Former ICRT mainstay (before it went down the drain) Brian Lynch showed up at Darrell’s on Saturday afternoon to do some pickup shots as well as his looping. Though he’s lost a bit of weight and is looking better, no one would accuse him of being excessively sprightly. The dogs were a bit apprehensive about Brian. The cats were nowhere to be seen. Doug, who played one of the many guards and lent us his jeep for the jeep scenes, also showed up to loop his (one) line as well as a series of fighting-related grunts.
After all of that, we piled into Doug’s jeep and made our way to JB’s, the site of the long-awaited cast party. To call it a wrap party would seem kind of silly as we finished principle photography in December. A number of people were already there, and the place filled up quickly. I was asked the same question approximately 389 times: “When will the movie be out?” My answer is a no-doubt overly optimistic six months, whereas Dean thinks it will take another year. The second most-ofted asked question was “What the hell are you going to do with it when it’s finished?” For this I have to be a bit more vague. My current plan is to submit it to some film festivals, show it to a few industry people I know here, and try to get some kind of distribution deal. Dean’s going to do the same in Canada. Although it’s possibly we could both end up in an elevator behind someone we think is a movie mogul, talking in exaggerated whispers about what a “sleeper hit” the movie is and how we’re “just going to leave a DVD right here next to the railing.”
At one point Dean dragged me by the ear over to the microphone setup, where he gave a short, humorous, well-scripted speech, as he is wont to do. Then he shoved the microphone at me, and I stuttered a few phrases into the awkward silence that followed. Actually, it was only at that moment, looking at the crowd of faces looking my way, that I realized not only how many people we’d managed to rope into helping us with this thing, but how wonderful they all are. I attempted to say so, and was surprised and moved when my remarks were met with enthusiastic applause. At the risk of sounding maudlin, I have to admit that it was a wonderful moment. It also impressed on me once again the fact that we owe these people the best movie we can make, and we shouldn’t let sentiment get in the way of that in any way. Maurice summed it up rather well when he said, “I’d much rather have a nanosecond-long role in a spectacular movie than a huge role in a mediocre one.” I hope everyone else agrees, because I plan to make that my mantra when I cut further versions of the movie.
The party ran past midnight, the crowd diminishing until only Rowan, Brian Asmus, Lisa and I were left, pleasantly drunk, at a table in the darkened bar. The owner suggested that we depart, so we did. I was fully intent on going home, but the others were in the mood for yet more revelry, so we took a brand-spanking new taxi to Watersheds. Brian marched straight in, but Rowan and I held back, regarding the young fashionable types strolling around outside the tiny space. Not our crowd, we decided, and began walking down the rainy alley towards Bliss instead. Lisa followed.
Bliss was still open, thankfully, and we had more drinks, and more, while sitting amidst the green carpet of the downstairs lounge area. Rowan grabbed a diminutive bartender and began dancing with her. Her Harry Bellafonte collection had been kidnapped, so we listened to Billie Holiday. I don’t recall much of what we talked about through the rye whiskey; I’m reasonably sure most of my state secrets survived intact.
Eventually they stopped serving drinks, and the bar prepared to close. We were ejected with a suitable amount of grace and caught taxis to our respective homes. “Where was the other fellow heading?” my cabbie asked me as we hydroplaned in the general direction of Bitan.
“Yangmingshan,” I answered. The driver grimaced.
“Damn, I live on Yangmingshan. I could have dropped him off and gone straight home,” he said. Outside, the sky was lightening into a dull, wet blue. After arriving home, I took a shower and slept to the sound of the rain until Buddhist chants woke me up at noon.