Sunday, October 01, 2006

Saw: Standing Room Only in Park

Dan Heffner's visit to Park on Saturday drew a standing-room-only crowd to the Auditorium to hear him talk about life in Hollywood, the Saw series, and what's next for Jigsaw (questions about that generally prompted a single response from Heffner: "Go see Saw III").

After that presentation, Heffner met with students from BuzzSaw, the Ithacan and ICTV. He had dinner on Friday night with a group of faculty and administrators, so when I asked him what he wanted to do Saturday night, his response didn't surprise me: "What I'd really like to do is hang out with some students."

And that's what he did. It's Sunday morning and I haven't heard yet what they ended up doing, but I left him yesterday in the capable hands of Ram Calley and his pals. I'm sure they'll have a few stories to tell.....

Speaking of which, this just in from another Park alum, Alexander Wysocki:

Dear Dianne,

I was keeping up on some Ithaca news and I noticed that "Saw III"
will be coming to Park this weekend. It is great to see Hollywood
making its way back to New York.

When Abbey Kirk ( IC '04 ) and I were in the IC LA program we were
lucky enough to get internships on the first "Saw" movie as
Production Assistants. At the time we were not quite sure what we
were working on. It was a horror film, and that was cool enough. We
worked hard and late, but the crew was fun to be around and the
experience was exactly what we went out to LA for. I remember Dan
being very stressed on the set when we were shooting, but when he had
some free moments, he was very gracious to us and made us feel welcome
on the set.

I remember helping the art department with pieces of the bathroom set
and, then the same day, getting be a camera assistant for few a
scenes. We both had the pleasure of making Danny Glover fresh
squeezed orange juice in the morning (he likes the plump left in so he
knows it is real). Abbey was walking into one of the storage areas
and was stopped dead in her tracks by the puppet on the tricycle, and
yes it even is scary in real life. It was a great experience for us.

Abbey's favorite moment was occurred at the end of a particularly
stressful day on the set. The DP was changing the light on a set,
when James Wan, the director came out and took a breather in her
section of the set. He was leaning up a against the wall and asked
her "Is this your first movie?" "Yes," she replied cheerfully. "Mine
too" and he took a huge drag on his cigarette.

At the end I talked to Cary Elwes (He's the actor who "saws" of his
foot) about his famous sword fight scenes in Robin Hood Men In Tights
and The Princess Bride. After that I helped him stuff a giant
television in the back seat of his Mustang.

Now that we are out here we have had great luck with all of the Ithaca
connections. One producer we worked for actually hired us just
because we were Ithaca graduates. This producer, Joe Revello, also
happens to be the neighbor of one Dan Heffner. Small world.

I thought I would let you know about some of these interesting stories
that are relevant to what is going on right now. As a former member
of the saw crew I cannot wait until the 3rd movie hits theatres. We
watched the first one premier on Halloween night in Ithaca many years
ago and it was great to see our names in the credits. Since the crew
was so small, that meant that our names were really big, which was
also a thrill.....


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