Tony the Production Assistant: The Gear, Part 2 - We Are Movie Geeks

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Tony the Production Assistant: The Gear, Part 2

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We Are Movie Geeks welcomes guest blogger Tony Fernandez, a production assistant taking us inside the underworld of indie filmmaking.


I fucked up and left expensive camera equipment on a bus. Now I must face the consequences.

After three hours of kicking myself and asking for help at the bus station I headed to Mike Pecci’s house to tell him what had happened. I just ruined his life by losing all of his camera equipment.

Riding the bus only a few hours after the incident felt awkward. I felt like a child coming home to face punishment after misbehaving at school, which I experienced often as a kid. My mom would yell at me and I would sit in my room and read X-Men comics and play Sega until she cooled down. Mike doesn’t have any video games.

The lump in my throat grew larger as I walked up Mike’s driveway. The driveway is annoyingly long and has a great view of his living room. Mike was in my field of vision for the entire walk toward his house.

I opened his front door and as soon as I walked in Mike yelled out, “Heyyy, Tony! What’s up?”

I told Mike I needed to talk, and then walked into his kitchen with him. I started to panic. The pressure was massive. Then I just let it out, “I lost the camera case.”


“I left the gear on the bus.”

I fully expected Mike to take a swing at me. I deserved that. What I didn’t expect was for him to be as calm as he was. He went into full on Winston Wolfe mode.

Mike said to me, “Here’s the plan. Right now, I’m gonna call Ian and tell him what happened. It’s too late to call anyone now, so tomorrow morning I want you to find the number for MBTA’s lost and found and keep hammering them about the gear. Then we’re gonna call every camera shop in town and report the missing cameras and lenses and give them the serial numbers. Go home, get some sleep. We’re gonna bust our asses to find the equipment.”

I didn’t think there was a shred of hope of us recovering the lost gear. How often does that happen? How often do things work out for the better?

Mike ended the night by saying, “This shit is going to happen, and in our business ‘holy shit’ moments happen very often. What is important is how we handle them, and how you handle yourself around those who depend on you.”

To be concluded…

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