Saturday, December 27, 2008


It's been a weird fucking year. 2008. It can go, can't wait 'til it does.

I thought 2007 was a weird one.

I wish I had 2007 back.

It's also hard to believe that 2008 is already over. I have these mini-flashbacks of events that happened this year that seemed like they JUST happened.

Bascially, life is moving r e a l l y fast. We all know this, of course, but it's amazing how fast it does go when you think about crap like that.


I was trying to get my horror script done but my head/heart/guts just aren't into it.

I had 3 script requests before the holidays - The Money Shot, The Stand-In, and A Couple Of Joes. Sent them out, hope to hear something in January. Fingers crossed.

Bloom/Separation Of Nate - Haven't gotten much done on it lately but an adjustment here, a tweak there.

Westville - Still love this one, and I think it'll be the one I finish next. I've got Act 1 done and I'm happy with it, and I'm well into Act 2. It's a fun script, has elements of Diner & American Graffitti.

Titan - This was my high school drama. Not about a shooting (although it touches on one) but focuses on one kid who is pretty much left behind, bullied, etc, and how his life falls apart. I think a story like this will always be topical - maybe too much so - I'd hate to rip off some story of some poor kid from a current headline.

And I've got about 5-6 others that I look at every now & then, itching to click on the file and getting back to them.


Saw some stuff here & there.....

Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist - Loved this. A sweet movie, great performances, and a killer soundtrack.

Burn After Reading - Smart & fun as hell.

Milk - Really well done. Sean Penn was superb, and Gus Van Sant really poured his heart into this.

Let The Right One In - A stunner.

Role Models - Funniest movie of the year of good, funny movies. Also loved Tropic Thunder, but Role Models is better. Jane Lynch is great in support - will someone give this lady an award already?!

The Day The Earth Stood Still - Not horrible.

Changeling - Interesting story. Had the pace of a dead tortoise but was a decent film, just something I'd never really watch again.

Can't wait to see: The Wrestler, Benjamin Button
Happy holidays.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Sunday, October 19, 2008

All Over The Place

Usually, I've got a few scripts open and sorta pop back and forth between them, depending on my mood that day.

Now I'm a mess.

I've narrowed my screenplays down to 2 (that I want to work on). No, wait. 3. Krikey.

One is Bloom (tentative title, we discussed this a few posts ago, and thanks for the input). The other is Temp'd, which is my little crime comedy of sorts. The other is Westville, about love, friendship and odometers.

And now, my books.

Yeah, books.

One is a memoir. Yeah, everybody's got one. Well, so do I, dammit. The other 2 are adaptations of screenplays. Cricket Hill (2nd place comedy at Austin in 2003 - For those of you down there this year, good luck and have fun). The other is Brightsword, which is a fantasy comedy.

I decided to work backwards on these (as opposed to adapting a novel) because:

A. I had bad writer's blockage.
B. Cricket Hill is a hard sell as a feature-script, and is better suited as a TV series (tried that 3 years ago until the company that optioned it went belly-up), or a novel.

But its too much to work on all at once, too much to think about. I know I have to focus on one (ok, maybe 2) so I can stop fartin' 'round and get at least one of these completed soon.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

More Union Feedback - Writers On The Storm

I entered my script, Union, into Writers On The Storm and didn't get far. Ok, I got nowhere. They did provide feedback. Here it goes..........

Recommendation: Pass


There are a lot of fun moments in this script, and a great family dynamic, but the story doesn't quite come together as it should. Characters are so quirky that they have a tendency to feel like caricatures instead of fleshed out people. The pacing of the story drags as a result of the flashbacks and changes in perspective. A good start, but a ways to go.

Reader suggestions:

One of the major concerns of the script is that we're never quite sure who the protagonist is, Hoyt or Barnaby. Barnaby's narrator status makes us lean toward him - the audience is seeing the story from his perspective.

However, the majority of the story centers on Hoyt. This slows the story down. Strengthen pacing by giving the script a stronger conflict, and making sure it sticks to a classic three-act structure, which works well with comedies. Consider eliminating some or all of the flashbacks - we don't need them to understand the family, and they interrupt the narrative.

Work on fleshing out the whole family - give them more flaws, more motivated personality, and more active goals throughout the script.

***At the end of the notes they gave it some scores, it boiled down to Structure, Major & Minor Characters, Title, Premise & Execution being labeled as SO-SO and Dialogue, Style/Voice, Originality, and Commerciality labeled as GOOD.

"So-So." That's a funny critique. They should have a "Neat" or "It was aiight" or "Kinda sucked."

Oh well, onto the next contest/script/query/who knows.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

I Sing Myself To Sleep........

