Last week has been all about catching up after being gone 3 weeks shooting this awesome new project called, “Yes, We’re Open“.
It’s a romantic comedy about a couple (Luke & Sylvia) exploring an open relationship. It’s funny, sad, serious and bizarre all rolled into one. It’s the meaty role that I’ve been waiting for about 10 years to tackle.
But the first thing was not learning the lines. Oh, no, no, no , no. Screw that. There were a lot of shirtless moments in the script for my “Luke” character.
So the first order of business was to hit the gym. Like hard. Like training to be Batman hard – 45 min weight/30 min cardio combo everyday for a month until the cameras rolled (and during).
That way even if the end result was, “meh” – I could at least honestly look my grandkids in the eyes and say, “Well, sadly that’s all Grandpa’s 37 yr-old body was capable of.”
Why I’d be watching a movie about infidelity with my grandkids? Perhaps a question for another day. But for now, I digress.
Next order of business was hearing the lines alongside with my YWO girlfriend “Sylvia”/longtime pal, Lynn Chen.
Again, being a laggard when it comes to technology – Lynn intro’d me to the rehearsal process in the 2.0 world via Skype.
It’s always a weird thing to have intimate scenes but especially with someone you already know so well.
But in the end, that stuff was only maybe 5% of the movie. The huge advantage from us already knowing each other was that our chemistry (I think) was instantly believable as a couple. Not wasting time to establish familiarity, thinking of back story reasons to want to hang out with this person, etc – was invaluable.
Cuz if the audience ain’t onboard with the illusion, it’s pretty much an uphill battle from the word ‘go’ (ie: see Eric Bana and Drew Barrymore in “Lucky You” – did he even like her?)
Lynn did a great job blogging about the YWO experience, mostly from the food perspective on her food blog — but I’ll be coming at it from an alternate view in the next few entries.
In the meantime, here’s a teaser that the writer HP Mendoza made (when I first saw this, the dialogue in it was literally shot the day before!)