Another Louie Shoot

Another Louie Shoot

On Monday, I got a call from the Louie show asking about my availability to shoot at the Comedy Cellar two days later. Oh hell yes! Ever since I worked on the pilot, I told Louie and the producers I would be there for them, even if previously booked. I didn’t have anything to drop this time though I was working late at the Cellar Tuesday night. I was needed for an emcee scene, so I figured the shoot would be at night. I soon found out my call time was 9 AM…ouch.

By the time I left the Cellar Tuesday, a snowstorm started that would last the rest of the night before turning to rain. I grabbed a couple hours of sleep and cooked breakfast before heading out into the slushy, sloshy mess. I was out the door at 7:30am giving myself an hour and a half for the usual 30 minute trip. There was a line at the top of the subway steps because people were being careful not to slip. The snow had not been shoveled off the steps, so everybody packed it down making it super slippery. It was almost like one of those cartoons where an escalator turns into a ramp, and everybody tumbles onto one another. Just missing a train, there was a logjam of people coming up the stairs.

I made it to the W. 4th St. stop twenty minutes before 9, and walked the block to the “Honey Wagon.” The Honey Wagon is a huge trailer split into about 6 compartments housing hair & makeup, production office, etc. I was led into the door marked “cast” and waited for further instructions. 40 minutes later I go in to hair & make up. My hat hair was brushed out, and facial hair trimmed.

A few minutes later it was time to walk over to the set, just a block away. Upstairs at the Olive Tree several producers and Louie were discussing the schedule and waiting for Pamela Adlon, who was in the first scene. I didn’t realize Pamela was the woman that played Louie’s love interest who left him to be with her kid’s dad at the end of last season. I love the work she does on the show and wished I had taken a pic with her. I tried to finish reading 12 Years A Slave while waiting, but the call to head downstairs came.

“For my scene, I was to intro Louie, and as he did his standup, Pamela and Jim Norton were shown in the hall watching. There were about 30 extras playing audience members and wait staff walking around to make it feel like a real show. Stand up in the daylight hours let alone before lunch is tough. This small crowd only had fake drinks in front of them, but I had little trouble getting them going. Having worked this room thousands of times helped my comfort level but the main factor is Louie. He works hard, and you want to work as hard as he does.

After the first take, Louie asked me to do a few more jokes and a couple of emcee things (Are you ready for more of the show? etc.) before bringing him up. The second take went as well as baby butt butter. There was a possibility I would change sweaters and do another scene, but that didn’t happen, and I was wrapped.

Looking forward to seeing Season 3 of Louie this spring!

 

William Stephenson

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