Had a very weird experience the other night. Went to see Lincoln (short review: very good account of the politicking necessary to pass the 13th Amendment, abolishing slavery. Don’t even bother nominating anybody else for Best Actor. Daniel Day-Lewis is astonishing).
Anyway, I’m watching the movie and what to my wondering eyes should appear but somebody I know, up there on the Silver Screen–and in a speaking part! His line was, “Aye!” But it’s a very important “Aye!” since his character turns out to be the very first member of Congress to vote for the 13th Amendment. The actor’s name is Ted Johnon, and the reason I know him is that I spent most of an afternoon chasing him and threatening to kill him in Manalive, as well as having him scowl at me and pretty much every other actor in the film for a couple of weeks, as his role as Mean Dr. Warner demanded. Here he is, standing behind me in the cast and crew shot we took when we wrapped:
And here’s a shot of Ted, Joey Odendahl (our director) and half of some fat guy, sitting around between takes at Beacon House.
He’s actually a very nice guy, but apparently that scowl of his was useful in getting him cast as a 19th Century politician. Those guys typically look like they are about to foreclose on a widow in the old photos from the period, so a talent for scowling could serve an actor well for such a part. Anyway, it was weird seeing him up there.