Let’s do some News – #Rascacielos

Yes, someone likes our work!

In the last couple of months there have been some developments I want to share with you. I left some cryptic clues here and there but it’s time to set the record straight that tell you what we’ve been up to. It’s quite cool but I’m pretty sure it will fall apart quite soon, that’s basically why I’m posting this now, before this post becomes obsolete.

But not too fast, let’s rewind a bit… previously on Hard but unfair… You probably know that the last year was a difficult one for me. Things1 didn’t go according to plan and life has been strange, difficult and just generally sucky. I always had a really hard time coping with these kinds of experiences and feelings and this time it completely knocked me off base. I’m a different person because of it, at least I feel different and I’m finally moving on. I hope though that these feelings and experiences make me a better person or at least inspire me to become a better writer but when it comes to unrequited love, being emotional just sucks. Life is hard but unfair… but even in these dark times, there’s usually a silver lining, you just have to look really hard. Sometimes a personal failure can lead to something good and in this case it did.

Out of respect to others, I’m not going into the details of what exactly happened, it’s not too hard to guess though and as an avid reader of this blog you have enough information to fill in the blanks but I’ll tell you what happened afterwards. I cried my soul out and I promised myself something: Become the best possible version of yourself.

So, who is that? Well, basically it’s a better looking more successful version of the thing I was looking at in the mirror. If you follow this blog you probably read about what came next, I lost some weight, started to use some hair product, bought some new shirts, tighter trousers, generally speaking, I started to take better care of myself and my looks. One thing was missing though, professional success. I’m not saying that I’m a loser, I have a decent job I like and I’m not bad at it but this blog is supposed to be about my endeavours as a writer so you probably know how I’d describe success or what my dream version of success is.

Take your broken heart, make it into art. – Carrie Fischer

I wrote a new screenplay last fall and I promised myself to work hard on achieving my goal of becoming a professional writer. A broken heart can be a really good incentive to get things done and I admit, I definitely used those feelings, as chronicled on this blog. My motivation was about 50% hope and 50% defiance, or maybe the other way round. So I worked really hard on some new material, worked a bit on some old stuff and made sure that word (the screenplays to be specific) got around. I’m not sure how but … and here it comes … no, she didn’t confess her love for me…we reached someone. Yes, you read that right. Someone got interested in something we wrote, we being Orlindo and I. Yes, I’m serious.

On May 8th2 we got contacted through www.whiteworms.com by Capitán Araña, a Spanish production company. They heard about our script Skyscraper on the Blacklist and wanted to read it. They seemed legit, they just produced an animated movie called Ozzy that looked decent and professional enough, so we sent them a copy.

They read it.
They liked it.

A week later I was on a Skype call with them. They had some concerns but generally they saw a lot of potential. Their biggest issue, length. 104 pages was at least 24 too much. Too expensive was another issue. So we searched our feelings and a week later we had another Skype call. We agreed to cut the pages and find ways to make the script less expensive to produce. There were some easy fixes but also some areas that required a lot of work and some creative problem solving.

We worked our asses off. At this point I’d like to mention writerduet.com. Cutting the script down was very collaborative and writerduet’s collaboration features made it just so much easier. I don’t want to think about how much time and hassle that piece of software saved us. We also used Slack and Evernote to communicate and share notes and thoughts. It’s amazing how essential these tools became for me in the last couple of weeks and months. Somehow I can’t imagine my workflow without those tools anymore, especially if there’s a co-writer you have to share notes and ideas with.

There were a couple of steps we had to take to turn 104 pages into an under 80 pages. Some pages were easier to cut than others but after a few days we were down to a 73 page screenplay and that was where the real work started. In order to cut pages we had to get rid of some connecting scenes and sequences. We had to come up with new connecting scenes and reworked entire sequences.

Another thing we had to keep in mind was the proposed budget. We wrote Skyscraper without thinking too much about money, the world was big, many characters, crowd sequences, water, wet fur, … . So when the proposed budget is less than 10% of that of a Pixar movie, you have to make some adjustments. This was probably the most difficult issue but also the one that required to most creativity.

The biggest nuisance was proofreading though and I’m not just talking about typos and stuff, by cutting pages, whole scenes or even sequences you risk cutting something vital, a small detail that was important for the plot but because you’re so into the story you don’t realise its importance. That’s why I, on behalf of Orlindo and myself, want to thank our friends who provided some proofreading/feed-backing. It was vital and fresh eyes were sorely needed. Thanks, if there’s a showing in town, you’re invited… if the villagers want to run us out of the village afterwards we need someone to blame.

Jokes aside, we’re actually very happy with how the script turned out. There are a few details missing and some moments I quite liked are gone but generally speaking the script feels more focused and no matter what happens we’re glad that we rewrote Skyscraper and we learned some valuable lessons for our next screenplay, yes we’re actively pursuing some of our ideas and I’m positive that this rewrite will lead to a better next script.

