Who Should This Man Talk To?

The writer of the following article lives in “The Heart of Screenland.” She now hears daily about the progress, or lack of progress, in the screen writers’ strike. She gets a sense that the one side does not like to talk to the other side. Even worse, the one side does not appear ready to listen to the other side. The striking writers thus leave many script ideas unwritten.
A man who lives in “The Heart of Screenland” has proposed using a true life story in a movie. He did not, however, discuss his story idea with a screen writer. The screen writers were on strike. Who could this man talk to, before he forgets his very mention of the interesting true story?

Perhaps he could talk to his son, a computer technician at a shop on Westwood Boulevard. A number of Hollywood stars and directors rent computer equipment from that shop. Perhaps one or more members of the Screen Writers’ Guild conduct business at that shop.

Perhaps Pedro Almodovar has reason to visit that shop. Almodovar has written a number of screenplays. He wrote the script for the movie “Talk to Her.” Maybe he would be willing to listen to a man who has an interesting story to tell.

Is Almadovar a good listener? Are any members of the Screen Actors Guild good listeners? Are any Hollywood producers ready to sit and listen to the opposing view? The local news in L.A. County has said that the Guild members will not talk to the producers until after Thanksgiving.

Meanwhile, how many other possible movie scripts dance around in the minds of a few local residents? Sometimes it seems like the very air in the region encourages the creation of movie ideas. Twenty years ago an immigrant from Pakistan declared that her own story should be used in a movie.

That woman had crossed the mountains from Iran into Afghanistan. From there she and her brother had traveled to Pakistan. After a two year wait, the woman and her husband obtained a visa, and came to the United States.
Another resident of Los Angeles County has pointed to the journey made by the Aunt of the woman from Pakistan. That Aunt had had to sit in Tehran airport for 36 hours, waiting for a flight out of Iran. She had purchased a ticket for a flight scheduled to leave on November 9, 1979, four days after the seizing of the American Embassy.

The son-in-law of that woman had survived an unusual life experience. He had once been captured by the government, a government lead by Khomeini, Iran’s new leader. Before he could talk to a lawyer, he was scheduled to be taken to a designated building, a building occupied by a Khomeini supporter.

Had that taken place, that man and those prisoners held with him would almost certainly have been put to death. Yet that did not happen. Someone in Tehran called, and wanted to talk to the government official who had ordered the killing, that very morning, of a second group of prisoners.

Perhaps that experience gave to that one man a feeling of invulnerability. In 1999, he decided to fight back, after an intruder broke into his home. That was a fatal decision. His luck did not hold out on that sad night.

Are the above stories the sort of thing that could be used as the basis for a Hollywood script? Could a skilled writer re-work any of those stories into an exciting plot line for a Hollywood movie? Who knows? Who can anyone ask? All of the screen writers are now on strike.

So, that resident of “The Heart of Screenland,” the man with the very different story idea, has no one to talk to.
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