CITY ISLAND: A STEVEN STRAIT JOYRIDE

Two clips below, featuring Steven Strait and Dominik Garcia: they’re driving in a car. Sounds simple, right? NOTHING IN MOVIES IS SIMPLE. This mini-moment involved mounting the Honda Element onto a contraption called a “process trailer”–an insane device that is, essentially, a trailer on which you mount the car you’re shooting, several cameras, all kinds of lighting equipment…etc. etc. Then a few of us–the director, the DP and the script supervisor at a minimum–ride in the car that’s towing, buried in video monitors, headphones etc. Often the sound crew rides in the cab of the towing car, trying to dial in the actors voices…all I can say is Oy Vey.

Steven is one remarkable young man–I hate referencing him by age because he’s truly ageless. Still, it was often strange for me to realize, while working with him, that when I was his age (early twenties) he was barely born. So asssured and serene is he in his dealings with work, the world and people that I felt he was beyond being a contemporary; like Alan Arkin he was somebody whose very presence made me feel better about my own work, place in the world and station in life. Jesus, has this blog become nothing but gush? The truth is, I’ve actually made films which were not pleasant experiences. This one’s different and thus my enthusiasm continues, unabated. By the way, Steven’s married to a terrific actress and lovely woman, Lynn Collins. Check her out in the Pacino “Merchant Of Venice” (she’s Portia, of course).

In one of the below clips, Steven slates himself for two cameras. In the other the scene is over and the actors, stranded in the above described contraption, wait helplessly for me to say cut. Eventually I do…

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