I worked as an extra in What Dreams May Come at the 1st Baptist Church, Telegraph Avenue, Oakland, at the end of July 1997. The first day I was there it took 12 hours of waiting before we finally started filming. We did some shots of Robin Williams and Cuba Gooding Jr. having a conversation at the back of the church and then walking up the aisle to Annabella Sciorra. An extra named Cynthia Davis acted as my wife and we were mourning in the back of the church, right next to Cuba Gooding Jr. Unfortunately, this part of the scene was cut from the final film so that it actually began with Robin Williams walking down the aisle. We ended the day after 16 hours, but we were energized late that night with Robin at the pulpit doing some hilarious comedy based on the current news events.
|from William Shakespeare's Hamlet....
To sleep, perchance to dream. Ay, there's the rub,
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come,
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause.
The next day we had a call time of 1:00 p.m. at the same place, though we didn't start filming until 7:00. Cynthia and I were again at the back of the church by Cuba and Robin. During a period when the camera view was shifted and we were no longer in the shot, Cynthia and I relaxed in an empty pew in the back corner of the church. Robin Williams joined us and spoke with us for about twenty minutes, sharing some funny stories about working on the set of Mrs. Doubtfire. A little later he signed autographs for a large group of the extras. We finished the day at 1:45 a.m.