But I digress, you were wondering about the guys from Spain. Well, we sent them the new version and started waiting and waiting and waiting …. After a week we started to doubt ourselves … not that they were taking that much time but they were really fast the first time around and let’s face it, emotions were running high. After the second week, all our doubts were gone, yes we suck. After week three….
Let’s just say we waited for some time. Our Spanish friends were busy with other projects and summer went by without any new developments. I’d love to say that in autumn the whole story gained “momentum” again but apparently they are really busy. We’re still waiting. So were basically experiencing our very first “development hell”, at least we can strike that off our bucket list.

This is the whole story up to this point. We’re obviously just at the beginning of this journey and there are many things that could and probably will go wrong but it feels like a really big step in the right direction. I’ve never been closer to achieving my childhood dream and I’m cautiously optimistic. There aren’t that many people who are lucky enough to get this close to achieving their dreams, especially if it’s something outrageous like becoming a screenwriter and yet here I am.

There are truly exciting times ahead and I hope that this journey takes me where I want to go or at least where I need to be. So stay tuned, hopefully there’s more to come, either a great Hollywood success story or a hilarious Hollywood failure story that ended before it really started… well not exactly Hollywood but you get the drift. I will continue to share news about this adventure under a new segment I’m calling #Rascacielos, that’s Spanish for Skyscraper.

The Hollywood process is like trying to grill a steak by having a succession of people coming into the room and breathing on it. – Douglas Adams

This is getting really long, so I should wrap it up. Just two more thoughts, first, thank you3. Not for breaking my heart but for pushing me to become the best possible version of myself. I couldn’t have done it without you. Second, this is a strange thought though, it’s probably just me being me, like totally stupid and ungrateful for this awesome opportunity and just by contemplating this I feel like I’m betraying my childhood-self or it might just be that part of my brain/personality again that makes me a writer, anyway, if someone (fairy godmother, I’m talking to you) offered me a choice, either this or a little more luck in that other area… how shall I put it… a heartbeat seems like an awfully long time to decide something so easy.

You know what? Actually, I think my childhood-self would definitely approve. 🙂

Stay Tuned.

  1. Let’s be honest, we all know that I’m talking about a girl. I have no idea what it says about me that I start this post about my greatest achievement with one of my biggest failures… but I guess it’s fitting.
  2. That’s exactly 10 years, 1 month and 1 day since we officially started the project, April 7th 2007. Coincidence?
  3. You know who your are.

Still alive

NewImageDon’t worry, the report of my death has been greatly exaggerated, well slightly but you know what I mean.

I’m still looking for momentum but I hope to find it soon. There are a few things I have to take care of first but one way or another I hope that “our long national nightmare” will be over soon.

I don’t want to sound too dramatic but… well let’s just say that Werther seems like a really chill guy with a positive outlook on life….just adding.

I hope to resume regular posting soon, just bare with me until I find my bearings.1

  1. Cool wordplay.

There and Back again

I’m home and back at work. Sorry that it took me so long to get back at the keyboard but I just needed some time to readjust and get into work mode again.

My trip was great and exactly what I needed. Canada is a beautiful country and I met a whole bunch of really nice people. I didn’t get that much work done, which speaks for the trip but I think I found some inspiration.

Every trip I do reinforces my believe that traveling is one go the greatest things you can do. It’s like nothing else. Being somewhere, being new things, meeting new people there’s nothing that compares to this. Nothing.

I don’t know which project benefited the most from the trip, probably none, I think it was I that benefited. Sure, the problems are still here but for five weeks they were a bit further away and that was definitely something I needed. Part of me hoped that the problems would go away but it seems I wasn’t that lucky.1

But don’t worry, I have an idea ion how to fix the problem, it’s kinda the nuclear option but it worked for WWII2.

I hope to get the Progress Reports and the corresponding work going by next week and the plan is to write something original until Christmas. There’s a slim chance that there will be another announcement as well but let’s burn that bridge when we come to it.

Ok, so stay tuned and wish me luck.

IMG 2613

I believe I can fly.

  1. Fuck!
  2. I know, bad joke and historically not entirely accurate but the analogy fits perfectly.

Progress Report 50 – In for the long haul

NewImageThis is it, Progress Report 50. I know I’m a bit late but the last too weeks of the school year are always busy and I wanted this one to be a bit longer, it’s the 50th after all. Time to reflect and time to look ahead. I’m not going to talk too much about my private life, I did that many times in the last few month and I’m pretty sure I’ll keep doing that for the foreseeable future but today I want to focus on my writing and how I think I evolved as a writer or to be more precise what I learned about myself as a writer.

Working on Skyscraper and dealing with some personal problems1 I realised that Skyscraper and all the other scripts are much more personal than I thought. I’m starting to see things about myself in Scrap and Skip, well more so in Scrap, that I didn’t knew. I’m not a bird who can’t fly but some of his issues and especially parts of his journey remind me of myself and some of my issues, fears and problems. I didn’t realise it while writing but now it seems really obvious. There’s a lot of me in Scrap and I think that #ProjectMomentum is an important part of my journey and really helped me to spread my wings or at least getting me to a place where spreading my wings seems like the natural and right thing to do.

