It’s Not Over

I had just finished taking a shower when a representative of Tammy Smith Casting informed me over the phone Vacation needed me back on set the next day. I instantly responded, “I’m confused. I thought it was over,” concerned about the sore throat that had gradually worsened for several days. Even swallowing my saliva became painful by the time I picked up the phone, and I was uncertain whether or not I could handle another session of shouting. Furthermore, I had already bidden farewell a couple of times to most of those involved in the movie, making my return somewhat awkward.

Though I arrived on set at eight in the morning, I began working near one, right before lunch. I only had one line left, and the technical crew placed me in front of the actors like the previous two times. However, Director John Francis Daley eventually yelled himself, probably as he believed that would have drawn a more ideal reaction from the protagonists for that particular segment. “Lunch break!” I was perplexed this might have been the end. Nonetheless, following a delicious meal and more wait observing the actors act like chameleons with lightning-fast emotion shifts from resting to filming, I was brought into the medic room again to record more lines. The staff originally seemed to think I could translate English into Korean as I read, so I had to request a minute to write the translations down. An assistant was impressed by how I managed the situation, that my brain functions differently. I sucked up the aggravating throat pain and screamed my lungs out once again, assuming this to be the last of my contribution to the movie. I received a virtual confirmation from two professionals the film will use my voice, and, although still not a hundred percent affirmative, I felt grateful I could play a fairly significant part in a movie filled with superstars as an extra.

Perhaps due to this being the last week of filming, the production appeared less crowded and more laid-back. I remained quiet and abstained from conversing with the adult actors near me to let them focus, but modest Ed Helms patted my shoulder walking past me and said, “Welcome back!” When we ran into each other again heading to lunch, he apologized to me for the crewmembers not letting me continue with my one line. Once again, I thought, “What a humble and down-to-earth man.” For the third time, I slowly sought and conveyed my gratitude towards numerous individuals who allowed this journey to be genially memorable. I will forever be appreciative of this unique experience for a nonprofessional actor.

6 thoughts on “It’s Not Over

  1. Jake,
    My sides still hurt from laughing when I stumbled across this page while I was looking for the translated phrases.While the movie was pretty funny, I have to say that your bits absolutely *made* the movie, in my opinion. Enough to the point where I want to accordingly “enhance” the GPS in friends’ cars.
    It’s great that you were part of the film, and even better that you captured your experiences for others’ enjoyment.
    Best of luck to you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for the positive comment! Unfortunately, I don’t believe the movie ended up using my voice. The voice you heard from the movie was probably of a professional, although the actors’ reactions were influenced by my shouting on set. I have not watched the movie yet, but I did skip to two GPS scenes, neither of which used my voice. 😛 It was still an awesome experience!

      Liked by 1 person

      • You are more than welcome…
        That sounds pretty frustrating to find that your voice was not used…but you are right – it sounds like the time you had was something that most people never get to experience.
        The movie is still one of the funniest I have seen for a long time, and I highly recommend it prior to your next trip 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • Came across your blog while searching (hoping) to find a real “angry gps” TTS out there. I enjoyed your story and it doesn’t matter if it was not your voice. You were obviously instrumental in the creation of that masterpiece. Probably the funniest thing to hit the scene in years. It has definately achieved cult status for many of us.
        Maybe consider making some really angry TTS or Garmin/Tom Tom GPS voice files for us someday.
        You would be a global hit and might get a few of us to drive better. In fact all of us would if we learn enough Korean to know what’s got you so riled!

        Thanks for the laugh. We all appretiate it!

        Liked by 1 person

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