February 2007 - petrostudio LLC
OK, so the Oscars were this week. Generally, I like to know what’s happening – I even find myself actually watching on the night of the show… trouble is, I still don’t care.
You hear stories about people that “make it” and win Oscars. Fact is, those people, probably 99% of the time, have some way “in” to the business. They know someone. They have people. I don’t know how to get people if you don’t have any. I’m sure someone has thought of ways for shmoes like us to get people (TriggerStreet?) but it seems like every “underground” route into Hollywood turns overground eventually. Even Sundance has Slamdance, folks.
But through all that, through wanting to make movies myself, through writing story after story, revising, talking about ideas, getting excited about work, directing shows, taking (calculated) risks… I just can’t bring myself to care about Hollywood.
You know my aversion to the culture of celebrity, but this runs deeper. It’s the machine of it. The wheels of Hollywood. And I guess that’s just from afar – I’m sure that, given the opportunity, I would jump on that wheel with both feet. But I would hope that I would have some morals left… in other words, not “play ball” like so many people seem to do so easily.
I guess the route I’m heading in – writing, film-making, directing – lets me think that way more. I’m sure that actors have to have a different attitude. They are literally a dime a hundred, and it’s all a game to get where you want to be. Most of the time.
Even speeches, lovely speeches like Mirren’s and Whitakers, and Marty’s “check the envelope”, though touching and enjoyable for a second, seem to mix together into the melting pot that is the Hollywood experience – very few come out the other end and remain memorable for years and years. But a few do. And that’s nice.
I still insist that I’ll “make it” my own way. And I’ve always had a good head about what “making it” was for me. It’s my own definition, and it’s an attainable goal. I always thought setting yourself the “rich and famous” goal was ridiculous, and hard to achieve. And when you don’t, what do you do then? Are you worthless? Do you feel that way? Who wants that?
My goal? Make a film. Then make another. And another. Rinse, repeat until I’m dead. That’s the process. That’s where it’s at, for me. For you? How the hell should I know?
By the way, re-listening to Ms. Fiona Apple. If you haven’t heard any of her music, you live under a rock. Crawl out, go to the store and buy everything with the word “apple” in it to make amends. Fiona makes you fall in love with her, especially her voice, from the start. And then you think, this chick is really fucked up. And then you think, this chick can be really swe… wait, she’s fucked up again!
Spent the last weekend in the Poconos again. freezing cold, frozen lake, bad fire. Ever played outside like a little kid when you are actually a fully-grown human being? People look at you with more disdain than when you were a little kid. We found a pickerel, threw boiling water in the air, and heated rocks and stuck them on the ice. It was hilarious.
Then my wife got the call – her grandfather passed away on Saturday night. Sweet man, some medical trouble in the last year. So, off to Little Rock again, where things are always then same. Yep, you guessed it – what’s in Little Rock? [refrain]
So it’s cold, and it snows Wednesday night. And by snow, I mean a light dusting. A powdering. It’s so cold, the snow looks grainy, like fake snow at the ski slope. It’s too cold to even make ice. You can’t find a ruler short enough to measure the amount of snow that falls.
And Arkansas loses their goddamn mind.
Accidents, school cancellations, the Anti-Christ shows up on the morning show, cats and dogs living together: mass hysteria.
And I am incensed. I mean, livid. I was born in Boston. I grew up in Indiana, mind you. I went to school in Syracuse, where 2 feet of snow = Tuesday. I’ve driven nothing but rear wheel-drive cars in 4 feet of snow, uphill, both ways, with only a hot potato in my pocket to warm my hands, which then I ate for lunch. And then, drove home with cold hands.
Sundi said to me, “Well, you are just superior… you’re going to have to teach everyone in Arkansas how to to drive in the snow.” Lesson one? Title of the post.