Wednesday, September 10, 2014
King Kong, your frapaccino is up!
Forget the fact that you may see stars. On any given day you may see a woman with a giant snake around her neck. Or five bloody zombies playing basketball. (THE DRIBBLING DEAD)
When it takes four hours to apply gorilla make up, the actor is not going to get shed his fur to grab a latte at the studio coffee bar. “Chloe, your coffee is ready. King Kong, your Frappuccino is up!”
When Jamie Farr was doing MASH he’d always go to lunch in a dress.
It’s not unusual to walk through a movie lot past twenty ancient Roman soldiers or three prisoners chained at the ankle and not even blink. I recently saw a guy in a giant bulbous Beefeaters’ uniform try to wedge into a booth at the commissary.
On any given day at lunch you might see four bloody ER patients at one table, three hookers at another, and five aliens at the counter. And the funniest part is that everyone else in the restaurants ignores them. Nothing to see here other than space creatures and hot women with their breasts hanging out.
I spent twenty years on the Paramount lot, which at the time was hopping. All of the various STAR TREK series were filmed there. Data once asked me where the credit union office was. Our bungalow was near the daycare center and we would routinely see all kinds of Romulans and Denobulans dropping their kids off for the day.
Of course it’s one thing for all of us to be blase about these outlandish costumes, it’s another for the actors themselves.
As fun as it is seeing all these elaborate get-ups, I bet in the golden age of films (back in the 30s and 40s) it must’ve REALLY been fun. Cowboys mingled with submarine crews and Frankenstein shared a smoke with Harem girls. Back in the 50s when Hollywood was making all those sword and sandal films I bet you had some extras going to lunch at the studio commissary dragging crosses.
For all the aggravation of show business, I must say there wasn’t a day I didn’t drive onto a studio lot and think, “How cool that THIS is where I work.” But I never took full advantage of it. I never wore my Princess Lea costume to work.