Tuesday, September 27, 2011

I Live On A Floating Movie Set

One interesting thing about growing up in Southern California is you are always within close proximity of somebody rich and famous.

I've noticed, though, that we're almost always within TWO degrees of separation from these otherworldy types -- rarely ONE. We're always the proverbial ships that pass in the night when it comes to the famous -- they're more often than not JUST out of reach...

 When we moved into the Cabrillo Marina in San Pedro, we were happily surprised to find out that the end of our dock is a frequent floating movie set.

                                  The Cabrillo Marina, San Pedro, California

They took over our dock for an entire weekend to film Ashton Kutcher in a Nikon commercial.

 We walked next to the boat at 2AM while they were filming, but never caught an actual glimpse of the guy.

  One morning I awoke to find our dock swarming in gaffers and cameramen preparing to film a scene of CSI: Miami. They had to yell "CUT" to let me tiptoe over and through the set in order to get to work.

In the parking lot, I found that David Caruso had stolen my parking spot with his giant trailer. I would have given him a piece of my mind but he didn't even come out to apologize. The nerve! (LOL)...

 Another day we came home from work to find Jack Sparrow's Black Pearl floating a couple of hundred feet away from our deck. As the sun was setting, we could see that they were filming the latest Pirates of the Caribbean episode on her decks.

Naturally we jumped into our kayaks and paddled over to the floating set, careful to stay just out of shooting range so they wouldn't lob us with (fake?) cannonballs if we got too close. There were dozens of cast and crew on the deck, but again, we couldn't quite make out Johnny Depp or Orlando Bloom. Two degrees of separation.

Another time I came home from work to see a large fancy yacht tied up to the floating movie set. I wondered: "Who or what are they filming today?" My husband told me that earlier he was watching them film, and he walked up to three young guys hanging out on the edge of the set and asked about it. Turns out it was The Jonas Brothers filming their TV show.

And the three young guys hanging out were the Jonas Brothers. SO OK, my husband was the one who got the ONE degree of separation from the young heartthrobs. Touch him the next time you see him, and that Jonas Brothers magic just might rub off on you. (LOL).

  One of the few TV dramas I've been truly addicted to in recent years is Mad Men. One day at work I read online that they were filming an episode right there in San Pedro! In fact, they had filmed several episodes in our humble harbor town! OK, now this is where I finally got a little bit starstruck and mildly excited at the possibility of actually running into Jon Hamm.

Needless to say, I remained a solid TWO degrees separated from Mr. Hamm, who filmed several scenes driving along Harbor Boulevard in his red t-bird, including the one above. How DARE they film these scenes during in the middle of the day during a work-week, when I'm stuck in my cubie 25 miles away?   :-(

 Other TV shows and movies which have filmed in our harbor or on our dock in the year since we've lived here include:

                        It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, starring Danny DeVito

                                      90210 starring Tori Spelling

                                      Law and Order, Los Angeles

                                 X-Men First Class, starring James McAvoy, Oliver Platt and January Jones. Of course since Kevin Bacon was in this one, this is a good time to point out that we were again TWO degrees of separation from Kevin Bacon and the rest of the crew, as we never actually saw the actors.  But we did hear and see the explosions lighting up the night sky around the WWII ship at the other end of our harbor.

                              Showtime's Shameless, starring William H. Macy

The last story I'll share is this: one morning yet another fancy mega-yacht had tied up to our dock in preparation for filming of an Adidas commercial starring soccer star David Beckham. As usual, as I walked through the set on the way to work, there was no Mr. Beckham in sight -- just the now perennial crew and equipment.

Upon returning home from work, there was a large limousine parked at the entrance to the marina, with the driver standing at the back door holding it open, in anticipation of a rich and famous passenger's impending arrival to enter.

Mr. Beckham must be preparing to leave the set and drive home to that pouty Victoria!

Finally, my ONE degree of separation with one of these damn celebrities was going to happen. I was going to have my star sighting if it killed me!

I slowed my steps and did the famous "hum de dum dum, la la la" whistling thing one does when they're trying to not look like they're staring. I waited. Still no Mr. Beckham. The driver still stood there waiting with the opened door...

...still nothing.

I quickly went to the bathroom to kill 30 seconds. Upon emerging: nothing.

Finally, I had to give up. I walked past the open limo door, walked through the film set which was breaking down and past the mega-yacht which clearly still contained Mr. Beckham, and into my floating home.

So, my TWO degrees of separation record has remained intact in my year and a half living aboard our little floating film dock. Ah, well...

None of this MEANS anything, by the way. It's just been a sort of silly, entertaining diversion. Life is funny. You never know how your world changes, just around the corner. Who knows what adventures will come?

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