Thursday, March 13, 2008
The last big scenes for Gus Van Sant's Milk were fimed outside City Hall last Sunday. I got a helluva sunburn for forgetting to use enough sunblock.
But in a way, it was worth it to be a small part of what will be a very interesting film. Sean Penn was great, giving his speech on the stage. Cleve Jones spoke between takes. Tom Ammiano was on hand (he's playing himself). A few shirtless hunks (paid extras) had the '70s look down, as did a hot, hot cop daddy.
My shots got a little sun-flared, too; discolored. Coincidentally, I talked with photographer Rick Gerharter and his friend Harley about old film stock (There were some fake old news cameras on hand). Harley had a hundred rolls of film from an India trip developed at Harvey Milk's photo shop!
The unveiling of the first big rainbow flag was quite dramatic. That, and the SF Gay Freedom Marching Band, were just started that year, 1978. There were no anachronisms, except a faux-Sister of Perpetual Indulgence (They weren't formed until 1979), but the Sisters have a way of inserting themselves in pretty much any gay SF film.
I look forward to the film, which may premiere at the Castro Theatre, which benefitted from some renovations to its marquee, thanks to the film set on Castro Street.
Update, March 19: SF Chronicle on the completing of filming.