Friday, July 12, 2013

Teri Garr dissing background actors (also known as extras).

Long ago, I worked as a background person on two episodes of a quickly-cancelled Witt/Thomas/Harris ABC sitcom titled GOOD AND EVIL--meant to recapture the naughty-serial vibe of SOAP (which began a decade-and-half earlier and ran for five years).

Among the stars of the show were Margaret Whitton (best known for playing Michael J. Fox's aunt in THE SECRET OF MY SUCCESS), Mark Blankfield (from the SNL-imitation show FRIDAYS) and comedy legend Teri Garr.

I just discovered an old interview Ms. Garr did for the AV CLUB site.  While she's candid about Industry sexism, it depressed me to read this fie-on-you-peasants comment, uttered in the context of how she moved up from dancer/extra to actress:

" Usually the extras have a different mentality. I had the mentality of an artist, because I was a "ballet-rina." But most extras are out to make a fast buck for nothing. They're "atmosphere." How can you have a job called "atmosphere" and be proud of yourself? [Laughs.]"

Here's the link to the 2008 interview:,2390/

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