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Archive for August, 2012

Back in 2007, Michael Winterbottom filmed parts of a movie in and around Austin. The film was “A Mighty Heart,” in which Angelina Jolie plays the wife of kidnapped journalist Daniel Pearl, and the Austin American-Statesman co-stars as a Wall Street Journal bureau.

Us Statesfolk were reminiscing about this last week, and I thought y’all might like to see the pics too. No Jolie — she wasn’t part of the very quick scene filmed here.

Everyone I can identify in this shot is a Statesman staffer except the guy standing up, who’s an actor (which you can tell because he’s wearing a TIE!). Colleagues observed that the film crew could have straightened our blinds, but probably thought they looked authentically sloppy. In fact nothing here was staged; this is exactly how it looks, except of course the trees outside are usually leafy. Coworkers also noticed that the cryptic sign on the column in back made it into the film — if you squint you can see it says “WHO-GAS,” the slogan of a former editor reminding us to focus on what’s important to our readers, aka WHO Gives A … toss. As an indicator of how often we clean and redecorate the newsroom, the sign is still taped to that column right now.

And the chair underneath the word “Journal” is where I sit! It is not, alas, where I sat in 2007, although I was in the newsroom during the shoot, over in Features — which is the backdrop for this shot:

Those are also real Statesbeings behind him. My desk, with me sitting at it, is approximately behind his right ear 🙂  We all got paid something like $28.62 after taxes, so that was kind of exciting. Should you happen to still be reading (hi! and thank you!), you’ve now spent more time looking at these photos than the Statesman spends onscreen in the film. Fame, how it fleets.

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