You did it! You booked a small role in a big film. Since you’re shooting on location in Nowheresville, you leave early and get to set in plenty of time for your big scene. The second AD walks you to the trailer and tells you they’re running late—in fact, they’re breaking for lunch now; do you want anything? You’ve already eaten—you’re so prepared—so you skip it to look over lines in the trailer.
In walks star No. 1. This is a huge star, by the way, but you’re too cool to look frazzled. You mumble hello and pretend to be extremely interested in something on your iPhone. When star No. 2 comes in, you barely look up from Words With Friends. You’re chill. Now the two of them start talking, cozy in their shared celebrity. You pretend to read aggregated news on your Google App.
An hour passes. You sit silently, pretending this is no big deal. You flip through a magazine. Star No. 1 is in the damn thing, so you put it away. Another hour goes by. You feel like an impostor. Any minute now, they’ll ask you what the hell you’re doing there. How did you get in this trailer? This sacred, somewhat dumpy honeywagon is for people like them. You know. Famous people.
Star No. 2 comes toward you. You’re ready to excuse yourself, yielding your seat, but he sits down next to you and begins making small talk. And as he tells you about his house and his dog and his allergies, you remember, all at once.
He’s just an actor. And so are you.
Jackie Apodaca is an associate professor and the head of performance at Southern Oregon University.