For me this is what art is supposed to be, I’m not saying that the things I wrote are great art but they speak some truth, maybe not universal truth but my truth and that’s the only one I have and frankly the only one I really care about. I know that Skyscraper is technically “just” a kids movie but if it gets made one day I really think that Scraps journey could be a good life lesson for kids and adults alike. Conquering your fears and self-doubts might not be the most original life lesson but I think it’s an important one, if not the most important one. It’s probably natural for any writer to give meaning to his work and I can see why, it adds value to your work and helps dealing with all the pain of being a writer. You wrote something that has meaning for you and if you’re lucky for someone else as well.

Again, I’m not saying that I wrote War and Peace but if were really honest, popular culture has a far wider reach than most great works of literature and and art, at least those who are not part of the cultural zeitgeist. A popular movie or a tv show has a far wider reach than Tolstoy or Joyce, I’m not saying that that is a good thing, Ulysses is a great book, so as a writer of these shows and movies you have to be aware of your responsibility. You characters, your themes, your stories are going to influence people, their choices and their values, maybe not in a big way but even small and insignificant choices can lead someone on a different path.

ProjectMomentum has been one of the best decisions of my life, it helped me though some dark times and made me a better writer and better person. Blogging about this process was a vital part of its success as well. I don’t know how this blog feels for my readers but it really helped me focus and reflect. If this just reads like gibberish I’m sorry but to me it’s really important.

I won’t do the numbers today, I watched a couple of movies and I’m preparing for my trip to Canada. I hope to get some editing and outlining done, maybe even some writing. I don’t know how often I’ll blog but you can be sure that “Hard but unfair…” returns in August and You can cry and laugh about me and my problems as a person and as a writer. I think the Canada trip is exactly what I need to recharge by batteries.

So, this is it for today but don’t worry, there will be at least 50 more of these in the near future, this time I’m in for the long haul. See you in August, who knows maybe something really great happens. You never know.

  1. I didn’t say I wasn’t going to talk about my personal problems, I just said not too much.

Progress Report 47 – The Times They Are a-Changin’

NewImage

Something’s in the Air

I can’t believe it’s time for one of these again, the weeks just fly by and I can’t believe I’m at #47 already. It’s matura time and I spent most of the week correcting matura exams. It’s actually not as bad as it sounds, we usually correct together and chat while correcting or make fun of some of some of our student’s mistakes. I know its sound harsh but what can you do, some mistakes are just too good/bad.

Anyway, correcting obviously ate away many hours and I couldn’t do as much writing as I wanted. I managed log some writing time but not nearly enough.

One book/screenplay: No reading this week. A bit of Catcher in the Rye and Of Mice and Men for school, that’s it.
Two movies: I watched some of the Mission Impossible movies, 1 and 5 to be specific. It’s great to see that some franchises evolve, talking to you Pirates.
Seven pages: We finished the new draft and now the real work starts.
Seven hours: Proofreading. Cutting pages and rewriting scenes was surprisingly fun, proofreading and making sure that everything holds together is not. That’s all I have to say about this.

So what now. I should write something, I should get back to work but sometimes I just feel the urge to write something completely different, something unimportant and let’s be honest, what’s less important than my blog. I have basically no readers, not even my friends…should you read this please drop a comment and I stand corrected but I highly doubt it… but that’s totally OK. I figured something out, this blog is not for them or for the world out there, the blog is for me. I’m probably repeating myself but writing this blog is a freeing experience and it kept me sane.

It sounds strange but it really did. You might ask, but if its a blog with no readers why not write a diary? Well, I thought about that too and the only answer I can give, I prefer to organise 1 my thoughts and having (a potential) audience helps me with that. I also like the fact that I I have to disguise some of my personal issues, it’s easier for me to cope with them after I translate them for you. Again, sounds strange but It helps me distance myself from my problems and sometimes they seem a little bit smaller because of it…sometimes they don’t.

During the last couple of month, this blog kept me sane and it was probably one of the best ideas I ever had. It also helped me shape my “writer persona”, that’s not to say I’m playing a character here but I’m a different person on this blog than in real life, I can show another side, other aspects, a different Greg who is probably a bit more honest and unafraid to admit to his feelings, even the dark ones.

I don’t know why I just felt the urge to type these lines just now, it’s just that somehow I have the feeling that change is about to come, The Times They Are a-Changin’. I have no idea, maybe it’s the end of the school year but I have this feeling that something is going to happen, not sure if it’s good or bad, I just know that something’s in the air. I’m not sure if I should be excited or frightened…I think I’ll go with curious.

