What Are They Up To With The New Indiana Jones Movie?

by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner

It has been pretty obvious the last few Indiana Jones movies that they REALLY want to transition to a new actor as the central figure in the franchise. Harrison Ford is old and there’s going to come a point when if they’re going to continue with the movies someone is going to have take his place.

The New Indy?

And, yet, there’s a problem — the Indiana Jones franchise is very beloved and everyone thinks of Harrison Ford’s Indiana Jones when they think of “Indiana Jones.” So, they have to think of some way to keep going without him.

I heard a stray remark somewhere that the next Indy movie is about time travel. And given that Phoebe Waller-Bridge is involved it seems possible….that they might literally make her Indiana Jones via time travel? Maybe some sort of multiverse event happens and Indy is a girl instead of a boy at birth. Then our universe Indy meets this new version of himself in the past and not only does hilarity ensues but there’s a way for them to keep the brand name.

Of course there would be a huge uproar amongst conservatives at such an offense, but, lulz, there’s money to be made. And there are worst things to happen than to have Phoebe Waller-Bridge play a female Indy in a few movies. Though I still think she needs to play Dr. Susan Calvin, robot psychiatrist. She’s perfect for that role.

Anyway, this is all very much speculation. But something’s gotta happen unless they’re going to start using de-aging and deep fake technology to put Harrison Ford’s face on some other actor’s body. Strange things have happened in movies, I suppose.

Make A ‘Moonlighting’ Movie With Phoebe Waller-Bridge & Ryan Reynolds, Please

by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner

Since Hollywood is all about using existing IP and not having a single original idea, why not make a Moonlighting movie with Phoebe Waller-Bridge as Maddie Hayes and, say, Ryan Reynolds as David Addison.

It would be great. The show itself was really surreal at times and one could make the argument that Reynolds is nothing more than Bruce Willis with a few tweaks for modern audiences. And Waller-Bridge playing the uptight Hayes would be a great way for her to show comedic range.

No one listens to me. And, maybe they shouldn’t. But it is an interesting idea.

The Tragic Missed Opportunity of ‘No Time To Die’


by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner

I’ve written about this before, but I’m drunk and irritated and so here we go. It is well known that Phoebe Waller-Bridge was brought in to punch up the No Time To Die screenplay.

You can occasionally see glimpses — I think — of her input in the movie’s third act. So, here we are — Bond has a family (at last) and his daughter is in danger as the Range Rovers are bouncing around in the forest. This was the point in the movie when I found myself the most engaged — I was leaning forward in my seat as I saw this, wondering what was going to happen next.

And, what happened next was not much. We’re invested in this unique situation for Bond — having a family — and THEN nothing happens. His daughter bites the villains finger and she escapes. That’s it.

I mean, that’s it.

There was so much more that could have been done with the concept of Bond Family Values. You could have had the little tyke prove her mettle in any number of different ways. It would have been really cool. This is even more so given that they’re going to kill of Bond (or a little while at least.)

And, yet, I still love the Bond franchise I understand why this happened. Bond is supposed to be lightweight summer blockbuster fun. So, lulz. But I do wish the Bond producers would at least think about making the next Bond a lot like The Dark Knight.

Anyway. No one listens to me.

Of ‘Fleabag,’ ROKon Magazine & Daydreaming About Jennifer Lawrence In The Movie Version Of This First Novel


by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner

I really need to shut up about any potential movie adaptation of a novel that’s not even finish yet. But, lulz, I’m a nobody and the only people who read this blog are stalkers or people who stumble across it for this or that reason.

Phoebe Waller-Bridge

It’s the murder of a Fleabag-type character that ultimately serves as the catalyst for the dramatic transformation of small Southern town I’ve come up with. I’ve mentioned that Bella Thorne would be ideal to play the character in any movie potential movie adaptation, but I have a huge ego and, as such, I realize what I really what is Jennifer Lawrence to play a person that Bella Thorne could play just by being herself.

LONDON, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 01: Jennifer Lawrence attends a photocall for “Passengers” at Claridge’s Hotel on December 1, 2016 in London, England. (Photo by Anthony Harvey/Getty Images)

The character is inspired — even based on — the late Annie Shapiro who was, in her own way, at least somewhat like Fleabag. (This is really stretching it, but Fleabag is a character everyone understands when you invoke it and as such, that’s why I’m using it.)

The late Annie Shapiro. RIP.

Annie Shapiro was a very, very unique person. And I’ve been trying to tell our story in the context of ROKon Magazine in Seoul for the better part of 20 years now. But I’ve finally accepted that it’s just not going to happen. So, instead, I’m using things I know to be true and pouring them into a five novel series set around something else I know to be true — what it’s like to live in a small Southern town.

So, I guess what I’m saying is, in my mind, the character whose murder changes everything is a mixture of Annie Shapiro fused with Fleabag as played by Jennifer Lawrence if she was channeling Bella Thorne.

