Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2017-11-22
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Stage to film: Laurie Attea on set of Hannah Free
by Jorjet Harper
2009-09-23

facebook twitter pin it del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email


In some way, Laurie Attea set everything in motion. She discovered Claudia Allen's play Hannah Free in a slush pile at the Bailiwick Repertory theater and decided to direct it. This original stage production of Hannah Free was produced in 1992. When the play was about to be filmed, in 2008, Attea was asked to help with the casting. "I then got swept up in the idea of the production," she said, and she became not only casting director for the film but also second assistant director, a job she had never done before.

She was a fast learner. During filming, Attea was a ubiquitous presence, clipboard in hand. "As it turns out, the job of the 2nd AD is very similar to that of a stage manager on stage," she said. "You're the first one on set and the last to leave. There's lots of paperwork. But one of my primary roles was acting as liaison between the actors and the set, which I very much enjoyed. I also organized the extras, dealt with call times for cast and crew and tried to keep things running on schedule."

Looking back on the original play, staged at Bailiwick, Attea said, "I'm not sure that the message has changed any from when we first produced the play. We didn't have a lot of media role models back then, the movies and television shows didn't have gay and lesbian characters as a matter of course. I think it is much easier now for people to hear and respond to some of the issues because they are more in the forefront of our thinking and more possible now. I think it was also harder to be in a gay or lesbian relationship 25 years ago than it is now. We now have many examples of lesbian couples in long-term relationships. I can offer mine as being one: my partner Lauren and I have been together 19 years."

Not only was it more difficult to be accepted as a same-sex couple years ago, but "the negative connotations made it difficult for some gays or lesbians to accept themselves," Attea said. "Of course, the small-town aspect is still alive—it is still not easy being gay or lesbian in a small town." With the advent of gay marriage and domestic-partner rights ( in some states ) , she added, "we've come a long way in some aspects and in some areas. Being able to care for the person you love should be a right for any person regardless of sexual orientation. I think Hannah Free reminds us of that as we continue with that struggle now."

Attea explained some of the practical differences between the staging of the play and the shooting of the film. "One of the differences between the script and screenplay are the amount of roles. In the stage play, the actresses playing Hannah and Rachel played them at all ages," while in the film, different actresses of different ages were needed to show the two main characters at different stages in their lives. Also, "the stage play didn't have as many sex scenes ( or any at all, I think ) . It was a more innocent play; we saw the characters' deep love for each other, but not so much the sexual passion."

Among the group of actors who worked on the film, Attea pointed out that many had been in previous stage productions of Hannah Free: "I don't think any of them, except Pat Kane, played the same roles, but it is a testament to Claudia Allen and this play that so many of them wanted to be a part of the film. A woman who had played the role of Hannah in a Madison production even drove to Chicago from Madison, just to be an extra in the film!"

Since the interior scenes were shot in an historic 19th-century South Side mansion, creaking floors and other noises needed to be silenced during the shooting so as not to spoil the scenes, and this too was part of Attea's job. "We had PAs [ production assistants ] stationed throughout the house, at the back door, upstairs and sometimes even outside to try and keep everyone quiet when we were shooting," Attea said. PAs communicated with each other by headsets so they would know when they needed to keep everyone quiet. PAs shouted "Lock it up!" whenever the cameras began rolling. The squeaking floors were a problem because, Attea explained, "any movement could be picked up by the audio techs, so we needed to keep people quiet near the set, outside the set and above the set. We were all in very close quarters on these sets, so any unwanted sound could ruin a take. At times, a lot of people had to fit into small spaces to shoot the scenes."

There was also the problem of noises from the urban environment. "Many times there would be outside noise that we had to go out and try and stop," Attea said. "Trucks or kids playing, lawns being mowed, etc. Not everyone wanted to stop what they were doing because we were shooting a movie, but I think most people tried to accommodate us." When the crew was short-handed, entry doors would be locked so no one would burst in, making noise, in the middle of a take. Even with the closed doors, heat was difficult to maintain in the huge, rambling house. "I remember it was always very cold in the house and people were usually in their coats, hats, scarves, etc," Attea added. "I always had multiple layers on to keep myself warm."

Attea said it was "a great learning experience, and a pleasure for me. I appreciate and respect actors a great deal, and I had a wonderful group of actors and extras that I worked with on this film."


facebook twitter pin it del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Hannah Free re-release celebration includes Sharon Gless 2016-04-17
Upcoming: Lesbian characters in Signature Move, Hannah Free 2016-04-13
Upcoming: Piano Men, Vintage Garage, Kinsey Sicks, Hannah Free, Sound of Music 2016-04-06
Upcoming: Paris Is Burning, HUMP festival, MoCP at 40, lesbian film Hannah Free 2016-03-30
Upcoming: 'Hannah Free'; 'Paris Is Burning'; HUMP! fest; 'Two Fisted' art 2016-03-23
Hannah Thomas: Out singer showcases voice in various genres 2014-03-26
Lesbian film 'Hannah Free' showing March 21 2014-03-18
'Hannah Free' showing March 21 2014-03-05
'Hannah Free' March 21 at Unitarian Church of Evanston 2014-02-18
Lesbian singer Hannah Thomas: Indie music's new 'It' girl 2013-07-10
Hannah Free re-release 2012-01-11
MOVIES Wendy Jo Carlton: From 'Hannah Free' to 'Jamie' 2011-03-02
'Hannah Free' director starting new project 2010-08-25
'Hannah Free' Director To Shoot New Queer Feature Film in Chicago 2010-08-20
Hannah Free release in Chicago, Gless honored 2010-06-30
Kelli Strickland Talks Hannah Free 2010-06-30
Jacqui Jackson Puts Her Heart into Hannah Free 2010-06-30
Gless to get gay police award; Hannah Free DVD release party in Chicago 2010-06-23
Gless to get gay police award; Hannah Free DVD release party in Chicago 2010-06-16
Sharon Gless to receive gay police award, Hannah Free DVD release party in Chicago 2010-06-14
Chicago to host LGBT police confab in June 2010-05-05
Gless to get gay police award; Hannah Free DVD release party in Chicago 2010-04-21
Sharon Gless to receive gay police award, Hannah Free DVD release party in Chicago 2010-04-15
Hannah Free film June 13 showing in Three Oaks, Mich. 2010-04-14
Sharon Gless to receive gay police award, Hannah Free DVD release party in Chicago 2010-04-14
Hannah Free, Scott Free among OUTMusic winners 2009-12-16
Chicagoans, Hannah Free OUTMusic award winners 2009-12-09
Hannah Free film in Ohio at Little Art Theatre 2009-12-03
Hannah Free returns to Chicago after successful run 2009-11-10
Hannah Free returns to Chicago after successful run 2009-11-09
Hannah Free returns to Chicago after successful run 2009-11-06
Hannah Free Returns to Chicago Nov. 27-Dec. 3 2009-10-12
Hannah Free hometown premiere, photos 2009-09-30
Hannah Free showing this week at Gene Siskel 2009-09-29
Knight at the Movies: Hannah Free; film note 2009-09-23
The Making of Hannah Free: Producer Tracy Baim 2009-09-23
Sharon Zurek, 'Hannah Free' editor extraordinaire 2009-09-23
Perfect pitch: 'Hannah' composer Martie Marro 2009-09-23
On the set: 'Hannah' stars talk about the film 2009-09-23
Sharon Gless on Hannah Free, Q&A 2009-09-16
 



Copyright © 2017 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor


 



Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Submit an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.