  1. Ok, my thoughts might not be too organised but definitely better than in a diary.

Progress Report 44 – 47:11

It’s that time of the week again but let’s start with some personal news. I did my first 10k yesterday and I totally crushed it. I wanted to run under 55 minutes, a decent pace for me, but I was able to finish in 47 minutes and 11 seconds. I’m really proud. I obviously didn’t win anything (I placed in the middle, 68th to be precise) but I ran for me and it’s safe to say that I successfully completed the challenge. Hooray!

You probably wonder if I had time to write with all my racing, of course I did, well not actual writing but I did some outlining. Here are the details:

One book/screenplay: I started with the Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood, I’m thinking of reading it with a class next year, too early to tell though.
Two movies: Finished Buffy today, great finale. Angel’s 4th season is really strong as well, even though the plot feels a bit too constructed sometimes, still great shows. Maybe I’ll go see Get Out today.
Seven pages: Still waiting for stuff to write.
Seven hours: I’m fairly certain that I cracked the idea. I have a decent outline for act one and two (two is a bit sketchy but makes sense) and I’m reworking them right now in order to get a good grip of the third act. I’m not sure how to introduce the Supernatural elements, actually I don’t know if they are necessary.

I decided to set the story on a space station, picture 2001 meets Gravity with a bit of Alien to keep everyone on their feet. I actually think that a psychological version of Alien is actually a good way to describe my idea. It’s not about a Ripley who fights an alien, it’s about a character who fights another kind of evil, inner demons, either real or supernatural. It’s more about an internal struggle than an external one, sure it’s a movie and you need some action but I mentioned I see the monster of the story as a metaphor, a manifestation of inner turmoil that the protagonist needs to resolve. I hope I’ll be able to externalise this internal conflict in an appropriate and entertaining way. That’s why I’m going to stop now, I need to get some work done.

2001 Space Odyssey

No HAL in my movie.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer – Growing up…

41GNxsP3G0L AC UL320 SR226 320

Slayer of Vampires

I’m a huge Joss Whedon fan, who isn’t, but I consider myself among the lucky people who knew his work before The Avengers. Not that there’s anything wrong with loving his Marvel Masterpiece but it feels good to appreciate someone before everyone else did. Since it has been 20 years since Buffy premiered, I don’t have to worry about spoiling anything but if you haven’t seen Buffy and Angel stop reading now and go watch it.

I don’t remember when and how exactly I started watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer but it must have been around 19981 and I immediately fell in love with the show2. I was exactly the right age to relate to the characters and their problems and it the fact that the characters and their problems grew (up) with me made the show all the more exciting. Buffy was/is genre TV at its best, I love the story-arcs and even the standalone episodes have monsters that stand as a metaphor for a familiar problem growing up. I don’t and didn’t mind that the main character is a girl, hell I like girls and the show probably had a big influence on the type of girls I like.

One could say that I grew up with Buffy and the Scoobies and they heavily influenced me and how I see problems and how I deal with them. Don’t get me wrong, I not a Rogue Demon Hunter3 but I learned many lessons from Buffy. Not all demons are bad, sometimes people change from bad to good or the other way round and generally, as long as you work together, even the Apocalypse is avertable. Not bad lessons for a TV show about a girl who kills vampires.

I’m currently rewatching the whole Buffyverse and I’m surprised how well the shows hold up. Sure, the effects are not to current standards but that doesn’t matter, Buffy was never about dusting vampires or slaying demons was always about the emotions that led up to the confrontation with the monster. Some episodes are a bit on the nose but it was never condescending4 with a positive message. Even the really heart-breaking stuff like Angel turning evil or Buffy dying is used to perfection to create great emotional television moments. There are so many great moments but I’m not going to make a Top 10 List but I want to mention a few that are still with me, either because of their emotional impact or because they were just really good storytelling.

Angel turning evil after a moment of pure bliss is one of my favourite moments in TV history. Sure, the metaphor is on the nose and it’s interesting that the real thing that obviously inspired this choice happens in season 4. The whole season 2 Storyline with Angel is just great.

Another of my favourite moments is near the end of season 2 when her classmates name her “Class Protector”, I think I cried a little bit, it was just a powerful moment and yeah, killing the mayor was fun as well.

The season 5 finale The Gift and especially the final moment is probably one of the best season finales ever and it’s fitting that another of of my great moments happened in the season opener, at the end of a mediocre Dracula episode Buffy’s sister Dawn show up for the first time. What the $#!&, did I miss something? A great moment because it made you wonder what the deal with her was.

Last but not least, Buffy’s speech and Willow’s magic in in the series finale Chosen. Sure it basically feminism but I have no problem with that, none whatsoever, it’s great television and a powerful message to girls (and boys), the power is yours for the taking, what a great way to end a great show.

It’s no coincidence that most of these moments occur in episodes written and directed by Joss Whedon and I strongly recommend to check out all his episode not just Hush and Once More with Feeling. I also recommend listening to his audio-commentaries, especially “Becoming” where he reveals the secret to good storytelling, “emotional resonance and rocket-launchers”. You gotta love this guy.

