AUDITIONS, part two

By Adrian Tullberg

***

"Morning, Lorraine."

"Russel. Let's get this over … started with, shall we?"

"Okay now, in your own time … Nigella?"

"Er, excuse me? Granted, I can't cook as well as you can, but if for any reason a particular recipe demanded I coat a rolling pin in Vaseline, I wouldn't be applying it like that …"

***

"Lady Ferguson, the fact you weren't notified of the audition is that … well, you're not a formally trained actress, per se. Yes, I'm aware of your weight loss commercials. Very … well lit. Look, just send your resume to the department head, and he'll sort it out, okay? No, it's not a problem. If you'll excuse me, I've got absolutely tons of work to get through. Good day."

"Do you hate that guy? I mean, killed your parents hate?"

"Remind me to give him a suitable grovelling apology in the next few days …"

***

"Er, Ms McKenzie? Lindsey Dawn? Ah, that's all for today, shut down … anybody? Hello? Could you stop staring?"

"Ah … uh …"

"You know, Russell, from an academic viewpoint it's fascinating that you're just as fixated …"

"It's … they have their own gravity Lorraine …"

***

"Lady Ferguson, I made sure that your resume was sent to the right people … yes, I personally took care of it. You'll get a call in the next day or so,  I promise. Someone's on the other line, got to go."

"Feeling okay?"

"How the hell did she get my home phone number?"

***

"Isn't it a little too early to be drinking straight Vodka?"

"How long have you been working in TV, Russel?"

"Well, I've …"

"You'll learn. Hang on, how did we manage to get her?"

"BBC Wales. Plus a need to put a positive spin …"

"The local-girl-done-good instead of the Hollywood-A-List-Money-Grubbing-Freak spin?"

"Yup."

"Must have been a job and a half getting those paparazzi out of the studio."

"Not really. Your typical British shutterbug is a very typical blokey heterosexual, so a little gay sexual harassment goes a very long way."

"Russel, I'm impressed."

"And I got two phone numbers. Can't remember which one belongs to the cute one and which belongs to the Reg Hollis lookalike …"

"How's the reading?"

"Pretty impressive. You know, if we can get her to commit to at least one season, I can really wring a good tragic death out of it … a good contender for the BAFTAs and a dead cert for international sales …"

"Just got a text from her agent. She's out."

"What? Oh, I can't … what is it, more money?"

"She's pregnant."

"Again?"

"Latest update has her stopping at Harrods for the booties."

"Bloody hell, he's a machine …"

"Hmm. I'm beginning to think that his money and Hollywood connections fall under 'fringe benefit' …"

"Think we should send a present?"

"I'm thinking … a television …"

***

"You do understand, Fergie, that ever since 9-11, the security services around government premises have a virtual licence to kill? I'm giving you till the count of three … two …"

***

"Great work."

"Thank you Greg. Your plan went exactly as predicted … there's been no mention of Doctor Who being gay for some time, yet favourable press about us in the majority of the media."

"Good then."

"If you'll excuse me, I've got some real … more work to do …"

"I'll have another list done up by Thursday next."

"… another …?"

"It's two years until we've got something on screen, we've got to keep the interest up … Lorraine? Oh bloody hell … Doris, get a nurse or somebody from the medical shows up here would you …?"

***

Please send any and all comments to adriantull@urban.net.au