Fringe Central and Venue #1 - The SoHo Playhouse
Blog by Comedian/Actor/Writer Byron Yee and my so called life in LA
So arrived at 6:30am at JFK, got on AirTrain at 7:05am. After fiddling with the machines and getting a $5 AirTrain ticket and a $7 LIRR ticket, I barely made it onto the 7:28am Jamaica to Penn Station train. Miraculously, I was at Penn Station in under 20 minutes or so. After lugging my two 50lb bags up the steps and onto the streets, I hailed a cab and $15 bucks later I was on 11th St at A at my sublet where . . . . .
Got to the 14th & 1st subway station, bought a monthly pass, went back up and took the 14 bus crosstown to check out the Fringe venue when the housekeeper called me. There was an emergency and she was in Jersey. About an hour and a half later, I finally made it inside. It was noon.
So it looks like "Paper Son" will have at least on more hurrah this summer at the NY Fringe Festival. The application and certified check are in the mail. Compared with other fringes, the NY is a juried festival and due to the structure, you are guaranteeed NOT to cover your costs. But the theatre press should cover and shows do come out of the NY Fringe and make it to Broadway and OB. more later.
Larry "Bubbles" Brown called me a few minutes ago letting me know that the comedy grapevine had put out the word that Richard Jeni committed suicide earlier in the day. I never knew Jeni but he was at one time one of the hottest comics working. He apparently was suffering through some health problems which is probably why he took his own life. We'll find out soon enough.
So the WSOP starts in less than a month. I finally made Silver Star on PokerStars and if I can't win a seat into the Main Event, I'm hoping to build my W$ bankroll enough that I can directly buy into some of the smaller events.
After watching "Munich", I rented "One Day in September" through Netflix. It is an Academy Award winning documentary about the 72 Olympic massacre. I think it's a more gripping film than Munich because it contains an interview with the sole living member of the Palestinian terrorist group that took the Israeli atheletes hostage and later killed them. It is also quite amazing at how inept the German authorities were and how they blew any change at rescuing the hostages. If you liked "Munich", then definitely rent "One Day in September" to see the real story of this crisis.
Terrence Malik has made four films. I have seen three of them; Badlands, his first, I have yet to see. I remember seeing Days of Heaven when it first came out many, many years ago. It was a beautiful, haunting picture and I even liked Richard Gere in it. Linda Manz was the little girl in it and she narrated it.
Let me start by saying I know a male to female transsexual (she's also preop, a dominatrix, and a feminist activist who's been featured on Dateline NBC). In fact the story of how Ric Fergeson told me he was becoming Susan Stryker was a monologue I orginally did as I was developing my one man show.
I think Munich is the best film I've seen this year. 2005 was a tough year because no film got to me or touched me in any way. It is a flawed film but I can overlook that for its ambition. Hey, if you're pissing off both the Palestenians and the Jews, then it can't all be bad.
Aside from the obvious jokes I can come up with, "It's the beans that made them gay", I thought Brokeback was a very good but not great film. Heath Ledger was terrific as well as Michelle Williams, Anne Hathaway, and Linda Cardellini (Jake Gyllenhall was just okay - he didn't suck - or maybe he did - but I don't think he was completely up to the task.). The sex scenes weren't too uncomfortable for me although the female heavy audience at the NuWilshire kind of giggled at some of the jokes and gay inferences.
So I'm back from driving 3,000 miles over nine days. Here's the trip report.
Last week I had the pleasure of seeing J.O.B. - The Hip Hopera. I had orginally seen it at the 2003 Edmonton Fringe where I had returned with Paper Son as a warm up for my Los Angeles run. J.O.B. was a huge hit on the Canadian circuit and they consistently sold out. I never had a chance to meet with them but when I found out they were coming to LA, I started to e-mail Eli and Jerome about my experiences of producing here in LA.
So the CAPE event last Thursday was loud and little networking was done by me. It was held at SUR (I guess the couldn't afford the E) at Robertson & Melrose and was held in a small gallery type room next to the restaurant. Hey, the beer and wine were free. Tamilyn Tomita was there (she had her name tag on) and someone who probably was Garret Wang but his nametag only said "Garrett". I had a nice talk with a Korean guy who's importing Korean comic books into the US. He tells me that native Korean speakers think Daniel Dae Kim is a joke - his Korean is apparently akin to a Southern accent. Boy, Asian American actors can't get a break anywhere.
I'm headed to the CAPE party tonight - a networking event for Asians in Entertainment where we all sit around a bitch about how there are no Asians in front of the camera so everyone's now behind the camera. All the TV roles go to the same five actors.
So I've never really done any analytics on my website, Paper Son, but I recently added Google Analytics to it and I've gotten some interesting results.
So I'm bringing this blog back - not that it went away but the fact is, I don't think I've got what it takes to be a blogger. But, what the hell, let's give it the good ole college try.
After reviewing the document, I pretty much have to shut up after this. I'll be signing it and returning it to the production offices later today which means I won't be able to say too much more.
I received an 86 page document which I have to sign and turn in by tomorrow. I need to really look at but when I do, I don't believe I'm supposed to say anything more about my participation. I'll try and post one more time before I execute the contract and turn it in. I'm no lawyer and this looks pretty restrictive. I'll post some of the more interesting paragraphs before I stop posting here.
The top 5 is now the top 10 . . .
Faking Reality . . .
Guess what? More changes . . .
I have sneaking suspicions at this time . . .
Still more questions than answers at this point. I've taken a look at scheduling and it's literally five full weeks of production to put this together with a half week for Thanksgiving and a half week at the end, just in case. What's this going to be worth? According to the WGA, the compensation 15 minutes and under, non network, low budget will be $8691. (See http://www.wga.org/minimums/min2003.pdf)
Things are moving rather quickly and I've finally received some information about this contest. I am scheduled to be interviewed by a field producer on Friday, November 5th. By Monday, November 8th they will determine the top five and they are expected to be in Los Angeles immediately to pitch the show. They will announce the final two on November 12th and the production of the show is scheduled to begin on November 15th. It is scheduled to wrap on December 23rd.
I've been told to expect a call from a field producer shortly. They may also want to get some B-Roll on me. So far so good . . .
Denial on Betsy's Blog . . . .
. . . one of my friends on my professional/personal reference list just called me and said that the background firm was asking about me. Calls are finally being made which is a good thing . . .
What is the definition of "A Professionally Produced Play on the Legitimate Stage"?
Hi. I'm Byron Yee and this is my blog. More can found out about me at my website, www.paperson.com.