Thursday, August 28, 2008
The case of the stolen ladder
VENICE, Italy -- You wouldn't imagine a ladder would be that high on a cameraman's list of red carpet essentials. But in fact, that's exactly what they use to get themselves head and shoulders above the opposition to bag the perfect shot.
And this is where our tale of woe begins. Having hauled almost 20 pieces of luggage (TV crews do not travel light) from London to Venice without losing a thing, the team hits the Lido on the first night for the "Burn After Reading" red carpet event. It's 30 degrees, Todd our cameraman is broiling in the compulsory tuxedo but the shots are bagged and we go home happy.
Next morning Todd wakes up in a sweat: he's left his ladder propped up against a wall in the festival grounds and there's a star-studded premiere for "Valentino: The Last Emperor" later that evening. We've got to get the ladder.
The ladder isn't where Todd left it and it is up to producer Lidz-Ama to sort things out. At the main press office she asks:"Do you have a Lost and Found?" "Why? Are you lost?" replies the woman. "Where do you want to go?" she continues helpfully. "No, no my cameraman has lost his ladder" says Lidz-Ama who is then directed to the Baggage Drop-off Point.
"My cameraman has lost his ladder," Lidz-Ama explains when she arrives. This causes a bit of a ruckus. The manager is called over: "Luca, we've lost this woman's ladder." Lidz-Ama begins to try to explain -- again.
"No, no we havn't lost her ladder. Her cameraman has lost the ladder it was never checked in," pipes up another man.
"This is a matter for the police" says Luca and takes Lidz outside and starts hollering for a policeman in the street. They finally find a policewoman who can speak English: "Madam, I speak English I understand someone has stolen your camera."
By this point Lidz-Ama is thinking, "Who cares. It's just a ladder," but it's too late. The ladder has now been registered with the police and Biennale security and if they find whoever (possibly quite innocently) took it away they will be arrested on the spot for stealing essential CNN equipment.
Labels: venice film festival
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