Freudian Slips: August 2010

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Location: Irony, New Jersey, United States

Life takes us many places. It's a box of chocolates and a Hansel and Gretal trail of candy wrappers. I have filmed as an actor in The Happening, Invincible, The Lovely Bones, The Bounty Hunter, The Greek American, Bazookas, Limitless, TV's Its Always Sunny in Philly, Outlaw, New York, The Warrior, The Nail, Game Change, Cold Case, & commercial work includes The Philadelphia Eagles, Septa, Coors, Turbo Tax & Carnival Cruises. Freudian Slips spotlights irony in short story format.

August 31, 2010

Fly Like an Eagle movie on You Tube

Here is the You Tube link to Fly Like an Eagle, A Bird's Eye View of Joseph Tornatore. It is the five minute segment I produced for the WPHL-17 television show, Fandemonium. The producers of this show, Chris Barletto and Ray the Rant, contacted me about submitting material to air on an upcoming episode following the commercial I shot for The Eagles Television Network.
It is common knowledge that I have difficulty doing anything small so here is my big production. Although it took me twenty hours to produce with tempermental movie making software in only four days, I believe the end product captures the essence of my eccentric personality. Mindful that no publicity is bad news, please forward to your friends and enemies. Enjoy!


August 28, 2010

The I in Team Fandemonium

The strangest thing happened while a friend and I browsed the Eagles Television Network website. Investigating for the presence of an uploaded link or any publicly released information to the commercial I filmed for the Philadelphia Eagles, I simultaneously received an email from the Eagles Television Network producers. Probability odds would place those two situations concurring at about a million to one.
Having viewed footage from the commercial shoot, the producers were one step ahead of my curiosity. While I was looking for me, they had painstakingly tracked me down though my casting agency. Confident the commercial had not aired yet and uncertain whether I made the final cut, I was solicited for my interest in doing a feature for a television show. Tune into the Fandemonium show, which will begin airing on Saturday nights on WPHL-17, to see if an actor can be typecast playing himself. Sometimes when chasing the tail of life, it wags behind you. Smile for the camera, little doggie.


August 26, 2010

Sounding off at the Canon

The comparison may never have occurred to me except for parallel intervention. After consuming part of my lunch break hour to run errands, I sat reading the headlines from a newspaper. Although a Canon series 40 inkjet cartridge sat beside me, it was dirty newspaper ink that transferred onto my hands. A newspaper dusting should never take place beside a brand new black ink printer cartridge without risking comparison.
Judging by the amount of ink on me and what remained on the newspaper copy, I reasoned that there must be as much ink printed on any .75 cent newspaper than toner housed in a brand new ink cartridge. The question begs asking, why do consumers pay a measly .75 cents retail for ink and paper only to be extorted $24.99 for an ink product that has paper sold separately? Compounding the cost factor, my printer's ink cartridges are not available in cheaper generic models, the well containers cannot be economically refilled and no competitor cartridge can be substituted due to a lack of standardization.
Exorbitantly paying the manufacturer for continued use of a product is eye-gouging greed. It is revolving systemic obsolesces lining corporate pockets. I detest this ink industry like nobody’s business. Cloaked in the anonymity of a technological revolution, this may be the greatest consumer scam of the century. For me it has moved beyond an Andy Rooney pet peeve rant to a Michael Moore mission for reform.
From their ivory tower, the kind folks at the office supply store where I bought the ink expeditiously emailed me an Internet coupon for an identical purchase. Once printed, the paper coupon could hail eight quarters off my next purchase of ink. I studied the full page advertisement in huge thick text fonts displayed in a rich crimson color surrounded by superfluous decorative margins. I just could not summon the courage to hit print on my computer screen then watch the ink run dry.