There have been other great shows that stuck with me but no other show influenced me that much. The only other non Joss Whedon show (there will be a separate post about Angel and I will definitely write something about Firefly as well) that influenced me like Buffy did is Aaron Sorkin’s The West Wing, Buffy made me a feminist, Josh Lyman a liberal5.

So yeah, If you haven’t seen Buffy the Vampire Slayer or if it has been a while, revisit it. It’s definitely worth your time and it might make you a better person in the process. That’s pretty good for a 20 year old TV show. I doubt you can say that about Keeping Up with the Kardashians.

Stay tuned for the second part of the Joss Whedon appreciation month, my post about Angel will follow soon.

000252735 217862398647

Still looking good.

  1. The show premiered in 1997 in the States so it probably aired here a year or so later.
  2. …and Buffy and Willow.
  3. Wesley is my favourite Buffyverse character though.
  4. Except that beer episode.
  5. Looks like I have to write about The West Wing as well. Damn.

Featured Screenplay: Die Klientin – German Edition

$ 32Dann halt ausnahmsweise mal auf Deutsch.

Im Herbst 2016 schrieb ich im Zuge von #ProjectMomentum ein deutsches Drehbuch. Ausgehend von einer sehr alten Idee, die seit Jahren unberührt auf meiner Festplatte vor sich hin vegetierte, wagte ich mich nach mehreren englischen Drehbüchern an ein Deutsches. Neben der Verarbeitung von einigen weniger tollen Erlebnissen war das Ziel ein Drehbuch für den deutschen TV Markt zu schreiben, preiswert ohne viele Effekte, einfach eine gute Story mit interessanten Charakteren.

Herausgekommen ist ein Gerichts-Thriller mit Ecken und Kanten. Der Staranwalt Benjamin verteidigt Katharina, eine alte Flamme und/oder die Liebe seines Lebens, gegen ihren ehemaligen Arbeitgeber, einen skrupellosen Energiekonzern der für Profit über Leichen geht. Mit der Hilfe eines Reporterkollegen versucht er die Verschwörung aufzudecken. Wer hat Katharinas Mann ermordet? Wer hat Katharinas Sohn entführt? Wer will sie hinter Gittern sehen? Die Antworte auf diese und weitere Fragen liefert „Die Klientin.

Erklärtes Ziel war ein preiswert zu produzierendes Drehbuch, im Gegensatz zu den High-Concept Action-Adventures die es hier normalerweise gibt. Keine teuren Sets, nicht zu viele Charaktere aber eine spannende Story mit einem cooler Twist, der die Zuschauer en wenig aus der Reserve lockt.

Das Drehbuch steckt noch im Feinschliff und Feedback ist sehr erwünscht. Ich bin gespannt ob ihr denkt ich hätte meine Ziele erreicht.

In der folgenden Sequenz treffen sich Benjamin und Katharina an einem Klassentreffen. Er war früher hoffnungslos in sie verliebt, ist nicht gut ausgegangen aber lest selbst.

INT. GANG BEI DER TOILETTE

Benjamin ist auf dem Weg zur Toilette. Er wird von der Seite angerempelt.

Eine leicht beschwipste Katharina stolpert in seine Arme und schüttet ihren drink auf sein Hemd.

BENJAMIN

Ernsthaft! So ne Scheisse!

Katharina schaut ihn mit grossen lächelnden Augen an.

KATHARINA

Hoppla, ich Schussel.

Benjamin schüttelt den Kopf und ist dabei in Rage zu geraten.

BENJAMIN

Schussel??? Da fallen mir auf anhieb mindestens siebzehn treffendere Namen ein, du..

Katharina lächelt ihn immer noch unschuldig an, sie hat eines dieser Lächeln.

BENJAMIN

...Trampeltier.

Katharina will was antworten doch er ignoriert sie und geht genervt in die Toilette.

INT. MÄNNERTOILETTE

Benjamin geht Richtung Pissoir und packt aus.

Die Tür geht auf: Katharina.

Benjamin schaut sie überrascht an.

BENJAMIN

Falsches Klo!

KATHARINA

Echt jetzt!?!

Sie dreht sich weg,

KATHARINA

Wegen vorhin...

Benjamin schüttelt den Kopf, er ist leicht irritiert.

BENJAMIN

Fühl mich ja geschmeichelt aber ich bin hier grad ein wenig beschäftigt.

Katharina dreht sich erneut um nur um sich gleich wieder wegzudrehen.

KATHARINA

Schon klar. Ich wollt nur sagen. Die doppelte Rempelei vorhin...war echt keine Absicht.

BENJAMIN

Aha... also wenn das ne Entschuldigung werden soll, dann beeil dich. ES ZIEHT!

Katharina macht einen Schritt hin zur Tür.

Sie traut ihren Ohren nicht, sie verlässt die Toilette und schlägt genervt die Tür zu.

Benjamin ist fertig und packt ein und geht zum Waschbecken und begutachtet sein dreckiges Hemd.

