I sent an email this morning to various journo pallies, but maybe I forgot to cc some others. It reads as follows: “Just assuming that the usual La Pizza get-together is happening on Tuesday, May 10th, at 7:30 pm. I understand there’s a plan to use La Pizza‘s upstairs flat screen for a post-dinner karaoke session. I know a local guy who rents mikes, speakers and pignose amps for a reasonable fee — perhaps we could all chip in a couple of euros? Shouldn’t be much.”
When I talk on the phone with personal assistants I don’t know or who don’t know me, I still get asked “what newspaper or magazine do you write for?” or “Hollywood Elsewhere…is that a weekly?” Either old concepts die hard or people are a lot thicker than you might think. I always answer politely and patiently, of course, but my inner smartass wants to go all David Letterman and say, “I run one of those newfangled doohickey online whachamacallits…”
The only thing that Justin Kroll‘s just-posted Variety story has that I didn’t have this morning about Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal‘s Kill Bin Laden script is this: Boal’s script “will definitely include the 40-minute firefight at the compound in Pakistan where bin Laden was found and shot to death Sunday.”
Except a military analyst said today on MSNBC’s “Hardball with Chris Matthews” that it probably wasn’t a 40-minute firefight but a two-minute firefight — 38 minutes of casing the joint and landing the choppers and figuring the angles and preparing the line of attack, and then two minutes of action.
Osama bin Laden, a woman and a child were reportedly sitting in a bedroom on the third floor. They all ate lead. I’ve read/heard that Osama took a double-tap to the head with a bullet through the left eye.
A six-day-old draft of Quentin Tarantino‘s Django Unchained arrived in my inbox this morning. I haven’t read much but it has the same old Kentucky-yokel misspellings (to Tarantino the plural of the word “dragon” is “dragon’s”), the same racial bluntness that was in Pulp Fiction (the word “nigger,” etc.) and it’s 168 pages. Figure a good two and half hours. Who’s gonna tell QT to compress or cut it down?
I love that our Secretary of State is the kind of person who doesn’t sit impassively but reacts emotionally when she sees, feels or senses violent activity. I mean, you can tell from Hillary Clinton‘s hand-over-mouth gesture that something hairy was going on when this photo was snapped during the White House national security team’s “live-time” witnessing of Sunday’s attack upon Osama Bin Laden‘s Pakistan compound.
Hillary, in short, reacted like an average cultivated woman with a normal civilized aversion to violence. And that’s cool. I want a person who’s somewhat appalled by violence representing this country’s interests in diplomatic realms, and not some frosty Dick Cheney-like macho prick. Notice how none of the guys in the room are batting an eye. Joe Biden could be looking at a football game. President Obama is apparently reacting in some clenched way to what he’s watching or hearing, but he’s keeping his cool.
I have one observation. Remember how Hillary presented herself during the ’08 primary campaign again Senator Obama? As the governmentally experienced tough-ass who could handle scary foreign-policy problems at 3 am, and hinting that the inexperienced Obama might not be as cool, calm and collected as she when push comes to diplomatic shove?
I’ve done a little follow-upping on Mike Fleming‘s 5.2 Deadline story about Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal‘s Kill Bin Laden project, which they’ve been working on since ’09 if not earlier.
Oscar-winning Hurt Locker screenwriter-producer Mark Boal and I had dinner in downtown Manhattan a couple of years ago, and as we said goodbye he mentioned he was off to meet some commandos about something or other. That was the Bin Laden project.
The casting of Joel Edgerton, the 36 year-old Australian actor who played Stanley Kowalski opposite Cate Blanchett‘s Blanche DuBois in the BAM stage production of A Streetcar Named Desire, is “probable but not done,” a production source told me this morning.
The title of the Biggy-Boal-Bin Laden project “is probably not Kill bin Laden,” he says. “Not sure. We have another title idea but don’t want to say yet.”
Boal “has been following the hunt for Bin Laden closely,” the source says, “and of course, the script will naturally incorporate” last night’s announcement about bin Laden’s death, he informs.
Shooting locations are not finally determined, but the project would presumably be shot in locations that could simulate Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan or Pakistan, etc.
When will the Biggy-Boal-Bin Laden project begin shooting? Pretty damn quickly, I would think. Today if not yesterday. This is supposed to be the lower-budget quickie, mind, that Biggy-Boal were looking to do before the bigger-budgeted Triple Frontier flick.
Fleming wrote that while the film “isn’t specifically about the Al Qaeda leader,” Biggy-Boal “certainly [have] a celebratory ending to that dramatic story” with last night’s announcement that U.S. troops have killed Bin Laden.
Fleming also mentioned that he’s “heard that Megan Ellison, daughter of Oracle chief Larry Ellison, is ready to fund it.”