to Scott (a young extra who was called back the next day to be [SAG] waivered). A few of the takes include Walken (and those of us at the top of the stairs) being pelted with peanuts thrown at him.

Update: in Pasadena I finally saw the film in late 1999. I am still visible on the front steps, and the context of the audience shots were altered. Now we are shown in rapt attention and no vocalizations are made. In our seats close to the camera my mother and I are indeed visible (albeit in very dark lighting) in very brief two static shots.

Further Update (0004.27):
Now and then I go to search engines and do a search on realbadger; most often at Dogpile as it's a meta-search engine and brings up most of the major search engines. I just want to see what sites of mine are indexed and if there are references to me Elsewhere. I came across a site called Notes from Austin. Apparently I'd emailed him a reply regarding background (in general as well as mine own background work) on Illuminata, as his own comments on the feature likened the film to Shakespeare in Love, as though Illuminata (released later) was made later, Illuminata came first (filmed in 1997 and technically released in 1998, unseen in theatres [to my knowledge] until 1999 when I finally saw it). The person to whom I'd replied, lodger13@pcm.net, posted my email reply on his site! The page even comes up on the Google search engine (via Dogpile) when doing a realbadger search.

Notes from Austin


Thursday August 7th my mother and I were Irish pub crawlers for a small independent film Some Fish Can Fly. Our friend, Brian Jude, was first AD (assistant director), and as they needed extras for that day, he'd called and checked our availability. It was filmed in Swift's, a pleasant enough tavern in the city on West 4th. We got a token amount for it (just about transport money), but Mom met there a casting director who decided she'd be great for a German beer commercial for which they were auditioning. She had the audition the following Monday.

Update late 2001: Brian Jude has gotten the green light on his screenplay Ride With The Dragons which he will be directing early 2002.


The Fin That Got Away

Godzilla

April 05, 1997
Whilst I handled a prior commitment, Mom attended a non-SAG open call in the city, a copy of mine own 8x10 and resume in hand as well (albeit not quite so detailed… ). We were aware the film was for the same filmmakers of Independence Day, but all the call said was for Big Fin Productions.

It was not until a few days later (whilest obtaining casting notices at the SAG office in the city) that I stumbled on the fact that Big Fin Productions was for the making of Godzilla 1996, for which both of us were cast for an early May weekend shooting date.
Apparently when the tornado hit Jersey City while my mother worked on Long Time, Nothing New, the Godzilla set got creamed; it made the local TV news and the Newark Star-Ledger.
However, as of May 22nd, the casting director indicated they were (now) only seeking extras with cars. Even though I pointed out we had access to a car for the shoot, the promised information call back from the casting director never came.
I almost feel silly having notified Barry S. Goldberg of Barry's Temple of Godzilla site about all this; originally that he may use the information with which to update his impressive site dedicated to my favourite movie monster of all time (and from whose site this graphic was taken).


Mom

March 5th, 1997 Mom spent the day in Rockaway Beach as background on Long Time, Nothing New, written, directed and starring Edward J. Burns, and starring both Lauren Holly and the busy Jon Bon Jovi. During the day a cloudburst kicked in, nearby (rumour has it) knocking down the Jersey City Godzilla 1996 location, and even Ozzily lifting a Jersey City house. When I moved to California and the film's special effects crew did a panel at a Shrine Auditorium comic book convention I attended, they verified the fateful day. I also warned them that if Godzilla's roar was altered Too Much, the film would die at at the box office (it was and it did).

This prediction was very similar to my prediction to producer Gary Kurtz at a Baltimore WorldCon. He had just given his slide presentation on the unforgivable Return To Oz. When he was done my hand was the first one up for questions and I asked him darkly if the film would follow as he just described. His face went pale and his eyes looked like a deer in headlights. You could just see him thinking desperately, 'Oh [damn]; he's read the books.'
Kurtz faltered and implied there could always be story revisions, etc. When he was done I accurately warned him that if the film's storyline followed what he'd just described, the film would die a well deserved death at the box office. It did… and it did.

The party scene in 'The Associate' in the film of which my mother can be seen

For three days January, 1996, my mother did some Extra Work on the film The Associate starring Whoopie Goldberg, Eli Wallach and Austin Pendleton, which opened October 25, 1996.

Mom can be seen during a ballroom like scene in which she descends a staircase with Whoopie above her at the top of the staircase. In the same scene she is in the background as Whoopie and Tim Daly dance, and later as Whoopie and Lanie Kazan walk through the party, there's Mom sitting on a sofa, over Kazan's right shoulder.


Shortly before driving her car in the film Independence Day (Mom didn't make the final cut, but her empty car did: Jeff Goldblum rides by it on his bike on his way to Judd Hirsh's), one day in the summer of 1995 Mom and I were extras in the Universal film version of I'm Not Rappaport which was originally scheduled to be released November 1995. Now it was to be widely released January 24, 1997, but it never was. The film remained in obscurity in very few theatres. Interestingly enough, the cinematographer for Rappaport was Adam Holender, who was cinematographer for A Price Below Rubies on which I worked.

I'm Not Rappaport

Mom and I are in a re-enactment of the 1907 NYC Garment District Union Strike Vote Meeting. At one point co-star Walter Matthau did his lines about ten feet away from me (Matthau's bits for the scene are not used, surprisingly). Upon viewing it on Encore on cable (the film is available on video), I found myself very visible as the scene now opens the film.

I'm Not Rappaport

I am seen as a little blur in the background as the girl walks down the aisle but there I am as I/we begin to stand to take the "old Hebrew oath:" a very clear shot of me taking up the right side of the screen (probably would be even better were it letterbox format). The other Rappaport co-star (who was not there for that scene that day) is Ossie Davis. Several weeks earlier I had met his son Guy Davis, AMS Video having been hired to video tape his powerful one-man stage show In Bed With The Blues: The Adventures of Fishy Waters.

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