Er schüttelt den Kopf.

BENJAMIN

Dumme Kuh.

CUT TO:

INT. KLASSENTREFFEN BAR

Benjamin, sein Hemd alles andere als sauber, und Thomas stehen an der Bar.

Katharina bahnt sich einen Weg durch die Menschenmenge.

THOMAS

Achtung!

Katharina steht vor Benjamin.

BENJAMIN

Ja? Was denn jetzt? Ist mein Hemd immer noch zu weiss?

Sie zögert.

KATHARINA

Ihr Männer wisst einfach nicht wann...

Sie holt tief Luft

KATHARINA

Tut mir leid!

Benjamin traut seinen Ohren kaum und grinst.

BENJAMIN

Na geht doch. Jetzt noch ein Bier und die Sache ist vergessen.

INT. LOUNGE

Benjamin und Katharina sitzen an einem Tischchen im Lounge Bereich. Benjamin mit einem Bier und Katharina mit einem Cocktail.

Katharina schaut auf sein Namensschild.

KATHARINA

Hmm, Benjamin? Du kommst mir irgendwie bekannt vor aber ich kann dich einfach nicht zuordnen. Du bist nicht einer dieser Party Crasher, oder?

Benjamin schüttelt den Kopf.

BENJAMIN

Leider nein, hatte das Vergnügen an diese Schule zu gehen.

KATHARINA

Kannst du mir einen Tipp geben?

Benjamin schüttelt den Kopf grinst.

BENJAMIN

Und wo ist da der Spass für mich?

KATHARINA

Gemein. Ich hab so echt Mühe mit den Gesichtern und Namen von damals.

Benjamin geniesst den Moment.

BENJAMIN

Ich finde es grad ein wenig gemein, dass du dich nicht an mich erinnerst.

Er zeigt auf sein dreckiges Hemd.

BENJAMIN

Ist schliesslich nicht das erste Mal, dass du mich wie einen begossenen Pudel aussehen lässt.

Katharina denkt nach.

KATHARINA

Bin ich mal in der Cafeteria mit dir zusammengestossen?

Benjamin wedelt mit seinen Händen.

BENJAMIN

Es wird wärmer.

KATHARINA

Aber wir hatten keine Stunden zusammen?

BENJAMIN

Doch, eine Menge sogar.

KATHARINA

Mathe?

Benjamin nickt und nimmt einen Schluck Bier.

KATHARINA

Cafeteria...Stunden...?

Katharina denkt nach.

KATHARINA

Hatten wir mal was miteinander?

Ben verschluckt ich und prustet das Bier fast aus Mund und Nase.

BENJAMIN

Sorry. Der war zu gut.

KATHARINA

So abwegig ist das jetzt doch nicht.

Benjamins Gesicht wird etwas ernster.

BENJAMIN

Scheinbar würdest du dich heute nicht verarscht fühlen wenn ich mit dir flirte.

Katarina schaut ihn entgeistert an.

Der Groschen fällt.

KATHARINA

Oh....

Unangenehmes Schweigen.

Benjamin nippt genüsslich an seinem Bier. Man sieht Katharina an das sie sich unwohl fühlt und er geniesst es.

Katharina bricht das Schweigen.

KATHARINA

Du... schaust gut aus.

BENJAMIN

Danke.

KATHARINA

Damals warst du doch eher ein wenig....

Benjamin fällt ihr ins Wort.

BENJAMIN

En wenig ... was?

Katharina ist etwas verlegen, nickt und lächelt.

KATHARINA

Ich wollte nicht...

BENJAMIN

Schon gut, ich hab abgenommen. Du warst nicht ganz unschuldig daran.

KATHARINA

Ich war jung und eingebildet. Ich war einfach gemein.

Benjamin nickt.

KATHARINA

Ein wenig zu beschäftigen scheint es dich aber immer noch.

Benjamin grinst verlegen.

BENJAMIN

Bei einem Klassentreffen kommen alte Erinnerungen hoch und manche waren eben prägender als andere

KATHARINA

Klingt so als müsste ich mich nochmals entschuldigen... Zu meiner Verteidigung, heute würde ich es anders machen.

BENJAMIN

Mir anders eine Abfuhr erteilen? Oder Typen wie mir eine Chance geben?

Katharina nickt und statt zu antworten lächelt sie einfach.

KATHARINA

Dann sind wir ja quitt.

Benjamin grinst schelmisch.

BENJAMIN

Naja, ich weiss jetzt nicht ob man eine schlechte Anmache mit Lebenslangen emotionalem Trauma gleichsetzen kann.

KATHARINA

Ein Bier hab ich dir auch spendiert.

Benjamin nimmt einen Schluck.

BENJAMIN

Ich überlege es mir nach dem zweiten.

Katharina grinst.

KATHARINA

Und wie gehts sonst so? Ich seh keinen Ring an deinem Finger.

Benjamin schaut auf seine ringlose Hand.

