But what if they just don’t want it?

March 29, 2010

Likely to go see Avatar again soon so was checking out the play times at my local Cineworld. It is still playing five times daily. I also wanted to see Green Zone and was surprised that this is only playing one show a day. This made me reflect on all the effort and energy that goes into a work, all the research and effort and skill and sheer hard work but what if nobody wants it? To say nobody is a little unfair but for a film with a reputed $150m budget it is currently at $30m in the U.S. so it is unlikely to make it’s budget back regardless of costs including P&P, from its worldwide release.

The DVD and other ancillaries market might just make it break even over the next few years but all in a car crash. Surprising considering the talent involved (paul greengrass, matt damon, jason isaacs, universal) and the generally ok reviews.

I’ve potentially got three years of work going nowhere with my Five Wives of Fela project so perhaps this is a pertinent subject for me at the moment.

How do you measure success? Is it the commission/greenlight? the production/release? the reviews? the chances of getting to make more work? the financial success?

K.B.O. right?

Video of Fela Queens

March 27, 2010

Link here to two minutes of video of Fela’s Queens preparing, on stage and on the streets of Lagos. It’s a clip from the Music is the weapon doco made in 1982.

It looks like this is something to do with the Broadway musical as the fela! logo tops and tails the video.

There are lots of Fela videos on the web.

Akira Kurosawa

March 23, 2010

On the anniversary of his birth I was wondering why there isn’t a decent box set collection. This was due to my just going to the usual sources, Amazon and Play.com. Then I found this site where all 33 of his films can be purchased for only £59.00!! One order on its way!

kurosawa box set cover picture

Oilivier Award results

March 22, 2010

The Olivier Awards were announced last night. Congratulations to The Mountaintop. Two really good performances in a well-written piece.

the mountaintop publicity shot

Rylance won for Jerusalem in a stand-out performance in a really good show.

I saw The Mountaintop at Trafalgar Studios and Jerusalem in the West End and am off to see Enron later in the year for which Goold won for Directing.

Fela- National Theatre Transfer

March 19, 2010

Fela! the musical currently on Broadway is transferring to the National theatre London. See here. Show opens in November. go to go see it.  I wanted to go see it as part of the research for my play The Five Wives of Fela Kuti so this will save me a couple of hundred quid!!

Talawa- Rum and Coca Cola

March 17, 2010

Rum and Coca Cola. Livestreamed from the West Yorkshire Playhouse. Enjoyed it. Technically massive improvement from the first Flipping The Script event that I saw (which I think was the second ever).

I imagined this show was going to be a similar type presentation of a reading so surprised that it was the production, mid-way through its run. A good move I think. The fear is that it will cannabalise audiences but I really think Talawa are ahead of the curve and are extending their audience rather than eating into it. The parallels with music industry as regards those who tried to ignore what was happening technically should act as a warning to those who seek to not utilise this different medium

Creative Screenwriting Magazine

March 15, 2010

Take a look at this link here to creative screenwriting magazine. It is a link to a series of podcasts with Screenwriters. Nick Hornby talks about Oscar-nominated An education, Peter Jackson and James Cameron talk about working in New Zealand, technology and other stuff. Lots and lots of podcasts available. Courtney Hunt Writer/Director of Frozen River (2008) which has the great Melissa Leo has the lead is also interviewed.

Oscar Nominated Screenplays

March 10, 2010

Raindance, the Independent Filmmakers organisation have a number of the 2010 Oscar-winning/nominated screenplays available to download on their site here. They include Up In The Air, Precious, A Serious Man, In The Loop and Up amongst others.

Congratulations to Geoffrey Fletcher for Best Adapted Screenplay for Precious. Like Bigelow another first.

John August’s Blogsite

March 9, 2010

Just added a link to John August’s Blogsite in the Links section of this site. August wrote Go, Big Fish, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and the Charlie’s Angels Movies. His ‘ton of useful information about screenwriting’ site is full of a ton of useful info. About screenwriting.  Check the post about Professionalism and the Rise of the Amateur.

Hurt Locker

March 8, 2010

Congratulations on the Win! Obviously Bigelow’s historic win but also Boal’s win. I know there was the usual ‘rubbishing’ of the story as the awards approached but the film has consistently been well-reviewed as a well-executed film that looks at the prism of Iraq through the main Bomb Unit characters. I wonder if in years to come it’ll be viewed how Platoon is viewed. Presumably the combination of these Iraq films ( Lions for Lambs, In The Valley of Elah, The Kingdom, etc) will eventually add up to the effect that one film, Pontecorvo’s Battle Of Algiers  does as an examination of colonialism, the blindness and arrogance of power and it’s human effect.

The ‘verbatim’-ness of Hurt Locker and Battle of Algiers are the connections. Hurt Locker still to make the big cultural connection of films like Platoon, and other Vietnam films such as Full Metal Jacket but it has certainly made a critical connection that will keep it talked about for a while one would imagine.

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