Former Luton News showbiz columnist Don Neufville has been employed as an extra in Final Score, which has a £20m budget and has been billed as “Die Hard in a football stadium”.
The movie, due out next summer, tells the story of terrorists seizing control of a football ground and making ransom demands.
And the experience last month has clearly whetted the appetite of the 58-year-old Wigmore resident who is hoping this first break in the world of movies will see work start to snowball.
Don, a well-known local DJ, quit his job as a TV engineer with Virgin Media in the summer after 20 years, aiming for a new career in modelling.
The Everton supporter signed up to London’s Star Now Agency and was told he’d have to build up his portfolio with free work for several months before he was likely to earn money.
He said: “I thought I’d apply for a laugh, the modelling agency contacted me the next day and wanted to know more about me. They wanted me to go down and see if I was for real! The photoshoot I did they said was amazing. They recommended I go for TV and movies as well as the modelling.”
But the work didn’t flow initially and Don started to wonder if quitting his job had been the best move.
He said: “I then had a text from the casting director for Final Score, which is going to be next year’s big blockbuster, he’d seen me on the Star Now website.
“I got work as a paid extra on the movie which stars former 007 Pierce Brosnan and Spectre villian David Bautista.
“It’s based on West Ham’s last match of the season. The lights go out and the terrorists come over the tannoy and say it’s a hostage situation.”
As well as being an extra in the crowd, Don was also filmed helping people injured in explosions across the pitch at West Ham’s former Boleyn Ground.
He said: “There were 250 people for the crowd scene. A lot of them were West Ham fans who were just happy to be there, but 50 of us got paid, including me.
“The first job I had when I left school was at Luton’s Strathmore Hotel when they made me clean the toilets as well as change all the curtains on every floor and deliver laundry to the bedrooms. Then I did night shifts after leaving there for Vauxhall Motors.
“I thought all that was hard work but on set I’d be working on the movie doing crowd scenes from 7pm until 5am, working through the night. There was a lot of hanging around. I’d never worked so hard in my life but loved every minute of it! I am now getting huge interest from top agents in London and offers of TV and more movie work. How crazy is that!?”
Don added: “We had amazing food but Pierce Brosnan and David Bautista had runners and they had the best food in a different marquee. They were chaffeured to and from the set. I want all that one day! I really want this to ultimately lead to Hollywood and be a film actor in America. I was born to do this!”