Bella Thorne

Anyway.

Of Bella Thorne & The Influence Of ‘Fleabag’ On These 5 Novels I’m Developing & Writing


by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner

I really love Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s “Fleabag.” So, in the back of my mind as I work on these five novels, I think about that character in the context of the character who is really the source of all the chaos that attacks the little Southern town I’ve come up with.

So, let me lay out what’s going on. The first book starts about 25 years ago. And it’s about the events leading up to, and the immediate consequences of, the murder of a Fleabag-like young woman. Or, put another way, imagine the damage Fleabag might cause if you plopped her in a small Southern town 25 years ago.

A lot, is what I believe.

(If I was going to cast this particular character in a movie adaptation of this book, it would be Bella Thorne. She’s perfect.)

But the point is — the character did not deserve what happened to her, even if she was really causing a lot of problems for people in the town. And, as such, the five novels are about how one person’s has value. The over-all, macro arc of the story is about how each one of us has value as a human being, pretty much no matter how bad our behavior. (Within reason, of course.)

So, I like I toying with the implications of Fleabag-like character “coloring outside the lines” leading to her murder in a small town and how everyone has to deal with with the consequences over the course of a generation.

That’s the creative itch that keeps me obsessed with these five novels. That and the idea that by the time readers get to the four and fifth books the allegory for Trumplandia that I’ve come up with makes total sense. Of course that’s what would happen, I want readers to say to themselves when we discover how fucked up the small Southern town I’ve come with is by that point.

Call your agent (one day.)

But we are talking about five novels. Things are moving really fast at the moment — I’m currently at about the fourth chapter mark of either a really good first draft or a mediocre second draft. Let me be clear, however, I’m pretty much doing this in a total vacuum.

I don’t have a muse. I have no one to talk to. No one likes me and I have no friends. But I can tell a Goddamn good story. So, lulz, only time will tell, I guess.

Phoebe Waller-Bridge As America’s British Sweetheart That Never Was


by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner

Phoebe Waller-Bridge is in a unique position. If this was 20 odd years ago, she would be sorely tempted to go the romcom route. She might star in three or four middling romcoms before she finally found her ground and become a huge star who could go any direction she wished.

I will note at this point that I have a great concept for just the type of comedy that I think Waller-Bridge would do great in. But I don’t even know how to use Final Draft and I’m working on five novels, so lulz. But the high concept is Wedding Crashers meets, I dunno, Cheers? It’s an innately funny concept and I’m, sadly, not that funny. But maybe I’ll get around to writing whenever I figure out how to use Final Draft.

Anyway, romcoms are pretty much dead as a genre at the moment and, as such, Waller-Bridge was born to late to take advantage of how huge she could have been in the romcom world. And, given that she’s an excellent writer, she probably could have made those middling romcoms a lot better than they might otherwise be.

As a side note, I just remembered how she’s supposed to be in the next Indie movie. That could really open a lot of doors for her career wise. And, yet, I still think she needs to have her own action-adventure vehicle for her career to be taken to the next level. I think she should star in a remake of Time Bandits. That would be so cool.

As always — no one listens to me.

Phoebe Waller-Bridge As Action Star


by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner

This seems like something of a gimmie, and up until recently Phoebe Waller-Bridge was set to star in a reboot of Mr. & Mrs. Smith that would have put her in a position where she could do as I’m about to propose: an action star. But she pulled out of the project for some reason, so lulz.

But I think Ms. Waller-Bridge has a lot of potential as a female action star because her comedy is very much Bruce Willis in Moonlighting. He was not the first pick for the lead in Die Hard and I think Ms. Waller-Bridge could be a huge, huge action star under the right conditions. She has the John McClain wise-cracking vibe to her, only with a British spin to it.

Hollywood’s next great action star?

She obviously can make Americans laugh, as shown with Fleabag and I think all she needs is the right vehicle and her career will go to the next level. Now, I would be remiss if I didn’t also point out that I think she would make a great Dr. Susan Calvin, robot psychologist.

I could see that being a whole franchise for her — there are oodles of short stories about Dr. Susan Calvin waiting to be adapted. My favorite is “Liar!”

I have no idea if anyone else realizes Ms. Waller-Bridge’s potential as an action star. Only time will tell.

[Spoilers] The Third Act of ‘No Time To Die’ & The Potential Influence Of Phoebe Waller-Bridge On The Screenplay


by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner

I really liked No Time To Die. I only rolled my eyes a few times and checked my watch a few more. And I only once felt the need to think about leaving the theatre in mid-film. For me, a person who walks out of movies constantly, that’s a big deal.

But it’s the third act of the movie I want to talk about.

It’s in the third act that the stakes are raised and a child’s life — Bond’s daughter — is put in harm’s way.

