July 19, 1996

Our last day of shooting was almost anticlimactic: after yesterday's big push, it was all but inevitable that we would finish on time. Fortune smiled on us yet again, and we got both the cloudy weather that we needed for our day-for-night scenes and the sunny weather we needed for our exteriors. At the end of the day, the moon even came out for the first time in weeks, and we got an establishing shot that we had all but given up on.

The last sex scene today was one of the most difficult to shoot, and the actors were troubled by the joking chatter on the set before the takes. Eventually we banished most of the crew to an unused room while we shot. During the last week or so, I've been making an effort to keep the joking on the set to a minimum for the serious scenes, but in general I've been too much of a wimp to control the tone of the set as I should have. I feel bad that I wasn't able to give the actors the working environment that they would have liked.

In the afternoon, as the pressure eased off, we started to think about our impending return to civilian life. I played guitar on the set between takes, and Alex and I sang a harmony for the first time in what seemed to be years. Later, we became melancholy as we sat by the lakeside in the dusk waiting for the moon to come clear of the clouds.

At night, Edith had her long hair cut by Claus (who's been giving nifty haircuts to the crew throughout our stay at the location), and we finished the shoot with the first scene in the film, which takes place two years before the rest of the action. (In Pinteresque fashion, we shot the last scene of the film on the first day of shooting and vice versa.) Afterwards, it felt like New Year's Eve, with everyone hugging and kissing. I went into the bedroom and allowed myself to nap on the set for the first time.

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