I had a dream last night that Werner Herzog had hired me for a film he was doing. I was over at a friend’s house discussing why we couldn’t start our film in the North Atlantic Ocean, because we didn’t have shark fins and we’d probably die of hypothermia. Werner happen to be there at the moment for some reason.
It wasn’t clear whether I was going to be his Production Designer, Art Director, Actor or all three. We were immediately flying to Germany…or was it an Asian country? At any rate the whole production crew were going to live in one big house during the entire shoot.
I remember having to share a room with several other people, and started thinking about my wife back in the states. For whatever reason I couldn’t find my cell found which made it worse.
We were all in a main room discussing what the project direction was going to be when Werner decided to get a group photo of us. There was a guy there filming a “behind-the-scenes” documentary from Werner’s film company as well.
So we group around this massive couch, and Werner sets up an old bakelight radio and it starts playing some German Opera or something. “We should have a little music for this,” he says in his easy comforting manner.
“Besides, the look on your faces make me out to be Charon or something.”
There’s these little girls playing on a shelf right next to him. The shelf was covered with Chinese porcelain tea services and they started to rattle and shimmy under their weight. He pays them no mind. But my focus is on them and he wants everyone to focus into the 4 x 5 camera he’s working with. I could feel the tension building.
Then out of the blue he picks up a tea-cup a small one at first and points to me, “I want you to sob at the drop of this tea cup. No, wait let me get a larger one so you can really cry.” I look at him and say, “I’ll try, how long do I have?”
“Now.” All eyes were on me, and I couldn’t quite drop-in to the scene fast enough. The cup didn’t break the first time either, so that didn’t help, especially when he said, “Wait, start over.”