Sunday, June 2, 2013

Disney Commercial Adventure: Part 2

Warning: Long post! Feel free to skip to pictures if you don't want to be bored by my ramblings. :) If you missed Part 1, click here.


6:15 a.m. Fifteen minutes before our ride would come and take us to set.

"Come on boys! Get moving. We don't want to be late getting downstairs. "

In nervous anticipation I slipped on my shoes and pulled my hair up into a sloppy ponytail.  No need to worry about styling it. They would take care of that.  I wanted to pinch myself to see if this was really happening!

We arrive on site and one quick scan brings everything into view...a couple of trailers, a few tents, tables and chairs, moving trucks and a RV.  All ages of people were lining up to be assigned as "Extras" for the day's shoot. It's 7:00 in the morning and already the place is humming with activity since many of the production folks arrived around 5:00 a.m.
Parked outside of the RV was a rolling rack of our garments for the 3 days we would be on set. I hurried over to see which getup was chosen for me. Ah, the navy suit. With it's flattering and modest cuts it was my favorite as well.  Little did I know how grateful I would actually be for their skill in choosing just the right bathing suit. Navy Blue and I were together for a total of 36 hours over the course of 3 days.

"Go on to breakfast and then get everyone changed into their selected clothing."

Thus began one of the most exciting experiences I've had in a LONG time, so it gives me great joy to share these highlights from this crazy "happenstance", starting with the most important meal of the day - breakfast...

For me that was an omelet, fruit and an indulgent piece of bacon.  There was plenty to choose from but, I had to remind myself that my wardrobe for the duration was Navy Blue. Enough said.

Next up is the fabulous makeup and hair stylists.  Below is Ethan getting a little sunscreen along with scar coverage, and me telling her that she has her work cut out for her. I loved these sweet ladies and wanted to take them home with me. However, one of them jokingly reminded me that I could not afford them. No doubt!

Keeping in mind that I was going to be at a water park we left my hair curly, with only the addition of a hair clip and anti-frizz serum (which ended up being applied all throughout the day).

All ready to go!!

The younger children stayed back with a babysitter for most of the day and were brought out to us when they were needed for shots on their age appropriate activities. 

She rose up to the challenge of 7 kids
Or at least we thought they were with the babysitter...

This was texted to me while I was on set

That looks a lot like the RV! Apparently, Evan and Caden thought they were special and didn't have to hang with the other young ones. They wanted in the RV with the working adults.  Unfortunately two four year olds tend to hold up progress so we had a little chat with our monkeys of privilege to fix that. They rejoined the appropriate ranks soon after.

***ON SET***

The wave pool before the waves...

Now we didn't go anywhere, save for the restroom, without an escort. They had to be aware of where we were at all times! Here are a few of us returning to set...
Crew pitching in for one of the final shoots


I was dumbfounded by the amount of people it takes to put a production such as this together. Someone was always doing something...

Producers watching the shoot on their ipads and discussing what will work and what won't. Camera men with cameras and lenses the size of my four-year old. Casted Extras waited around for direction. There were men called "grips", whose sole responsibility was to carry all the heavy equipment from place to place. Production assistants, who brought the "talent" to and from shot locations.

Sometimes while we were sitting around awaiting for the next scene I would ease drop on the conversation a PA was having with their ear piece. "Yeah. I've got the Bowan, no, Roden family and can bring them to such and such slide". (Our last name was a challenge for them apparently.) There was the editor, who had a work station set up with top of the line apple computer products, an official snack woman who served snacks to all in production and kept organized rubbermaid storage carts filled with various packaged snacks and fruits, and of course there was the director and his assistant.

As for us? You do your best to follow the director's instructions that are rattled off like machine gun fire.  "Ok. Your going to come down the slide, smiling until you get to the bottom.  Then you are going to hop out and go to the right side of the stairs. Do not look at the camera. Look at each other. Then give a high-five." Ba-da-da-da-daaat (insert machine gun fire). So you hike your way up to the top of the slide and a few more folks are waiting to tell you when to go.  "Don't forget. You are going to come and go to the left of the stairs." Oh. Okay. "Um, the other guys said right." 
"Nope. That's changed. Go to the left." 
Alright. And so we would go. Sometimes the change was right and sometimes it wasn't.  Just the same, I loved the hectic confusion. Reminds me a lot of home. :)

One of the big boys favorite shoots by far was a little snorkeling action, or should I say a lot?? This was also on the same day that Glen had been up the night before with food poisoning. He was so miserable, but did whatever was asked without complaint. Commerical must go on, right? ha!

Collin and Ethan snorkel to the other side

Father and son discuss what they saw

***What we did when it rained...***

Ran for cover

Food poisoning will bring you down
Snoozing with a little barrier for protection

Everyone that we worked with was wonderful to our boys. They took such care of all the "talent", making sure we were as comfortable as possible. Here is one of several moments that I saw one of the employees interacting with our boys...

What's more fun to a kid than splashing someone?

***The Families We Worked With***

Here are the other two families that we worked with.  Our families got along great during our brief time together. Everyone looked out for each other, supported and cheered each other on. So blessed to have met each one!!

Tisdale Family

Sprouse/Delgado Family
Being silly

With long work days filled with people and activity the time flew by. However, I was not ready to leave.  We had met some neat characters that we may never see again. Would I do it again? You bet!! I cannot thank God enough for this blessing.

Some final plane photos from the ride home...



  1. AHHH! I had no idea I was in the presence of a real live celebrity. So fun! Has the commercial aired yet?

    1. Lol. Yes, the shortest claim to fame in history. :) Not sure about tv, but they said that it will be on the website in August or September.


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