July 23, 2007 |
What superhero screenwriter will you not see at Comic-Con this year? That would be John August, who is toiling on the first draft of "Shazam!," the New Line Cinema film expected to bring Captain Marvel to the screen in one of the next few summers. "I've never been to Comic-Con," he says. "I'm sure I will be going down the road. I hear it's pretty intense, pretty massive." Massive and intense is exactly right.
June 26, 1988 |
He was dead, I was told. Or at least he wouldn't answer my letters (he didn't). When I finally trapped him on the telephone, he said he was far too busy to grant an interview. I said I was coming to see him anyway. Would he talk? He said, "We'll see." Philip Yordan is the great mystery man of the post-1930s generation of Hollywood screenwriters.
March 24, 2003 |
In a first, a Spanish-language screenplay, "Talk to Her," won the Academy Award for best original screenplay. "This award is to the Spanish cinema," writer-director Pedro Almodovar said upon winning his first Oscar for the idiosyncratic tale of two men in love with two women who both happen to be in comas. Almodovar was being particularly charitable considering Spain didn't even nominate the film to be its entry for best foreign language picture.
May 31, 1992 |
Evoking memories of the Watts Writers Workshop, created by writer-novelist Budd Schulberg in the wake of the 1965 riots, the screenwriting community is trying to reach out to riot-scarred South-Central Los Angeles by rebuilding two libraries that were destroyed by fire. "The object is not just to play Lady Bountiful," said screenwriter Roger L. Simon, who is chairing a July 24 fund-raising auction at the Museum of Flying in Santa Monica.
April 26, 1987 |
As a veteran screenwriter, Bill Norton has specialized in action pictures about tough guys (Burt Lancaster in "The Scalphunters," Burt Reynolds in "White Lightning" and "Gator," John Wayne in "Brannigan") and tough gals (Angie Dickinson in "Big Bad Mama"). It's doubtful, though, that Norton ever expected to find himself in the kind of dramatic real-life scenario in which he's now trapped.
June 9, 2005 |
In Hollywood, they say, it's all about who you know. But what if the only "in" you have is a downstairs neighbor who's a producer's assistant/Pink Dot driver? And what about that farmer in Iowa with a great script? Cousin Cletus over the county line doesn't really cut it as a connection. That's where websites such as Triggerstreet.com come into play, even if you're in Hollywood's backyard.
July 1, 1990 |
This spring, nine major American screenwriters converged in Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport, lugging cans of tuna, granola bars, coffee and other creature comforts of capitalism to buffer them against the bare-bones conditions that they had been warned about in the Soviet Union, where they were headed. Soon, they would add to their portable larders cartons of Marlboro cigarettes and packets of condoms, which tour leaders assured them would be useful for hailing down cabs and rewarding good service.
May 27, 1996 |
Even armed with Tom Cruise as star, Brian De Palma as director and the familiarity of a TV series known to millions, the people behind "Mission: Impossible" left nothing to chance. Like the makers of many expensive Hollywood franchise films, they turned to multiple writers--in this case, a veritable dream team: David Koepp ("Jurassic Park"), Robert Towne ("Chinatown") and Steven Zaillian ("Schindler's List").
June 29, 1991 |
Six years ago, at a ceremony at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, blacklisted screenwriters Michael Wilson and Carl Foreman were posthumously awarded Oscars for "The Bridge on the River Kwai." It had been an open secret that Pierre Boulle, who accepted the original Oscar in 1958, did not write the screenplay based on his novel.
January 20, 1988 |
It has been almost a year since Steven Spielberg stood at the podium at the 1987 Academy Awards show and said it was time for film makers to rethink their priorities and reacquaint themselves with the value of words. After a decade of special-effects addiction, Spielberg seemed to be swearing off the stuff and offering to lead other traveling-matte, rear-projection and animatronics junkies back to the land of plot, story and character.