Tuesday, November 24, 2009

A Small Quiz


You need view only the first fifteen seconds of this vid ...

So, a short quiz. Here's the deal: Read the list of terms that follow, and immediately after you finish, quickly think of a city in the U.S. that most embodies them. (Those of you out of the country will doubtless have your own versions at home, but for the purposes of this exercise, think U.S. of A.)

Ready?

Q: Egotistical, vain, greedy, power-hungry, double-dealing, backstabbing, out-of-touch with reality, disloyal, ambitious, underhanded, sprinkled with a few pedophiles, wretched hive of scum and villainy ...

A: ?

I expect, based on my experience and observations, that you will name one of two cities, and rank them one, two, according your own beliefs.

1) Washington, D.C.
2) Hollywood, California.

I don't have that many dealings with D.C., and only a few more in Tinsel Town, but I'd have to agree with those choices ...

When net surfing, I usually make a pass by Nikki Finke's website, Deadline Hollywood.

Nikki exposes the oft times unsightly underbelly of LaLaLand. She's been called the spiritual heir of Hedda Hopper, or even Walter Winchell, and a lot of folks do not like to see the cats she unbags running around loose. When she caught the flu recently, people happily wished her dead on the comments pages.

Me, I like to know there are watchdogs about, and that some of what people want hidden needs to be outed, in the interests of public safety. She has a viewpoint and she doesn't mind expressing it, and agree with her or not, she's no shrinking violet.

Why I bring this up is not what Nikki has to say as much as what people who write in have to say about what she has to say. There are some bright, intelligent, clever folks posting there, and now and again, I am struck by just how sharp some of the Hollywood players are. Witty out the wazoo.

There are also some folks who are less witty, and downright mean-spirited and vile in their offerings, and it reminds me of something a collaborator on a movie script I once worked on said. I had to fly down there to SoCal for one reason or another, and him being local, I called him up before I took off. We had had some interesting experiences on the lot of one of the majors during a script notes meeting that had not all been pleasant. So, I said to him, I'm flying to L.A. this week. Anybody you want me to shoot while I'm down there?

To which he replied, Hey, just fire a round off in any direction. You are bound to hit somebody worth killing ...

5 comments:

Dan Moran said...

I immediately thought of New York.

Thomas Arnold said...

Please tell me that "The Man Who Never Missed" is being optioned...

Steve Perry said...

TMWNM has been optioned a bunch of times; just never made it to the production stage.

Thomas said...

There's the whole superhero genre thingy, and Khadaji is a hell of a lot like Batman, only somewhat cooler, but the "soldier, patriot, terrorist" wouldn't go down very well.

I went quite a few years before I realized there was a sequel. During that time I had thought you had killed Khadaji off, and that his point was to inspire those who would follow.

Little did I know...

What has gotten in the way of production, if you don't mind sharing?

Steve Perry said...

In a word? Money.

Getting a script written, getting it produced, getting it distributed, each is a hurdle that must be vaulted by use of a runway paved with cash. To get somebody to put it up is the main business of Hollywood.

A big-name actor helps, as do big-name directors and producers, but even those are no guarantee. Lot of potential scripts have had all those attached and still stumbled and fell on the way to the theaters.

Took Oliver Stone ten years to get Platoon done, and it won a shitload of awards, Oscars, Golden Globe, and made everybody connected to it a nice piece of change.

Someday, maybe ...