Well, kids, she's done it. My old film school friend Blonde Ambition "C.", the one who looks like Elle Woods except for the tattoos snaking across her back in bold defiance of the real life sorority bitches likely to have misunderstood her at S.C., has sold her pilot to series. Since everything is about me, my first reaction was to decide just exactly where I fit in here. She's about to hire ten or so writers to sit around in the required uniform of baggy shorts paired with flannel shirts and duck bill caps to come up with the next thirteen episodes while eating Poquito Mas and making a freaking fortune.
I could ask her to read my work, but she's already done that aloud. Dating back to first year screenwriting class, I would always cast her in the lead during table reads of my pages. Not only did she have the right look for all my deceptively pretty and surprisingly acerbic heroines, but also an uncanny knack for delivering their lingering annoyance at being a smart girl in a stupid world. Perhaps our finest collaboration was her dutiful read of the eponymous heroine of my ill-advised debut script, Jihad Barbie, about a girl terrorist who changes her mind about suicide bombing the Orange Bowl after being named Orange Bowl Princess. If that courageous display of comedic genius didn't speak to my ability to write a kicky network sitcom for the average, flag-flying American family, I can't imagine what would.
Although my original focus was on television, where I earned my single produced credit before even going to film school, I've not given a whole lot of thought to the small screen since sitting proudly besides C. at graduation. But that's mostly because the only guy who's deigned to purchase my work since that fateful day happens to be an A-list movie star who I doubt watches much TV. I doubt E. even has one, not in his solar-powered canyon home, not in his Aspen ski lodge or Park Avenue penthouse. E. comes across as the type to spend a lot of time sitting around reading Sun Tzu in the original Mandarin.
I can't imagine why the studio recently reported they're putting our lighthearted, R-rated comedy in "turn-around." This is executive speak for, "So, yeah, we're not going to make this turd but damn if we'd give it back to you kids to play with." You know those hearbreaking stories you hear on the news during sweeps periods about evil foster parents who lock the kids in the basement for years with a pee bottle, occasionally tossing them stale crusts of bread? That's how I picture turnaround. They don't want the love child Mr. Movie Star and me bore out of wedlock, but they'll be damned if one of the other studios are going to get their hands on it any time soon. It could happen. This is Hollywood, after all, and anything can. Even my ancient Korean manicurist has a screenplay people are saying very good things about, but my pedicurist is having some third act problems. As for the torture artist who waxes my eyebrows, she's got a little horror thriller going and recently signed with CAA.
So back to C. and me. My Very Supportive Manager says she'd have to push pretty hard for the network to even acknowledge my existence at this stage of the game, let alone staff me on C's hot new show. So what if it's about a misunderstood smart girl living in a stupid world?
C. could intervene on my behalf, but judging from her last e-mail, she's been drunk for the last three days since the big announcement at network "upfronts" in New York. Agents and other assorted power mongers, no doubt, are busily showering her with logo items from Tiffany's and other pricey trinkets meant to inspire some pretty darn high level favor trading. Me, all I've got to hold onto right now is the unlikely belief that Jihad Barbie has held a very special place in C.'s heart all these years. Or maybe, just maybe, she's become hopelessly addicted to this kooky little blog of mine. Now that would be the Hollywood version.