It’s now Day 14 of shooting Go For Sisters, which means it’s the final day of shooting in California before production moves to Calexico, Mexicali, and then Mexico.
The final few scenes of the movie will be shot south of the border.
For some insight into what it’s like to work with John as an actor on-set, I’ll share with you this story from Hilary Barraford, who appears in the opening scene of Go For Sisters, and also did the background casting for the film (as well as taking the pictures that you’ll find below).
John Sayles doesn’t have a director’s chair on set. Even more surprising, it took me almost two full weeks to realize that. He mostly stands, hands in pockets, or improvises a perch. Often, he’s right in the room with the actors observing their performance, bypassing a monitor altogether.
My scene, which opens the film GOFOR SISTERS, was shot in a tiny office. Between camera, sound, a trio of talent and John, we were nearly on top of each other. There was no room to move, but all the room John needed to get the performances he wanted. He’s been dubbed “The Original Independent,” and I’m learning firsthand why that’s so incredibly apt.
John has his own way of doing things: he stewards the story instead of ego. And doesn’t need a chair to do it.
I’m sure that if you polled the actors who’ve worked with John on his 17 other films, you’d find them in overwhelming agreement with Hilary’s assessment. And this blonde LA sleuth also dug up a little fact about John that I wasn’t even aware of.
Did you know that John Sayles is on the Advisory Board for Merriam-Webster? He helps them decide which words make it into the dictionary (lately, lots of nouns-turned-verbs). The word verb itself was verbed in the 1930s. I want this job!
You might wonder where he finds the time.
To the on-set photos! You can almost feel that desert heat.