'Film Crew Files': Cary Foreman

cary foreman
Cary Foreman is special effects technician on films. (Cary Foreman)

Cary Foreman is a film crew professional from College Park, working in special effects and other departments for the last six years. He began his film industry career as a “greensman,” a special kind of set coordinator that sources plants, flowers, trees or any type of greenery for a shoot. A greensman often dresses an indoor soundstage to look like the natural outdoors, covering concrete floors with real and artificial plants. 

Now, Foreman focuses primarily on bringing enhanced imagery to life as an SFX technician. “It’s hard to describe what a typical day in the effects department is like because it could be anything — you could be working in a shop doing pretty much the same stuff for months, or you could be on set hiding, making smoke all day, or wiggling trees, or making it rain, or sweeping dirt in the millionaires’ faces — whatever it calls for,” said Foreman. Yes, he also handles explosions and car chases.

Despite the fun and rewarding results, Foreman follows a rigorous work schedule. “The hardest part of my job is definitely the hours. It’s a minimum of 60 hours a week, usually way more than that,” he attested. “It means you can’t really do anything other than work and support your working lifestyle because anytime you have time off, you’re doing laundry, trying to clean your house and fixing any personal relationships that you have — which better be counted on one hand, because you don’t have time for that.”

It’s clearly no small sacrifice for Foreman, but he can list several blockbuster projects he’s helped make possible with pride. “I started out on ‘Ozark.’ I got to work on three huge Marvel films. I got to work on ‘Zombieland 2.’ But my favorite was definitely ‘Stranger Things,’” said Foreman. “Everybody was super talented and really cared about the product they were putting out, and I was very proud to be part of that team. And getting to watch that show with my pre-teen son at the time, who was super into it, was an extra bonus for being able to work on such a cool project. I loved it, and I was very lucky to be there.”