I was trolling Craig's List last week for job leads and came across a strange listing in the tv/film/video/radio jobs section. It was just titled "Green Screen". I clicked the link and found out they were looking for all body types and ages for "green screen" work. I totally fit those parameters, plus they were paying 75 dollars for two hours of work.
They didn't want head shots or resume's, just a full body picture. I sent them this:
I know... I know, totally sexy right?
I figured what he hell. After a day or two I received an e-mail from them, informing me that the "client" had chosen me. I was to be at the studio between 2pm and 4pm the following Tuesday.
It all seemed very ominous. I had no idea what it is for (and still don't) or what I would be doing. I couldn't help but picture a shadowy figure in the back of the room, smoking a cigarette and talking through a microphone that distorted his voice. He would lean forward into the microphone and say things like, "Mr. Gibbons, I need you to bend over and pick up that gun in front of you... slower... with conviction... think about a puppy... ", sounding like the dude from all 87 Saw movies.
On Monday I got a call from them telling me to wear dark clothing. They also wanted to know if it was OK if they had me walk on a treadmill. At first I thought this might be a very elaborate hoax by my wife to get me to do some exercise.
This afternoon I drove to the studio which was in a pretty shady part of town. For all intents and purposes I could have been going to an alien landing site to be eaten by space creatures and no one would have ever known.
I pulled up and parked in front of the warehouse. After walking into literally 4 of the wrong offices, I finally found the right building. I signed the waver and was lead to a big open studio with a huge green screen.
The producer told me where to stand as 7 people entered the room and sat in directors chairs to watch. They never said a word. I was told to stand there and act as if I was at a bus stop. I did. Then they told me to change into the cargo shorts I was instructed to bring. I was again directed to stand there.
As a performer, it was very difficult. I had to really reach down inside and pull out several very real, very painful memories of situations where I was just standing around in order to really make my performance read. It was some of my best work.
Ten minutes from the time I arrived I was leaving, $75 bucks richer. That means I was making $450 dollars an hour... sort of. It's tough work being a paid actor. I can see why actors are always bitching and moaning about their life.