Life in Hollywood, below-the-line

Life in Hollywood, below-the-line
Work gloves at the end of the 2006/2007 television season (photo by Richard Blair)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

It's Beginning to look a lot like Christmas... Hollywood Style

While doing a day of rigging a couple of weeks ago, we had some cable to wrap on the studio's "New York Street" back-lot, where a big crew of rock-and-roll roadies were loading in for a Christmas Special starring one of the many "American Idol" winners. Since I pay no pay attention to Unreality TV, I didn't recognize the name, nor can I recall it now.

Not that it matters. Whoever it was is just another media-manufactured star de jour, a cultural flash-in-the-pan destined to begin the long spiral down into wounded obscurity in a year or three -- yet one more addition to the steaming pile of vox populi celebrity, and ultimately, another name for a future trivia game.

First, a truck-load of phony Christmas trees waiting to be lugged onto the stage...

Next, the enormous snowflakes, giant candy canes, and snow blankets...

And finally, a wide shot of the whole kit and caboodle -- or as much as my lens could take in. Trust me, there was more (a lot more) lighting and sound equipment waiting to be unloaded, hauled into the stage, set up, powered, adjusted, fine-tuned -- then fine-tuned some more -- before being ready for the show.

And as soon as the last shot was in the can, it all had to be disassembled, carefully loaded back into all those rolling cases and onto the trucks, then driven the next painful gig.

Working on television and features can be tough, but having seen (many times) what these roadies go through every working day, I'm not sure you could pay me enough to do their job.


A.J. said...

I heard that the latest U2 concert had about 200 trucks filled with gear. Can you imagine setting up all that equipment for an event that only lasts a few hours? Then tear it down and repeat 40 times... Yikes.

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