Thursday, May 26, 2011

Lancelot Link Thursday?

Lancelot Link Thursday! For those of you who can't wait to see the new PLANET OF THE APES movie with James Franco, here are some articles about screenwriting and the biz plus some fun stuff that may be of interest to you. Brought to you by that suave and sophisticated secret agent...

Here are eight cool links plus this week's car chase...

1) Movie Ball Flow Chart!

2) The TV Pilots This Year.

3) Hollywood Films Overseas.

4) RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK - stuntman's diary.

5) AVATAR 2 and 3 news.

6) STAR WARS opened 34 years ago yesterday...

7) Jimmy Stewart's VERTIGO apartment... today!

8) NETWORK notes.

And this week's car chase...

The genius of Bigelow.

Oh, and PIRATES 4 has made over $400 million in less than a week with bad reviews... So, why do they make sequels?

- Bill


TODAY'S SCRIPT TIP: Act 2 Is Quicksand! - one of reader's favorite tips - about the perils of act 2.
Dinner: Subway ham & swiss before a movie.
Pages: In act 3! Wrote a good scene, but needed to write 2.
Bicycle: Short bike ride.

MOVIES: THE PEOPLE VS. GEORGE LUCAS - a documentary about the STAR WARS movies and the fans love and hate for them... and the absolute stupidity of medichlorians. One of the reasons why I went was my friend and fellow screenwriter Chris Valin was one of the angry fans interviewed, and his name in the closing credits *twice* - once with middle initial, once without. But the film ended up *full* of people I know, to the point that I felt left out. The main thrust of the film is that Lucas made these magical movies... sold us all of the toys and action figures... then made three crappy prequels and recut the original three films and turned them into crap. We all know that Han Solo shot first - and having him just return fire changes the very core of his character. A big part of the film were the fan films... But how can you do an movie about STAR WARS and fan films and not have a single clip from HARDWARE WARS or interview with Ernie Foss? HARDWARE WARS was the original fan film, and was a huge hit back in the late 70s. One of the weird things was that the film seemed to focus on younger fans, with very few people in the film who saw STAR WARS without the crappy A NEW HOPE subtitle. Though there are no new interviews with Lucas, they use some footage from old interviews where he laments that he always wanted to make edgy indie films and now he can’t. Dude, you have all of the money in the world, if you want to make a movie just go make it. Who cares if it flops? If you’re afraid you won’t get a fair shake because you’re George Lucas, make it under a another name and see what happens. But complaining just seems false. Lucas also seems aware that many fans do not like the prequels... and there’s a cool solution for that: In some interview in the late 70s Lucas said he had planned 3 trilogies and claimed to have synopsis for all of them. Oddly enough, the prequels are fairly close to what he described back then... I think Lucas ought to produce the last trilogy, just to make up for the prequels. Skip whatever stories he had planned and do three more kick-ass space westerns like STAR WARS and EMPIRE.

MOVIES: INCENDIES - Canadian film in French that was nominated for Best Foreign Film (and lost) - and it's quietly disturbing. Emotional puzzle with a bunch of OMG! moments. When a kind of a boring middle class woman who worked 20 years as a secretary dies, her will is just weird: her twin children (one female, one male) now in their late-20s are each given a task. One must find the father they thought was dead, the other must find a brother they never knew they had... in the Middle East where there mother was born and raised. We follow the female twin as she discover's her mother's violent hellish past (not much of a spoiler, since someone gets their brains blown out in the first ten minutes). Seems they had no idea who their mother was... and that kind of means they have no idea who they are. The story just keeps escalating - the more she finds out about her mother the more frightening the story becomes. The movie is a little confusing because it alternates between the daughter’s quest and the mother as a young woman - and the actress who plays the daughter looks like the actress who plays the mother... and as the daughter follows her mother’s path she begins to *dress* like her mother - adding to the confusion! The mother wore a distinctive crucifix, and that could have helped tell them apart... until the daughter begins wearing the crucifix! But there are some *great* bits of visual storytelling - the long lost brother is given a tattoo on his foot when he is born, and there are some great shocking moments of flashback as we see a child soldier... who has the tattoo on his foot! Sometimes you think one character might be the lost brother grown up... and then we see that tattoo and realize the guy we thought was the villain is the hero or vice versa. Lots and lots of twists! This film is brutal! The more the twins learn about their mother, the more they realize she was just pretending to be that typical middle class secretary for 20 years. After seeing this film, I'm wondering what the hell my sweet old mom did when she was young!

MOVIES: Also saw another film that I will talk about later.

- Bill

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