David Loftus redux

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David Loftus
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Re: David Loftus redux

Postby David Loftus » Mon Apr 12, 2010 5:11 pm

I'm hoping they'll just put me in a sumo suit.

After all, since I have to be stripped to the waist in my other, more significant (if you measure in terms of performances) role, I'd prefer keep my own (semi-demi-hemi-)slim figure.
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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Re: David Loftus redux

Postby David Loftus » Tue Apr 13, 2010 9:56 am

It's official. I am now working on a Book Drum profile of Catch-22 and have a copy of the most readily available current edition of Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? in the mail to me from Amazon so I can do one on that, too.
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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Re: David Loftus redux

Postby David Loftus » Fri Apr 23, 2010 11:49 am

So . . . yesterday morning I played one of a small group of barflies hassling a nun. The story involves twin sisters -- a lingerie model and a nun -- who switch places temporarily so the former can make use of the latter's medical insurance coverage. (Actually, my wife points out -- she was raised Catholic -- nuns don't have medical coverage; small plot hole, I guess.) Anyway, one of the snoopy Sisters has an inkling something's not right with "Sister Mary," and goes on a detective hunt that takes her into XXX adult video stores and pubs on the trail of the lingerie model's past. Mine was just a bit part so I'm not sure I'll be doing any more "work" on this. (I put that in quotes, since we weren't paid a cent; I'm waiting to see whether the union gets wind of this and goes after the filmmaker, who is on her first project and is breaking the rules more out of naivete than malice, in my judgment.)

Today, we'll be shooting one of the final scenes on "Coup de Theatre," the indie feature I've been working on for several months. Those of you who have looked at my demo reel on YouTube --

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xI22qjrRjN4

-- have seen two clips from this project: the one where the guy is yelling at me in my office and the one where I'm the mysterious character with the Clint Eastwood rasp in a trench coat and fedora. This afternoon we shoot the "movie premiere" sequence at a cinema in the SE Portland neighborhood of Sellwood called the Moreland. The filmmakers (they're just a pair of 21-year-old kids who've been working buddies since middle school, but they already have half a dozen IMDb credits apiece -- a lot more than I have) hope to edit the thing over the summer and be ready to submit it in the fall for film festivals next spring and summer. God knows whether this could be the first feature I'm in that gets actual distribution, but here's hoping!
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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Re: David Loftus redux

Postby Chuck Messer » Fri Apr 23, 2010 7:26 pm

Dang. Every time I try to watch that video, I get a message: An Error Occured. Please Try Again Later.

David, I do have a lot of respect for you. You actually decided what you wanted and are going for it. I hope that film gets distribution.

Best of luck. Or break a leg, or whatever works.

Chuck
Some people are wedded to their ideology the way nuns are wed to God.

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Re: David Loftus redux

Postby David Loftus » Sat Apr 24, 2010 8:48 am

Shit, Chuck -- sorry you haven't been able to see my nifty set of video clips.

Is there another computer somewhere (you do have friends, yes?) you can try? Don't worry about trying to preserve the link. If you search for "David Loftus Acting Reel" or possibly even just my name, I should be among the first three to five things that come up.

Yeah, I just tried searching my name, and it's the second item that comes up. The thumbprint shows a guy in a white shirt with his back to the camera and his arms upraised -- it's the start of the Chinese gangster sequence, one of the worst things in the reel, quality wise, but a vivid contrast to the other material in content.

Interestingly, there's a whole string of other items just beneath my reel that consist of pieces of of David Wood vs. John W. Loftus debating "Does God Exist?" I thought I'd settled that long ago.
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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Re: David Loftus redux

Postby David Loftus » Mon Apr 26, 2010 5:51 pm

> David, I do have a lot of respect for you. You actually decided what you wanted and are going for it.

While I appreciate the compliment as it was intended, in all honesty I'm not sure this is a fair and accurate description of my professional arc.

It seems to me that I've kind of backed into a lot of the things I've ended up doing -- kinda sorta doing them for a while, not even realizing (or acknowledging to myself) what I was up to or what I wanted out of the situation; at best, just checking the activity out "just for now" and gradually realizing I was in deep and still kind of enjoying it and/or getting something out of it ... on the side of my "legitimate" wage-earning activities. Unwilling, perhaps, to take the full plunge into being a full-time creative person.

I'm not sure why I act. I ask myself all the time, and I've not yet worked out a clear answer. It's something I'm going to have to think about a lot more, and write about, eventually.

I have assured myself over and over that the odds of being able to support myself as an actor (or as a writer, which was another supposedly creative and honorable activity that I seemed to be pretty good at) are next to zero.

There was a sobering story in the local paper a few weeks ago about a 47-year-old dancer who has had trouble affording health insurance coverage for herself -- she's often gone without it for much of her adult life. It was only the first in a series of stories about how health care reform will potentially affect various individuals, employees, and businesses, but because it was the first, a lot of readers took it to be a "liberal media" call for "taxpayer support of artists" -- that the profiled dancer was looking for handouts and pity. Of course, the paper had sought her out to be interviewed, and she didn't say she thought she "deserved" to be singled out for any sort of government support.

What was depressing and puzzling to me were how many of the readers' comments went along the lines of "why should we support her hobby?" and "obviously, if her dancing doesn't earn her a steady income with health benefits, then it's of no value to society." In my heart, I feel there's a response to this (after all, Mozart, Bach, and Michelangelo were "state supported" artists in the sense that the Church and royalty paid for their work with funds "extorted" from the populace, as well), but it's hard to know what to say.

Anyway, here's the story and the comments, if you're interested:

http://www.oregonlive.com/health/index. ... nd_da.html
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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Re: David Loftus redux

Postby Moderator » Mon Apr 26, 2010 6:21 pm

Wow. How thoroughly disheartening. And in Oregon. I cannot fathom how the same circumstances might be met in, say, Oklahoma City.

Lucky are the few -- the very few -- who can pursue artistic endeavours with no other source of income. I am fortunate to know a few, but the vast majority of artists are "part-time". Unfortunately, this also leads to the conclusion that the of an artist work is just a hobby and not a profession. I'm considered an amateur photographer, despite having fifteen CD covers, six magazine covers, thirty-two publicity package sets, some forty privately purchased photographs, and a handful of travel guide shots to my credit. Oh, need to include a dozen weddings and other events. All compensated efforts.

But I'm an amateur to many people because it's not my primary income. (After all, everyone can take a picture. How hard can it be: just aim the camera and shoot, right?)

Cris, because of our circumstances, can genuinely claim "professional" status. It's what she does. And she actually does earn enough to contribute nicely to our joint income. Rare indeed, however, and to many folks she must be ducking a "real" job. Eff 'em.

So yeah, David. I sincerely empathize with your post. Too many folks we all know are brilliant at their craft, but cannot afford to make it their sole profession exactly because society itself does not value art enough to pay for the privilege.
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Re: David Loftus redux

Postby Chuck Messer » Mon Apr 26, 2010 6:24 pm

Which only reinforces my view that it takes a certain amount of intestinal fortitude and perhaps a little insanity to try to make a go of it in the arts.

My hat's off to anyone to even makes the attempt.

Chuck
Some people are wedded to their ideology the way nuns are wed to God.

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Re: David Loftus redux

Postby David Loftus » Tue Apr 27, 2010 10:17 am

I should report on what happened with the "movie premiere" sequence shoot we had on Friday. Only about 30 or so extras --mostly friends and family of the filmmakers -- showed up to be our audience in the story, so the creators had to do a lot of creative angle shots and move the bodies around for various scenes (making their way to the seats, waiting for the show to start, lining the aisle to congratulate the big-cheese producer afterward, etc.).

The script called for me to deliver three words: "Adrian? Let's talk."

But the writer-director asked me if I could improvise a speech to the movie premiere crowd, on the spot, which turned out to be a lot longer than my dialogue in the script -- five or six sentences. Basically, I was to welcome the crowd, apologize because the director (the villain of our story) would normally introduce the film but I wasn't sure where he was, and urge them to enjoy the movie. All done very nervously because not only is the director missing, but I'm expecting to see the kid hero show up (the one my character has secretly been running interference for) with his guerilla version of the film as a substitute, and I don't know where HE is, either.

We were pressed for time, so I did the thing in one take, and that was it. Pretty exhilarating. I hope it shows up in the final cut.

