Me and Tracie, after our interview!
Yes, that is right, Tracie and I were asked to callbacks.
I have a couple of confessions.
First, we were invited to callbacks before the open casting call. When I spoke to one of the casting directors the day before the thing at Urban Flats, she told me that we could skip it. Truthfully, I was a little disappointed, given I had moved heaven and earth (in other words, arranged childcare for the entire afternoon and evening) in order to get over to Orlando and meet Tracie specifically for this thing. When the casting person heard my little story, though, she said she loved it and asked if I would mind going to the casting call (because "the Ford people would love that story") and return later in the week for callbacks.
Done and done. And, quite frankly, worth every bit of effort we both made for it to happen!
My second confession is that we may have only been asked to callbacks because the casting person thought I was black. Because of my name. Because one of the casting people was black and the only Vanessas she'd ever known had been black. (And that included Vanessa Huxtable.)
Tracie, if we don't get this because I'm white, I apologize.
So. Friday afternoon, I drove back over to Orlando and picked up Tracie at her residence. We made it to the hotel where the callbacks were being held, and we looked over our instructions again.
1.) Wait in the lobby.
2.) Text your name to this number: ###-###-####.
3.) Do not under any circumstance speak to a member of the hotel staff! Do not ask them where to go! Do not tell them why you're there! Just sit! Sit and wait!
Okay, I paraphrased that last part, but we were really asked to not bother the hotel staff. (I was glad the signs to the restrooms were clear.)
So Tracie and got out of my car (parked away from the building so we wouldn't be in any paying customer's spot) and walked into the lobby, and after I'd powdered my nose, we sat on a couch, texted our names, and waited.
We also saw other people that had to be there for callbacks, but no one was saying anything because we were afraid that the hotel staff might think we were talking to them... Well, I was also being quiet so as to listen to the other people there. And just like at the open casting call, it seemed like these folks had auditioned for a bunch of reality shows! Like, lots! So really, all they want to do is be in front of the cameras, not have the opportunity to drive an incredible 2012 Ford Focus and utilize the wonders of social media to their fullest extent! (See what I did there?)
Then. The text came. "Come to Room 318."
Not a conference room, a regular room. As Tracie and I got off the elevator and walked down the hall, we wondered what we might be walking into. I mean, it was kind of ominous. What if it was all a big scam? What if there were two skeevy guys waiting in the room with a camera? I wondered if I should put my key through my fingers and be ready to poke someone in the eyeball...
But as we approached, two other girls walked out, smiling and apparently unharmed, and we were met by two of the perkiest, most adorable young women ever. They greeted us, they took mugshot-type photos of us, and then Tracie and I sat super close together on two chairs in front of a camera while they interviewed us, and we made our best effort to not look directly at the camera while we chatted away.
One thing I loved was how Tracie and I were talking like old friends, but at the very same time we were learning things about each other that "normal" friends would already know! It was just so hilarious and so fun and I'm smiling just thinking about it!
So now, I guess we just wait. I know they have more casting calls this week, so obviously they have to get through those and I'm guessing other people have to look at the applications and the videos... I don't know, I've never done anything like this!! But even if they say no (but really, seriously, you'd watch us online, wouldn't you??), I wouldn't take back a second of it because otherwise, I wouldn't have met Tracie in person, and I wouldn't have had the experience of doing the casting call or going to callbacks!