Yesterday marked the first, and quite possibly last, acting job (unpaid) I've ever had. A friend of ours, Prashant, is a product manager at MS (used to be the C# product manager actually) who has for a long time now worked on movie scripts on the side. He's quite the movie aficionado but it turns out he's not so great at “casting“ for a film. 🙂
Last week I received an email from Prashant, as did about five other friends of ours, letting us know the “shoot” was taking place on Saturday starting at 9am. The email included an Excel spreadsheet attachment detailing the shoot schedule, locations, cast, and some other information and there was also a script (in RTF format). The video is potentially going to be used at the upcoming TechEd conference and it's based around a software company who finds a glitch in the system late in the game. Semi-long story short, I ended up getting the part of the older, big-picture kind of guy, software architect named Art. My wife played the part of the project manager and Tony Goodhew played the part of the angry head-of-IT-dept. guy. For those of you who know Tony, he was a natural at the angry part.
Overall, it was a blast. It's definitely a lot harder than it looks to say and remember a few lines or try to express a feeling through just facial expressions without looking overly corny. It's also extremely hot when you're in front of a couple of those 7500 watt lights which doesn't make the pressure ease up at all.
I still have my doubts about it actually getting used at TechEd, but at the very least, we got what might end up being a 3-4 minute video of a bunch of friends attempting to act and about three hours of outtakes that we're sure to find extremely funny (but quite possibly no one else).
If any of you end up seeing it, please don't tell me...