You heard me. All of them, no exceptions.
After waiting forever to hear from the director I’m back in Los Angeles with the sneaking suspicion that all is not going well with the film “Snow”, the one I was contracted to be the co-writer on.
I’m couch surfing with friends in Long Beach and in the Hills and waiting for news. And all I’m getting are requests from the director to do more and more rewrites.
In the end I corner him on the phone and ask what the fuck is going on?
Long story short. He had an unbelievable connection to the man at the top of one of the largest independent studios in America. They do great films. Ours could have been one. But his ego, lack of experience and far too much self-belief made the star, the producer and the money all walk in a week.
And I still haven’t been paid.
Welcome to Hollywood. This is what my writer friends all tell me.
If Hollywood is a Hilltop mansion and the heads of the studios and the stars live in the penthouse, writers are the retarded sisters, locked in the broom closet, under the stairs in the basement.
Film is considered a visual medium and directors are seen as the authors. Anyone else who claims authorship is an embarrassment.
Producers are mostly interested in how they are going to keep their kids in private school and pay for their three ex-wives. They also have the only job in the world where they hire their own boss and kowtow to him, when all some directors have done is graduate from UCLA film with a final project that no one understands.
And then they have to deal with the actors.
So I get it. I don’t like it in here in the cupboard. But I get it.
I wonder if this is like being the man in a pregnancy. You deliver the all important sperm, without which nothing will happen. Then you’re expected to be available whenever you’re required.
The truth that no one wants to admit though is, unless a writer writes, no one else works. No one. So while the director was busy hacking up my script over nice lunches and bottles of wine at the Ivy, I was sitting far away in the dark, getting third hand news and ridiculous deadlines for changes that I didn’t understand.
I want to set fire to the Hollywood sign, I want to send fighter planes down the Miracle Mile, I want to see Fred Segals never have another sale. That’s the sort of pain I want to see visited down like a plague of locusts from above.
I pack my things, jump in my car and go to stay with friends in SF to have a good long sulk. And as I watch LA shrink in my rear view mirror I tip my head out the window and scream, “Where were you when the page was blank motherfuckers?!”
If I was an actor or director, someone would have had to have written that line for me.