Monday, February 27, 2012

The Artist Wins Best Picture

Last night's Academy Awards didn't have too many surprises, and The Artist took home a bunch of major awards.  And though it wasn't my favorite movie of the year (I was actually hoping Moneyball or Midnight in Paris would win Best Picture), it was the only movie up for awards that I was involved with.

My friend, Megan, snapped this shot during the Oscar telecast last night which featured me for about a tenth of a second.  Thanks for spotting me!  (And yes, I'm aware that blending into the gentleman behind me makes me look like I have Nosferatu ears...)

For more info about my various days working on The Artist, check out this post from last month.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Runyon Canyon Hike

The day before my hernia surgery, my friend Chris and his dog, Nani, (see below) took me for my first ever hike in Runyon Canyon, a popular hiking spot in town.  The weather was perfect and the trails offered several beautiful views.  I will definitely go back!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Under the Knife

It's probably not so rare in California to have someone sign your body with a permanent marker, but yesterday was a first time for me.  According to new federal guidelines, surgeons must sign near where they are about to cut, hence my doctor's autograph on my right quad -- the side of the hernia he was about to fix.

Thanks to everybody who sent good vibes and words of support.  Apparently the surgery was a success, although you'll have a tough time convincing my extremely sore abdomen of that for at least a few days...

Despite the discomfort, I'm grateful for my insurance, pain meds, and access to some of the best doctors around.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Non-Softball Miller Lite

Last week I wrote about how Miller Lite was looking for softball teams for a new commercial.  Unfortunately, our team didn't get chosen for that commercial.  As part of the same campaign, however, I got to work a day as a "Partygoer."  It was a beautiful day on a great location in Grenada Hills.  As you can see from the pic above -- in the very center -- the real star of the commercial was the bowl of pretzels...

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Dairy Staters in Toluca Lake

This week my parents drove up from where they are vacationing in Arizona to visit for a few days.  It was great having them in town, and they enjoyed the new neighborhood.  In fact, as you can see, they loved walking around -- and then stopping to rest on the Toluca Lake benches.

And I learned just how self-sufficient they are when I had to work one day and they were left to their own devices.  They walked the neighborhood and eventually found themselves at Warner Brothers studios where they took a 3 hour back lot tour!  It looked like fun and they had the pictures to prove it -- good work, Mom and Dad, come back soon!

Monday, February 13, 2012

National Marquette Day!

Unfortunately I am some 2,000 miles from my alma mater, but I am still an avid supporter of Marquette University basketball.  This past Saturday was National Marquette Day as the Warriors/Golden Eagles squared off against (formerly much-more-hated) rival Cincinnati.  I know a lot of good friends and former classmates were part of the raucous Bradley Center crowd and I sure wish I was there with 'em!  But, since I'm out here -- and a bit under the weather, I had to celebrate from my own couch as I watched the game on ESPNU.
And despite MU getting down to their usual early deficit, they roared back for a convincing win.  And despite having no real size, this team has a lot of heart and is exciting to watch.  Currently in the top 15 nationally, looks like our boys may be poised for another nice March Madness run.  Ring Out A-Hoya!

Friday, February 10, 2012

SAG-AFTRA Launches Website

For everything you ever wanted to know (and more) about the upcoming proposed merger between the major screen acting unions, check out the new ONE UNION website.  Ballots are set to be mailed out to the members by the end of February.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Dog Jack Spotted! At A Redbox Near You!

Dog Jack -- the little Civil War movie that could -- has finally been released! (Second from the lower right in the above pic, between Spy Kids and Batman.) If you're interested in seeing a family-friendly movie, narrated by Louis Gossett Jr.,  that was made on a shoe-string budget (i.e. most of us working for free), but with large amounts of love, check it out.  (It's also on 

It's been several years since we braved the crazy August Pennsylvania heat in wool Union uniforms, but I remember it like it was yesterday.  Glad the movie is finally seeing the light of day -- congrats to all those who actually made it happen!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Miller Lite Softball Commercial?

Yesterday there was a breakdown looking for softball teams for a Miller Lite commercial.  I e-mailed the casting director and told her I play on several teams and asked what the "audition" protocol was for  such a project.  She told me to send pictures of each of the guys on the team.  So my friend Chris and I collected as many pics of our softball-playing teammates and friends as we could and I submitted them.  Here is a sampling -- overall, I think we make a pretty diverse looking, beer drinking crew.

Now, I'm waiting to hear back.  But it sounds like it would be a great time -- spending a day outside shooting a national commercial with some friends playing softball?  Per one of the CD's e-mails to me: "The spot is looking for authentic people who would have a good time together on camera."  Having a good time playing softball -- and getting paid for it? -- now that we all can do!

Monday, February 6, 2012

The Good People at NCIS

After Gina's first NCIS episode, "Engaged: Part I" aired last fall, Mark Harmon presented her with this beautifully framed still from her show's opening titles.  Every cast member signed it and wrote a short message of congratulations or welcome.  What a way to make a new writer feel at home!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

A Little Residual Goodness

When work is slow, there's nothing like opening a nondescript envelope from SAG and finding some residual goodness!  Residuals are what actors (and writers, directors, etc.) make when a program/movie is released -- subsequent to its initial run -- or repeated on dvd, pay-per-view, pay/free tv, etc.  The value of residuals can vary widely based on what type of medium and how long ago the project was made.  My last residual check for Angels & Demons was fifty-some dollars, this one more than 10 times as much!  (Yay, for being fortunate enough to be a tiny part of a popular movie that is endlessly replayed on free TV!)  I realize that this is probably the last sizable check I will get from the project, but that's okay by me.

Also, last week I got a residual check from my 2010 episode of Criminal Minds -- it was a pretty big check, so the show must have reran in prime time.  Of course if I was working more, more of these babies would be rolling in quarterly, but as it is, I am definitely grateful whenever they do arrive.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Cat Yoga

Recently, I've had several inquiries as to how the cats are getting along.  Let's just say there aren't killing each other.  Actually, it's better than that though: the other day we came home after being gone all day and they were asleep on the same couch -- not cuddling, mind you, but still a mere four feet apart.  And you can see from this post that there are becoming (mostly) civil. 

Here is a video of the cats doing their version of yoga.  It's is not what one might call "strenuous."

And one final picture of both cats sitting in bed, helping Gina write her current episode of NCIS:

Thursday, February 2, 2012

SAG Awards Contrarian

Of the 14 categories in last weekend's SAG Awards ceremony, the actor/program I chose as my favorite only matched up with the masses twice: Modern Family and Kate Winslet.  (How anyone involved in Breaking Bad doesn't win an award he or she is up for boggles my mind.) 

However, if my goal was to guess who would actually win, I would have gotten 11 out of the 14.  Begs the question of these awards shows: is there only satisfaction in seeing the actor you think should win actually win?  Or is there a measure of satisfaction in successfully guessing who the membership will choose? 

Here is a full list of winners -- and their speeches.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

ONE UNION for Actors

For any of you who watched the SAG Awards last weekend, you saw many actors sporting these nifty pins:

I wrote about the talks recently.  And as expected, the merger proposal passed both boards (it should have -- as they were the ones that came up with it!), and the time-table for an all-member vote looks to be within the next several weeks.  Onward...