News: In theaters December 14: THE MULE, directed by and starring Clint Eastwood!

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 on: November 18, 2018, 10:50:46 PM 
Started by KC - Last post by KC
William Goldman, the legendary screenwriter, has died at the age of 87.

He and Clint only worked together once, on 1997's Absolute Power. I'm sure they both would say it's not their best work. But the published edition of the screenplay (New York : Applause Books, 1997) is worth getting for Goldman's introduction.

It begins, "Absolute Power is the hardest screenplay I have ever written."

Goldman talks about wrestling with the book for nearly a year before Clint was involved, without finding a good solution to the various problems he saw in transferring the story to the screen. In particular, he couldn't settle on a character to be the star. Luther wasn't an option, because in the book, he dies halfway through. I'll quote a couple of pages:

SETH, by elimination, became my star.

There was still the problem of his not solving all that much. But I figured I could help that by giving him stuff to do that had belonged to other characters in the novel and the first draft.

One of the ways I did this was by giving him a family. … The family was a way to keep SETH around, and also to get rid of exposition that other characters carried earlier. And it made SETH vulnerable so, near the end, when he is closing in on RICHMOND, the President has BURTON and COLLIN send him a message by instructing them to hurt his family. Which they do, driving them off the road, putting ELAINE and the TWINS into the hospital. So SETH has a huge emotional score to settle when in the last scene, he visits the White House and brings RICHMOND down.

Not Shakespearean, no. But maybe an improvement over the first draft. And SETH was now at the center of pretty much everything possible. I had certainly written a star part which was primarily what I meant to do.

I sent it out. Fingers very much crossed.

Because this draft was going to Clint Eastwood. His agent had called while I was writing this draft and indicated he wouldn't mind taking a look at this draft when it was done.

I was desperate to work with Eastwood, had been for decades. He is quietly having one of the very greatest careers. Along with John Wayne, the two most durable stars in history. Plus plus plus the directing.

Eastwood as SETH - set the blood racing.

I had given them something. So at last we had something to change.

Little did he know...


December, 1995.

The second draft got out to Castle Rock around the 20th of October. Their reaction was good — not terrific but certainly good — and they were very appreciative about the amount of work that had gone into changing it.

Now, nothing to do but wait for Eastwood.

On the first of November Martin Shafer called to report that Eastwood definitely was reading it.

Then he called later that day and this is what he said. Eastwood had already read it. He thought it was absolutely OK.


—big but—

—he had already played guys like SETH and didn't want to play that character again—

—now Shafer dropped the shoe —

EASTWOOD was interested in playing LUTHER. He thought LUTHER was a terrific character but—

—amazingly huge but

Eastwood wanted LUTHER to live and to bring down the President.

I was rocked.

During these days of waiting my fantasies of writing a movie for Clint Eastwood grew out of all control. I was even more desperate to work with him —

—I simply didn't know if I could write it.

But write it he does. Goldman goes on to describe how all the various unsolvable problems got solved, to both his and Eastwood's satisfaction, and he ends:

I have seen the finished film as I write this and you will decide what you think of it. But I can tell you this: I'm sure glad I'm involved.

There, now you know everything.

Norman Mailer, center, presented the writing Oscars to Mr. Goldman, left, for “All the President’s Men” (best adapted screenplay) and Paddy Chayefsky for “Network” (best original screenplay) at the 1977 Academy Awards. Credit: Pendergrass/Associated Press

From Sasha Stone's obituary on the Awards Daily site:

Where to even start with William Goldman. I’ll start here. When I first began my site the tagline was “Nobody knows anything.” I think it remained so for about a decade. I can’t think of anyone I admired more in the movie business when I first started than William Goldman. So bright, so funny, so willing to jab a dagger into the heart of bull$#!t that Hollywood ran itself by. I’m such a fan of Goldman’s that I’ve watched Absolute Power, directed by Clint Eastwood, multiple times and All the President’s Men remains in my top five of all time. Goldman was a once in a generation mind and talent.


 on: November 18, 2018, 08:42:20 PM 
Started by Matt - Last post by KC
I'm through Paycho, and started The Lady Vanishes tonight. I'm sorry I'm not finding more time to comment about them as I watch.

 on: November 18, 2018, 08:21:49 PM 
Started by Adam S. - Last post by PeterD
Season 1 of 13 Reasons Why was good viewing, maybe a smidgen long.

 on: November 18, 2018, 08:20:29 PM 
Started by slacker - Last post by PeterD

Saw this last week and while it was basically ok, it wasn't scary.

 on: November 18, 2018, 04:43:38 PM 
Started by Macpherson - Last post by exit00
Since the trailer discussed by Macpherson has not been released and I was curious about why, I contacted trailertrack to inquire about a new trailer. He says that this trailer is a shortened version of the previous trailer and not a new trailer. He also said that movies like this typically only have one trailer and that he hasn't heard anything about an upcoming trailer for "The Mule."  :(

I think I might have seen this shortened version today on tv while watching a football game.  I don't recall seeing any new scenes but the background narration/dialog seemed to be a bit different.  Wished I had paid more attention to it....

 on: November 18, 2018, 04:42:48 PM 
Started by The Schofield Kid - Last post by Jed Cooper
I enjoyed this.  I went in with low expectations, came away entertained.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 on: November 18, 2018, 04:37:14 PM 
Started by exit00 - Last post by exit00
How big was the screen, and how full was the house? :)

The movie was shown on a good size big screen in a theater with around 100 seats.  It was a good crowd, I would say around 60-70 people (the row I was in was completely full).  Pretty good considering it was on a Monday night plus tickets were $20 as the screening was benefiting a local landmark. 

Here's an article announcing the event:

 on: November 18, 2018, 03:44:01 PM 
Started by Matt - Last post by Christopher
I hope to watch a few coming up here too.

 on: November 18, 2018, 02:15:41 PM 
Started by Richard Earl - Last post by Doug
Gant, are you a fan of the movie? The first couple seasons more closely resemble the tone of the movie, but then the show forms its own identity. I grew up with the show and I used to watch it compulsively, so I came to the movie after that. I like both the show and the movie for what they offer.

 on: November 18, 2018, 02:14:06 PM 
Started by Matt - Last post by Matt
Of all the ones I've seen that I remember, it's my least favorite.

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