Woody Allen Esquire Magazine Interview
#screenwriting #director #film #story
Source: SoundCloud / Esquiremag
A rare interview with Stanley Kubrick
#screenwritig #film #directing
Source: brainpickings.org / brainpicker
Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje On Making A Film Of His Extraordinary Life Story (A Kind Of Black Oliver Twist)
#screenwriting #film #screenplay
As already covered on this site, a reading of British actor Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje's feature screenplay titledFarming, took place at the first-ever Sundance London Film Festival, last month - April 27th.
The script, which Akinnuoye-Agbaje developed at the Sundance Labs, is said to be based on his life story, and is described as a true story about “a young African boy’s search for love and belonging within a brutal skinhead subculture.”
I don’t know about you, but I’m certainly intrigued by that premise alone.
The project might be getting closer to being fully realize, as, announced recently, it’s been selected by the Sundance Institute and WorldView to receive the Story Development Award; specifically, the project, along with the others being recognized, is being awarded for its focus on “social justice issues in the developing world.”
Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje’s Farming, will receive a £10,000 grant; or just over $16,000. Probably not enough to get the project fully financed, but with the Sundance pedigree behind it, and this initial funding boost, I suspect the project will continue to attract financing over the next year or so, if not sooner.
In a profile pience posted on the The Guardian’s website 2 days ago, we get much more info/background on Adewale’s Farming, which helps paint a fuller picture of what to expect from the project.
Here are the notables:
- It’s being further described as a “neo-Dickensian tale of hardship, abandonment and solidarity, a kind of black Oliver Twist for the postwar immigration era.”
- The title “Farming," refers to the practice of handing out children to informal fostering that many Nigerian parents followed in 1960s and 1970s Britain, and Adewale was one of those children.
- In 1967, his parents, a Nigerian couple studying in London, gave him to a white working-class couple in Tilbury, which was then a fiercely insular dockside community. At times his foster parents had 10 or more African children living with them, including his two sisters.
- A a young boy in Tilbury, he was in constant danger of physical attack from local kids who, encouraged by their parents, nurtured a violent fear of blacks.
- And because he really wanted to fit in, he saw his skin color as a burden, and actually thought of himself as white. It didn’t help that he knew nothing of his African parents until later, when they came and took him back to Nigeria, where he experienced a brutal culture shock, and didn’t speak a word for about 9 months, saying he was traumatized and afraid.
- Frustrated, and unsure of what to do with him, his parents sent him back to Tilbury.
Eventually, all that shifting and clashing led to this:
"I wanted to assimilate and go back to the abnormal normality I knew. I wanted to wash off the experience of Africa but obviously I couldn’t because that’s who I was. As much as I wanted to deny it, it was plaguing me, and I was reminded by the images coming through the TV, people on the streets and in the end my family in the house." The more he tried to blend in, the more he was rejected. After a year in Africa his skin was darker, which made him yet more conspicuous among the white population. Reluctant to go out, he was issued with an ultimatum by his foster father: either he fight in the street or he would have to fight in the house. With little choice, he learned to defend himself and also to attack others. As he became a teenager he grew into a well-built young man with a reputation for violence. "It was a time of standing up and standing your ground or running, and there wasn’t anywhere to run in Tilbury. The local skinhead gang really ran the streets. They made my life – and anyone’s who was a shade darker than pale – a misery." […] He became a skinhead. He didn’t just adopt the haircut and clothes but the racist attitudes too. He fought alongside his new skinhead comrades, who treated him at first like some brutalised pet to be unleashed in battle.
It’s really a fascinating, unusual story, and one that should make for an interesting film. You can read the full Guardian profile of Adewale HERE. It’s a good read and encouraged.
So, needless to say, this is a project that’s on my watch list, and I’ll be following it from here on.
Akinnuoye-Agbaje hopes to start shooting the film later this year.”
#screenwriting #film #director
Having written seven of the eight screenplays for the Harry Potter films, Steve Kloves knows a thing or two about adapting a novel for a feature film. Recently we learned that he was in talks to pen a new adaptation of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book, and now it looks like he may have yet another adaptation project on the horizon, which he may also get to direct.
