May 11, 2011

So, my dear bloggereenos,
     two of my dearest friends from England, D____ and sweet B____, recently expressed their discomfort with me not blogging in English, and so I promised some improvements on this blog. I will write in English a wee bit more frequently in the future, and the future starts now!

What have I been up to? Well, unfortunately, I haven’t been in England for a while — except for a few performances last autumn —, and I do miss it terribly at times. But decisions had to be made. My life was torn apart between London, Madrid, and Berlin, you see, and I was very unhappy with this situation for many, many years. After I had left London two years ago, I readjusted my life in Germany. It was just something I had to do. I wanted to leave the actor behind and focus on the writer-producer. I thought it would put me a little bit more in charge of things, but actually, it’s not that much fun either. You see, as an actor, you depend on the director — he’s the one in charge, and you are merely an instrument. (In most cases. Admittedly, I did have the pleasure of working with some very fine directors who gave their actors the space they needed, but alas, these were exceptions.) The producer, although in a slightly more powerful position, is a nuisance to almost everyone on the set, because he’s the one who looks after the money and has to say »No!« a lot — a word nobody likes to hear. (Especially wildly extravagant first-time movie directors.) The reputation of being a butthole comes quickly and sticks to you like dough. As a writer, no-one really takes you seriously, but everyone seems to enjoy putting the blame on you in case something didn’t work out as intended. If you’re looking for respect in your life, don’t become a screenwriter. There was a lot of slandering and libelling, stealing, plotting and mobbing going on, real rabble-rousing attacks on me. It was a big heartbreak. Best you can do when things tumble down on you like this? Try to stay sane, breathe in, breathe out, remain calm. Take a hot bath. Evoke positive thoughts. Summing it up, being an actor-writer-producer on a film project isn’t exactly a ball, but after all, it was my choice — tough titties!
     Last month, one of the movies I did here in Germany had its DVD release in the United States and Canada, and apparently it does quite well. The reviews were favourable, and so far the sales are good as well — what more can you ask for? (The same movie had become an irreproachable hit in France and Belgium, by the way, which still gives me a weird feeling, a sort of happy, dance-dance-dancy feeling.)

Shortly after my birthday something funny occurred. An old friend managed to track me down. (Old as in, I knew him way back then. Not old as in, tons of wrinkles. Although, unless the past four years were kinder to him than they were to me, I’m sure there are a few.) And guess what? E-Mails flew back and forth, pictures of his children, invitations to stay, and the next thing I knew, I’d agreed to be in his upcoming movie which he’s planning to shoot in London of all places. I still don’t really know why I agreed. I guess it was the kind of thing one does because why-the-hell-not. It felt just right — and strange, too. It was like a hello to an André from the past, but different. No career to worry about. No responsibility resting on my shoulders. Just get to show up on a movie set, have fun playing dress-up, eat delicious cookies at the craft service table, hang out with my friend, be paid a little money for having a good time, and then I’m back off to Berlin. What could be nicer? I’m really looking forward to it. (Working with other people! Being a writer is lovely, but it can be a little lonely, too.) But it’s still a long time to go; from what I’ve been told, cameras won’t start rolling until February 2012.

Some of you may know my precious little flat in Kreutzberg. I cherished it so much and lived there for eleven years. It was quite a shock for me to hear that the flat had been sold and the new owner wanted to move in himself. In other words: I had to move out asap. Found a bigger, brighter, prettier flat, unfortunately located in a much shabbier part of Berlin. I loathe moving. Always have. Packing, carrying boxes and furniture, driving through town many, many times, unpacking — and that’s the fun part, isn’t it? Changing all of your mail, getting your passport updated — that’s the stuff that really sucks! My God, it took me months getting my mail all transfered to the new place!
     Chelito, my cute little dog, though, likes the new flat because it’s sunny and quiet. He just loves to stretch out on the bed when the afternoon sun shines through the window, dreaming for hours, snoring contently in his sleep while I’m writing. Oh, and another plus is that there’s one of Berlin’s most beautiful und biggest parks nearby where Chelito enjoys chasing crows. (Even though I keep telling him that it’s not very bright to annoy an animal that can easily outsmart you.)

Well, I guess that’s it for now. My new script’s waiting to be finished. Next time you visit my blog, you can go directly here to read all my English entries.
     I’m sending tiger kisses and baby bear hugs to Michael, D____, Stuart, C____, B____, and Anthony — so sorry I’ve become such a lazy caller, but things will get better. After all, it’s May, it’s May, the lusty month of May, that lovely month when everyone goes blissfully astray. It’s here, it’s here, that shocking time of year, when tons of little wicked thoughts merrily appear.
     Love,

André

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