Chris Riddle – actor, filmmaker, videographer, and stage director – is one of my oldest friends. We’ve worked on many projects together in the past. Every year he puts together a team for the 48 Hour Film Festival here in Asheville. If you’ve never worked on a 48 Hour film, it’s a blast with the right people. High stress, high creativity, solving complex problems on the fly, and after two days of that you have a fim. It’s really fun. Chris and his wife Sam put together a great team last year – Director of Photography was Mike Belleme, who’s an awesome skateboarder and gaspingly good photographer, (and also in my blogroll). They tapped me for an acting role – though I had no prior screen credits. Now, I think acting is really fun, and I’ve done it confidently – on stage. On film I was totally uncomfortable with myself. We pulled the Romance genre (which is a tough one) so nobody was really thrilled with the story, and my lines made me feel like I had marbles in my mouth. I hate myself on screen. I hope I don’t really sound and look like that. Enjoy.
I thought of this because I saw Mr. Riddle. I kidnapped him and brought him to Asheville to see the Firecracker Jazz Band play at the Rocket Club, and he asked me to be an extra in his next project which is filming tomorrow. He’s filming it at the cofeehouse in Tryon, where we met. The first friends I ever made outside of church or work was at that coffeehouse, and it always feels good to come back there – especially to work with Chris, who was the first guy to ever talk to me there. I was just weird guy in the corner that nobody knew, and when Chris said “The time has come,” I finished it with “the walrus said,” and I often think of that precise moment, when the outside world first recognized me.