BENJAMIN

Liess sich bislang vermeiden. Du scheinst nicht so viel Glück gehabt zu haben

Katharina zeigt verlegen ihren Ehering.

KATHARINA

Ich haben einen Kleinen Sohn, Martin, also wir, Bernhard, mein Mann und ich, wir sind seit 4 Jahren verheiratet.

Katharina kramt ihr Handy hervor doch Benjamin winkt ab.

BENJAMIN

Ich bin nicht so der Babyfoto Typ.

Katharina lächelt.

KATHARINA

Dein Pech. Ich bin nämlich eine Babyfoto-Mutti, also ertrag den Schmerz.

Sie zeigt ihm mehrere Fotos des süssen, kleinen MARTINS, ein süßer kleiner 2 Jähriger.

Martin lachend.

Martin wie er einen Ball kickt.

Martin wie er sich Brei um den Mund schmiert.

Benjamin muss grinsen, die Bilder sind echt süss.

BENJAMIN

Ok, der Kleine ist tatsächlich relativ süß. Für ein Kind

Katharina grinst.

KATHARINA

Sind halt nicht alle alle so süss wie mein Martin.

Katharina verstaut ihr handy in ihrer Tasche.

BENJAMIN

Und wie ernährst du den kleinen Martin?

KATHARINA

Ich arbeite bei IEP in der Geschäftsleitung, bin für Übernahmen zuständig.

Benjamin grinst über beide Ohren.

KATHARINA

Was? Was ist so lustig für einen Energiekonzern zu arbeiten?

BENJAMIN

Energiekonzern? Komm schon, alle wissen wie der Hase bei IEP läuft. Die lassen Mafiabosse wie Engelchen ausschauen. Die Russen habt ihr ja so richtig übers Ohr gehauen und was “ihr” mit dem Solarunternehmen gemacht habt, echt nicht OK.

Katharina schaut überrascht.

KATHARINA

Du bist ja echt informiert.

BENJAMIN

Ich lese oft die Zeitung und über euch steht recht viel drin.

KATHARINA

Wo gehobelt wird da fallen Späne.

Benjamin grinst.

BENJAMIN

Das klingt ja sehr überzeugend. Ich hoffe einfach, dass der Kerl mit den Solarzellen euch verklagt und zwar so richtig.

KATHARINA

Tut er. Ich muss nächste Woche aussagen. Ich mach mir aber keine Sorgen, er hat so gut wie keine Chance. Unsere Anwälte werden ihn auseinander nehmen.

BENJAMIN

Ganz schön selbstsicher, jeder der die Zeitung aufgeschlagen hat weiss dass ihr ihn übers Ohr gehauen habt. Sein Produkt war toll, hat euch einfach nicht ins Konzept gepasst und deswegen habt ihr es gekillt.

KATHARINA

Man sollte nicht alles was in der Zeitung steht, und selbst wenn, wir haben Gutachten und das Gesetz ist erst recht auf unserer Seite. Es zählen nur Beweise und bis jetzt konnte er noch keine liefern.

Benjamin schüttelt den Kopf und lächelt.

BENJAMIN

Du bist ja knallhart und ich dachte zu mir warst du damals gemein.

KATHARINA

Naja, um sich als Frau in meinem Job zu etablieren darf man nicht zimperlich sein. Die Männer sind es auch nicht der unterschied ist einfach, bei den Männern ist es guter Geschäftssinn, Frauen sind gemeine Zicken.

BENJAMIN

Als Zicke hab ich dich auch schon verflicht aber tut dir der Kerl nicht leid? Ihr habt ihm seine Firma quasi geklaut und ihn dann vor die Tür gestellt.

KATHARINA

Geklaut klingt so böse, annektiert klingt soviel besser.

Auf der anderen Seite der Lounge versucht ein leicht betrunkener Thomas eine der Bedienungen anzumachen.

Sehr erfolglos.

Benjamin sieht ihn.

BENJAMIN

Ich würde ja gerne noch mehr Firmengeheimnisse erfahren aber mein Freund Thomas braucht mich glaub bevor er zu aufdringlich wird.

KATHARINA

War nett, vielleicht sehen wir uns ja beim nächsten Klassentreffen.

Benjamin steht auf, Sie geben sich die Hände und Benjamin geht Richtung Thomas doch er dreht sich noch kurz um.

BENJAMIN

Oder etwas früher.

Noch nicht perfekt aber auf gutem weg. Auf www.whiteworms.com gibt es das ganze Drehbuch. Würde mich wirklich über Kommentare freuen.

Progress Report 42 – the Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything

AwAFKPqy

Six by Nine?

I’ve been looking forward to this one. We all know that 42 is the answer the to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything, so maybe Progress Report #42 is the thing Douglas Adams was aiming for. Who knows, maybe this blogpost starts a new movement or religion or something1.

