By Jon Coker
A sophomore who speaks four languages spent four days as a French translator during the filming of a commercial with San Antonio Spurs guard Tony Parker.
Fluent in Spanish, Hebrew, English and French, Eitan Feldman was recommended by French Lecturer Pierre Schmitz to a European production company to be a production assistant for a commercial starring the popular Spur.
Parker is from Bruges, Belgium.
“I received a random call from a TV company and they asked me if I had any students fluent in French. I said to them I have a student that would be perfect for the job,” Schmitz said
The commercial, to be shown in France, is for Kinder Bueno Chocolate from Ferrero Rocher, the company that makes Nutella chocolate.
Feldman said he had no experience in television, but he jumped at the opportunity to work as a bilingual production assistant.
“My job consisted of translating English to French for the crew, driving them around and helping them with anything else they needed on the set,” Feldman said.
Because of Parker’s obligation to the Spurs, he could not shoot in France, so the company came to him. The commercial was shot Oct. 25-29 at the Contessa hotel downtown and is expected to be airing in Europe soon. Feldman and the crew worked 18-hour days.
“I spent one morning showing the crew around the city and took them to the Quarry for breakfast.
“While they were loading back up, Tony Parker came up to me and asked if I was the one who spoke French. I said yes and he handed me a smoothie, and talked to me for a minute before getting back to work,” Feldman said “He seemed curious to know who was taking care of his crew.”
In return for his hard work, the crew took Feldman to watch Parker in action against the Philadelphia 76ers in an exhibition game Oct. 27 at the AT&T Center. “I’m really not big on sports, but the game was a lot of fun,” Feldman said. “I was surprised because Tony Parker’s not much taller than me.”
He said his teachers allowed him to postpone midterm exams. “Normally, students have wild excuses for missing class so I didn’t think they would excuse me when I came in and said I’m doing a commercial with a basketball star, but they did.”
Feldman is also studying Chinese and is running for an office in the Student Government Association and for vice president of the Chinese Club. Voting polls close today at 5 p.m. for the student government elections.
The commercial should be available on YouTube in January by logging on to www.youtube.com and typing “kinder bueno” in the search bar.