Behind the Scenes

Last night was the season premiere of the television show, Leverage. While I enjoy watching it when I can, after all it is filmed in Portland, it’s not something I watch regularly because it’s on TNT, and I don’t have cable.

But last night I had to make sure I could see it.

See, back in March, I spent a long day at the Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum in McMinnville, Oregon. I was there to be an extra in a future episode. When I showed up, I didn’t know that it was going to be the season premiere, and also the first episode in which they are officially located in Portland, even though they’ve been shooting here for the last three years, which made it even more special.

It was a fun day.

I met so many interesting people, even reconnected with a high school classmate, learned that Timothy Hutton is even more handsome in real life.

And also a long and tiring day.

I left my house just after 7:00AM and arrived back home after 9:00PM. Being an extra is the epitome of the phrase, hurry up and wait.

Being on the set was fascinating.

But not as fascinating as seeing how those hours translated in to just seconds in the show. The number of people required to shoot those scenes was unbelievable. Cast, crew, extras. The equipment. Food.

It was a really amazing lesson in how important the set-up is, something that’s easy for me to forget. I’m often so anxious to get to the thing, whatever it is, that I don’t always spend as much time as I could setting things up for success. I forget that the practice, the set-up, the rehearsal, is all part of the thing.

The thing does not happen by magic.

Whether it’s a teaching a class, coaching a client, or running a race, there’s so much to it besides the class, session or event. While I don’t intend to ever have the number of moving parts involved in making a TV show, there are lots of pieces that come together to make the final product as good as it can be. And perhaps more importantly, making it look easy, believable and enjoyable.

Want to see it?

If you missed the show, you can buy it on iTunes. And if you just want to play a little game of Where’s Shannon, all the scenes I appeared in are in the sneak preview clip that you can download for free.


2 comments to Behind the Scenes

  • Eeeeeek! I’m trying to find you right now! I made my way almost all the way through season 3 over the past week, two episodes left to go but the DVD is overdue at the library. I’m getting there. :)

    • Keep looking! Let me put it this way, if spotting me was a drinking game it wouldn’t be very fun. Unless, of course, your goal was to stay sober.

      I am impressed by your dedication this weekend! If you hurry up, the overdue fine will be less than a rental fee.

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