The day the news broke on Twitter that J.J. Abrams is to direct* the remake of the Fantastic Four was the same day I happened to be scrapping the dust off my acting resume. How very karma-esque. I’ve been known to act out on occasion. And I do have some small measure of expertise. Ahem. I played “Bunny” in my town’s little theater stage production of Neil Simon’s “California Suite.”
Critics were captivated by my “mesmerizing ability to bring life to an unconscious prostitute.”
Invisible Girl could be my first speaking role in a film. Excuse me while I gargle. The Fantastic Four is my favorite of all the Marvel comic super heroes. Usually, you get one guy in super-tight stretch pants. With FF you get FOUR super heroes in super-tight all over body wear. In shiny blue the exact color of my contact lenses. *sigh* Too bad the first film was so agonizingly boring, the movie theater sounded like late night at Denny’s…shifting butts and slurping noises.
If it wasn’t for that Jessica Alba babe and her implants, it could have been my name on the lips of every man born after 1980.
Hollywood remakes are nothing new. Sadly. Remaking a movie that sucked in the first place is not the best use of your time and their effort. HOWEVER. There are directors in la-la land who can make you stop and pull over. Like a really bad car crash, you just have to brake hard and watch.
Hot off the hugely successful Hollywood remakes of not one, but two films from the Star Trek franchise, Mr. Abrams is THE director to
bribe watch. Word is Benedict Cumberbatch may appear in one of his upcoming Star Wars movies. Or maybe not. Ben’s such a tease.
So, with my acting resume grasped in my sweaty hands, I sat by the phone for four days. This shows you how important I am to my agent. Only four days of waiting before “Chariots of Fire” starting blaring from my iPhone.
Agent: I got you an audition. It was a hard sell as J.J. kept insisting he wanted Jessica Alba back but he owes me a favor. Don’t ask.
Me: You know I don’t auction well. We’ve talked about this.
Agent: Yeah, well, you’re auditioning so smoke it, toke it, drain that bottle ’cause you’re on at 10am tomorrow. And for Christ’s sake, don’t wear what you wore when they cast Star Trek. You looked like a tribble. Creative Artists almost revoked my license over your idea of “warm and fuzzy.”
Me: Are they sending a car?
Agent: [silence] [dial tone}
[INTERIOR SCENE: the next morning]
Oh my god. Oh my god. What time is it? [clocks ticks over to 6:13 am] WHAT! No, no, NO. Three hours is simply not enough time to reject 15 different outfits. Where’s my black velvet catsuit? No, no, NO. Forget the catsuit. Wrong movie. How about culottes? They’re back, right? No, no, NO. Too eighties. Get a grip, BD. Think seductive superhero. Be the part. Okay, relax. You can do this. Think back to high school and the Spring Fling. Remember Bobby ditched you at the punch bowl and you felt invisible for the rest of the night. YES! The tie-dyed skinny brown corduroys and the pink wrap-around top. Retro yet hip.
[INTERIOR SCENE: J.J. Abrams’ suite at the Plaza]
JJ: Hi. Take a seat. We’ve made some changes to the script. Invisible Girl’s been injected with a genetic modifier and she’ll be invisible throughout the film. What’s your natural hair color?
Me: Ahh…light brown but I’ve been blonde for…
JJ: No. I see you as a redhead. Eye color?
JJ: No, no, no. The rest of the cast have green eyes. Just squint a lot. How tall are you and would you be willing to wear lifts?
Me: Five nine but I’m confused. Didn’t you just say I’d be invisible on camera?
JJ: Maybe you haven’t heard but I like to keep it real. AUTHENTIC. We’ll film you in place running lines then we’ll erase you via CGI and dub your voice. You look like you’ve gained weight. We need you 10 pounds lighter by next Tuesday.
Me: Sorry, I’m still not getting it. I’m going to be invisible. Can’t you shoot the script and let me do a voice over?
JJ: That’s not the way I work. I want my actors to be IN THE MOMENT! Are you method? I thought I asked for method.
Me: So I’m in the movie but not actually IN the movie.
JJ: You’re smart. I like that. What size dress?
Me: Eight. I’m an eight. Since I’ll be invisible can’t I wear jeans?
JJ: Not for the publicity shoot. We need you GLAM, baby. We need you rocking the BLING.
Me: Fantastic! So people WILL see what I look like. My agent is gonna love that!
JJ: No, no, NO! You’ll be CGI’d out of the publicity shots, too. There’ll be a space with an arrow pointing to you in the line-up. What part of Invisible Girl don’t you get?
Me: [mumbling] Not this part, apparently.
JJ: Good news is you’ll be in every scene.
[EXTERIOR SCENE: fourteen months later on premiere night]
Me: But I’ve got a VIP pass! Here! Look! It says “Invisible Girl, J.J. Abrams’ production of Fantastic Four: Negative Space.” You’ve got to let me in.
Security: Look lady. I’ve seen the movie and you ain’t in it. So why don’t you and that black velvet catsuit you’re wearing hustle off down Sunset and work it somewhere else.
*It’s not official that J.J. Abrams is directing Fantastic Four. It’s not even a rumor. Yet.