Alright Mr. Gosling, I’m Ready For My Close Up
Recently, a gloomy storm system engulfed the better part of a week. On the first sunny day, I take my bike for a quick spin around town. I ride through greater downtown Detroit, jetting past hot spots where I’d usually stop to enjoy the ambiance or indulge in a tasty nosh.
The speedy jaunt leaves me wet and hungry, so I freshen up and nosh at Wayne State’s Campus. Once rested, I notice it’s getting late and quickly make a bee line toward home. I speedily traverse Midtown in an easterly direction and through Eastern Market, cutting a path to E. Vernor Hwy. Just a couple miles from there, at Crane Street, I’ll be halfway home.
Making good time, I turn right onto Crane expecting to speed a couple short blocks to Kercheval, but the next block is partially flooded and a crowd of people, with trucks, cars and equipment jam the street. I assume this is a crowd of city workers fixing the sewer drain. I very slowly peddle toward Kercheval navigating the puddle and a man speaking into a two-way radio. Mind you, there’s no blockade or people wranglers at any point along Crane Street.
I approach a large crew of men seemingly on break, casually standing in the street, on the sidewalk and sitting in front of an abandoned building. Approaching the corner, I peddle through a field of awkward stares, a somewhat confusing situation, as this group isn’t wearing construction helmets and hasn’t a black face in it. A somewhat strange setup on Detroit’s deep east side at a largely blighted intersection. It’s rare that I encounter anyone on this particular corner, much less a large group of white men with, what I eventually recognize as, film equipment.
I ask a man sitting near the corner, “Are you all filming here?” He affirmatively answers with a timid nod, as I slowly coast to the corner. Suddenly, a fast moving silver sedan traveling west on Kercheval abruptly turns onto Crane St. passing on my right. Stunned, I dismount my bike, scoping out the car to see who almost hit me. I spy a man in the backseat talking on a two-way, intently glaring at me. I thought to myself, “Hey, that’s Sean Penn,” as it turns out, he’s the movie director Ryan Gosling (my bad!). I attempt to flee, but a raggedy Ford Pinto quickly approaches the corner with a beautiful flaming red head at the wheel (Christina Hendricks).
Startled, I dismount expecting another high speed turn. Instead, the car abruptly stops and then it happens; Ryan Gosling leans out of his car barking at me, ” WOULD YOU PLEASE MOVE, YOU’RE IN MY SHOT!!!” Flabbergasted, I snap my head back at Gosling yelling “THIS IS MY REGULAR ROUTE!!!” I casually exit stage left grumbling a few choice words. Looking back, I notice Ms. Hendricks acting out her scene as if nothing happened. I thought it a bit strange, but during the whole debacle Mr. Gosling never yelled “CUT!”
I got all jammed up in a Hollywood movie scene just bike riding in the hood. Who knew Ryan Gosling would pick that particular corner to shoot a scene from his modern fantasy drama, “How to Catch a Monster.” Rarely is there ever anyone standing on, walking or driving by Crane and Kercheval when I come speeding through. I typically navigate that corner without stopping for traffic.
I’d like to thank Mr. Gosling for injecting a bit of excitement and intrigue into my exercise routine. I wish him great success with this project, as it’s his debut as a feature film writer and director. It’s just too bad that my Hollywood acting debut will end up on the cutting room floor. Below are photos of the location where I had the encounter with Ryan Gosling and his film crew.
Feature film ‘How to Catch a Monster’ approved for film incentive (Click On Detroit.com)
Ryan Gosling Shoots How to Catch a Monster on Detroit Bridge (E News)
Cannes: Foreign Buyers Flock to Ryan Gosling’s ‘How to Catch a Monster’ (The Hollywood Reporter)
Ryan Gosling’s ‘How To Catch A Monster’ Sees Strong Sales (Variety)
UPDATE | Movie Trailer – Lost River (Apparently the movie title has changed)