Look, I'm sorry if this post is a bit intense for those of you with weak stomachs or whatnot. That's just the way it is. This is the TRUTH, and as Jack Nicholson said, if you can't handle the truth, get the hell outta my hotel.
I really don't know if I can be bothered with this stuff any more. You know, you put your heart and soul and everything into something and then some smug fatcat in a stupid suit of some kind just says, 'oh, this isn't angled the right way to our native American teen girl demographic' or something, and it's over. Done. Your dreams scattered on the wind like so many quite light pieces of rubbish, or litter, if you prefer.
This is what happened. You might remember that I mentioned a while ago and again yesterday that my project Space Indians!
had been given the green go ahead for a pilot. Everything was in place: Chris Columbus had signed up to co-direct (he actually made contact through this site!), and Orlando had come on board to be happy space captain Captain Chris Columbus. I knew the marketing angle would be great – Chris directing a pretend Chris, but in space, and fighting against space indians, led by their tribal leader, played by Christopher Lambert. His son was going to be Lou Diamond Phillips, but he had to pull out fairly early on, due to being tied up with the prequel to Bats
. We were screen testing just yesterday for the parts of hundreds of space indians and also for the crew of the ship (and yes, there were some very attractive women here, desperate, as they say, to get a part – but don’t worry, my casting couch is for napping and blue skies thinking only!).
So this was all great. It’s an exciting position to be in, preparing for your pilot to be made. You might have read my entry yesterday, about a typical day in my life. Well, I don’t think there’ll be too many more of those. I am SOO upset, I don’t think I’ll be able to continue in this business any longer. I’m serious.
This is why. When I got to work yesterday, my PA handed me a message. It said could I call some guy from Fox Searchlight, as he had some important discussion points about Space Indians!
he wanted to bring up, and why had I been avoiding him? I said I haven’t been avoiding you, I’ve just been very busy, but my PA, Sherilynn, said that it would be easier for him to hear me if I spoke to him on the telephone, rather than through a note. I pretended to laugh at her little impertinent joke, but then gave her my stare which says: “Do NOT undermine me. Not now, not ever. You understand? Huh? Huh?” Then I went into my telephone room.
This room has a number of telephones in it, some of which are used for special purposes. I decided a relaxing, general purpose telephone would do just fine for a conversation like this. Little did I suspect I had dialled into an aural minefield of betrayal and traitorous behaviour. How could I?
The conversation went something like this. (It might not be 100% correct, as I became flustered, but it IS the truthful essence of what happened, and this is what I aim for in all my creative endeavours. Or rather, I did. What a bunch of rubbish.)
Me: Hello, you left a message with my PA about the pilot for Space Indians!
, which has the director Chris Columbus attached (not literally!) and also the famous actor Orlando Bloom in it?
[Note: When I am speaking in brackets, I tend to lower my voice a little, drop the volume, and alter the angle of my mouth to the telephone, so the listener understands the structure of the sentence, and the placement of the parentheses (brackets).]
Guy at Fox Searchlight: Hi Neil, yeah, we just had a few issues that needed ironing out. Firstly-
GAFS: Firstly, we're really excited about the prospect of working with you, and we think Space Indians!
is a really great, brave, exciting piece of cinema. I know Frank Darabont is very excited about doing the rewrite…
Me: Hey, hold up! Nobody said anything about any rewrites, GAFS. I’m an auteur, you know, which means nobody touches my scripts but me. Nobody. Well, ok, the actors get to touch them a little...and so do some other folks...but it’s only touching, not rewriting. There’s a difference. Anyway, I don’t really see that we need to discuss that aspect any further (if at all). What else did you want to bring up?
GAFS: Ok, we’re a bit worried that you’re all over the internet claiming that we’ve given the go-ahead for you to shoot a pilot. That’s simply not true – we said we’d be interested in something about a space pilot-
Me: Exactly. So stop talking about riddles. You want a space pilot, I’m making a space pilot. Is this worth me paying for this telephone call to overseas?
GAFS: Ok, Neil, umm… Look, there are a few issues, as well, with the script you’ve sent us. First of all, we feel it’s a little, um, insensitive to the Space Indians…
Me: You know that’s the idea, GAFS. The indians weren’t exactly sensitive to the explorer Chris Columbus (not the film director) when he discovered America, were they? So why would space indians welcome a courageous and happy space pilot into space if they wouldn’t even let him into a country on Earth? Answer me that, Mr Knowledge. It’s simply an intrinsic part of the project.
GAFS: Ok, um – there’s also the matter of the, what was it, five or six extended shower scenes featuring Columbus, not to mention the weird dream sequence where he has sex with his mirror image while the ghosts of massacred Indians watch, cheering and applauding…
Me: YOU were the ones who said the movie didn’t skew to the teen female demographic, GAFS. YOU were the ones who begged for some romantic interest in the story. Get real, you twerp. Who wouldn’t want to see this, that’s what I want to know…
GAFS: I’d advise you against calling me a twerp, Mr Wurmel. You really don’t want to lose me as a contact in this business…
Me: Ooh, you’re angry. Did anyone ever tell you that you sound like you look handsome when you’re angry? (Heh heh heh)
GAFS: Look, Neil, that’s it. We no longer have any interest in Space Indians!, and we no longer have any interest in you. I can barely understand what you are talking about. Here’s some advice for free, Wurmel – take your head out of your ass or you’ll find yourself rolling downhill faster than I can say ‘fuck you’. Goodbye.
Me: Oh, hahaha. Really funny. Are you recording this? Is this for the Christmas tape?
Me: Come on, GAFS. I’m onto you! Stop winding me up, man. Hahaha. You got me. I admit it.
This went on for some time, until I realised he was serious. They were dropping the Space Indians!
pilot. And what’s worse, as can be seen from the conversation above, they were dropping it FOR NO GOOD REASON.
Well, frig them. And frig you if you are laughing at me. And frig you, too, Harry Knowles, you fat fuck.
I have really had enough of this baloney. What the heck is the point of toiling away for hours at a time on projects DESIGNED TO ENTERTAIN people, to BRING a little happiness into their dreary, depressing lives, when these soulless, faceless money making robots just say ‘No, this isn’t going to play with the midwestern housewives.’
HOW WOULD THEY KNOW? Are they themselves fat, stupid midwestern housewives? No, they aren’t. These people will watch what they are told to watch. For God’s sake.
I am so mad and upset right now I feel like I could punch this computer, and I would if the skin on my knuckles wasn’t so sensitive. What’s the point of carrying on if your work is only going to be dismissed like so many soldiers at ease? I may as well just get a tiny little video camera and make some videos and watch them by myself in the dark at my house while eating some hard food.
Do you know what? I think that’s what I’m going to do.
Actually, no, I’m not. I’m gonna get a normal, boring job, working for some kind of office or something, and not do any more movie magic. I know nobody cares about me. I’m so sad and disillusioned I don’t even know if I care about myself any more.
This will probably be my last post.