Tuesday, March 3, 2009

My Campaign for Writers Lives On

I'm always happy when people remember the image campaign I created for the Writers Guild of America back in the day.

I came across a blog that mentions the campaign, so I thought I'd share.

The blog is that of Josef-Konrad Radomski, a Montreal-based freelance writer. His blog is named "Sophisticated Hokum," and as this guy says, the name "stems from the critique a story analyst at Warner Bros. gave to an unproduced play called 'Everybody Comes to Rick's' back in 1940. The analyst described it as an 'excellent melodrama' and 'sophisticated hokum,' and suggested the studio purchase it at once. That play became the basis for 'Casablanca,' one of the best movies ever written."

One of the coolest things about the Guild was that I often had the opportunity to meet exceptionally talented people. Billy Wilder. Neil Simon. Larry Gelbart. Randall Wallace (the screenwriter of "Braveheart," the single best piece of literature I've ever read). I also got to meet Julius Epstein, the co-writer of "Casablanca."

I can only hope that my efforts, in some small way, helped raise awareness of the role of writers in film and television. And I would like to take complete credit for the fantastic way scriptwriting was integrated into this year's Oscar telecast (where typing in script format was shown as the action played out on the screen).

I still think "Somebody Wrote That" has a nice ring to it.


Yay, Interwebs! I heard from the writer who posted that blog, and he wrote something nice, so I'll share it: "Aside from getting more people to notice writers, your WGA campaign was also instrumental in getting me to notice the WGA, learning about its many resources and offerings, and giving me a heads up about the business side to writing that follows the creative process. I especially liked the ad that was written to writers about the 'perfect scene' that reminded you what it is 'to truly be alive.' Very inspirational stuff!"

Here's the ad in question, and it was always my favorite. It's on my bedroom wall, even to this day.

This was the only ad I did that was intended to speak directly to the writers themselves. It was the last ad in the series, and I got a lot of positive feedback about it. I think writers liked the reminder that what they do isn't interchangable or expendable. It was also a reminder of why they write in the first place. The residual payments are great, of course, but ultimately writers want to move people, inspire them and unleash their imaginations.

Yay, writers. Yay, Interwebs. Yay, snappy taglines.

No comments: