Doug Jones ... or ... how a Cat got to hang out with a Movie Star
I must say that I have the best husband in the entire bloody universe.
I know you married ladies out there are saying, “Hey! My hubby’s
the best!” But I’ve got news for you ladies, you’re
wrong and you’ll see why in a bit. *grin*
started back in May when Dougie’s webmaster, Helen, posted
on the Hellboards that Dougie was going to be in Sacramento for one day. Now for me,
that’s a bit of a drive, but it’s not impossible or
even all that daunting. So I told Hubby about it and my wonderful
love not only told me to go but suggested that I go up the night
before and stay in a motel so I wouldn’t be driving about
5-6 hours in one day. THEN, this absolute angel of a man finds me
the closest place to stay to the convention. And to really top it
all off, he lets me borrow his new digital camera. Is this guy great
So plans are
made and set, I’ve pre-registered for the convention so I
can get in early and I spend the next month bragging to anyone who’d
sit still long enough that I was going to meet Doug Jones. Needless
to say, after a while, no one wants to sit still any more. Hey!
I may have invented a new exercise program.
So the day
finally comes and I pack, give hugs and kisses to Hubby and the
kids and head out. 2 ½ hours later I finally arrive at the
motel with the new found knowledge that one who does not normally
drink caffeinated drinks, shouldn’t suddenly drink one just
before going on a long road trip. Live and learn.
I call home
to let them know I made it safely and get informed that the 4 year
old has been throwing up for about the past hour. Have I mentioned
that Hubby had arthroscopic knee surgery about 2 ½ weeks
prior to this and has his leg in a brace and has to use crutches
to get around? Like I said, I have the best husband in the whole
Ok, now it’s
time for bed. Ah to sleep, perchance to dream. Yeah right. I’m
staying in a strange place, lying in an unfamiliar bed, it sounds
like the room is on the freeway and it smells like stale cigarette
smoke. (Would someone please tell me why there’s an ashtray
in a non-smoking room?) Oh, and there’s the little matter
that I’M MEETING DOUG JONES IN THE MORNING! Ok, so I got a
minimal amount of sleep, but as I found out later, I did better
than a certain Mr. Jones. More on that in a bit.
does its thing and I arrive at the Scottish Rite Center at 9:30
and it feels like I’ve swallowed a swarm of butterflies. I
get checked in; head inside and there are the tables for their special
guests…and no guests. Ok, maybe they don’t arrive until
10:00, so I wander off to check things out.
At 10:00 I’m
back with fewer butterflies and still no Dougie. Ok, time to check
out the Anime room for a while. When I finally check back, there’s
Dougie talking to a couple fans and the few remaining butterflies
are making a feeble attempt at escaping.
Before I get
the courage up to go up to the table, I snap a couple pictures of
Dougie, one of the ceiling, one of the floor. Ok, so I’m still
getting the hang of Hubby’s camera.
I tell the
butterflies to give it a rest and I wander over to the table. Since
we’ve never met before, Dougie doesn’t know me from
Eve, but he knew I was going to be there. He’s still talking
to the other fans, so I just hang out and listen as he talks about
Abe and how visually impaired he was wearing that mask. Finally,
the others leave and the butterflies are back in force and I take
a breath to speak.
You made it!” Dougie yells as he leaps out of his chair and
flies around the table.
who some of you may remember had the good fortune to meet Dougie
in October of 2004 at A Series of Small Things
premier, has arrived with her two kids, Dalton and Jordan. For the
next couple of minutes the hugs and introduction thing is done and
I wait patiently. And if you knew anything about me, patience is
not one of my stronger virtues.
turns to me and asks for my name. I tell him and the next thing
I know I’m in the midst of some serious Dougie huggage. If
there was a hugging contest, this man would win hands down.
thoroughly hugged, he lets me go and introduces me to Sharon and
her kids. Then Dougie asks if we live in the area. Now for Sharon
it's a twenty minute drive to get to the place, but when I told
him that it took me 2 ½ hours with traffic and the occasional
stop for other things (remember the caffeinated drink I had?), his
eyes got really big.
he was impressed. Here’s a man who flies all over the world
to be in movies that he usually has to endure hours of makeup before
he even gets in front of the camera. Who should be impressed here?
So we chat
for a while and Dougie finally admits that he’s not feeling
100%. It seems the Wednesday before he developed a fever with no
other symptoms and only managed to sweat it out the night before
the convention. He later told me that he had been having fever dreams
the night before and woke up literally in a pool of sweat that morning.
also the reason he arrived late to the convention. Seems he was
supposed to be picked up at the hotel at 9:00 but didn’t wake
up until 9:15. Yet, he still shows up despite feeling like he’d
been run over by a steam roller. Again, who should be impressed?
talking, he lets us know his most exciting news. When Hellboy
2: The Golden Army gets made, Abe’s part will
be much bigger (no trying to make sushi out of him this time, I
hope) and Dougie will be doing the voice of Abe. He also
revealed that the reason he hasn’t seen the script yet is
that Guillermo del Toro told him that if by some strange quirk of
fate the movie doesn’t get made, it’ll be the biggest
disappointment in Dougie’s life not to do it. However, Guillermo
did warn that fans are going to hate him for what he does to Abe.
So more chatting
and picture taking happens and I’m able to get some little
trivia bits out of him about Pan’s Labyrinth a soon
to be released independent film that was directed and written by
Guillermo del Toro.
I found out
that it took him five hours to get into the Pan and Pale
Man costumes and with the Pale Man he had to look
out the nostrils of the mask to see where he was going. To really
add to the challenge of seeing out of that mask, the holes didn’t
even look forward. The right nostril looked left and the left one
looked right. Even after they took the mask off of him, he was still
walking around with his eyes crossed for a few minutes.
Now one thing
that I’ve always wondered about his job is how does he get
into the mindset of creatures that are completely non-human such
as Pan or the Pale Man or even everyone’s
favorite fish guy, Abe. He told me that he starts off reading
the script to get an idea of how the creature thinks and acts and
then he sees drawings or the maquette. After he knows how the being
is supposed to think and act, he then goes to his 24 hour gym in
the middle of the night, goes into the empty aerobics rooms with
the walls of mirrors and starts practicing how these beings would
move. In the case of Pan, he knew that he was going to
have to wear leg extensions, so he walked around on his tip toes
to get a feel for how a faun would move about. What I wouldn’t
give to be a fly on the wall at that gym.
a few hours with this wonderful man, I had to finally say goodbye.
So with lots of hugs to get me through my drive home, I left. I
glanced at my odometer when I got in the car and saw that I had
driven over 138 miles to meet this man. And you know what? I’d
do it again in a heartbeat.
With Love and
aka 'The Shadow Cat'
California, 14th June, 2006