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Tuesday, September 30, 2008
File Under: Only Fools Are Scandalized
:::BREAKING NEWS:::

Joe Eszterhas joins the Act One Storytelling Conference October 17 & 18!

Act One Presents:
"Storytelling for the 21st Century"
October 17 &18
9:30 am- 5:00 pm
Historic Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel
Cinegrill
7000 Hollywood Blvd.
Hollywood, CA 90028
Cost: $125 for both days

Come sit at the feet of some of the greatest thinkers and storytellers of our
time. Our panelists will present meaningful topics based on art, story, ethics,
and entertainment. A round table discussion by our panelists will further
explore the nature of story in today's age.

Confirmed Panelists include:

Dr. Peter Kreeft, renowned philosopher and author of over 50 titles, including
Socrates Meets Jesus
David Mc Fadezean, Executive Producer, Home Improvement, What Women Want
Barbara Nicolosi, Act One Founder, Screenwriter, VP Development, Origin
Entertainment
Armando Fumigalli, professor, Catholic University of Milan
Karen Hall, writer on several shows, inlcuding, M*A*S*H, Judging Amy, Hill
Street Blues, and Moonlighting
Dean Batali Executive Producer, That 70's Show, writer, Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Bobette Buster Creative Executive and International Story Consultant
Chris Riley, Screenwriter and Author, The Hollywood Standard
Bill Marsilii, Screenwriter, Deja Vu
Chuck Slocum, Assistant Executive Director, Writer's Guild of America
And…Joe Eszterhas, Journalist, Author, Screenwriter, Jagged Edge, Basic
Instinct, Showgirls

Due to the intimate nature of the venue, seating is limited, and we will be sold
out soon!


To register for the event or for more information, please
visit www.actoneprogram.com or https://public.serviceu.com/registration/default.asp?OrgID=9286&EventID=3572571&OccID=117230909&


If you have questions about attending the event, contact tj@actoneprogram.com
<mailto:tj@actoneprogram.com>

If you would like more information on being an event sponsor, contact
vicki@actoneprogram.com <mailto:vicki@actoneprogram.com>

Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Almost ready to come up for air...
I submitted probably my rewrite today. I think the thing is much stronger than it was two weeks ago. Hopefully, the producers will agree and I will have a break for a bit.

It was cool to see that the production company has entered a listing for the project here. I can't say a lot about the project yet. I can say it has some wonderfully profound theological moments that hearken back to The Passion of the Christ in style.

I have two or three other projects which could be listed up on IMDB, but for some reason the producers are cagey about doing that. Now, that I'm really up there, I've become obsessed with getting the others up. This is that Hollywood disease, I think. But, as we say in the biz, it is an honor just to have a listing.

We have our top candidate for the next CEO of Act One visiting us Thursday-Saturday, and as I will be shepherding hm around the most, I can't see getting back to regularly scheduled blogging before next week. Please keep this job search in your prayers.

I'm not even sure I remember HOW to blog. Hopefully, it's like riding a bike.

Honestly, ever since I discovered Facebook this past summer, I am spending a lot more time there than here. If you want a day by day, what's up with Barb N, accounting, get a Facebook account and message me to be my friend.

I'm loving my two days a week teaching at Pepperdine. The kids are really smart and we have great discussions. I am hearing from the students one by one how much they like the class. I am really liking teaching it and I will probably do it again next semester. The class is Intro to Cinema, and it is a new one for me to teach. I have to say, in all, you know, humility, the approach I am taking with the class is, well, devastatingly brilliant. You know, in all humility. But really, I think the students are actually changing in the whole way they look at movies, and by the end of the class, they will have a whole new set of objective standards by which to measure a movie. And I LOVE Pepperdine. It runs like a clock. And everyone has been so nice to me. Niceness to Barb hasn't eggzackly been the ubiquitous commodity this summer, so maybe that makes it even more, well, nice.

In heaven, I will teach this class to the critics who review movies for the Christian world... Although that might be purgatory for them. Ah, but a necessary purgation.

