THE PATRIOT (day four)

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Posted by Soldier #2 on September 01, 1999 at 22:20:47:

Hello Boys!

Well does that give you a hint?

Day Four, I started the day waking up to high winds and a temperature of about 55 degrees. Cold as compared to the past days. I had pulled the camper in Sunday night and sleep there as not to have to drive 2 hours first thing in the morning. I dressed in my British uniform as requested from some of the other men who wanted to see as close to what we would be wearing. As I walked to the casting tent one of the trainers told me to report to Riley Flynn. I did and found out that I was promoted to Sergeant. Then I found out that I had been traded to the English. Black Company. The first session (M,T,W) was for men with short hair. They would be the Americans (Remember Red, White and Blue Companies ? ) The second session was for long hair men and would be English. (Black, Gold and Green Companies) Well I am now Sergeant for the Black company. So that answers that question. Huh? I will be a Brit. The morning started out without weapons. Doing facing and marching movements. Opening and closing column, displaying column, displaying battalion, firing as platoons from the right and left, firing as companies from the right and left and firing as a battalion. Mainly, so the Sergeants can get the commands right. Needless to say I have no voice again, but not as bad this time. By 10 am the English were marching with weapons. The Americans were doing their own thing. We broke for lunch at noon and who did I met? Our own Mark Baker was there to train the four principle actors in the art of firing a flint lock. . Mark asked me to get up with him at the of the day to talk more. We talked very briefly and I was introduced to Heath Ledger. Heath was nice young man. Very quiet, but typical young man of his age. He had a since of purpose yet would seek some direction. Make sense? I also met Mel. Now, if you have seen any of the Lethal Weapon movies you have already met Mel. If you think I am hyper and somewhat of a clown then you donít need Mel. He was very funny though his favorite word begins with an "F". After lunch we began working with the Americans doing the stunts. The English were set up on one side of the field and the Americans on the other. The English with bayonets charged would charge the Americans. Fighters were picked and paired with someone form the other side and began working on their routine. Basically all the fighters will be running at each other, clashing, and while the English do a bayonet thrust the Americans block it. Then the English do a Vertical butt smash, the Americans block that. They clash again and do the whole thing again in reverse. Then clashes once more, the English kill the Americans and march on. The Americans turn and run to be chased by the Calvary. Well...........whew! We worked on this till about 3 or so till some news crew arrived and guess what? Dog and pony show! CNN 2 filmed us going thru our drill as well as The Herald a newspaper from York, SC. (BTW I was in the Charlotte Observer Tues., Aug. 24, York section. This section is sold only in SC. I plan to contact the paper for a copy as well as The Herald. Aug. 31 of The Herald. If anyone gets this or anything about the movie please get me a copy or let me know. ) We finished the day and I was able to sit down with Mark for a good hour. We talk about the gun maker ( I am sorry but I have forgotten the mans name. He is a re-enactor and lives in Ky. Bill R., any idea?) In this type of gun it was typical for the makerís name to be engraved on the gun. Well, he was asked to engrave this gun so in the close up shots we maybe able to read his name. He should be very proud of that. Mark and I talk about his teaching and him missing his sons football game in which he ran 60 some yards only to be tackled on the one yard line. Mark is one proud father as he has been his coach. BTW Mark is left handed and his weapon named Carrie is made for him. He has owned the gun for 19 years and it is a close match to a PA. long gun. He bought it close to the time that his daughter was born who was named Mariah. So, as Mark said "I guess my weapon is really named Mariah Carrie" Haha. Mark says Hi to Mohicanland and he will contact us when he can. He is scheduled to work only till Saturday Sept. 4th or the 11th. I donít remember. Never the less, he will not be there for the whole picture, just training. Our chat was very nice and I myself would like to go thru his training. Did he tell you about DDL and shooting the bottle? Let me know? After our chat I retired to my camper along with David Wilson and Trinity Shull. I met both these men/ boys really (20 and 24) when I applied for the movie. Trinity was in front of me and is from Hudson, NC, very near Morganton and David was in back of me and is living in Greenwood, SC. Trinity is in my company and David is the Sergeant for Green Company.

Day Five, Started normal and a lot of the same. At lunch I again saw Mark and met the gun maker. Very nice man with a very KY accent. He didnít want to break the lunch line as actors do. So I pulled him in the line in front of me. One of my men walked off the set after lunch. He forgot where he put his weapon after lunch and got drilled for that. Pissed him off and he left. Fine with me. I want men who want to do their best. Nothing other really special till about 2 30. At that time we marched to a field about 3 miles away and did the scene we had practiced the day before for the director. Everything went smooth till powder was given out. One young man in the company next to me fired off a round prematurely and got his A** chewed for that BIG TIME! Then a young man in Green Company fired off a round while the weapon was still at make ready. Basically still on his shoulder pointing straight up in the air. The flash from the pan burnt his ear and left side of his face. Really, he was fine and continued the day. An order was given that if any more premature blasts would result in being fired on the spot. Safety was a big concern and the men get very excited when firing. Then the director wanted us to open a space between each company to make it look bigger in the film. That didnít help. We were all trained to march at close order. When that space was added, the men had a hard time keeping their dress. After a few time it really came together. I have one man in my company who is very slow in reloading, so at a time in which he gets behind I have to kill him. (ask him to lie down) It is kinda funny. He may die on the first volley or he may live to see another day. All depend on his timing. We have to keep going for the filming. We finished the day with a cheer from the director. He is impressed with our work. We march back and were released. I then drove to Rockhill to talk with Shirley while I was there I saw Jason Isaac. Nice looking man. You women will love him I am sure. I also saw Joely Richardson. WOW! You men will love her! Smile

I am to return on Saturday in Rockhill to be fitted in uniform and wig. My first day of filming will be on Sept. 11th.

If you have any questions I will try to answer them ASAP. Till next time,

See Yaíuns
Eric

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