Why Working on Set in November Feels Like Going to a Rock Festival

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By Cat Taylor

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Anyone who has lived through the festival season knows that the key to surviving in style is preparation. And while there is no need for a stash of Valyrian steel in the tents of Glastonbury, there are certainly things that make the rules of surviving festivals the same as surviving filming.

  1. The field is full of tents, and positioning is everything. Avoiding horse dung, flooding, high winds and steep slopes is the ideal.
  2. Wellingtons or hiking boots are a must to avoid swamp foot. There is high risk that your foot will get stuck in the inches of thick and churned up mud. Socks will be the most important thing about your day.
  3. A smart crew member will avoid the portaloos at all costs, using honey wagons at base, or bushes if no lights are shining (and they happen to be male).
  4. By the third day, wet wipes become a human rights issue.
  5. Phone signal will drop in and out intermittently, usually just before you’re supposed to meet or call someone.
  6. Sun on the field will make it all seem worthwhile, even if you are helping push a 4x4 out of the muck.
  7. Security will spend a good deal of time explaining what is happening and why, sadly, passers-by aren’t allowed behind the scenes without a pass.
  8. The traffic to and from location will be dreadful as everyone tries to arrive at the same time.
  9. Finding the coffee hut and biscuits is like finding the Lost Treasure of the Sierra Madre.
  10. Occasionally, Snow Patrol swing by. It’s a lovely surprise to reveal that the producer’s guests for the evening are some of Belfast’s finest home grown talent.