Wednesday, October 21, 2009
The Most Annoying Guy On Set.
If I wanted to spend time in front of a camera, I wouldn't be lugging around cables and stands all day. I'd be going to auditions and looking for an agent. In fact, despite working around a camera all the time, being in front of one makes me ridiculously uncomfortable. So to me, the most annoying guy on set is the EPK guy, aka: the guy who's shooting the "behind the scenes" video.
In case you haven't noticed, most of the stuff I work on are low budget projects that aren't good enough to be listed on IMDB, let alone be seen outside of a cast and crew screening. So it always perplexes me when Production brings on a guy to shoot behind-the-scenes footage all day, every day.
For example, a job I was on earlier this year shot for 5 days. The EPK guy was there the whole time. Give or take a few breaks here and there, that's about 40-50 hours of behind-the-scenes footage.
For a 15 minute short.
Is that really necessary??
Now normally, I wouldn't care who Production hired to do what... Unless it effects my ability to do my job. And this is where the "annoying" part comes in.
This guy (and the many others like him I've encountered over the years) was always in the way. With his eyes behind a view finder the bulk of the time, his focus is only limited to whatever is in front of the camera. Forget the crew dodging all around him, trying to set up a scene. Forget the cables he's about to trip over, or the stand he just kicked. He's so focused on getting the interesting "action" shots of everyone working that he doesn't notice he's on a ladder that the grips need to use or standing directly under a lamp that needs to come down.
Plus, the "interviews." Oh dear lord. That's the most annoying part of it all.
I'm handling a really hot light. He comes up, totally invading my personal space with a camera in hand, and asks a stupid question like, "So, can you tell me a little bit about what you're doing?" Dude. I'm trying not to burn myself and you're not making it any easier. Go away.
We're about to roll, and everyone's waiting on a last minute tweak. But I can't rush onto set because the EPK guy, totally invading my personal space with a camera in hand, is standing right in front of me, trying to get me to say some words of praise about this wonderful production I'm on.
There's a call over the walkie for a light. I hop onto the truck, grab whatever it is I need to grab, and turn to hop back out. Only I can't. Because the EPK guy is there. Totally invading my personal space. Camera in hand. Cornering me between the shelves and equipment carts. "Hi. Can you tell me your name and occupation on this shoot?"
Ugh. Really? Can't you harass me when I'm not working??
I'm usually a nice person. I can be sweeter than an ice cream sundae. But I do have to wonder how many times the guy has me on camera saying "Get out of the way," "Not right now," and "Get that fucking camera out of my face."