Keeping The Faith In Hollywood!

Keeping The Faith In Hollywood!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Summer Box Office Heats Up!

It seems that there was something for everyone at theaters these past few week! Pixar's animated heroine with a bow and arrow, Brave best out its rivals in its first week but went down to #3 behind Mark Wahberg and his raunchy, pot smoking talking teddy bear voiced by Seth McFarlane in Ted followed by more raunchiness with Matthew McConaghey and Channing Tatum starring as male strippers in  Magic Mike. Brave was followed by a gun-totting Madea in Witness Protection for the #1, 2 and #4 spots, respectively.

Things got even hotter as the new Spider Man reboot opened to great numbers. I'm looking forward to The Dark Knight Rises, the newest Batman sequel with Tom Hardy as Bane as well as Anne Hathaway as Catwoman, which opens July 20th. Meanwhile Comic-Con starts this weekend so there should be 1 or 2 interesting stories coming out of that.

The London Summer Olympics starts runs July 27th -August but it is doubtful that this will take much out of the summer B.O. numbers.

My IMHO Movie Reviews:
I'm way behind on my summer movie viewing and reviewing 'cause I'm busy writing and polishing a few scripts. Also, my movie logline (story idea) and part of my movie outline was selected for the short film project, Let's Make A Movie for the Alameda Writers Group. The AWG plans to make the short film in 2013 and the script is in it's first draft. If all goes well, I should be getting my first and second writing credits! I should be returning to my IMHO reviews by mid July so "stay tuned"!

I read an interesting conversation on about animated movie characters Ted, the raunchy teddy bear from the movie, Ted and Toon Town's Roger Rabbit from Who Killed Roger Rabbit fame as compared to Citizen Kane ("what!"). Of course, I couldn't resist making a comment on Jessica Rabbit versus Angelina Jolie. So sad that Jessica's never won an Oscar ;D Check my response and more here:

Monday, July 2, 2012

Writers Write!

Write Now!
I missed the final May 1st deadline and then the extended deadline (May 2nd) for the Nicholls Fellowship screenwriting competition due to persistantly dilated pupils and eye sensitivity from and an eye exam 2 days prior and to an ungoing computer glitch (shoots!). Needless to say, I was very disappointed and exhausted but I attended the National Day of Prayer-Hollywood at CBS Studios with great hope for my writing future and Hollywood in general(see National Day of Prayer post).

I rested the rest of the week then I busied myself by writing for the 100 Word Writing Challenge on the Alameda Writers' Group (AWG) website. AWG has a monthly writing exercise or 100 Word Challenge contest on its site and for this challenge you had to write something that reflects the story behind the picture or photo posted but in 100 words or less. In the first case, it was this 1950s styled drawing of a male and female character as they sit at a table sipping tea or coffee?

The following month's contest was a 1950s styled drawing of a red-headed man in a tux shooting a gun from a convertible as a blond in her bra and undies? drives them recklessly.

This month's photo is of that post-hockey game riot in Vancouver a few years back where the boyfriend was kissing his girl while she was lying on her back in the middle of the street amidst crazy rioters and battle-ready riot police.

I thought that was the craziest of things to see so writing about it was too much fun. See my various submissions for the 100 Word Challenge at

More on the AWG:
The Alameda Writers' Group meets every first Sat of the month at the Glendale Public Library on Harvard Street. They offer a monthly Speaker Series (which is FREE for non-members) along with writing contests and loads of writing resources. For $60 a year you can become a member and you can attend their SIG groups, a group for critique and feedback of your script or novel and you can attend and vote at the monthly GENERAL MEMEBERS MEETINGS  held before the seminar speaker speaks.

I'm not an actual AWG member yet but I attend about 4-5 times a year and find the meetings to be worth an early Saturday morning wake up. There are also small prizes for contest winners and also raffle tickets for other prizes. Plus, there's usually donuts, milk, coffee, tea and often times fruit, all for FREE but donations are welcomed!

All speakers and panels are hosted by AWG President, Marc Cushman (see pic above), who is a writer, director, author and producer. Cushman has written for such shows as Star Trek:NG and Diagnosis Murder and he currently teaches a class on screenwriting at the Pierce Colllege extension program. Learn more about Marc at and at

AWG's Emily Wright also gives extra-ordinary feedback for most of the contest entries and I follow her on her blog. 

The AWG's speaker for the month of May was Ken Rotcop (pictured below), a writer, producer and former chief executive of creative development at four Hollywood studios. His writing has varied from writing for The Super Friends Saturday morning cartoon series to writing the award winning American Playhouse TV movie: The Medgar Evers Story. Rotcop is also the author of 2 books on how to pitch. ( off topic: hey do you know that they're re-making Robocop?)