Something else I learned on Friday: the 21-year-old filmmakers (writer-director and writer-star) are not even out of college yet! They're finishing up at Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington, and this is sort of their senior project. But they already have half a dozen IMDb credits each, and let me assure you, it's a solid screenplay and they seem to be doing excellent work. The experienced stage and film actors who are part of the cast have all been very happy with the project and impressed with their work.

FYI, their names are Sean Parker and Austin Hillebrecht. Watch for them in the future.
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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Re: David Loftus redux

Postby David Loftus » Wed May 12, 2010 11:46 am

Busy weeks ahead:

Sunday, May 16 - staged reading of Neil Simon's "The Last of the Red-Hot Lovers," with me in the title role as a 47-year-old nebbish (seafood restaurant owner) who attempts to have an affair with three different women, with predictably disastrous and hilarious results

Saturday, May 22 -- first day of shooting on an indie SF film in which I play twin scientist brothers, a good one and and an evil one; then, a stage performance of Brian Friel's "Translations," in which I'll play a British Army engineer employed on a project mapping Ireland (and changing all the place names to English) circa 1833, who falls in love with the country and an Irish girl and is of course murdered by Irish nationalists

Monday, May 24 -- evening shoot on "Sister Mary's Angel," an indie film about twin sisters, a lingerie model and a nun, who trade places so the former can make use of the latter's medical insurance coverage (I have a small role as one of a group of barflies who tease a snooping nun who suspects what's going on and is doing a detective hunt to expose the ruse)

June 8 -- begin rehearsals for "The King and I"

June 28 -- begin rehearsals for a children's production of "Aladdin"
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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Re: David Loftus redux

Postby David Loftus » Sat May 15, 2010 10:48 am

The Gresham Outlook, a small weekly for the white-bread suburb where the reading will take place, has a piece on our upcoming performance of "The Last of the Red-Hot Lovers" with a couple of absurd quotes from yours truly:

http://www.theoutlookonline.com/feature ... 1260647700


And of course I keep writing:

http://www.oregonlive.com/books/index.s ... _poly.html

http://www.americancurrents.com/
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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Re: David Loftus redux

Postby David Loftus » Fri May 21, 2010 3:58 pm

Photos from last night's rehearsal for the play I'm doing -- Brian Friel's "Translations," one show only, free, in connection with the Fourth Annual Irish Language Day at Marylhurst University -- tomorrow afternoon:

http://www.thewaughs.net/Translations/FirstDress/

Slide the slider down the left margin until you see a bright yellow jacket. That's where the photos with me in them start.
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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Re: David Loftus redux

Postby David Loftus » Thu Jun 03, 2010 12:31 am

I've already crowed on the Pavilion about the trailer to "Coup de Theatre," but here's the link again:

http://www.seanparkerfilms.com/Sean_Par ... rrent.html


A very different project is the proposed Web series "The Magic Shiznit Show"; I won't try to explain it, but I got to be a homeless guy in the pilot, and you can get a quick glimpse of my character at about 00:58 - 1:02 here:

http://www.majicshiznit.com/


Rehearsals for "The King and I" start Tuesday. . . .
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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Re: David Loftus redux

Postby David Loftus » Thu Jun 10, 2010 11:32 am

Up to now, I've often been cast in "good guy/dependable team player" (Duke of Albany in "Lear," Mr. Anagnos in "The Miracle Worker") or authority figure roles (The Boss of the School in "Junie B. Jones and a Little Monkey Business," academics, shrinks).

This year I'm playing more villains.

I like it.
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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Re: David Loftus redux

Postby David Loftus » Thu Jun 10, 2010 5:09 pm

The latest episode in my investigation into recycling of deposit cans and bottles is online here:

http://www.americancurrents.com/



As for the performance of "Translations" I talked about a few weeks ago:


http://www.thewaughs.net/Translations/FirstDress/

"Slide the slider down the left margin until you see a bright yellow jacket. That's where the photos with me in them start."

It's a RED jacket. RED!!

After all, the character is a British soldier. The show went splendidly, by the way. One of the most exhilaratingly scary enterprises I've ever been involved in -- doing a full staging of a play with only six rehearsals!

What the hell was I thinking?
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus


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