“Hurry up and wait!”
Anyone who has worked on a major Hollywood production is familiar with this ironic cry.
There is a tremendous amount of down time on a Hollywood film. It takes hours to set up lights, rig camera and sound, and make sure the sets and props are in place. Thus, actors spend a huge amount of time waiting, waiting, waiting for the the cameras to roll.
In the past, especially in the 1930s, scores of Hollywood actresses took up knitting to help pass the countless hours between takes.
Several years ago, at a swanky Hollywood party, I met the wealthy widow of a prominent producer who had been active during Hollywood’s Golden Age. After dispensing with a few glasses of champagne the elderly lady talked about, well, the good ol’ days. When I expressed my admiration for classic Hollywood movies she told me that at the tender age of 15, she was one of Busby Berkeley’s chorus girls.