Back on topic: Ken gave great advice about writing, pitching and the biz. As the Great America Pitch Fest(GAPF) was the next week, Rotcop reminded us listeners that he holds a form of pitchfest every year. He calls his a pitchmart but his is smaller than the other pitchfests and says he has agents attend who are interested in repping writers at his pitchmart event. In fact, Rotocop claimed that at the end of every one of his mart, all the writers are repped by agents! Learn more about Ken at  and get his pitching DVDs online, too.

AWG met Sat June 2nd, 2012 at the Glendale Library and their speaker was Christine Conradt, a writer and exec. producer. She read our submitted bios and loglines to help us craft one that works best.
The speaker events usually runs from 10:00 a.m.-12:15 p.m. followed by a Q&A after but July's meeting will be dedicated to the Let's Make A Movie outline selection with 3 established Hollywood producers judging for the winner.

You can attend the AWG for FREE but not the other events like smaller sub-groups or SIGs. I suggest joining the AWG because all the great feedback you get and the speakers they invite to speak are definitely worth your money.        

Glendale Library            
222 E Harvard St.     
Glendale, CA 91205

My computer crashed and I had to reboot the entire system. I had about 95% of all my writing, artwork and photos saved on flashdrives and CDs as back up, Thank God! I have to rescan some of my most recent artwork but otherwise I am restored. My laptop is actually running better now so even the crash was a blessing. My laptop is old, too (7 years-old) so I used to have to pray over it regularly and annoint it (seriously)!
Wow! God is a restorer of things!

More Star Sightings

Star Sightings:

I was in the check-out line at Trader Joe's off Sunset/H-wood recently when I looked at the guy checking out next to me. He looked real familiar and not because I had nearly swiped him with my cart in the refrigerated food aisle minutes earlier. I mean the guy REALLY looked familiar. The guy looked to be in his mid 30s and about 6 feet tall. He was nicely built, kind of ruggedly handsome in a down-to-earth way in just t-shirt and jeans. He was with a happy teenage girl and another lady who looked like a family member. I stared at the guy again and he caught me but I looked away, totally embarassed to be caught staring. But I mean this guy looked like I knew him... like maybe from church here in LA. I made brief eye contact again and he shrugged and nodded real humbly back at me. That nod confirmed that I did know him... maybe from back east... But not from home.. No... not from home...

I shook my head as I continued to ponder the situation then I placed my bananas from my cart to the counter. I finally gave in and decided to ask the guy where I knew him from. So I tapped him and said, “You look so familiar to me. Where do I know you from"? The guy put his hands in his pocket shyly and paused then he took his hands from his pockets and motioned with them as he began to explain to me the situation. He turned around to face me mid-explaination and I finally saw his full face and then I immediately knew! Meanwhile, the guy took a big breath to start to explain to me quietly but I cut him off almost simultaneously with ” Oh, Greys...” .

You see, it was Justin Chambers aka Alex Karev from Grey's Anatomy. Chambers blushed a little at me then he smiled boyishly and nodded as I told him what a great job that I thought he did on the show. Then I mouthed sorry, lowered my voice and slinked away hoping no one else recognized him because of my noise and nosiness.

I went back to checking out but couldn't resist leaning back over to Chambers and whispering to him that I was a medical doctor and that Grey's was the only medical drama that I had really liked in years and that my first two spec scripts were for Grey's (then Monk, then Samantha Who, then House, M.D. -lol). He shook my hand and asked me my name. I told him and he said he would let the cast, crew, writers and Shonda Rhimes etc know of my feedback. I have already met a few of Grey's Anatomy's writers who are medical doctors also but it was nice meeting Mr. Chambers as he was very, very sweet.

Update: TV Medical Dramas
Speaking of TV Medical dramas, House, M.D. had its series finale a few months back but I didn't watch it. IMHO, I felt the show ran it's course and actually jumped the shark big time this past season. I have one spec script for House that I'll be posting here soon because it is useless as a spec now. I haven't kept up with Private Practice or Grey's but I hope they have at least 1-2 more years because I have 2 written specs for Grey's.

I do like Dr. Neal Baer's new show, A Gifted Man, where the doctor sees the ghost of his dead ex-wife but I wish the show had more Judeo-Christian elements as oppose to the shaman elements. I can't seem to catch any episodes of Gifted Man though so I hope it's not canceled. I have caught ads for a new NBC medical TV drama for Fall 2012 called Hope which reminds me of Gifted Man.

I will definitely do a spec for Gifted Man with added Christian content if it comes back for the 2012-2013 season. Or I may write an original medical drama spec like Dr. Sunjay Gupta just did.