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A Brand New Satan and Bob Cartoon is currently in production. Be on the look out for "Bedtime Tails", coming soon!


My latest Satan and Bob Cartoon, and this time in HIGH DEF!
(Just stick you head closer to the monitor and turn your computer speakers all the way up.)


Bored to Death on the set of HBO’s “Bored to Death”

NO!  WAIT!  I ONLY WROTE THAT TITLE BECAUSE IT SOUNDED CUTE! 
I actually had a good time in the end.  What am I talking about?

I was cast as an extra on the HBO show “Bored To Death” after receiving an email from The New York Comic Con back in May.

I guess I look enough like a goofy comic book artist to fool someone.

AND, to say I was cast as an extra is a tremendous exaggeration.

I was a background extra, which is just to give background color to a scene, like the color of paint on a background wall, only less important.  The script probably read something like: “a large room filled with 200 fans, mostly in colorful costumes with one geek and two nerds.”  I was one of the nerds.  All this and I was paid $80 for the day (as opposed to me paying $20 to go to a real convention as I did the previous weekend).

I planned out my schedule: grab a sketchbook, get the kids to school, catch the train to NYC, jump on the subway to the Brooklyn Lyceum, yeah, I could do that.

As I hopped onto the subway train a half hour ahead of schedule, I was feeling good and smug that I, a boy form the suburbs, was finally doing what working commuters do everyday, and I would even make it to work on time.  Then I looked more carefully at the subway map and realized I was heading in the direction of the Bronx instead of Brooklyn.  (Hey, they both start with “B” and I was kinda sleepy.)

One transfer and 32 minutes later I was back on schedule and believe it or not, made it there on time.


DID I SEE ANY STARS?

Well, not right away.  The closest I got to any stars was a dirty and torn changing screen with marker pen and masking tape on it that said, “Property of 30 Rock” on it.

Ted Danson (center) with Jason Schwartzman (right) from the window of the room where they kept the unfed and unwashed extras (me).


SO WHAT DID YOU DO?

We sat around for a few hours.  People got into beautiful and elaborate costumes of their own creation, and we sat around and excitedly chattered as we watched the temperature rise quickly as our spirits sank slowly.

After 2 hours a burly guy brought in sandwiches and gruffly said, “take only one”, and for some reason the 50 sandwiches he brought in failed to feed the 175 extras there.

Then they released us for lunch, so the people in costumes & make-up got out of their costumes and we went searching for food.  Nice pizza place across the street.

SO WAIT, WHAT DID YOU DO, AGAIN?

We sat around and talked more after lunch.  I met a professional SAG extra (Hi, Leonard), a Painter and Art Teacher (Hi, Milena), a costume designer, students, etc.

Around 2pm the film company took in some of the brighter costumes and spread them around the large main floor of the set.  The rest of us couldn’t see anything in the hot attic we were in, so the minutes seemed to crawl by. 

Around 4pm the company sent home the first casualty.  A guy in an elaborate and metal robot costume was overwhelmed by heat exhaustion and the on set nurse (not just someone in a nurse’s costume) had a company worker take the extra home in a cab and make sure he was ok.

SO, WAIT, DID YOU EVER GET ON THE SET AND DO ANYTHING?

Finally, after the long, hot day, I was called down to the set and was put in the background.  I had not seen the set or the actors up to this point.  The room was made up to be a small comic book convention, with tables and comics & some actual creators, etc.

The assistant director said he wanted all of us background people to make some quiet conversation, so I turned to the woman to my left and told her……

(Whoops, my wife is calling me to dinner; I’ll have to get back to this tomorrow).


TITILLATING TALES of TV-LAND. Part II

So I turn to this woman in a BatGirl costume, whom I have never spoken with before and say, “Be prepared to see the worst drawing of yourself you’ve ever seen in your life.”

I decided that was going to be my costume & character.  Crazy Comic Book Artist who never stops drawing (Crazy Artist, that’s quite the stretch for me, huh?).

MY ART IS FEATURED ON HBO'S BORED TO DEATH.

Well, once again, not exactly.  But every time the cameras rolled in my direction, by some shear stroke of luck, my sketchbook page would fall open, facing the camera. Today, I can’t find that sketchbook, but it was fun to do at the time.  I took a couple of pictures just to picture message to the kids back at home who were probably wondering why daddy was not burning their dinner, as he usually does every night.



DAY 2 OF MY 15 SECONDS OF FAME

The 2 day-shoot probably accounts for 2 minutes of screen time, so don't blink.

SO WHERE DO WE SEE YOU?

Look directly at Wonder Woman's breasts.

I was standing 20 feet behind an actress dressed as Wonder Woman that Ted Danson's character flirts with.  I was told by some of the men at my church that if you have one of those new 3-D High Def TVs, you might be able to get right up to the screen while wearing the 3-D glasses and push Wonder Woman chest to the side, but I think they might have been kidding.


THE CONTINUING CONUNDRUM OF CONTINUITY

On the 2nd day, I decided to wear sandals instead of my heavy hiking boots to beat the heat.  After all, no one will be looking at my feet.  Guess again!

The assistant director moved some of us background pieces to the other side of the room, so now I was one of the fans waiting in line to talk with the comic book creator of "Super Ray", played by the actor Zack Galifianakis.

SPOILER ALERT

The episode is titled, "Super Ray is Mortal", and in Zack is stabbed with an exacto knife (I did that to myself once, it can really hurt), and then the perpetrator is wrestled to the ground by Jason Schwartzman's character...right at the feet of myself and the other comic book fans.

So, the size 11 1/2 sandals, that's me!  Yeah!  My famous feet!

In between takes, Jason checked for messages on his cell phone and talked with the show's creator about going to a ball game over the weekend (I think he's a Yankees fan, but you'll have to ask him yourself).

We'll just have to see how long the scene goes in the finished piece.  In the previews, it looked like a minor scene in the story.  It may be my 0.0015 seconds of fame.


 
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