Wednesday, 12 March 2008

The Einstein Factor

After my stint as a Military Marine on The Pacific which lasted for a couple of days, I make another television call, this time at the ABC Studios again for The Einstein Factor. Last time my topic was Errol Flynn, but this time I'll be putting my knowledge of that merry master of mirth Benny Hill to the buzzer.

Working on The Pacific was surreal, the 4am wake up calls to get to the main building by 6am only to be driven an hour out of town to then be marched about in uniform single file, and finally in the blazing heat dodge machine gun blanks and mortar bombs.

All in a days work for an extra, but it fell on a few days I didn't have to work and so it was "extra" in all senses of the word including monetary. It was also exhausting, eleven hour days in full military gear and being barked at by real Marine Officers, all to keep up the authenticity of the production.

The funny thing about the auditions was that when I turned up we all had to take off our shirts and get our photo snapped - the men. Most of the other people there were young hopefuls probably sent by some mass casting mob like Blackbox or whomever. They were either brawny guys, tanned with styled highlighted hair or pretty girls in fashionable jeans and tops.

The girls all squirmed when the casting director told them their hair would need to be cropped, "None of this pretty stuff" she said, "It's the 1940's". When it came to having our body shots taken, all the young fit guys ripped off their shirts and squeezed their muscles, and I thought, "I'm going to look so out of place" but when I got to the camera, the casting director said, "Good, I can use you", and I walked away thinking, "Oh yeah, POW I bet" - not to be, indeed all the soldiers were fairly skinny lads because soldiers were in those days, not beefy and tanned, these guys had trooped without food, and had no time to tone muscle, it was all sinew.

I suppose the other guys and girls might finally realise their look suits a KFC commercial more then a grubby World War II epic.

So, now it is back to my element into the cosy ABC Studios to Reverse salute Peter Burner.

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