Saturday, July 08, 2006

Overheard at Uno's - Tales from RTF School

Huh. Somehow this didn't post. Well, I wrote it the night before we left for Houston.

So Octavio and I hit Uno's today for lunch as they have the greatest number of TV's showing World Cup. I was rooting for italy v. Ukraine, mostly because I'm hoping my folks brought me an Italian Football t-shirt or pin or banner or something.

The guys sitting at the next table over were deeply immersed in their very loud conversation, and not watching the game at all.

And then I heard one of them say "(blah blah blah) Lynda Carter!" so of course that piqued my ears. Then I heard "Marilu Henner. Carol Kane." I turned to look over to see what was going on, and I saw that the very loud guys all had 3-ring binders and cell phones out. "(blah blah blah) at CAA. (blah blah) at William Morris. Check their availability."

One of them picked up his phone and started barking into it. "Is Jason there? No? Is this Brian? Dave. Who? We're with (blah blah blah)."

I was having a hard time keeping up with the game thanks to these chowderheads.

"We're thinking Jonathan Silverman and David Schwimmer."

"Martin Short. Rick Moranis. Or John Stamos."
"What about Arsenio Hall? @#$%ing everybody knows Arsenio Hall."

"Aren't they twins?"
"No, they're just brothers."
"There's the one line that says (blah blah blah). That's why people think they're twins."
"They should fight a lot more. Twins fighting? I think of the twins in Harry Potter. Twins fighting is just funny."

When I was in film school we'd sort of play this little game. It was the 'mediocre movie game', but we didn't call it that at the time. The unspoken goal was to come up with the blandest movie with the dullest casting you could muster.
"He wears a leather jacket, never takes off his shades, chews on a toothpick. He doesn't take crap from anyone."
"We'll call it 'Stingray.' It'll star Timothy Hutton."

Stingray, for some reason, sticks out the best in my mind, aside from when I played the game at my old office with Beta-Juan (the lesser of our two Juans).
"It's a penal colony. In space. Bruce Willis is there for a crime he sort of committed, but he was justified. Self-defense."
"He finds a mentor in Robert Duval, a guy whose been on the asteroid prison for 30 years."
"Chris Rock is the smart alecky prisoner nice guy."
"The prisoners riot and take over the space prison. Led by Ving Rhames."
"He's turned on the boosters and he's flying it towards Earth for a ransom."
"Robert Duval is secretly evil. After the ransom is paid, they can't shut off the boosters. He's so bitter, he wants to crash into New New York."
"The movie is called 'SC 666'. Space colony 666. It's where the worst space prisoners wind up."

As I listened to these guys (who were getting louder as they were on their third or fourth round at 12:15), it completely reminded me of why I decided not to pursue my Hollywood dreams. They didn't seem nearly as interested in making a half-way decent movie as they were interested in hiring actors they used to like. They didn't even seem to understand their own script, and had plans to make it "edgy" by hiring non-SAG actors.

I was guessing their budget was somewhere between $250K and $500K based on the figures they were tossing around. And you just knew, these guys are going to spend all that money on a film that nobody... I mean NOBODY... is going to want to see. If it gets picked up, that'll be no small coup for these guys and their little indie film. But most likely, at best it will run after 10:00 on one of HBO's channels, sort of filling time so HBO doesn't have to put up color bars and 1K tone.

God bless 'em. Somebody has to make those movies. I'm probably just going to refuse to pay to see them.

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