This week was busy, which is just how I like it. It started off with work at Michener, with a bit of suspension of disbelief when my ‘scene partner’ went from playing my 23 year old husband to playing my father. Either way, it is always so much fun to be able to play off of someone in those scenarios.

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New demo reel 🙂

When work was done, I headed over to 4 points to be one of the Amazons at the 7 pm class. Women are welcome in all of the classes, but if one feels like she would rather try a class when she knows there are other women who will be there, she can sign up for this one. There are guys too, but we outnumbered them this week. With 10 girls and slightly less guys, I ended up being paired with a girl who was there for her first ever jiu-jitsu class. The teacher came over to make sure I had the technique right, so I did it on her a few times, then guided her through doing it on me. There was a lot of uncertainty and trying to figure out which side to do certain things on, but we made it through. I also told her that it would be a good idea to stay for the second class, because while I struggled through figuring it out, most of the guys who showed up for the later class know what they are doing and have been incredibly helpful in teaching me the techniques.

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For the rolling, I completely made the mistake of acting like all the guys did with me, where they won’t attack or take the upper hand, they just wait for me to figure things out. At the same time, I really appreciated that my first ever time rolling, when I knew nothing. There was someone I had rolled with last week and they had simply used their strength against me, grabbing my wrists tight enough to bruise, so I was slightly reluctant when paired with them this week. A few moments in, I asked them how long they had been doing Jiu-Jitsu and found out it was their second week. I actually knew more than they did! So, instead of trying to win or get the upper hand, I talked them through the techniques they could use to get out of my guard, or to get control over me, without just using all their strength. I tapped out 3 times that roll, but it was because I showed them how to overpower me. Which still feels like a win in my book.

On Tuesday I worked all day as an SP, starting with an incredibly topical role that brought up a lot of conversations, most of them really inspiring, while some comments reminded me why a #metoo movement and #believeher is so important.

In the evening, I had a scenario that hit so close to home during the dry run, having spent the week at the hospital in a much less severe, but still similar situation. This week I was thankfully out of that situation personally, but it was incredibly easy to put myself into that emotional state. The tears poured freely, even with the frequent time-outs to discuss how things were going.

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Wine and cheesing at the ACTRA Member’s Conference.

On Wednesday I had a fitting for some background, then came home to sleep because I was under the impression that I had an overnight shoot, followed by a 5 am call time with potentially no time to sleep in between. Luckily, that wasn’t the case, but it took a while for me to find that out.

I had brought my car to set before, but this was the first time that I was actually asked to drive it in the scene while being background. The part that worried me of this was after they call cut, when you have to back your car back up to the original position, while the crew and the other extras who had crosses are all wandering around because they know the street has been blocked off for them. After the first take, a guy told me to honk twice to let everyone know I was backing up, then said he would guide me, so he went behind my car and walked backwards, gesturing with his hands for me to go straight or to turn, telling me I was doing great. At one point, we had to stop for another car to turn around, so he waited by the side of my car and said, “This is what happens when you get BG for ND drivers.” into his radio. He kept telling me I was doing great, and I have no idea if he meant me, the car we were waiting for, or just the lot of us in general, but I felt slightly offended, and like he was underestimating me. True, I was nervous about this part, but I had only ever done exactly what I had been told to do. After future takes, he left me on my own, so I did the 2 honks and drove progressively faster to get back to my starting position.

We wrapped around 1 am, and my call time wasn’t until about 11, so I went home and slept before driving to Hamilton. It was nice to spend international women’s day on set, with a bunch of other women. There was also a stunt happening, with a very energetic and demonstrative female stunt coordinator, which I find super awesome. Especially given the date, but also just in general. Some people couldn’t wait to go home, as with every day on set, but I loved pretty much every minute of it. I met some cool people, saw some brilliant performances, and my reaction game was on point.

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On Friday, to celebrate my day off, I went to a boxing class, where I was the only student, so I basically got a private lesson. It was a totally off day for me, where I found myself assuring him that I can normally do a much better, real pushup. He thought it was really cool when I told him I wanted to get into stunts, but he didn’t let me off easy. I still had to punch as hard, and he insisted my technique would need to be even better, because when he sees me on tv one day, he wants to believe that I am someone who actually boxes.

I stayed afterward for the Jiu-Jitsu class, where we were three, but there was some time between the 2 where I got to roll a bit with my boxing coach, then I worked on my handstands, because having a padded wall is almost just as good as a person who promises to catch you.

The techniques we learnt in jiu-jitsu were pretty straightforward, but I was really lucky (and a little frustrated) to have someone who was not going easy on me. When learning new techniques, you go until the other person taps out, which I usually do once they get to the end of the moves, because we’re just learning things and I assume you’ve got the gist of it. My partner, however, did not tap out until he actually had to, and purposely tried to hold his position and make me work for it. In the moment, part of me was obviously exasperated that he was making everything harder, but I also appreciated it sooooo much, because he wasn’t underestimating me, he was showing that he believed that I could do it, and was making me prove it. Which I did. It was more of a struggle than I would have preferred, but it was so much better that way.

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From the Action for Film and TV Workshop

 

“Being strong doesn’t mean you’ll never get hurt. It means even when you get hurt, you’ll never let it defeat you.”

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