EVERYONE’S A CRITIC
September 16, 2008.
I was doing a casting director workshop a few weeks ago and got paired up with a great comedic actress from the studio. The scene we were given was between a bored casting director and a bad actress. The actress is having a terrible, over-the-top audition for a herpes commercial and the casting director is reading opposite her in a monotone “I couldn’t care less” manner. When the “real” casting director sent us out of the room to practice we went up on the roof of the studio but only had time to run through the scene once before some strange guy, dripping with sweat, came staggering up to the roof from the alley. He was mumbling something about being lost and a street that didn’t exist in L.A. We tried to help him but he was clearly high so then we just tried to get rid of him. Unfortunately he saw that we were holding scripts.
“Are you girls actresses?”
“Are you auditioning for something?”
“Um, not really. It’s a workshop.”
“You girls got agents?”
“Are you famous?”
“What are you working on?”
“Just this scene for the workshop.”
“Well, let me see it.”
“Oh, no, that’s okay. Thank you, though.”
“Come on, come on. I’m lost. Give me some entertainment.”
“Oh, no, we really have to practice before we go back in.”
“Yeah, practice for me. You need an audience. I’ll give you something extra.” “No.” “Come on. You gotta get used to an audience. I’ll tell you if it’s good or not.”
This went on for some time and finally I said, “Oh, let’s just do it.”
So my partner and I proceed with the scene- with her playing a really bad actress and me reading in a monotone. After approximately two sentences the guy stopped us.
“Hold on, hold on. You guys really think that shit’s going to work?”
We tried to explain that it was supposed to be bad (a losing battle) until we finally lost patience with being nice and went inside. We hadn’t been able to rehearse much at all but when we got up the scene went beautifully- everyone laughed the entire way through and the casting director said she had no adjustments but just wanted to see it again for fun.
I told Tony the story a few days later and he said, “See, Dawn, everyone’s a critic. Even the guy who’s high on crack coccaine.”