Roll out the red carpet, call Harvey Weinstein, inject some botox in Joan Rivers, and don’t remind Leonardo DiCaprio – Oscar time is fast approaching in Los Angeles. Hollywood Boulevard has officially been closed off between Highland and La Brea in anticipation of the big event at the Dolby Theater this Sunday.
I won’t be attending the 85th Academy Awards this weekend, but I can beam with pride knowing that my likeness has been captured on celluloid in Silver Linings Playbook, one of the nominated Best Picture films. I know as an actor, you’re not technically supposed to mention extra work on your resume, and many think it’s demeaning, but critics be damned, I think it’s kind of cool. Sure I’m only in a few blink-and-you-miss scenes where I’m dressed as an astronaut and a wolf during the Halloween segments, but it’s fun to feel some invested interest in a movie. Although invites, nominations, and heck even SAG eligibility escape the extra, it does give you the right to say things like, “I remember when David O. Russell was setting up that shot, and Bradley Cooper had to do five takes because he kept messing up.” or “Jennifer Lawrence really is grounded and probably our generations’ Meryl Streep.”
I’m rooting for SLP of course, although I’ve been informed that Argo is slated to win. Argo can win and Hollywood can feel good about itself – especially after they’ve come under fire this year from Congress about violence and gun control issues – knowing that the movie industry played an integral part in the rescue of American hostages in Iran. Silver Linings, however has grit. It’s a damaged love story set in Philly and is about second chances and hope in the face of despair. When I went home for Christmas, my Mom and Dad watched the movie together. They pointed me out of course, but laughed and cried along with the film.
I was moved during a pivotal scene with Bradley Cooper when he says, “The world will break your heart ten ways to Sunday. That’s guaranteed. I can’t begin to explain that. Or the craziness inside myself and everyone else. But guess what? Sunday’s my favorite day again.” As a lowly extra in a film, and an actor new to Los Angeles with great expectations, it’s dialogue, and a movie that I can identify with. Now off to grab some popcorn and root for the home team.