Wednesday, July 11, 2007

July 11th, 2007 - Recommended Reading

As many of you know, when I'm not slaving over PIRATE COVE, I work as an executive in movie production out here in good 'ol Hollywood. Now, before you go blaming me for all the crap Hollywood churns out, allow me to step in and mention that I am in POST production. Once the script is written, the cast & crew are hired, and the film is shot, THEN my job starts. I'm the guy who has to make sure it is edited in time, all the pieces are in place, all the elements are created, and then get the film distributed around the World.

I used to suggest projects to my boss. Used to bring him ideas and concepts, but after a few years of being disregarded no matter WHAT I proposed, I gave up. You would, too, if your suggestions for a TRANSFORMERS movie got shot down because "a car that changes into a robot sounds ridiculous." (Ahem - $155 million opening weekend.) Also on the list of "thanks but no thanks" projects I had were "WHAT WOMEN WANT" ($183 million box office,) MICRONAUTS (option picked up by Gale Anne "TERMINATOR" Hurd,) THE WHITE MOUNTAINS (someone named Spielberg snatched up that one,) MAZINGER Z (someone named Cameron went after that one,) and the FLETCH series.

The FLETCH series was a particularly irritating one to be turned down on. My boss' reasoning was "no one goes to see Chevy Chase movies any more." I tried to explain that there were 11 books in the series and every one of them was aces over either of the movies. That Kevin Smith claimed he'd learned to write dialogue through reading those books. That Smith LOVES the books. So why don't we pick up Universal's expiring option to the books and offer the writing / directing duties to Kevin Smith? I seem to recall his reply being "Kevin Smith? Who's Kevin Smith?"

About a week later, the Weinsteins purchased the option to the FLETCH novels. Then they offered the writing / directing duties to Kevin Smith. My boss failed to recall our conversation of a week prior.

Anyway... I didn't come here today to bitch & moan about passed up opportunities. This was just my roundabout way of suggesting you get out there and find a copy of Gregory MacDonald's FLETCH WON. That's the first book in the series (although it was the eighth one written) and it was followed by the conveniently titled FLETCH, TOO.

I started re-reading this series in between HARRY POTTER books and I was unsurprised to find they're every bit as entertaining, fast-moving, and humorous as they were when I first read them (even though I already knew who the bad guys were.) I know a lot of people these days feel that reading is a laborious waste of time. That they could be watching TV or a movie instead. In some cases, I agree... some books just bore ya to tears. And unfortunately, those are the books they force-feed you in school.

Give FLETCH a spin. You might be pleasantly surprised. And for the record, it's not only Kevin Smith who was inspired to become a writer via this series. Speaking of which...

It's finished! Or at least, the files are finished and uploaded. I'm still waiting to receive the printed copies from PIRATE COVE: COMIC CONJOB 3 will be available at the San Diego Comic Con and will then be made available for purchase online shortly thereafter. Also available at Comic Con will be copies of Episodes 24 / 25, 26, 27, and 28! C'mon down and spend some money!

And let me know if you check out FLETCH. I'll know if you just go and rent the movie so don't even try it! ;)

Viva Las Vegas!

- Joe


At 6:27 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll disagree about Fletch; I thought the original _Fletch_ was incredible and its sequel _Confess, Fletch_ was even better, but the books after that were disappointing.

At 9:30 AM, Anonymous - Joe! said...

The only Fletch novels I felt were substandard were "Fletch & The Man Who" and "Fletch Reflected." Some of my personal favorites were "Carioca Fletch" and "Fletch & The Widow Bradley." I thought both of those had some nice twists which, when I first read them back when I was a teenager, came as complete surprises to me. Have you read MacDonald's "Flynn" novels? I never had a chance to read any of those but heard they were on par with "Confess, Fletch."

At 6:05 AM, Blogger ralphmerridew said...

I read _Flynn_ (which I enjoyed) and _The Buck Passes Flynn_ (thought NN contrasted too heavily with the atmosphere).


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