Since[our family had been involved in many movies that were being filmed in Charleston, it was no surprise to us that the casting director called to offer a part in an upcoming movie to our youngest son, Brandon, who was around 6 years old at the time. So, I asked him if he would like to participate. Knowing how long it takes to shoot a scene, he was a little hesitant but finally agreed.
The day came to film and we were instructed to meet at The Aiken-Rhett House in the historic district of downtown Charleston. When we arrived, we were asked to sign in and wait for further instructions. To our surprise, there sat a very good friend of ours along with her 6-year-old son, Ryan.
Within minutes the wrangler came out and whisked the two boys away. And, thirty minutes later they were back in full “Civil War” era costumes. The boys, very happy to see each other, were having a grand ole time playing, running and laughing, waiting for the shoot to begin.
The wrangler came to collect the boys at which time she told us that the scene they would be shooting was a birthday party for Jefferson Davis’ son-- and, that she was not sure how long it would take. She said, “Just make yourselves comfortable, have a water and relax for a while.”
I knew what that meant. We were in for a long day... And it was hot outside.
Well, they were back in the blink of an eye, already out of costume and in their own clothes. “My goodness,” I said, “That didn't take long at all.” The Wrangler said, “They did such a great job that the director shot the scene in one take!”
“Excellent,” I said.
Months went by, the “made-for-TV” movie was released. Time for the big day! Each family gathered around their respective television sets for the “viewing.” We were all so excited to see how the boys had handled themselves. The movie started, the big scene comes up and the boys are playing a version of “blind man’s bluff.”
Ryan, the one who was “it” and trying to get the targets—all of the other children playing the game—was spun around, feeling his way around the room, finally catches one of the other boys. The camera immediately pans away to another room but we continue to hear Brandon’s laughter coming from the party as the boys continued to play.
Not being able to see Ryan's face or even tell that it is him, his mother said, “How did you end up wearing the burlap blindfold in that scene?”
Ryan said excitedly, “I raised my hand and volunteered!”
“Well,” she said, “how do you think all of our friends are going to know that it's you?”
“That's easy,” he exclaimed. “I'll just tell them I'm the one in the blindfold!” He was just as happy as he could be knowing that he had done something special by volunteering to wear it.
You gotta love ‘em!
By the way, both “men” are still heavily involved in theater as writers, actors, directors, makeup artists, set designers... You name it and they can do it...
Still working together and still great friends.
~ Jeannie Joyner