The last time I saw James was 1992. Tower Theater in Upper Darby, PA. They were opening for Squeeze, and I got to meet them afterwards as they were hanging out, looking for a cool place to go (we had no interest in Squeeze). Nothing like a little chit-chat with a band you admire. A similar thing happened last week at the Trocadero in Philly.

I got the the concert as the opening band, Unkle Bob, was playing. Good stuff actually, I had no expectations. Never heard of them. Anyhoo, they played and were gone, and soon James began. For those of you who don't know them, their big hit was LAID from many moons ago (it's in most teen movie previews). And yes, I named my teen movie Laid. Ok, anyway...

James played, and they were astonishing. They played all their gems. Sit Down. Sometimes. Born Of Frustration. Seven. Ring the Bells. Say Something........

I love it when a band breaks out a trumpet and violin, then invites the audience to sing the chorus of their tunes. On Sometimes, we all sang the ending chorus for about 5 minutes as the band just watched, smiling. Good stuff.

After the show I decided to check out the overpriced t-shirt section. I asked a dude how much the shirts were. $30 per t-shirt. Man, I used to balk at $20. But he mentioned that Unkle Bob shirts were only $20, and I told him I only had $15 (I truly did). He said they'd accept that. I figured they were an upstart band, and selling merch is a good way for them to make some cash so I gave him my last $15. And it turns out he was the lead singer of the band, out selling t-shirts.

We chatted for a few minutes, mostly small talk, he told me to find them on myspace & facebook.

Now, I understand they're not well known (they did apparently have a song on Grey's Anatomy last year) but sometimes you just can't beat seeing bands in a small venue, rubbing elbows with a possible future rock God.

"Sometimes.....I look in your eyes and see your soul."
James, Sometimes.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

New Script Title

Yo. Been a weird Summer, I'll leave it at that.

I'm awaiting word on two screenplay competitions - Austin, which should hopefully announce 2nd rounders/semi finalists soon (this week?) and Writers On The Storm (9/15 - quarter-finalists). Once again, fingers crossed.

By the way, my new profile pic was taken by me in Serbia back in 2000, in a small village outside of Belgrade. He's a neat kid, and there were a bunch of other amazing kids that had gathered around to see the dorky American with his dorky camera. Got some great shots.

So I've been tinkering with a script or two. Kinda settled (but not really - focus, Pat! Focus!) on two - Westville and another that I'll need your help on:

It's about a 30ish year old guy, married with kids. But his wife is leaving him, and his life is unraveling. It's a drama but with some comedic touches.

His name in the script is Nate Bloom. Two titles I'm kicking aroung are: Bloom & The Separation Of Nate.

Which do you guys prefer?

Monday, August 04, 2008

Unless round's funny

Got a few scripts I've been kicking around over the last few months, and as usual, will be starting a new one before the other ones are finished...or even halfway done.

Bluecat Union update - No go for the Semi-finals. Ah, phoey. Guess I'll just have to win at Austin (2nd rounders to be announced at the end of the month - fingers crossed).

Taking a look at some screenplays I started but never finished for a variety of reasons, such as America Inc, Westville, and The Wonderful World Of Wonderworld. All comedies, cause that's my thang.

I started a new screenplay about a month ago that was supposed to be a drama, but couldn't help throwing some comedy at it. Life's funny, what the hell can I do?! That one is called The Separation of Nate. Have an outline for one called Funeral also. So, I may be telling y'all about any number of these soon (hopefully I'll be saying something along the lines of "I finally finished...." or I'll be saying how I just started 6 more new scripts. Who knows. Writers write, so as long as I'm working on something, even with a lack of focus, at least I be writin.'

Still stuck on the new Coldplay, James and Weezer albums, and will be attending the All Points West shebang at Liberty State Park on August 9th with Radiohead headlining. Should be pretty amazing.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

'Book Me

So I signed up for Facebook recently. I like it, it's a neat alternative to myspace, and it feels cooler and less dirty/nasty/filthy than myspace.

Anyway, just get on their if y'alls got a facebook page and look me up!

Saw Stepbrothers. Funny stuff. not amazing, and more of Will Ferrell/Man Child antics, but it's still funny shite.

Going to see The Knight That Is Dark on Sunday.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

BlueCat Feedback - UNION

Ok, so here is my feedback from The BlueCat Screenplay Competition for my script, Union (currently a quarter-finalist). Fingers crossed that it advances. Here goes.......

What I liked?

What worked in this screenplay was a well written, good natured family/holiday comedy, with a good central plot arc, compelling characters, and a significant theme.

