I made props for the films I’m shooting at the weekend today. I had previously thought I was going to hire some, but was given the right royal runaround by a series of specialist prop hire companies, none of whom seemed that fussed about making any money out of me. I went on one company’s website and pored over all of their pictures of items in stock only to be told all five of the items I eventually selected had been thrown away! Another company said they would only be able to hire things to me if I could provide them with headed note paper with my company’s name attached. I told them I was an independent film maker. “Oh, then we can’t help you.”
So I printed out lots of 1960s food wrappers and dutifully glued them to various boxes. Close up they look a bit crude, but I think they’ll look quite good on film. I don’t have a great deal more to say about the day. I spent way too long attempting to find a vintage car for the shoot. It seems people are only interested in the wedding market, so finding a 1965 Beetle or Mini is nigh on impossible. Especially in the Midlands.
I went to Philip Sallon’s birthday party tonight, which was a surreal occasion. It was full of larger-than-life characters, all in fancy dress. It was a themed party, but the theme was too complicated for my tiny brain to deal with. The invitation was worded like this: “My hideous Birthday's on Monday November 13th, so I'll have a few degenerates around at my flat from 7.30pm. Well, talking of themes, despite leaving Europe, I'm all for a United World, so please wear something that has the disturbing feel of any country, even your Transylvanian homeland. Hatefully. Philipx”
Philip has taste in music which can only be described as wacky, bordering on tasteless. Every second track, we were treated to a rendition of the Magic Roundabout theme tune and, on one occasion, a highly familiar song rang out. “Your letter is only the start of it. One letter and then you’re a part of it.” Yes. It was the Jim’ll Fix It theme tune!
The highlight of the party was almost certainly an ancient Irish woman who Philip had hired for the evening as a waitress. She was reminiscent of Julie Walters in the Two Soups sketch. She even wore a little pinny. She moved at the speed of a tortoise but was dead set on making sure everyone had their drinks topped up and were well fed with smoked salmon bagels! Brilliant!