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October 26, 2008

FNL: Report from the Background

I've had a few opportunities in the last year or so to work as an extra on the TV series Friday Night Lights, as much of it shoots here in the Austin area. Couldn't fit it into my schedule on most days, but last Wednesday I decided to get in on the action.

I'd hoped to work as a Coach, but the only slots left for my type and age were for Parents. I showed up at the ersatz home of the Dillon Panthers, ready to shoot a scene where parents rally for their "sons" as they're bused off to an away game.

We waited as Panther cheerleaders engaged in the shoe-polish ritual:

 

 

Panther cheerleaders decorate a car on the set of 'Friday Night Lights'.
 

 

 

It was cloudy most of that morning, until around 11 or so when the sun decided to remind us that it might be October, but central Texas doesn't really see Fall until at least November. Between takes and multiple camera setups, I tried to shield my face from the solar onslaught --- I'd left the sunscreen at home. By the time we were done waving and cheering (mostly in pantomime), I knew without even looking in a mirror that my mug was going to be lobster-red.

Just before the final command of "check the gate" from the 1st AD, things changed a bit:

 

 

Clouds loom over Hermann Field on the set of 'Friday Night Lights'.
 
 

 

Nice timing, cloud cover. Sure, maybe you looked threatening, but you didn't even produce any rain to cool us off.

On an up note, Kyle Chandler ("Coach Taylor") was kind enough to say hi as he hurried to wardrobe. Reports of his being an exceptionally nice guy are confirmed.

 

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October 03, 2008

A Crash Course in Political VO

Unless you live under a rock, you've probably noticed that we're about as deep into the political season as it gets. Campaign ads on radio and TV are ubiquitous, and they're meant to have an impact on undecided voters. A hat-tip to Stephanie at Vox Daily for finding and publishing this behind-the-scenes look at how it's done.

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