Some of the best of this screenplay were a number of very funny moments throughout the screenplay. Some examples are as follows. Page 45 and 46, very funny, “I’m pregnant”, followed by “I’m a lesbian”. The timing used here was also on point, and showed a sophisticated understanding of comic elements. Pages 81 and 82 were also very funny with the disastrous hunting trip. The scene on page 92, with the mayor on down, confessing their gay experiences in public, was also very entertaining.

The screenplay featured good emotional movement throughout. This was definitely a story with a strong moral center, specifically focused around values of family and acceptance. These thematic elements were a major driving force behind the central plot and character arcs.

Structurally the screenplay was successful in several ways. Scenes turned well with good beats of conflict. Act climaxes weren’t that pronounced, but there were major turning points and reversals placed in strategic locations, roughly based within a three act structure. The main character arcs, Barnaby and Hoyt’s in particular, worked very well in congress with the story’s central plot arc. Further more, from early on starting at the inciting incident, it occurred to me that the success of the screenplay would depend on two things, character dynamics and an increasingly complicated and tenuous set of progressive complications, and second act obstacles. I’ll get to the characters in a minute, but as far as the progressive complications were concerned, you delivered, and kept the screenplay engaging and entertaining.

There were a number of really likeable characters in the screenplay. You easily cultivated an audience investment in all of the family’s collective success, and specifically in Barnaby and Hoyt obtaining their objects of desire. With Barnaby it was about finding himself. With Hoyt it was about making peace with his family, his town, and his self. Both Barnaby and Hoyt had great emotional movement and turning points. Hoyt in particularly was a very dynamic and entertaining character. Though Barnaby, narrated the story and was technically the protagonist, in a way Hoyt’s desire to sort out his family was the spine of the screenplay, more so than Barnaby’s personal character arc, as it would seem. In this screenplay Barnaby’s own character arc, in all actuality, takes a back seat to the collective character arcs of the family members.

What needs work?

A big problem here is genre. Since this is a family/holiday comedy, with an adolescent protagonist, most of your audience is going to be either young adults or entire families. Your audience is young adults, while the content is very adult. The situations are often too thematically sophisticated for your demographic, and the humor is usually too edgy.

You’ve written a very good adult comedy in a family genre. A great example of where this is a problem is on page 68, the sex scene between Liz and Hoyt. This scene is very graphic and has very explicit conversation and content. This scene alone would guarantee you an R rating. Forget that you lose most of your audience demographic right there; no audience wants to see this scene. No one wants to see or think about their own parents having sex, and they certainly don’t want to see Barnaby’s. As a general rule, parents having sexual intercourse should be left out of any cinema altogether. There’s also a ton of cursing in this screenplay. Some of it could be cut without affecting the story, or the humor. Some of the bad language seems to derive solely from Barnaby’s narration, and that I think it would behoove you to tone it down.

The ending is a little sappy, and emotionally contrived. I liked the fact that Hoyt becomes friends with Pissbottom, but from the way in which it occurs, there isn’t any strong motivation or catalyst behind the change. Suddenly Pissbottom just breaks down and admits to Hoyt the reason for his animosity. This is fine, but maybe there can be something stronger which drives this change in Pissbottom.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

We'll Survive - The 7 Song Meme

Okay, Crymes hath tagged me with the 7 song Meme (What I'm litening to right now). This is pretty much it, in no order:

1. Weezer -The Greatest Man That Ever Lived. A fun, jokey song, but also one that you can listen to and decide that you're gonna kick some ass.

2. Weezer - The Angel & The One. This speaks to me. Truly. Usually a tongue-in-cheek band, they drop a few serious ditties once in awhile. The lyrics:

It's not my destiny to be the one that you will lay with
So many reasons why I have to go but want to stay here
Sometimes I want a taste, but then I don't know what I'm saying
You are the angel and I am the one that is praying

There is another love that I would rather be obeying
I see the ecstasy, and already I'm anticipating
I feel a deeper peace, and that deeper peace is penetrating
I've got the magic in me, I am complete is what I'm saying

I'm flying up so high, my purple majesty displaying
I've reached a higher place that no one else can make a claim in

I'll take you there my friend, I'm reaching out my hand, so take it!

We are the angels and we are the ones that are praying
Peace, shalom
Peace, shalom
Peace, peace

3. Maps - Don't Fear - Simple song really, with only 5 lines and it's 6 minutes long. The lyrics are:

Don't fear
The sun
Feel like someone
Somehow, somehow

4 & 5. Coldplay - Lovers In Japan & Strawberry Swing - My 2 faves off of their new album, and album full of great songs, but these stand out to me. Just wonderful, wonderful stuff here.

