Paula has a role as a street beggar in Bold Compass Films' upcoming feature, Landing Up.
In describing her experience, Paula writes:
I was shooting a small role as a homeless woman, begging on the street, in a film today. As film work demands a great deal of waiting, I chose to wait for the crew to move on to my scene, outside. I found a place on the curb, and dropped into character, visualizing where I might have been able to sleep the night before - feeling the hard, cold concrete, the discomfort of the ground, having to pee, but nowhere to go...shaking my cup and asking for spare change. Wishing for enough to get something warm to drink. I found myself the object of stares of derision, mostly; folks pulling their children (and dogs) farther away from me...or just ignoring me outright. Occasionally, someone would drop in a few coins, but when I looked up to thank them, they would avoid my glance. One man threw the coins in my cup, while at the same time, snarling, "Get a job." I viscerally, physically, felt being viewed as "other." "Less than."
I have always made it a point to give as I can, on a daily basis, to the homeless men and women that are everywhere in NYC. Sharing whatever I have to share. Today made that point even sharper and clearer for me. It ended up that I made almost four dollars and change before it was time to film my scene. When I got off the subway, on my way home, I gave all of it, plus a few spare dollars I had left for this week, to one of the homeless vets who is always hanging out at my particular station. We met eyes and I spent a few minutes talking to him. When I left he said, "I love you." I told him, "I love you too." And I do. We opened up to each other's common humanity...the most basic of connections. We acknowledged each other's existence and importance.
Today was more than "just another day on set." Today was a most special kind of gift - the gift of understanding, compassion and intention to do more. Every single day.