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Friday, November 21, 2014
Extra! Extra!
(Page 2 of 4)
Chris Connolly
Director of photography Ethan Mass captured a close-up of B.J. Gruber and Ali Dwyer. Gruber’s character, Robert, a popular band teacher, had affairs with two different students 20 years apart.
Then Hutchison, a man in his mid-40s with a quick wit and a salt-and-pepper beard who has previously worked on shows including A&E’s “Killer Speaks” and “Requiem for the American Dream,” an upcoming documentary about Noam Chomsky, turned his attention to constructing the band scene. For one shot of the band’s footwork, he exchanged a student extra wearing Nikes for one wearing less prominently branded shoes.

On set

The production, overseen by Adam Merrit, 34, was clean and professional but far from lavish. Actors and extras alike brought costumes from home and helped out wherever they could. Olga Kosheva, for example, the energetic xylophonist from the band scene, was also in charge of makeup and wardrobe — a slate of responsibilities all deriving from a business internship with Atlas Media, the company that produces “Bad Teachers” and “Hotel Impossible,” among other shows.

“It’s the funnest thing ever,” Kosheva, 19, laughed. A business student at Bentley College in Massachusetts, the Port Washington resident said her initial duties with Atlas involved budgets and office work, but evolved to include on-set activity. “I was undecided about what I wanted to do,” she told me. “I thought about economics or working in a bank. But this has opened my eyes. Maybe I’ll do business in the media industry.”

Other participants last week were also seeking to do something new. Current and recent BHS students including Ally Callaghan, Adam Hartman, Gabrielle Boris and brothers Anthony and Reginald Carrion said they wanted to gain some experience on a TV set. Larry Hobbs, 62, husband of Baldwin School District Clerk Mary Hobbs, said his wife encouraged him to show up.

Patty Nicolari, 55, drove from New Haven, Conn., to participate. “I like to get outside my comfort zone,” said Nicolari, a retired school principal who learned about the opportunity on castingnetworks.com. “It’s not about the money. They told me, ‘It’s just pizza.’ But that’s fine.”
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