HEB, the monopolistic supermarket chain here in San Antonio, closed down my neighborhood grocery store a couple of weeks back. So now I’m trying to settle on which inconvenient grocery I will now use for my shopping.
Earlier in the week, I stopped by the La Fiesta (one of the very few competitors to HEB) located on S. Flores. It’s maybe three miles away. The problem is, while I was standing in line, holding a carry-basket in one hand, and a box of 12 Topo Chico mineral waters by one of the two handle slots, the Topo Chico box decided to open up. It suddenly became lighter than a pillow. And then came the sickening sound of a dozen glass bottles under carbonated pressure bursting as one. I wouldn’t say I’m persona non grata at La Fiesta, but I’m a bit self-conscious with the idea of slinking back in there again. And so tonight I tried a HEB over on Nogalitos. Sure, it’s only about a mile and a half away, but I really do need to make a firm commitment with my boycott of those bastards, We’ll see.
Yesterday in the early evening I gave all the sixteen teams for this year’s 48 Hour Film Project their marching orders.
A representative from each team pulled a slip of paper from a hat. It gave them each a particular genre. (Drew and Janet from the San Antonio Film Commission got stuck with the dreaded “Western / Musical.” This is an instance where you can choose one of two problematic genres. I believe they are going for the western.)
The prop is “paint.” And I know one team where a character will be huffing it. The character is “Brad or Brenda Parsons, Water Expert.” And the line of dialog is “What’s the worst that could happen?” These three components are the same for all the teams.
Thanks Dar and Marti for helping out as volunteers. And additional thanks to George and Cat Cisneros for providing their space for the kick-off.
Today I decided to drive around and visit some of the sets.
The Dark Design team was shooting not too far away in a large house over by SAC. Matthew Jasso opened the door for me and introduced me to the small cast and crew. Travis Thomsen, team leader, was upstairs shooting a scene. He explained that I missed several gorier scenes earlier. I only saw a few drops of fake blood. Travis drew “Thriller / Suspense.”
Next I headed over to G2E Studios where the NALIP-SA team was camped out. Team leader Veronica Hernandez had drawn “comedy.” Roman Garcia was camera-ready with some new tats. And Christopher Viltz was dressed quite nice — I believe he was the water expert. The NALIP team seemed to be running harmoniously on Bud Lite and paletas. Not too shabby in the craft services department, I’m thinking.
I then drove way the hell up north towards the Outer Cracker Belt where one tends to get lost in the proliferation of cul d’sacs and gated communities. I finally found the Film Classics team, led by Bryan Ortiz and Michael Druck. They were busy in a large, beautiful house, which I think belongs to actress Liz Moise Gonzalez. Other actors on set were Rick Carrillo, Nikki Young, and Gabi Walker. I hung out for awhile, sampling Liz’s guacamole and Alicia Walker’s PB&J sandwiches. Film Classics were certainly on par with NALIP in the amenities.
For my final stop of the day, I drove way out to the westside to a wonderfully seedy bar where the Haunted House Studio team, lead by Carlos Pina, were shooting their last scene. Erick Romero, Roz, and Priscilla were sitting around a table as Hector Machado worked the camera. Armando was at a table further back editing earlier scenes on a laptop. “Coach” Pablo, who had provided some stunts earlier in the day, was prepping the beer bottles and glasses of liquor with tea. A woman named Shannon was taking production stills. Inexplicably, she had her mouth wired shut. Something one just doesn’t see every day — but, non-the-less, the sort of ambiance that never seems too out of place on a Carlos Pina set.
Other than these four teams, I’ve been in communication with six other teams since the kick-off. Only two have encountered significant obstacles. But as I’ve not heard anything recently from them, I’ll take the optimist’s path and assume they have resolved their troubles.
I’ll have to wait until tomorrow night to see who comes out the far end of the tunnel with a film completed for the deadline.