Well, well, well. It was quite the heady April around our little slice o’ paradise. The usual patina of grit’n’grime was temporarily obscured by the bright lights of Hollywood. Kevin Costner, the hero of that great classic, Waterworld, was in the ‘hood. And not even the pungent aromas wafting across the railroad tracks from the animal rendering plant could ruin the amazingness of it.
It all started when a location scout knocked on our next-door neighbours’ door. Apparently, Khris and Erin‘s little house conveyed the exact right amount of 1963 charm the soon-to-be-filmed KC feature required. The scout offered them a sweet deal to vacate their premises, and before we knew it, they were gone.
So commenced a week-long home dis-improvement project. The crew got right down to business uglifying the house to make it appropriately 1960s. They replaced the kitchen cabinets with uglier kitchen cabinets, the carpet with uglier carpet, the front door with an uglier door, and the furniture with uglier furniture. It was ugly. But authentic, which is apparently what matters when it comes to period movies.
All this for one day of filming. And what a day it was. We went from living in a quiet area where the most exciting thing that happens is carloads of cops raiding the sketchy corner house (but only occasionally!), to being surrounded by a zillion film people.
They redirected traffic and plunked a food tent in our backyard and a bunch of port-a-potties and trailers in the back alley. We were surrounded. Khris and Erin came over for the day, and Erin and I spent most of the day gawking out the window at KC and trying to ignore our respective children.
That evening, the very kind producer found a time for us to get a photo with Kevin. I wasn’t originally planning to ask for one, but then I was hit by a wave of fear that if I didn’t, I would spend the rest of my life (or at least the rest of that day) regretting it. He was nice to us, and I must say, he has aged extremely well.
After 12 hours of watching the action, I’d had my fill, and went to bed. But the film crew was still going strong. They set up massive floodlights that made the darkness seem like broad daylight for probably a block in all directions. But by 12:30 or so, even they had had enough, and packed up. When I got up in the morning, the whole operation was gone.
And so ended our neighbourhood excitement. Now we are back to enjoying the full range of odours that Ogden has to offer, and waiting for the next big event. Will it be Hollywood? Or the cops?* Personally, I’m holding out for Hollywood. And this time, I want Brad Pitt.
*Trick question. The cops have already been around.