Variety is reporting that Kloves is in talks with Warner Bros. to write and direct the Mary Parent produced adaptation of William Landay's legal thriller novel Defending Jacob. Compared to novels Presumed Innocent and Ordinary People, the story is set in an upperclass Boston suburb, and follows a district attorney who takes time away from his job in order to defend his son, who’s been charged with murder. Apparently, he’s less than certain over just how innocent his son is. Sounds like a pretty major conflict of interest on this case, but one that likely makes for an interesting story.
As a fan of the Harry Potter series, I should admit - knowing this likely puts me in the minority - while Order of the Phoenix was not among my favorite of the books in the series, the film proved to be one of my favorites in terms of how the story was adapted. Of course, Phoenix happens to be the one film in the series that Kloves didn’t write (Michael Goldenberg penned that screenplay). With that said, all of the films were great and given the rich world Rowling created, with increasingly complex character history and development as the series went on, adapting those books to a regular-length film that did the story justice was not likely to be an easy task. Kloves’ experience on those films may help him in adapting Landay’s novel. As for directing, his experience with that is limited to two films (Flesh and Bone and The Fabulous Baker Boys) years ago. Assuming this deal goes through, it should be interesting to see how he does not only in converting the novel to a screenplay but then getting to direct.”
Source: Courthouse News
#screenwriting #film #legal
“A screenwriter-director asked a state judge to rule that a vote ousting him from a film project is invalid, as is the contract to find much-needed financing that endorsed his removal.
The complaint, filed by Tennyson Bardwell and his Daydreamer Films LLC, comes less than a month after the two were named as defendants in a separate, related case.
Common to both lawsuits in Schenectady County Supreme Court is an attempt to make an $8 million feature movie from “Dancehall,” a murder-mystery set in the Adirondack Mountains of Upstate New York.
Bardwell, a writer-director with two movies to his credit, created a screenplay from the book by local author Bernard Conners and delivered it in early 2010 to Dancehall LLC, a company formed to steer the project. Bardwell was one of three managing members of the company.
But after a contract promising $7.5 million to the movie fell apart, a group of Albany-area business executives that had pledged $1.1 million for development became concerned about their investment. They had one of their group, retired banker Daniel Hogarty, named as investment manager of the company in 2011, and Hogarty, voting with Edwin Graham, another managing member of Dancehall LLC, moved to oust Bardwell early this year, saying he stood in the way of new financing.
Dancehall LLC sued Bardwell and Daydreamer Films in early April, asking the state court to affirm the vote.
Bardwell and Daydreamer countersued, claiming the vote came “without proper notice, authority or cause.”
Named as defendants in the countersuit are Dancehall LLC; Graham and his Puddle Jumper Films LLC; and Hogarty, individually and as investment manager.
Bardwell claims in the countersuit that Hogarty, when he was named investment manager, was given “certain designated and limited powers set forth as negative covenants” - including that no agreements for a third party to help secure financing and no establishment of foreign or domestic distribution rights could be made without his consent.
These agreements “do not confer upon Hogarty the authority to vote on the removal of a voting manager of the company,” the complaint states.
That would make the Hogarty-Graham vote to remove Bardwell as managing member “unauthorized and void,” according to the complaint.
The countersuit also contends that when Graham signed an agreement in August 2011 to bring on Crescendo Capital Advisors LLC to help secure new financing for the film, he overstepped his authority as a managing member.
According to the complaint, Hogarty and the local investors had contacted Crescendo - unbeknownst to Bardwell - and hammered out an agreement that offered Crescendo a $250,000 up-front payment and another $250,000 once new financing was secured.
The countersuit contends the contract constituted a “significant matter” that required a unanimous vote of the three managing members of Dancehall LLC: Graham, Bardwell and Anne Marie Lizzi, who has worked with Bardwell as an editor.
The countersuit contends Lizzi was a managing member when the Crescendo contract was being negotiated. But Graham and Hogarty say she had relinquished that role a year earlier.
The lack of a unanimous vote on the contract “constitutes a breach” of Dancehall LLC’s operating rules, according to the complaint. “[W]ithout the necessary unanimous vote and agreement of the managers, it is invalid and subject to rescission.”
The countersuit contends that after the contract was signed, Crescendo began suggesting that “significant changes” to the management structure at Dancehall LLC “would have to be made purportedly in order to attract the interests of foreign investors to the picture.”
In October 2011, the complaint states, Hogarty advised Graham and Bardwell by letter of the changes, which required that they resign as managing members and become at-will employees of Dancehall LLC.
Graham, who originally was to be………”