During my tenure as creator/programmer/admin of the Northern Secondary Film Club we watched a lot of Sam Raimi, Terry Gilliam, and Ridley Scott... actually, we had some pretty great programming...maybe a little heavy on the 80s dark comedies, but shutupthoseareawesomeokay?!
...We also ran a film festival which was cancelled halfway through for content...nerdy high school street cred, yo.
During this time, I was also volunteering with the Space News team from the Space Channel during the Fan Expo convention in Toronto (although, at that time it was SFX, god I feel old...). This gave me access to some pretty cool discussions, some pretty cool places, and some pretty cool people.
|note: Mr. Head, and the back of my Space News-employer's head...|
Now, at this time Buffy the Vampire Slayer had been on the air for about 5 years, but I had never seen an episode...in fact, I only started watching it last week (yea yea, I'm a terrible nerd, deal wit it) , at that time I was very very heavily into The X-Files, and Six Feet Under.
BUT WHERE IS THIS GOING, CLAIRE?
So here I am, a nerdy-but-not-a-Buffy-nerdy-girl at Fan Expo, working as a production assistant on an taping of a interview with Anthony Head, and another with Ted Raimi...
Now, Ted Raimi was the real reason I was there... He is the little brother of Sam Raimi (who we all know, right? RIGHT?) creator of the Evil Dead series and several other not-quite-as-awesome films.
|Mmmm, dat acting.|
Now I was, in retrospect, very very naive
... But there I was, with business cards for my high school film club that I had printed out on pre-scored business card templates from my mother's office...and dammit, I was going to ask Ted Raimi to come and speak to my film club about the experience of working in heavy prosthetics on the classic (and generally awesome) horror-comedy, Evil Dead 2.
|I don't know which is more horrific, the festering corpse, or the 80s happening all over blondie...|
I waited till everything was being packed up, and I was released from cable-pulling duties...I screwed up my courage, double-checked that my newly acquired cell number was pencilled on the back of my homemade business card, and I approached Ted Raimi...
|I love film, herp derp!|
I stammered and tried to explain how fantastic my film club was, and how I wanted to start a lecture series regarding the behind-the-scenes process of film making to follow some of the films that we were showing... I tried to explain how wonderful it would be if he could come and talk to the club (at his convenience, of course) about his experience in shooting his first film, Evil Dead 2 in full body prosthetics, and under the direction of his big brother, and what it felt like to be part of a cult-classic film, and how it affected his career and life, if at all...
...I finished my sales pitch. All I could hear was my heartbeat, and all I could think was "you are the biggest loser in the world, Claire...way to go."
...and then? He took my card, said he would be delighted to, and that it sounded fantastic. Then he introduced me to his friend, Anthony Head, who I knew of but didn't really know. They commended me on my work running the film club, and then Ted Raimi asked me if I wanted a hug...
Now, I'm not a touchy-feely person. I'm not the type to give hugs to any and all people. I was...confused. Did I want a hug? Well, no, not really. Would I insult him by refusing? Possibly...
He hugged me. It was awkward...I was being hugged by Henrietta from my favourite film...not my top choice, but it was happening whether I liked it or not..
|"COME TO SWEET HENRIETTA...!"|
...Then Anthony Head asked me if I'd like a hug too...
At this point the answer was honestly... "Um, I don't watch your show... so this will just be some (very tall) guy hugging a (very) dorky 16 year old..." but seeing as I hadn't even asked him to come and talk to my high school film club, and he was definitely the bigger star... I didn't want to risk his ego any further.
And then Anthony Hall hugged me. I thanked them, shook hands, left the room, and pretty much forgot about the whole thing for years.
Ted Raimi never came to speak at my film club's meetings, but I don't really hold it against him...not really. And last week I started watching Buffy The Vampire Slayer...
|oh hi, I didn't see you come in to the library...|
|Oh, hello there... I'm terribly sorry, I was in the stacks when you came in...!|
...and I have to say...that Anthony Hall is pretty alright, and the memory of the awkward hug has become a fairly pleasant one.
Hey, 16 year old me... you rock... in retrospect.