the dailies by juleshg

21 Mar

I’d like to dispel a few myths about death.  The first being that it is not the end. Not that I am any great expert. I’ve only been dead a week and I am not yet sure where I am.  I seem to be in a holding pattern waiting to move to the next phase but I am not scared.  Rather I feel a sense of excitement like I am waiting to embark on a huge adventure.

Last week when my head hit the cold, hard cement I knew immediately that my time on earth was over.  A tremendous explosion rocked me to my very core and suddenly I was free of my body, able to witness the action like a movie-goer watching a scene from my latest movie. 

When my agent arrived an hour later to find my empty corpse floating in the swimming pool chaos ensued.  Firefighters and ambulance attendants pulled me from the water trying to breathe life back into my lungs.  My loyal assistant sat on the ground huddled in a ball and sobbing quietly, ignored by the photographers snapping photos over the fence and by my agent who was cursing his cell phone battery for dying on the most important day of his career.

With my body empty and nothing left to see my spirit simply floated away and a week later I am still here – hovering in the in-between.  

I can still see glimpses of what I have left behind.  The director who never returned my telephone calls started working the talk-show circuit telling the world that he was devastated by my passing – by a career cut short and talent never realized.  The man who walked out on me and broke my heart now cries crocodile tears for the cameras bemoaning the love he has lost.   Magazines that criticized me as a hack with no fashion sense now feature my face on their front covers trying to capitalize on my death to garner subscriptions.  Celebrity bloggers wait with baited-breath for news of a failed tox-screen to titillate their followers.  

 In life I was an up-and-coming character actress.  In death I am a full-blown super-star.  Tripping on a pool noodle and cracking my skull was the best thing that ever happened to my career.

Before the accident I was known in the industry for being a serious actress.  I arrived early on days when I was filming and I always knew my lines when I showed up on set.  I never missed a screening of the “dailies” when the director the reviewed raw footage shot the day before to see where changes could be made.  I was a rarity but I learned a lot from the shots of other actors who shared my scenes trying to understand their reactions to my lines, the development of supporting characters in the same plot.

It is ironic that the after-life I now enjoy is much like the dailies.  As I wait to see where my spirit will end up I review scenes from the present and my past.  I can observe how other characters in my life have been affected by my actions and choices.

I have not been allowed to choose the reels I have been shown – rather they pop up in front of me at random.  I have been able to watch the images of my parents cry tears of joy when I came into the world 28 years ago juxtaposed with my mother’s sorrow when she was told of my passing.   I have seen my father’s worry as the Hollywood-machine cast his baby girl as a down-and-out drug addict and his pride when the industry recognized me with an award for that same role.  I have been thrilled to see the joy I brought my family as they celebrated my accomplishments and I have cringed to see their shame when the media blasted photos of a drunken fight with my ex on an L.A. street corner. 

I always expected that my life would flash before my eyes as I travelled from one world to the other.  What has surprised me is that I am not the star of that production: the truly compelling parts were the reactions to my drama.

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4 Responses to “the dailies by juleshg”

  1. jadamthwaite March 21, 2010 at 10:51 pm #

    I really like the idea of being able to see your life from other people’s points of view… and I especially like this idea explored from the point of view of an actress – it’s an interesting concept.

  2. jmforceton March 21, 2010 at 11:15 pm #

    One of your best. There’s a lot of insight into the acting profession here. When I saw this prompt I drew a blank. Great piece of writing.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. troika by juleshg | the character project - May 2, 2010

    […] We first met Marcie Mae/Marcia Mayville in The Dailies […]

  2. hello cranton creek by juleshg | the character project - May 9, 2010

    […] We first met Quinn last week in Troika. Marcia Mayville made her first appearance in The Dailies. […]

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