July 2, 1996

I made the incredible mistake today of giving myself a small part in our picnic scene in Central Park, when the intended actor (Bill, the producer) had to run to Long Island to pick up equipment. The problem wasn't so much that I was bad (which I was), but that I couldn't watch the other actors in the scene, some of whom needed supervision. For a while, I stood there in the frame and monitored the performances, until the actors started complaining that I was throwing them off by not reacting. Then I started acting a little, which completely obliterated my awareness of my surroundings. On top of everything, Edith and Dylan showed up in the middle of the scene, and I had to humiliate myself in front of them! Never again.

In general, I think I took too little care in casting the supporting roles. Some of the actors in these parts have been excellent, but more than once I've been unable to get exactly what I wanted, either because I didn't have rehearsal time with the actors or because they were inappropriate for their roles. Our production has become a bit more professional over the months, but this is one aspect of the film that will probably betray our amateur status.

We got one wonderful shot that made the day for me: a big closeup of the lovers kissing and being startled by someone calling to them. The shot came out like something from a Frank Borzage film, with Edith and Dylan wavering in and out of the tight frame and clinging to each other. I get happy every time I think about it.

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