Saturday, February 21, 2009

Hollywood Comes Calling

Welcome to "The Gods Are Bored!" We hold firm to the conviction that if you live long enough, you see it all.

This morning two men arrived at our front door. They are not Mormon missionaries, but rather film producers. They are spending the weekend here, conferencing with Mr. Johnson and myself about a film project.

Mr. Johnson is a journalist. For many years he followed the story of a Philadelphia-area man who was rendered quadriplegic during a football game. The fellow was a quarterback, and he got hit, and the hit fractured two vertebrae in his neck. He could not even move his hands after that.

Some catastrophically disabled people can cope. Others cope for awhile and give up. Mr. Johnson's story subject fell into the latter category. After 25 years helpless in a wheelchair, he arranged to see Jack Kevorkian.

The fellow's brother, after much protest, took the ex-football star to Jack Kevorkian. For years the brother kept secret from the world the role he played helping his disabled sibling to commit assisted suicide. Finally the brother opened up to Mr. Johnson and agreed to have a story written.

So that's what our movie is about. This journey between brothers.

Mr. Johnson and I have worked on the script for several years and have gone through several producers. This most recent company is run by two young, energetic guys with all the artistic bells and whistles in place. Even as I write, Mr. Johnson is taking them over to Warminster to meet the brother and his family. (I've already been over there several times. The houses are small, and I would just be in the way today.)

We are having dinner with the producers this evening, and a script conference tomorrow, here at Chateau Johnson, which hasn't been so tidy in quite some time.

You should see my daughter The Spare. She's eyeballing the fast track to Hollywood, even as I warn her to be careful what you wish for.

As for the movie business, I'm not wishing at all. I'm just watching it unfold, keeping the day job firmly in hand.

Some stories deserve to be told. Mr. Johnson found one, and I agree with him that it's something people would want to see and think about.

Please don't call the Cineplex near you to find out when this ground-breaking piece of movie-making will come to the screen. But I do think this script process will be a nice motif to follow here at TGAB in the months and years to come. Let's go through it together, readers.

Which, I'm afraid, means you'll mostly get to hear me bitch and complain. But maybe not.


yellowdog granny said...

I think it's a wonderful idea..but your husband is missing a golden opportunity..a documentary of a modern day druid..and you'd get to play yourself...

THE Michael said...

I wanna play Jack! Please, PLEASE let me play Jack!

Mama Kelly said...

It is certainly a film that we would watch and a story that should be told.

{{{ luck! }}}

Lisa said...

so exciting- congratualtions for gettng it this far- lets hope it goes all the way xxx
Lisa xx

Pom said...

I'm blown away! I wish you all the best with the project. I remember in an interview, Matt Damon had said they wanted to see 'Good Will Hunting' made into a movie so badly they would have taken a bucket of chicken for the script! lol Hopefully you'll do better than a bucket of chicken but to be recognized at all is certainly something to be excited about. (is it weird to be excited considering the difficulty of the story?)

Anonymous said...

Good luck with your (and JM's ?) project..

That said..... :grin:

Keeping my Fingers crossed this is not being created to desensitize people without disabilities to assisted suicide, ala Million Dollar Baby'esque, while simultaneously impressing upon persons with disabilities (PWDs) some societal ordained duty to die [Wesley J. Smith, Secondhand Smoke].. My concern arose because of your Choice of verbiage that includes the words "helpless" and "cope" in describing [the PWD] who went through assisted suicide..

Should you be looking for parties interested in assisting you with providing [an opinion balance] to the controversial topic of your movie, any number of my colleagues, both meatspace and cyber, would be glad to assist:

disABILITY LINK, Decatur, Georgia; 404-698-8890; Ask for Linda, Margo, Hilary, Rebecca, or any of the other wonderful advocates and self-advocates over there..

Georgia Advocacy Office, Decatur, Georgia; 404-885-1234; Try asking for Cheri (pronounced shuh-REE), Ruby, or Yvette for starters..

Shepherd Center, Atlanta, Georgia; 404-350-7490; Ask for Mark or Carol..

Not Dead Yet, Forest Park, Illinois; 708-209-1500; Ask for Stephen or Diane..

The list goes on and on..

And on......... :)

Again, good luck with your project..

Peace and best wishes from Talking Rock, USA.. :)

Anonymous said...

Talking Rock:

While I appreciate that some people give up easily, I think that 25 years of being unable to do most of what we all take for granted is long enough--it's certainly far longer than I would put up with--for someone to make a reasoned, difficult decision to die.