"....One day, the sun will come out...." Lovers In Japan

6 & 7. James - Great band from the UK. They sang the classics Sit Down and their biggest hit, Laid, among other gems. They've got a new album (Hey Ma) with some great stuff, most notably Boom Boom, just a bittersweet, precious song (it ends in a flourish of strings, the icing on the cake) as well as Of Monsters & Heroes & Men - Sample lyric, the end of the song:

Rambling poets
Manic with vision
We are the drivers yet we feel driven
Moths in the moonlight
Fooled by a flashlight
Caught in a jam jar
Gasping for air

Either way. I’m in awe of you.
Either way. We’ll survive. We’ll survive.

I shall now tag Aaron & Moviequill.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Cue theme from The Natural - Updated

Okay, I had to update this post - I forgot some inportant info such as the title of what the hell I'm talking about!

I'm a quarter-finalist for the BlueCat Screenplay competition! Yeeeaaaahhh bboooooooooiiiiiyyyyy!

My script is called UNION, and is a family comedy. I also sent Union to Austin & Writers on the Storm.

Ok, it's just a quarter-finalist, and there's about 100,000 others with me (I think a bazillion people entered this year) but it's been a shite year thus far so give me a frakkin' break. A guy's gotta celebrate.

I'll post the feedback when I get it, as I've done in the past. C'mon, gimme some love! Pat needs some love!

Monday, June 30, 2008

Pat Rodio Park!!! NICE!!

WOW! Somewhere in Fairfax, VA, there is a park called Pat Rodio Park. It's apparently also known as Keith Avenue Park, but screw Keith. What the hell has he ever done?

Check it out here ---

Now, while the park looks cool and all, I really wish they would have consulted me on this before they built the joint. It's my legacy, after all. It looks fun enough, but I hope somewhere out of the picture's view is a tall slide, a see saw, maybe some kind of sand box, and (obviously) a merry-go-round - a vomit-inducing nightmare that many park-builders seem to have forgotten.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


Okay, starting to write again. We'll see how it goes.

Sent out UNION to some competitions/fests - Bluecat, Austin, and Writers on the Storm. I'll keep anyone who gives a poop updated, and post any feedback (from Bluecat & Writers).

Touching up an old script that was requested off of called Dritwood. Basically a road crime comedy that takes place across NJ. I shot a trailer for it in 1998 on Super 16mm. I'll post it if I can.

Going to start a new script soon. I've got plenty of other ones already started but this one is important. Cathartic, perhaps. Been a real shit year, so we'll see how this one goes.

As for my box office guesses so far it's been hit & miss.

Iron Man - I said 330 million and it's at 297+ million. Might not hit 330 but might hang around to get close.

Indy - I said 290 million. It's at 276 and stills trong so it should pass 300.

Kung Fu Panda - I had at 140 and it's at 117 and strong as hell. Likely to get over 200 but Wall-E will knock it down this week.

My 2 that were WAAAAYY off were Sex and the Shitty (I had at 40 million, oops) and Speed Racer (I had at 180-190 - double Oops.)

Music-wise I'm listening to Editors, Interpol and the new albums from Weezer (not all great, but some stellar tunes) & Coldplay (so far it's amazing).


Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Almost there........

Trying to get back. Difficult. Zero inspiration. Actually, negative inspiration nowadays. Lots of shizzle going on. None of it good. Just some personal, life-altering stuff to clean up.

As for writing, I may have fixed a typo here & there but that's about it. My managers read The Stand In, and dropped me. Thanks, guys! Upside is I was with a new agent by the end of the week, so not all is lost.

Anyhoo, as for movies, saw Kung Fu Panda which was a fun romp. Indy was ok, better than most popcorn movies nowadays but it was just really forced. Speed Racer was Speed Racer, won't change the world but it wasn't what I would call bad.

So once I sort of the personal life I'll try to get back on the writing horse.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Summer B.O.

Here are my guesses for the Summer Box Office. Feel free to chime in.

Hancock - 340 million

Iron Man - 330 million

Sex and the City - Sigh. 40 million.

Dark Knight - 320 million

Speed Racer - 180-190 million. It doesn't look bad in my eyes (or in my son's eyes, he can't wait). It looks like campy fun. They embraced the orignal source, and I think that was wise. It's all over the place where it matters (Nick, Cartoon Network, online, in cereal boxes, and the toys have been out for weeks).

Indy - 290 million.

Wall-E - Number 5 is alive again! Yes, it looks like that goofy robot from the Short Circuit epics, but the damn thing is adorable and there looks to be some pretty special visuals here. Plus, you know, Pixar. 260 million.

Narnia - 300 million

Incredible Hulk - Eh, I just don't see this killing at the box office. 70-80 million.

Love Guru - Mike Myers is back. If it's funny, I'll say 175 million.

The Mummy - 90 million. I don't think people will care after Indy.

Tropic Thunder - 150 million.

Kung Fu Panda - 140 million

Get Smart - Opens against Love Guru. Doubt both comedies can make it. 60-70 million.

Wanted - Looks fine and all, but nothing new. Let's call it 90 million.

The Happening - I liked the Green Effect better as a title, but this looks creepy as hell, and I think it'll be a nice surprise. 240 million

Pineapple Express - 120 million - Will probably open big but drop fast. Doubt it will have Knocked Up legs. In the end, as hilarious as this looks, it's about potheads on the run, and pothead movies aren't usually blockbusters.

X-Files - 90-100 million.

If they're good, Meet Dave (Eddie Murphy comedy), Journey To The Center Of The Earth 3D & Step Brothers might make some noise.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Being Productive

Trying to get productive again. I've been writing plenty - I'm waiting for my managers to discuss The Stand-In and see if they have notes for me (they will - they're big note-givers, but they know what the hell they speak of so I should listen). In the meantine I've been touching up an old script that I still think could do well nowadays.

I'm also in the process of getting some of my old work up on youtube. Some of the projects I'm pleased with (considering our no-budgets) and some, well, not so much. They don't age well, would be the nice way to put it. If anything, by watching them, you can learn what NOT to do.

But that's what I'm talking about. Production. I have some short ideas that we might put into production this year. One is a portion of a feature-script that could be condensed into a 15 minute short. Perfect for a weekend or 2 shoot. I've also been talking to a cool band from Philly (they lent us a song for my feature, West River Drive, back in 2002) called Patrickshead and may shoot a video for them.

Have no plans for a feature any time soon, especially the low/no budget/shooting on weekends type. If we get back into producing, I'd like to start slowly with smaller stuff. With the kids and all, I simply don't want to lose my free time embarking on a feature and missing time with them. I did it before when they were younger and regret it a ton.

Been thinking about getting my horror script back out of the pile - I never finished it actually, I got Act 1 done and thought it was way too much like every other horror script ever written, but I've thought of some cool twists that may make it stand out. We'll see.

The wife and I snuck out and saw Forgetting Sarah Marshall. Funny stuff. Had some really, gut-busting stuff in it. If I had to compare, not better than Knocked Up but still a very funny movie. Paul Rudd is a funny bastard. Jason Segel wrote a fun script with some great moments. Check it out.

Song of the day - Weezer - Pork & Beans.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Chaos Theory

Marcos Siega, a supercool dude I met when the company he was with optioned my script, Cricket Hill, has a new movie out. Yes, the Cricket Hill deal was killed like a lame horse when the company dissolved, however, I still keep in touch with Marcos. He's a good guy to have in your corner, knows a shitload about directing and story in general. Anyhoo, check out his new movie, Chaos Theory:

Saturday, April 12, 2008

The Stand In - Done.

Finally. It took longer than I wanted, but I finished that puppy. Here's how it went down:

Pitched my managers some ideas/partially written scripts and we zeroed in on The Stand In (I'll whip up a logline and post it soon - I'll tell you this much, it's a romantic comedy). They loved the idea but wanted to change the setting (it went from taking place over several weeks down to a weekend, and from a city setting to a contained setting). More on that soon.

So I thought - no problem. Yeah, it was a problem. At least, not as easy as I figured. Scenes that I loved had to be cut - and I hate cutting scenes I love, although it was right to do it.

The worst part was Act 2 (isn't it always) but I'm hoping some of the set pieces I added will work. I think it flows well, and I tried to be sure to give the main characters their own voices - If you cover the character names on the page, can you tell them apart?

Is it the best thang I ever wrote? Well, no. But I like it, and enjoyed writing it. The movies/stories I like usually aren't main stream stuff...maybe that's why I'm still working the day job! This is certainly mainstreamish, so we'll see what kind of reaction it gets. The Managers will come back with some notes, and once we get it to a place where we're all happy, they'll take it out to the marketplace.

Keep you posted.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Oh Uwe

Uwe Boll, director of Dungeon Siege, Bloodrayne, Alone in the Dark, and the upcoming Postal. Well, not much I can say. He pretty much sums it up:

Monday, March 31, 2008

I'm done

Yup. I'm hanging up my screenwriting shoes. Why? I'm just beat. I've been at this thing for years now (11), and it's gotten me nowhere. Zilch. Nada. Had a few close calls but nothing ever came of anything.

I told my managers earlier today, and they understood where I was coming from. They left the door open if I decide to try again, but I can tell you that that will not be happening.

So, the plan is to pretty much stick with the regular job and concentrate on the family. Because really, I'm sick of the constant disappointment in this dead-end pipe dream.


Monday, March 24, 2008

Don't Fear

I've been trying to hammer out my comedy script The Stand-In. I'm on a sorta deadline, so not much to post about at the moment. But I hope y'all are rockin' & writin'.

In the meantime, check out Maps - great band. Well, it's one guy plus some other fellas when he plays live. Anyway get the whole album - great inspiring stuff to write to. Kinda trippy but thoughtful, Chapterhouse-meets-Stone Roses-meets-Charlatans UK with a sprinkle of Moby - if you guys have any idea the bands I'm talking about. The song/video below is pretty repetitive, however, it's quite beautiful. Enjoy!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Monday, March 10, 2008

15 Quotes Meme

Name the movie:

1. "'Cause me men, ain't we." GLORY

2. "I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast." CHARIOTS OF FIRE.

3. "No more yanky my wanky." 16 CANDLES

4. "Let them eat static." THE WRATH OF KHAN

5. "My name's Harry Pepper. If you ever have any trouble with the line, do me a favor, don't ask for Harry Pepper." BAREFOOT IN THE PARK

6. "Sex? He's a man! We wrestled!" BARTON FINK

7. "You want to know how I did it? This is how I did it, Anton: I never saved anything for the swim back." GATTACA

8. "I didn't want you to be this miserable. A little bit's all I asked for." BREAKING AWAY

9. "Kickboxing. Sport of the future." SAY ANYTHING

10. "Bunch of slack-jawed faggots around here! This stuff will make you a god damned sexual Tyrannosaurus, just like me!" PREDATOR

11. "Is it safe?" MARATHON MAN

12."I'd known her for years. We used to go to all the police functions together. Ah, how I loved her, but she had her music. I think she had her music. She'd hang out with the Chicago Male Chorus and Symphony. I don't recall her playing an instrument or be able to carry a tune. Yet she was on the road 300 days of the year. In fact I bought her a harp for christmas. She asked me what it was." NAKED GUN

13. "Nothing's riding on this except the first amendment to the Constitution, freedom of the press, and maybe the future of the country. Not that any of that matters, but if you guys fuck up again, I'm going to get mad. Goodnight." ALL THE PRESIDENT'S MEN

14. "I've tried everything: the embassy, the German government, the consulate. I even talked to the U.N. ambassador. It's no use, I just can't bring my wife to orgasm." TOP SECRET

15. "Very odd, what happens in a world without children's voices." CHILDREN OF MEN

I tag Aaron, MovieQuill & Taz.


Busy, busy. Trying to finish my Stand-In re-write so my managers (Heroes & Villains Entertainment) can start sending it out. I plan on getting them a draft within a week.

Lots of sickness going around, seems to have missed me, but not the kids. But they're troopers and are getting past it.

The talent show for my son's school seemed to be a success. I'm the coordinator for it (2nd year!) and everyone seemed to have a good time. The kids did awesome, and we kept it to 2 hours (32 acts, not bad!).

So, back to writing. Also, the Ben Stiller comedy epic Tropic Thunder looks to be great - If not, it still has one of the best tag lines ever: "Shit Blows Up!" Perfect.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

2008 Oscars

No, I'm not gonna list my pix for this year. It should be pretty predictable. Yes, Daniel Day "A Bastard In A Basket" Lewis will win, and he should. Let's talk next year.

Best Animation - Might come down to Horton, Kung Fu Panda & Wall-E. Or if they're any good, the Madagascar sequel, or something called Bolt (about a super-dog) from Disney.

And now for movies starring humans. Keep in mind, some of these might get pushed to 2009, or might completely suck it. Or a lil' flick (Juno 2: The Revenge) could always come out of nowhere.
Oscar possibilities:

Body Of Lies - Leo & Russell team with Ridley Scott for a CIA thriller. It'll make a ton, and if it's good, look for it at the Oscars.

The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button - Fincher, Pitt & Blanchett.

Nothing But The Truth - Rod Lurie returns, starring Kate Beckinsale & Matt Dillon.

Australia - Baz Luhrman directs Hugh Jackman & Nicole Kidman.

Miracle At St. Anna - Spike Lee does WW2. I'm there.

The Women - remake starring Meg Ryan, Annette Bening, Bette Midler, and a ton of other names.

Shutter Island - Scorcese, with Leo (again)

Revolutionary Road - Leo (um, again) reteams with Kate Winslet, directed by Sam Mendes.

Doubt - Meryl Streep, Phillip Seymour Hoffman & Amy Adams in a 1960s-set drama about a priest accused of abusing an African-American student. Oscar material, at least for the actors.

Burn After Reading - Clooney, Pitt, The Coens. Not sure when this is coming out, but never count out the Coens. But keep in mind that they really held back from their usual style for No Country, and if they return to their off-the-wall filmmaking, it won't make much money or get many kudos (but it might be super-cool).

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Strike - Over!

"The time has come to accept this contract and settle the strike,'' stated WGA West president Patric A. Verrone.

"Sweet," said New Jersey screenwriter Patrick J. Rodio.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

My Best (and THE Worst) of 2007 - Updated!!!!

First of all, what a freakin' year. Wow. Some truly great films happened in 2007. Now, I've numbered my top 10, but with me at least, depending on my mood, a list like this could change over time. And will.

Also, it should be noted that while we did have a great year of movies, nothing came close to my Children Of Men experience from 2006. Still love the hell out of that film.

Here we go:

Not on my top 10 - Chuck Wilson's War. Saw it, thought it was good, but considering the material, not much happened story-wise. He decided to help, then he helped, and that was it. Barely any conflict, and what little there was (possible drug scandal) was barely a blip. Interesting story, not a great flick.

Honorable Mentions:

The Hunting Party - Richare Gere, Jesse Eisenberg & Terrence Howard lead this funny but important film about journalists looking for a brutal Serbian terrorist. It's a pretty smart script, with great performances by the above-mentioned trio. Check it out.

The Ten (Funny, but kinda gets old).

The Bourne Ultimatum (a nice bookend if they stop, decent story and kewl action).

I Am Legend - Yeah, I liked it. Sue me.

Superbad/Knocked Up - Really funny stuff. Loved both.

Trade - Powerful stuff. Didn't amaze me though, the trailer was incredible, but it was still a good movie, and well worth seeing.

The Mist - Holy shit. A fine creature feature with a little social commentary thrown in. But that damn ending. It actually rips your heart out, pours gasoline on it, lights it on fire, then puts it out by taking a nice, long piss on it. Messed me up, man.

Here's what I HAVEN'T seen, that might have made my list:

Rescue Dawn, Atonement, Rendition, The Savages, Before The Devil Knows You're Dead, American Gangster, Ratatouille, Zodiac, Into The Wild & Eastern Promises.

Oh, and here's the worst of the year - Ghost Rider. Oh. My. God. What a piece of crap. Worst thing about it - Wes Bentley. I love this guy, too, but what a shittily written part and really really poorly acted, full of "Bwah! Bwah! Bwah! I'm going to take over the whole world!!!" Bullshit. Ugh.

Finally, here's the best:

10. The Lookout - Loved this movie. A nice caper, kick-ass writing and tight direction.

9. Once - A sweet little gem of a love story. I think it's a tad overrated, and some of it did drag, but it had some truly emotional scenes, and I loved the last shot. Loved it.

8. The Darjeeling Limited - It was no Royal Tennenbaums, but I liked the cast and think Wes Anderson did a nice job here.

7. Gone Baby Gone - Ben kicked some ass directing & co-writing this. Good for him. He really captured these neighborhoods, the people, their language. And Casey is on a freakin' role.

6. Juno - Smart & witty, sure. It's a fun script, however, Cera, Garner, Bateman, and Page are the ones that ground it, the dialogue, its emotion. Some of the dialogue is actually a little to show-offy, but the actors make it work. And kudos to Jason Reitman, he did a fine job here.

5. No Country For Old Men - Great movie. It has some incredible scenes and great performances. But Bardem is a little overrated in this role. While he kicks ass, don't get me wrong, and makes a skin-crawling creepy killer, he's pretty emotionless and one-note. I would actually nominate Tommy Lee Jones over him, thought he was excellent (Brolin did fine, too). I liked the ending but didn't love it. Fargo was better.

4. There Will Be Blood - Daniel-Day Lewis is the movie. His performance is astounding. Paul Dano was wonderful as the preacher, and I think this is the best thing Paul Thomas Anderson has done.

3. The Assasination Of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford - Casey Affleck should win the Oscar in my book. Brat Pitt was great as JJ, and Sam Rockwell was also damn good as always. Loved the direction and smart writing, but the cinematography blew me completely away. Roger Deakins should win the Oscar for this. And not just for the amazing landscapes he captured, but for the intimate scenes as well. Incredible, breathtaking stuff.

2. Sunshine - Wish more people saw this. Really amazing film. There's something that goes down approx. 3/4 of the way through the movie that I thought did not work real well, and that kept it out of the #1 spot. But for the most part, I thought this was fantastic. Haunting.

