Monday, March 10, 2008

Milk and Jones

A couple of hundred people showed up on Sunday to be extras in the "Milk" movie being shot by Gus Van Sant depicting a crowd in front of City Hall at the 1978 Gay Pride Parade.

Most of the people looked too old for the period, and there probably would have been much more nudity on a beautiful afternoon in 1978.

I ran into a couple of friends while walking by and found out that nobody was being paid for their services as extras, which seemed sort of crappy, but it's typical operating procedure for Cleve Jones, who was hired as an "advisor" to the film and who is being played by Emile Hirsch.

Jones was a young assistant to Milk, who went on to co-found the San Francisco AIDS Foundation in the early 1980s and the NAMES Project AIDS Quilt in 1985, two organizations that have siphoned off millions of donated and publicly awarded dollars over the decades without actually helping anybody with AIDS. Jones sold his interest in the AIDS Quilt in the 1990s to some foundation in Georgia on the condition that he receive $41,500 annually along with health insurance for life, and then he proceeded to retire young in Palm Springs. As I've told people for years, if you want to give money to an AIDS charity, give the money to somebody you know with AIDS who needs it. Otherwise, it's probably going to people like Mr. Jones.


Greg said...

interesting that the extras aren't paid...or at least given something for their time...if it's a Guild production there's some rule about that.

didn't know that bit about the!

Nancy Ewart said...

I know that when I worked for the AIDS Program at UCSF, we tried to get some of that quilt money and couldn't. I didn't know the details but it's a shame if it ended up in private hands.

jolene said...

ooh, I was wondering what this was... I was on my way to the ballet when I saw the crowd.

sfwillie said...

The Aids Health Project at UCSF gots lots of Ryan White money in contracts through the City's Aids Office.

There was this one contract, large but otherwise no different from the others, that AHP got as a sub through SFAF. I think SFAF got maybe a 10% admin fee, but it was otherwise strictly pass-through.

I surmized that SFAF counted all the pass-through as "program" expenditures. It's important for charities to keep a low ratio of admin expense to "program" expense.

Who knows how legit this was. It smelled fishy.

Papi said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Papi said...

Hi I was actually there and i was a paid extra on the movie. there were about 150 paid extras with wardrobe mind you all of us paid extras were between 21-40. and there were alot of people ask to show up but were not paid. so you should get facts before posting info

janinsanfran said...

The movie shoot now seems to over in the Mission, gumming up parking. At least it was last night, when I circled and circled.

I liked living it better.

Civic Center said...

Dear papi: I was there too since I actually took the photos, and I'm glad there were some paid extras who were the proper age, but the ones I took pictures of were not (proper age or paid). And that was the info I posted.

Dear Jan: Sunday was the last day of shooting, Monday was the wrap party. Now we'll see how they've depicted "our" youth.