I am grateful and excited that current favorite actress Katee Sackhoff has signed on to play a lead in the new Dick Wolf pilot Lost and Found for NBC. I am mainly excited because it meant she pulled out of the four spots she was going to do on the highly perverted and disgusting Nip/Tuck. A whole bunch of us are praying for Katee who has said she is a Christian, and we have taken this as a sign of Divine Intervention. It doesn't look like the NBC pilot will be that big a stretch for Katee. As I read it she's going to be playing a bad-ass, LAPD detective who gets kicked downstairs to the cold case department for bucking the system. And her car is named Starbuck... But anyway, at least she won't be prostituting herself. She'll have a much better life and career avoiding the likes of Nip/Tuck. (Katee was replaced on the perverted gig by the rather famously trampish Rose McGowan. Resteth my caseth.)

I saw the new film from Steve McEveety/MPower American Carol and laughed quite hard at about four different moments. This is more than I have done at any movie since Enchanted. It isn't art, or great storytelling, but I had a good time. If you are a political conservative, parts of it are sheer catharthis. A liberal friend of mine was shocked and horrified by the film. Which might mean $100 million in red state cash funneling into Mpower soon.

Act One's 10th Anniversary Gala is October 11. We are honoring Chuck Slocum, and Alcon Entertainment. Contact info@actoneprogram.com if you want to come or send money. We have some COOL auction items which we will probably be sending out an advance bidding notice about. (I'm talking autographed posters from the cast of The Godfather awesome!)

The Storytelling for the 21st Century Conference is all set to go on October 17-18. Besides the great Peter Kreeft, we have European cinema luminary scholar Armando Fumagali, from the Catholic University of Milan. We have David McFadzean (creator of Home Improvement, producer What Women Want), Bobette Buster (world renowned script analyst, and founder of the Development Program at USC Film School), Chuck Slocum (#2 guy at the Writers Guild of America), Dean Batali (Writer/producer, Buffy, That 70's Show), Karen Hall (writer/producer The Brotherhood, Judging Amy), and several more. It's going to be the smartest two-day seminar on visual storytelling in the history of the world. No, I don't think I am exaggerating. If this kind of thing is your cup of tea, there are still observer seats available. Contact vicki@actoneprogram.com
Sunday, September 14, 2008
Where's Waldo?
Sorry I have been AWOL everyone. In about a six week period I went from being hapless and unemployed to having three jobs. I suddenly find myself trekking out to Malibu Tuesday and Friday mornings to teach Intro to Cinema at Pepperdine University. I have also been interim managing Act One and heading up the job searches for a couple of senior staff positions.

And then there is the little matter of the insanely rushed page one rewrite that I was hired to do on a very cool feature project that I will hopefully be able to talk about soon.

And then emotionally it has been exactly what Anne of Green Gables meant by the term "Jonah" summer. A few times I found myself considering having "Et tu Brute?" tatooed on my forehead. But there is tremendous consolation in my Mother's thesis that people are rarely malicious. They are just much more focused on themselves than anything else, and to forget that and take creepy, schizo acting out personally is really just breeding infectious crazy-making. Obnoxious comment I am tempted to write borrowing from Amadeus, "I absolve you mediocrities."

It all means I have been too tired or too grim to blog.

It's a shame because I have seen some movies like Henry Poole Was Here (mostly thumbs up for a sweet little movie that could have had a better script but is still appreciably better than the Facing the Giants style Christian schlock) and Mama Mia (total embarrassment as a story, but it was fun watching Meryl Streep do ABBA).

I also laughed a lot at the upcoming David Zucker satire American Carol. I found it ideologically cathartic.

I saw Wicked again, this time with my friend Laura from Washington. That's three times for me and I still enjoyed it thoroughly.

I have pictures and travel commentary to post from my family's vacation to the rip-snorting sexy hot spots of the Gettysburg and Antietem battlefields. (I apologize to all of you who have been holding your breath to see my inspired photos of the sunken lane at Antietem....)

I still have a polish due on another script. If I get that done this week, look for blogging got continue in earnest next week.