August 15, 2010

The Incredible Bulk

I recently finished filming a promotional spot for the Eagles Television Network. Arriving at the set location prior to my call time, the cobblestone horseshoe drive of the private residence introduced a mansion. Exiting my car, I stepped in between a procession of crew members, cables and ladders. It struck me as rather curious not seeing another actor arriving to set.
Near the front door, I approached a pony tailed production assistant. I asked, “Where is everyone?”
“You’re the guy who will be diving into the pool of green paint, right?”
She described the feat as if it required the actions of a superhero. “Yeah, ugh, that’s what they told me.”
“Okay. We’re filming a wedding of lifelong Eagles fans now but you’re the only actor in the next scene. You don’t have a problem with that, do you?”
“Nah, the center of attention in a commercial about my favorite sports team, forget I mentioned it.”
About an hour and a half later, the assistant director introduced me to a lineup of people assigned to me. He explained, “You’re up. Tom here will valet your car to designated parking. Wilma handles wardrobe. Milly is in Makeup. Mack will shower you off in between takes. Peter and Debbie will change your clothes. If you need anything else other than what has been mentioned, Manny will get it for you so don’t be afraid to ask.”
I continued shaking hands and nodding agreeably. I don’t remember anyone’s name but my own. All I know is the only thing I have to do is act and everything else will be done for me. The AD instructed, “Head to wardrobe and makeup then you need to meet with Patrick, the stunt guy, before reporting to set.”
Wilma from Wardrobe replies, “This just in. The director wants you to go commando.”
“Humm…Do you mean like wearing Army fatigues instead of a bathing suit?”
She handed me cargo shorts, its price tag revealing its newness. “Neither. Change into these shorts. Commando style means no underwear. You need wardrobe change after every wet take. We only purchased so many matching shorts so might as well leave your underwear behind.”
I replied, “No problem. When casting telephoned me about my measurements, I wasn’t asked about underwear size.”
She continued, “How big is your head?”
“Excuse me?”
Wilma from wardrobe rifled though a dream catcher’s heap of licensed Philadelphia Eagles memorabilia in order to outfit me with the right cap. “You need a cap for this shot.”
“Oh, when asking an actor how big his head is, always assume extra large. That’s certainly the case here.”
She smiled then fittingly slapped a black logo cap on me. Milly from makeup ushered me over to her glitz station, where she powder puffed my nose and cheeks.
I asked, “Do you realize I’m going to be covered in green paint?”
“Then make the first take count, hot shot. Take off your shirt, let me checkout your skin tone.” After removing my shirt, I felt her eyes combing me. Her fingertips glided across my shoulders during inspection. “Nice even tan. Good.”
She summoned the stunt man on her headset, who proceeded to brief me on safety precautions for the stunt. As if one were not enough, two crew members escort me to set. Along the way, a stunning backyard boasted a huge stone patio; double wide outdoor fireplace, grilling station under a sizeable arbor and Jacuzzi to finally arrive on set in front of… an inflatable kiddy pool surrounded by empty gallon jugs of tempura green paint. I go wide-eyed because I was expecting an indoor swimming pool amidst the pomp and circumstance.
Before long, it was time to roll film. The cameraman climbed a circus ladder to the top of a huge A-frame support equipped with a camera mount tilted down. “Let’s get ready to roll. Get Joe up on the blocks. Let’s see what it looks like from up here.”
Crew members assisted me onto a platform made from stacked apple boxes. I sensed tenseness on the set, as if my comfort hinged on giving them a carefree look. I decided to break the ice.
“When I booked this gig, my agent assured me this pool would be heated.”
The entire crew busted out laughing. The cameraman maneuvers the camera to fully frame an aerial shot of me free falling backwards into a pool of green without a care in the world. On the first take, my body drifted beyond frame despite hitting the pool. I realized for the first time in my acting career, staring at the seamless blue sky means scrubbing your mark.
Emerging from the greenish hue, I thought to myself…So much for my powder treatment in makeup.
“Remember gang, the owner forbids him back in the house looking like that.
With my flesh oozing in green, the obvious reference point is the Incredible Hulk. However, when I am shown myself captured on the playback camera, the natural reference is The Incredible Hulk except that I resemble a balding overweight middle aged man covered in pond scum.
“I look like The Incredible Bulk.”
The director added, “It’s the shot we were looking for. You performed great. We just need to follow you fully in frame on the next take.”
Stepping away from the camera, the running garden hose hit my skin. Gasping at its coldness caused me to take in a mouthful of watered down paint. The hose washed green from me until clean. Two people toweled me off until I returned to unassuming David Banner.
Watching Wilma from Wardrobe carrying a clean pair of cargo pants, I realized the dilemma for the crew and myself.
A crew member inquired, “How modest are you?”
“I draw the line at nude modeling so I’m thinking about changing behind that juniper bush if that’s alright.”
And so let it be told that it was behind a prickly juniper bush, that I first stripped naked on a set. A girl held a bath towel up as a cotton barrier but anyone who wanted to see my full monty could.
The girl smirked then filled space in between silence. “Don’t worry about me looking at the little twig in your garden.”
Wrestling the slimy shorts off, I feigned exception. “What do you mean, little? I got shrinkage. I just got out of a cold pool and somebody hit me with a hose. My agent is going to hear about this as soon as I take a temperature reading.”
She knew my offbeat personality by now. Our chuckling reduced the awkwardness. I heard my name being called back on set, something about water displacement and testing the adjustment made to the apple box for the fall guy. With a twig leading the charge, I chugged back to set. My acting career was getting a lot of exposure on this promotional spot. Finally seeing green, I soaked it all in.


August 07, 2010

Behind the Scene in The Bounty Hunter

left to right - Gerard Butler, Jennifer Aniston
background- Joseph Tornatore

A dialogue scene from The Bounty Hunter starring Gerald Butler and Jennifer Aniston. Judging how adorable Aniston looked in frame, certainly no viewer pictured me far right in this movie scene. No matter how many takes we shot in the Taj Mahal casino, my tired feet did not fall for Jennifer Aniston once.


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