I got the gig through this online talent agency I use called The Agency Online: http://www.theagencyonline.com/ What you do is pay a small monthly fee, and you get access to different castings, build a profile, etc. Sometimes they even submit for jobs they think you'd be appropriate for. To be honest, I'd been with them for about a year and a half with no success. I was ready to cancel my membership to save a few bucks that could go towards rent... Or beer. I got an email saying that I was submitted for a print ad for All-State Insurance. "Ok...," I thought. I'm not usually considered print material, but I figured I could go in for the audition. "What the Hell? Right?"
The day of the shoot, I made my way to an empty garage/studio in Chelsea for our shoot. I was nervous as Hell. "Don't fuck this up, Fafoutakis!" There was catering, hair & make-up, and a full set. This was legit! I noticed one of the older extras I had seen in a few agent meet-up classes. We approached each other and introduced ourselves. He was one of those types of actors just scrambling and clawing for any crumb of recognition. You know the kind that tells you his resume before he says his name. He was the one in those classes that asks the question during the Q & A portion, "Why am I not getting work!?" He looked me over with a look of disappointment that I was here.
Jaded Extra: "Oh, are you an extra?"
Me: "No, I'm the 'Hero Talent'... I get paid more..."
Jaded Extra: "Oh... Well you know they were talking about promoting me to the "Hero" group too."
I decided then and there not to let this guy get me down. I would have a great day with this, and nobody was going to take this from me or let the air out of my sails. We soon were put in football fan gear for the first half of the shoot. We did a big group scene in the stands cheering with Dean in the middle causing mayhem as the spokesman, Mayhem. I nearly lost my shit when I saw Dean enter for hair and make-up. I've been a big fan of his ever since I saw Oz, so to have him in the same room made this day so special and real. We took our shots in the stands with re-arranging various people in the stands. I was terrified of being cut out of the shot, but they moved me prominently in the stands close to Dean near the end of the shoot. It was finally time for the "Heroes" shot. We were taking the picture in the car with me, Dean, and Michael up in the front. Michael was supposed to be driving with Dean disrupting our trip. I was in the passenger seat supposed to look scared that we would crash. Dean was a total gentleman and very funny on-set. The car could be uncomfortable at times, but he handled it like a pro. He took the time to get to know Mike and me, even though he had to put Mike in a headlock for a few shots. It was probably the most fun job I've ever had.
|On-set for All-State|