Windy City Media Group Frontpage News

THE VOICE OF CHICAGO'S GAY, LESBIAN, BI, TRANS AND QUEER COMMUNITY SINCE 1985

home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2022-06-08
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
Donate

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

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

This article shared 3755 times since Wed Sep 23, 2009
facebook twitter pin it 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."


This article shared 3755 times since Wed Sep 23, 2009
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Rapinoe, Biles among Medal of Freedom honorees
2022-07-02
Out lesbian soccer player Megan Rapinoe and famed gymnast Simone Biles are among 17 people who will receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Joe Biden, media outlets noted. Some of the other honorees include ...


Gay News

LPAC endorses Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot for re-election
2022-06-30
-- From a press release - LPWashington, DC — LPAC, the national political organization dedicated to electing more LGBTQ women to public office, announced today it has endorsed Lori Lightfoot as she seeks re-election as Mayor of Chicago. LPAC is committed to ...


Gay News

The group Stud 4 Life celebrates Pride
2022-06-30
Local social club Stud 4 Life celebrated Pride on Chicago's South Side. On June 25, members held their Saturday Car Parade. A celebration followed at the Wild Blossom Winery, 9030 S. Hermitage Ave. Wanda B. started ...


Gay News

HRC on how the end of Roe v. Wade impacts the LGBTQ+ community
2022-06-28
-- From a press release. Video below. - WASHINGTON — The Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization, in light of the dangerous Supreme Court decision in Dobbs ...


Gay News

Russian trial for Brittany Griner to begin July 1
2022-06-27
More than four months after she was arrested at a Moscow airport for alleged cannabis possession, a Russian court has set the start date for the trial of U.S. basketball star Brittney Griner for Friday, July ...


Gay News

Back Lot Bash attendees party during Pride weekend in Chicago
2022-06-27
The inclusive music fest known as the Back Lot Bash took place June 25-26 at 5238 N. Clark St., in Andersonville. Back Lot Bash started in 2004 in response to the lack of women's events and the limited presence of ...


Gay News

U.S. House passes resolution urging Griner's release
2022-06-26
The U.S. House passed a bipartisan resolution calling on the Russian government to immediately release WNBA star Brittney Griner, CNN reported. "Not a day goes by that we aren't thinking of Brittney and working to get ...


Gay News

How Coming Out in the 1970s Helped Me Make Brave, Life-changing Decisions
2022-06-25
By Edith Forbes, author of Tracking A Shadow: My Lived Experiment With MS - As a child growing up in Wyoming in the 1960's, I did not know any actual person who was gay. I knew exactly one fact about gay people, a fact universally accepted but never talked about: Gay people were strange. Even ...


Gay News

Maggie Trevor among latest group of Victory Fund-endorsed candidates
2022-06-25
Cook County Board of Commissioners candidate Maggie Trevor is included in the most recent group of political incumbents and candidates with the backing of LGBTQ Victory Fund. LGBTQ Victory Fund endorsed 23 more out LGBTQ candidates, ...


Gay News

ELECTIONS 2022 Activist Rick Garcia talks about MWRD race
2022-06-24
Longtime LGBTQ+-rights activist Rick Garcia is among those who entered the June 28 primary to win a seat on the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District's (MWRD) board of commissioners. Longtime Commissioner Debra Shore, who is a lesbian, ...


Gay News

Actor Ezra Miller supposedly housing people at firearm-filled farm
2022-06-24
Non-binary actor Ezra Miller is allegedly housing a young mother and her three small children at a Vermont farm, which is allegedly littered with firearms, ammunition and marijuana, according to a Page Six item that cited ...


Gay News

'Hacks,' 'Euphoria' lead LGBTQ+ critics' Dorian TV nominations
2022-06-23
-- From a press release - JUNE 22, 2022 - The Society of LGBTQ Entertainment Critics—now composed of 385 professional critics and journalists covering film and television—announced its 14th Dorian TV Awards nominations for the best in all of TV, mainstream to ...


Gay News

TELEVISION 'A League of Their Own' screening July 2 in Rockford
2022-06-23
-- From a press release - ROCKFORD, Illinois — June 22, 2022 — Prime Video and the City of Rockford will team up to host a free advance screening of the upcoming Prime Video original series A League of Their Own. The ...


Gay News

HRC report: Wage for LGBTQ+ women is 79 cents to the average man's dollar
2022-06-22
-- From a press release - WASHINGTON - Today, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation, the educational arm of the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization, released new data outlining ...


Gay News

Back Lot Bash taking place June 25-26
2022-06-22
The inclusive music fest known as the Back Lot Bash will take place June 25-26 at 5238 N. Clark St., in Andersonville. Back Lot Bash started in 2004 in response to the lack of women's events and the limited presence of ...


 



Copyright © 2022 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






Donate


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam     
Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.