The Insider Says Hello

The names have been changed, but the problems are real. . .

Firstly, welcome to me! I’m the 2nd team member on project “Hey Kids, Let’s Make a Movie!” – and the only one currently working full-time in film (which is why, in passing, The Producer called me The Insider, and I decided I liked its Russell Crowe-like appeal). For the record, I am NOTHING like Russell Crowe, nor did I even enjoy a Beautiful Mind. Except for all of Jennifer Connelly’s scenes.

Anyhoo, back to the point. I’ve never been a movie geek, a film snob, an art house nerd. . . I simply don’t have the stamina to watch a 3.5 hour movie in which people stare at walls and babble nonsense to each other. But damn do I love movies, and tv, and pretty much anything with pretty moving images. I’ll take a flipbook, if you’ve got it. With that in mind, I decided to put together a “reading list” of sorts to give folks an idea of what gets me going about movies.

To start: – I was first introduced to Jane Espenson’s work on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. She’s a fabulous screenwriter and producer, and she gives fantastic advice on how to write jokes, pitch stories, craft spec scripts (a sample episode for a TV show). She’s very generous with her advice, and she also lets you know what she’s eating for lunch! – Firstly, This American Life is excellent. Secondly, the first “act” of this podcast deals with the story of Richie Castellano, who made an entire town believe that he was going to make a fantastic movie in which they would all play starring roles. . .only to disappear from their lives a la Harold Hill. Not only would this story make an excellent movie – but it says a lot about why people absolutely fall in love with Hollywood, to the point of total mental blindness. – I can’t link you to a full episode of Slings and Arrows, but I think everyone who has ever been a writer, an actor, a techie or an audience member in theater or film should watch it. So that would be. . . everyone. It’s a Canadian TV show, and it’s about a Shakespearian Theater company and the struggle to create great art, despite the pressure to be commercial or trendy. Also: Rachel McAdams!

Anyway, these three are by no means the complete list of things that have made me think to myself – “Why yes, it’s perfectly reasonable to spend hours/weeks/years glued to my laptop trying to plunk out the next ‘Good Will Hunting.'” But it certainly means that I am not alone. . .

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *