1.20.2006

The Redford Rule and Its Soderbergh Exception

I always said I wouldn’t go to the Sundance Film Festival unless Robert Redford invited me as his date. By some miracle of nature—one well beyond further teeth bleaching and a touch-up on the eye job—he would still be as hot as he was during the Jeremiah Johnson years. In our private hours, he’d remove the hand-trapped pelts, set down the black powder rifle and shave the beard as we settled into the clawfoot tub at his slopeslide chalet. Late at night, just for me, he’d put on the dress whites from The Way We Were. I'd remove them tenderly after he nodded off, just as Barbra Streisand did after he blacked out and slept with her by accident. The next day she’s used all her ration coupons to buy steak and cherry pie so he stays for dinner and they fall in love forever.

Attending the opening night ceremony, Bob would get all misty-eyed when crediting me for being his lifelong rock and muse, despite my tender years. Suddenly slender and doe-eyed again myself, I’d be wearing the tiny Jordache jeans that fit me in high school. Or the Calvins every teenage girl bought after our leader Brooke Shields claimed to be running around in them without panties. A pair of slim-fitting Levi’s 501s I wore in college the year I threw up a lot would work very nicely for public outings, when Bob and I would frolic in the snow among fellow film legends to amuse the paparazzi.

The only other inspiration for my appearing at Sundance would be the premier of some sizzling hot film I wrote, made for a hundred and twenty-five bucks in some guy's backyard and widely expected to win Audience Favorite. After Sony Classics picked up distribution rights for a cool ten mill, I’d become known as this year's “brand new thing,” a Sundance "discovery" of Soderberghian proportions. This according to my newfound "people,” who elect to erase the nightmarish details of the ten years it took me to become an overnight sensation.

Yesterday, a third scenario presented itself when my friend invited me out of the blue. She has a timeshare and two all-event passes. She’s deathly afraid of flying, so she offered me a lift in her mammoth black Escalade. Rather than explaining the Redford Rule and its Soderbergh Exception, I told her I needed to work on my spec script. She said to bring my laptop and she’d look over my pages. This was a rather attractive offer coming from a former network showrunner who’s got a new pilot in the works. The only note of hers I remember on my last script was a hand-scribbled one saying I’d always be welcome at her table.

What could I say besides yes? Hell yes. If we run into Bob somewhere, I naturally added, show me the way to some steak and cherry pie and don’t wait up.

12 comments:

  1. Have hell, yes kind of fun.

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  2. Hang out by the men's room door. Even Robert Redford has to go eventually.

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  3. I can only imagine the stories you will bring back.

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  4. Have a blast. It's too cold and far away for me and Mrs. CA to attend (we do go to the Toronto festival in September) so we'll have to live through you. Come back with all the dirt.

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  5. Anonymous11:11 PM

    it'll be fun, if for nothing more than the open bars at the many parties your friend undoubtedly has invites to--i know there's a UCLA party, and most likely IFP/Film Independent party, at a bare minimum ("minimum" meaning parties w/o a swag bag). maybe you'll even get to see a film or two that you'd actually have otherwise paid to see.

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  6. Great Post!
    I hope you're having fun.

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  7. I too had a policy of not wanting to attend Sundance. Then I moved to Canada. Now I'd shlepp to Park City just for the balmy weather.

    Enjoy Sundance, RR or no. Maybe someone there will spark to your Hilarious Funeral Comedy.

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  8. Have a blast out there.

    If you run into Whedon, Rodriguez, or Coppola (of the Sophia variety)... say hey for me, will ya?

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  9. I probably saw you there! We have to compare notes when you get back. I came back with a possible agent and a manager willing to read. And I saw the Beastie Boys so it's all good!

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  10. SOoooo? It's been a week, and not a peep from you on the blog. Did you elope with Robert Redford?

    I can picture the media announcement: "The bride was resplendent in a white parka. Jake Gyllenhaal wept openly at the ceremony..."

    Dish!

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  11. Where are you!? Are you in prison for bitch slapping Paris Hilton? Was it you that tried to push her off that balcony?

    Can't wait to hear about your adventures.

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  12. I didn't come home with Bob or Jake, only with a case of pneumonia. I promise more dish from the slopes when I can sit up straight. Thanks to all for writing...JGTH

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