And at #1 - A Tie!

1A. 3:10 To Yuma - Great, great stuff. Bale & Crowe are superb, and the last 10 minutes is thrilling stuff. I can't describe it without spoiling, just see it. Best western since Unforgiven (not as good as Unforgiven, but came close - this is a damn fine film).

1B. Michael Clayton - For me, this movie kicked ass. The acting, crisp writing & direction, all of it came together for me. Clooney was superb, as were Pollack and Wiltkinson. Tony Gilroy rocks.

What were your faves?

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Heath Ledger is gone

That is truly fucking ridiculous. Wow. A terrific actor, he looks simply amazing in The Dark Knight, and besides that, just about everything else he was in. Jesus Christ.

An amazing talent is gone (possible pill overdose - here is the NY Times article) which leads me to ask Hollywood - ARE YOU PEOPLE THAT FUCKING STUIPID??????????

Sunday, January 20, 2008

To quote Red Leader......

Almost there......

My best list of 2007 is almost complete. I know I'm not going to see everything I should before I post it, but it should still be a good representation of 2007. And let me just say, it didn't seem like it at the time, but what an amazing movie-year.

I should have it up this week, for the 2-3 of you that give a hoot.

Song of the day - Maps: To The Sky.

Sunday, January 13, 2008


God damn.

Great, great film. Daniel Day Lewis - Astounding.

Still need to see 3-4 flicks before I can write a definitive top 2007 list, but I'm trying to finish up this week.

Recently caught My Blueberry Nights, starring Norah Jones, Jude Law & Natalie Portman. Interesting movie. Not amazing, but neat to see a Portman stretching her legs a bit.

The Golden Globes were awesome. Nice & short! Actually, I'm a sucker for the speeches, etc, so I missed the usual BS, but not all of it. Good for Mad Men, and there were quite a few surprises (like Juno & Clayton getting the shut-out).

The Oscars should be interesting,and I hope they are broadcast as per usual. The Guild shouldn't picket this - too many careers riding on it. Some of these actors/craftspeople only get nominated once, and what an honor it is for them. If the Guild pickets Oscar night, they're doing more harm than good. What about some nobody nominated for a short film? This is THEIR moment. Let them have it.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

My Slate

I heard Weinstein Co, Overture, & UA are the latest to have struck deals, like Letterman recently did, so I'm hoping this is a sign this daggone strike will end soon.

Loving my Laid re-write. It's gone through quite a change, hopefully for the better.

After this it's off to my already in progress comedy called The Stand-In, and I'd also like to continue work on my kids/family script called The Battle Of Thunder Hill. And of course I'd like to start my drama, Dakota, that's been kicking around my head. And finish my comedy Westville. And continue my murder/comedy called Thong. Oh, oh, and when I free up some more time I'll work on my other comedy called Kill Whitey. Almost forgot about my thriller, NSA. And my road comedy called Crazy With The Cheeze Whiz. And my working-in-a-mall comedy called Retail Messiahs. My heist comedy Temp'd. And my dark comedy called The Wonderful World Of Wonderworld.

I expect to have these done no later than 2020.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Done (Again)

Just finished a pretty intense re-write of Laid, made from notes through my managers. At first, I resisted, but finally I saw the light and I think it's much stronger now.

Coming soon: My Top Movies of 2007. I've still got a few to catch. But looking back, we had a pretty amazing movie year. Some pretty great stuff came out.

Oh, and that writer's strike? It can end now, thanks. Going on way too long, people (other than writers but them too) losing way too much money & jobs.

Song of the day: LCD Soundsystem - All My Friends.

PS - Yeah, that's one of many awkward pics from my youth.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

So, it's here......

Oh-8. Welcome!

The Eve was spent at the bro/sis-in-law's, where there were numerous kids running about (2 of them mine) and only about 4 injuries. There was a sweet girl vomitting as well, but that was due to a fall prior to the party (rollar skates) so she had to leave, but she rocks and we hope she's doin' better.

Ah, and there was karaoke. My wife and I sang "Move Along" to our embarassed 5 year old son (one of his fave tunes) and my bro-in-law & I tackled "Abracadabra," "If I Had A Million Dollars", and the one that truly brought the house down - "Total Eclipse Of The Heart."

My dream was to sing "Bust A Move" but we didn't have it on our collection of karaoke CDs.

We actually left around 11 and figured to wrap up 2007 quietly at our house, so we put the kids to sleep.....and fell asleep. My wife woke me up at around 12:20am, 2008. Oops. No ball-drop-watching 4 us.....2nd year in a row.

Now back to some screenplay writin.'