Paris and Hector, played by Orlando Bloom and Eric Banna respectively, seemed quite taken with the girls, and Brendan Gleeson, playing Menelaus, mustered up some joyous energy under the oppressive heat in order to join in with the dancing. We also had to lose the back bend over the dagger, simply because the costumes that were made well before the dancers were hired had more structure in the bodices than the wooden horse did and any bending was out of the question. The dance department is a tiny cog in the giant wheel of a big movie, very often brought in late, once many design decisions have already been made.
The next day we were dancing again around the magnificent wooden horse in temperatures of 40 degrees Celsius. My job was now making sure that the dancers drank enough water as they endured the full anger of the sun for most of the day. Diving into the shade as ‘action’ was shouted, I could only look with awe at the magnificent structure of the horse. Built from what looked like old pieces of salvaged ships, it transported me far away from the children’s picture book versions with planks and nails. In fact, I was more impressed by the horse than I was by the fleeting glimpse of Brad Pitt getting into his unit car with his mobile phone firmly attached to his ear. I always forget, is he the one we are not supposed to look at?
Returning from my warm experience in Malta, having achieved my ‘blink and you will miss it’ moment on celluloid, I could not help wondering whether my little trip to the British Museum was not the most enlightening part of the experience.