We shot this film primarily in downtown Los Angeles, where I spent no time in my addiction. As I thought about which residential hotel we should shoot in, I figured we had to shoot in an actual hotel I lived in during my days while in active addiction, to keep an air of authenticity in the film. This led us to the Mission District of San Francisco at the 16th Street Hotel on 16th & Valencia, where I spent time living with a dancer girlfriend of mine in 1996 and 1997. When Terry and I arrived at the hotel, it was as if time stood still. We paid for the room and while inside, I began to channel the emotions and memories of being there before. The blood spots from people pulling out their needles were still decorating the walls and ceiling. The smell of old Chinese food leaching in from down the hallway. Mise en place, mise en scène! I am convinced that the emotion of this piece would have lacked if we shot in a random hotel in Los Angeles. I learned that the decision to keep closely next to the truth in art is always a good decision.
Film dailies of A Fix.
All photos by Keida Mascaro