China Diary

Day 89: Dining The Cast

One part of my job is to create a trusting relationship between my cast and myself, so that when I start to work with the actors on set, everyone is relaxed enough to let go of themselves when the cameras are on. Actors are quite a colorful bunch of personalities, so a dinner with the cast is usually quite a varied experience.

Tonight, after the shoot, I wanted to take everyone out for a bit of a celebration. We had worked the whole day doing the end scene of the movie, which is kinda weird when you feel that you just started the whole shoot, but sometimes film scheduling just goes like that. Shooting chronologically would probably be easiest for the actors, maybe even for the director, but trying to combine cast availabilities, location availabilities and minimizing needless costs, this is rarely possible. So, we have to be prepared to crank ourselves every day into a very different mood of the shoot.

Sunrise over the Hope Island

But since we had nailed the end scene very nicely, it really was time to take everyone out for some seafood. I asked for a nice local joint with great seafood, but instead the production had booked a high-end restaurant in a hotel in some kind of a seafood town part of the Yellow Island. First, I was a bit let down because I wanted a local experience, but when the food started showing up, things turned much nicer. We had a big, hefty dinner, some Chinese white wine and loads of discussions. Turns out some of my cast members are so famous the whole restaurant staff was lining up to take a selfie with them. I wouldn’t know, to me they are just people I work with without the pressure of them being big stars or anything, and I prefer to keep it that way.

The wine is heady and the food is plentiful, and as we turn in for the night I have a quick call back home before falling asleep probably mid-sentence.

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