I’m still not feeling quite myself but I’ve been quite creative so I’m not complaining too much. So let’s start with the numbers and then we’ll see where #42 takes us:

One book/screenplay: I’ve read Off to be the Wizard by Scott Meyer. Quite a fun read, nothing too deep but highly enjoyable.
Two movies: Still in the middle of my Buffy marathon. There are some great arcs and episodes. Season 2 and 3 are even stronger than one, Angelus is a great villain and the Mayor is just hilarious. I even cried a lot wehen Buffy’s classmates thanked her for saving their lives in the Prom episode. I also watched some horror movies, The Babadook and Drag me to Hell to prepare for my new project.
Seven pages: I’m not there yet. I have to light some fire under Orlindo’s arse though, I need to rewrite Die Klientin.
Seven hours: I’ve been working on my new idea and so far it looks promising. I’m still figuring out what exactly I want to say but I had some good ideas on how to structure the whole thing. At the moment I’m toying with some alternative setting ideas. The Nerdwriter hat this interesting Video this week about Passengers, that movie with Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence2. In the video he talked about ways to improve the movie and he (and others) has a point. A structural change would improve that movie and it got me thinking, not only about the structure, maybe the movie and the supernatural aspects would flourish in a different setting as well. I’m not just considering space, maybe a different time period or just a really peculiar setting, basically anything more interesting than just a boring office.

That’s what I’ve been up to this week. It feels good to work creatively again and it helps me through all the other crap. Alfred Hitchcock once said: “Drama is life with the dull bits cut out.”I’m just hoping I get to the happy end before I get canceled.

In other news: James Gunn released the Tracklist for the Guardians Vol. 2 Soundtrack, guess who’s on it…David Hasselhoff. I would never have thought of that but it makes perfect sense. Proof? Let’s end this post with an awesome song/music video.

  1. Or maybe it’s “Six by nine. Forty two. That’s it. That’s all there is. I always thought something was fundamentally wrong with the universe
  2. Love of my life…please call me. 🙂

Progress Report 41 – A Monster Calls

Ok, bare with me, this is the last time I promise1 but at least this one is a bit writing related.

There’s a saying among screenwriters, I’m paraphrasing but basically its about the idea, that every villain is the hero of his story. He probably doesn’t know that he’s the bad guy, he has his mission, his goals and his motivation and he just want’s to succeed. If that is true, what about the opposite? Is every hero a villain of someone else’s story? To complicate matters even more, how do I know which one I am? How can I be sure that I’m the hero if it feels exactly the same as being a villain in someone else’s story?

In my ongoing quest to make sure that my life is one god-awful movie, I inadvertently (or maybe through mind-boggling stupidity is more accurate) turned into the villain of someone’s story. I was blind to the effects my actions had on that person and through all my efforts to fix my mistakes (apparently heroes and villains both make mistakes), I made it worse and  I turned from villain to monster. I’m not comparing myself to a moustache-twirling Bond villain and I’m no Xenomorph either but my actions deeply hurt someone. It doesn’t matter that my intentions were good, apparently all villains have (some) good intentions, the only thing that really matter how my actions affect others. It might be a while until I fully realise the damage I caused and the full extent of my misguided actions, I don’t even know if I can ever forgive myself, the only thing that I’m sure about is that I’ll do everything in my power to never repeat my mistakes. Out of respect to others, I’m not going into too much detail but trust me, I learned a valuable lesson I don’t intend to ever forget. It doesn’t feel good2 to realise that you’re the monster and that you (inadvertently) hurt someone you care for. If you should ever read this, I’m sorry.

NewImage

What I see in the mirror.

Moving on, I promised you screenwriting and screenwriting you shall get. It was Carrie Fisher who said,

“Take your broken heart, make it into art.”

and that’s exactly what I intend to do. The last couple of month were really difficult for me and recent revelations reshaped my perception of them and I think in these events and my newfound insight into them lies my next movie. I know I say that all the time that I finally found my next project but I think I really need to write this one now. It might not surprise you that I’ll think of it as part writing, part therapy but who cares, I truly believe that it will turn out good and I’m saying that before I even have the slightest idea what the plot is going to be. I have a lot of ideas about the characters and I know that the story will get a supernatural-horror edge, I’ll mix in a bit of romance and round it up with a pinch of Buffy the Vampire Slayer (not the slaying part but the one with all the metaphors).

I have no title yet but I hope to finish my outline over the easter break. I’ll keep you posted.

And now for something completely different…the numbers:
One book/screenplay: To Kill a Mockingbird is a really good read.
Two movies: I rewatched a few things, among themThe Neverending Story (someone needs to remake this, there is so much potential) and I started with a Buffy marathon, its just a great show, the first season is really tight.
Seven pages: Not even one page.
Seven hours: Does my new Idea count?

That’s it, I’ll promise to regain momentum, but who knows I might be a villain and maybe I’m just lying.

  1. Who am I kidding, there will be more posts like this but let’s be honest, you’re just here for these anyway.
  2. Honestly, it totally sucks.