It’s in the third act when something about how unfocused the movie is becomes clear. Somewhere in the movie’s nearly three-hour run time was an even better movie, waiting to come out. The emotional highs and lows of the movie were blunted by how muddled it all was.

I think it was so muddled because that is the point of a Bond movie. You go to a Bond movie to have a good time, not to really get your emotions played with. But had they wanted to make not just a Bond movie but a Bond “film” they could have focused a lot more on the implications of Bond having a family for once in his life and what he was willing to do to save them.

As it is, we’re introduced to his daughter as a plot point, she’s put in danger and then…she escapes because she bit the finger of the villain? What the what? It was a huge letdown.

You have something unique in the Bond franchise — he has a family to protect — and in the end the whole thing is dismissed in a rather ham-handed manner. There was not nearly the emotional pay off that it could have had.

Phoebe Waller-Bridge

Maybe I’m seeing the influence of Phoebe Waller-Bridge? But because she was just punching the screenplay up and wasn’t the main screenwriter, we just saw glimpses of the far more powerful movie that could have been? I dunno. But it definitely is weird that something so potentially powerful — Bond with family — was introduced and then not a lot was done with it.

As I mentioned, I think some of what I’m noticing is just something that is basic to the Bond movies on an existential basis. We don’t really expect them to be No Country For Old Men or There Will Be Blood. There’s just a fun way to entertain yourself for a few hours.

Oh Lort, Is Phoebe Waller-Bridge A Babe


by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner

Let’s talk about the curious case of Phoebe Waller-Bridge. Relative to Hollywood metrics of beauty, she’s something of a square peg in a round hole. But relative to, like, normal people, she’s a smoking hot babe. In my mind, at least, she’s a smoking hot babe. She has a certain √©lan to her that isn’t easily pinned down.

Babe.

Ms. Waller-Bridge is so unique, out there and creative that she always keeps you guessing. And what could be more sexy than that? She’s so interesting just by being herself that audiences can really relate to her in a way they can’t with some more established stars.

She probably has a great Hollywood career ahead of her. I could see her being a stable of romcoms for years to come. Though, I also think she would play a great Dr. Susan Calvin from the I, Robot short stories. But I think that says more about my eagerness for one of those short stories to be turned into a movie than anything else.

One thing I find interesting is how she seems to be glowing up right now while another one of my celebrity crushes, Alexa Chung, seems a bit long in tooth. Not to say Ms. Chung isn’t still gorgeous, but the difference in mentality between Ms. Waller-Bridge and Ms. Chung is striking. Ms. Waller-Bridge seems to be getting younger while Ms. Chung is definitely looking a very attractive 35-ish.

Still a classic babe.

Anyway. I have to think of something to make myself feel better than now that fucking Trump has been acquitted by the Senate. I will say, in passing, that one of my novel’s female characters is inspired by Ms. Waller-Bridge. But the connection is extremely tenuis beyond what’s going on in my head when I write the character.

Hollywood, ‘Fleabag’ & The Strange Case of The Dog That Didn’t Bark


by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner

Looking back over all my ranting about Trumplandia, there’s one thing that really shocks me — we never got a “Network” for that era. It’s surreal. It’s almost as if Hollywood was scared to touch the epic shitshow that was happening all around us for four years.

For much of Trumplandia, the case could be made that it just takes time to develop and produce a movie. But in the four years of Trumplandia, we never once got a movie that directly referenced the insane situation we were in. And, really, in a sense it was Phoebe Waller-Bridges’ “Fleabag” that gave us the catharsis we needed.

How many times during Trumplandia did we collectively want to look at the camera of life with one of Fleabag’s expressions?

Now that Trumplandia has fallen, it does raise the question of will art ever address it. The novel I’m developing and writing hopes to do that, but the context growing very, very different every day. I struggle with how to tell the story I’ve always wanted without it seeming extremely dated.

The issue, I think, is to make the story a good as possible and also to really lean on character. If I can just make it a good story set in a specific moment in time — like, say “Ladybird,” then some of the more potentially dated aspects of the story will be “hidden” by how good the story is unto itself.

I really have a huge amount of reading to do, but I also have to put-up or shut-up. They say your first draft is meant to be shit, and so now that I have the structure of the story down pat, as soon as I’m mentally in the right space to do so –which should be very, very soon — I’m going to sit down and start writing a serious first draft. One, I hope, is the best first draft I’ve attempted to date.

But I must admit that I’m on a hair trigger to do something different if I feel I’m forced to. I have maybe three or four solid novel or screenplay concepts rolling around in my mind and if this current novel becomes untenable, I’m going to move on — even if it sucks and will hurt like a bitch.

Yet, that hasn’t happened yet. Gotta keep moving on.

I still think there will be an audience for a novel that wallows in the conventions of Trumplandia.