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I don't know what it is about March, but that's when A.V. Club's Mike D'Angelo and The Conversation's Bruce Isaacs each independently posted great analyses of Eternal Sunshine's closing scenes.
When I first pitched Scenic Routes, back in the summer of 2009, one of my big selling points was the idea’s sheer inexhaustibility. Over the past seven and a half years, I’ve analyzed 175 scenes, yet barely scratched the medium’s surface[...]
“I should finish by writing about one of the great movie endings,” I immediately thought, and just as quickly, I knew exactly which one it should be.
[...]It’s never been clear to me whether Kaufman views these two characters as admirably quixotic or ludicrously self-deluded. Maybe it’s a bit of both. Director Michel Gondry repeats the final image of Joel and Clementine running in the snow, creating a loop. (This isn’t in the screenplay, which just ends on Clementine’s “Okay”—the most baller move I’ve ever seen in script form.) That suggests an infinite repetition of the same mistakes, though the implied pessimism is offset by Beck singing “Everybody’s Gotta Learn Sometime” on the soundtrack. Regardless of what was intended, I can’t help but perceive these lovers’ renewal of vows, so to speak, as intensely romantic—and not exclusively in the lovey-dovey sense. Maybe it resonates less strongly for those who believe in an afterlife. (Source)
And here's the Isaac piece, which comes with the video posted below:
The film is about memory, desire, love and loss. In this scene, Isaacs focuses on what he calls two “cinematic gestures” in the closing sequences of the film.
The scene features Joel Barish (played by Jim Carey) and Clementine Kruczynski (brilliantly portrayed by Kate Winslet) as they realise their relationship is doomed but still worth pursuing.
It is, says Isaacs, a beautiful and deceptive sequence that includes one of Jim Carey’s finest moments on screen. (Source)
Bonus: couple of weeks ago, the Medium Jump podcast had a look at Eternal Sunshine.Add a comment
A while back, Charlie was scripting an adaptation of The Knife of Never Letting Go, the first book in Patrick Ness' YA trilogy, Chaos Walking. In 2014, though, Variety reported that Charlie was out and Jamie Linden had taken over the writing. Now, Deadline are talking as if Charlie's still on board:
Doug Liman has backed out of directing Warner Bros’ Justice League Dark, the film that was to be a cog in the studio’s DC Universe of movies. The move is not surprising, as Liman’s schedule is officially tied up for the time being: As we reported, Lionsgate is moving forward with the Daisy Ridley-Tom Holland movie Chaos Walking based on Patrick Ness’ YA novel, with a franchise play being eyed and Liman at the helm. It is now in preproduction and is currently on offer at the Cannes market, and Liman is moving along with it.
[...] Ness is co-writing the screenplay with John Lee Hancock and Charlie Kaufman. Allison Shearmur and Doug Davison are producing. (Source)
I suspect they're wrong, but it could be that Charlie's now re-attached. In August last year at Karlovy, Charlie said "I'm not involved with that any more. I did the first draft." (That's an hour-long video. He talks about Chaos Walking around the 45:45 mark. The whole clip's worth watching if you've never seen it!)Add a comment
Game show host, writer and possible CIA assassin, Chuck Barris--played by Sam Rockwell in Confessions of a Dangerous Mind--has died at age 87. From the New York Times:
Mr. Barris died of natural causes, said Paul Shefrin, his publicist, according to The Associated Press.
[...] The book [Confessions] got only a smattering of attention, but it caught some eyes in Hollywood, and in 2003, after many delays, a film version came out, directed by George Clooney and starring Sam Rockwell as Mr. Barris. (Charlie Kaufman wrote the screenplay, embellishing Mr. Barris’s tale.) The film brought Mr. Barris, by now in his 70s, a fresh round of attention and endless variations on the obvious question: Was it true? Mr. Barris generally played coy, delivering elliptical answers that neither confirmed nor denied. The C.I.A. was more direct: various spokesmen said Mr. Barris had had nothing to do with the agency. (Source)
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Everything, a new game for PS4, is the creation of David OReilly, the artist behind Mountain (a 'mountain simulator') who also did some work for Spike Jonze's Her. The game's 11-minute trailer, reminiscent of something Charlie might come up with, makes a pretty great short film by itself. The voice-over comes from a lecture by British philosopher Alan Watts.
Everything is an [sic] narrated sandbox in which everything you see is a thing you can be, from animals to planets to galaxies and beyond. Travel between outer and inner space, and explore a vast, interconnected universe of things without enforced goals, scores, or tasks to complete. (Source)
Reviews are just starting to come in, and Polygon gives it 9/10.
Bonus trivia gleaned from Wikipedia: in 2008 OReilly created a series of hand-drawn animated Youtube videos about a character called Octocat.
In an interview he said "I wanted to try experimenting with the Youtube audience and Microsoft Paint. The story for Octocat came to me by reading the bible word-for-word backwards'. (Source)
Thanks to Garrison!
Clicky clicky. What does this mean? How firm is this October 3 date? (My guess: probably not firm. Possibly even Charlie is reading this thinking OHMYGOD WTF OCTOBER, I SHOULD GET STARTED ON THAT. But I'm usually wrong about things.) Is the title of the novel actually Untitled Charlie Kaufman? Because that would be Kaufmanly. It's not likely, I know.
The book isn't listed on Amazon or the other usual places, but I'll be sure to make an excited post when it is.
Big thanks to Patrick on our FB page!Add a comment
This is good. Says Mashable:
John Malkovich was disturbed to find upon a recent visit to johnmalkovich.com that someone was already being John Malkovich.
The actor, who moonlights as a fashion designer, had wanted to use that address to promote his new eponymous clothing line.
But it turned out someone had beaten him to the punch and the domain was home to a knock-off fashion brand illegally using his name and likeness.
Despite the ongoing legal headache that ensued, Malkovich volunteered to spoof the ordeal in a new pre-game Super Bowl ad for the website-building company Squarespace.
In a bizarrely meta twist, Malkovich actually had to seek legal blessing from the rights holders of Charlie Kaufman's Being John Malkovich for the ad itself, which makes implicit reference to the famously weird film.
"If you think about it, it's kind of crazy, kind of outrageous," Malkovich said. "I have no problem [with the film, in which he appeared], but I also understand what it means to have one's name under the control of other people and, in some cases, being used for purposes that I might not be so supportive of." (Source)
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Charlie is among 74 winners of a MacDowell Fellowship, which was granted to artists across 7 disciplines by the MacDowell Colony in New Hampshire
The fellows will take part in residencies at the artist colony.
[...] They will join colleagues in the fields of architecture, music composition, film and video, poetry, fiction and non-fiction writing, and visual and interdisciplinary arts.
The fellowships, each with an average value of $10,000, were awarded from among a pool of 732 applications received between July and September 2016. A panel of professionals in each discipline picked Fellows based solely on their talent, and Fellows are provided a private studio for a period of up to eight weeks, accommodations, and three meals a day. (Source)
You can read more about the Fellowship and its winners at the link.Add a comment
Today BCK turns 15. HOORAY. I'd say it feels like I built the site only yesterday, but that would be lying. It feels more like 20 years ago. I am old.
Here's an inadvertent birthday/Christmas pressie from Charlie: a new interview with the UK Guardian, who incidentally ranked Anomalisa as their #1 film of 2016. HOORAY AGAIN.
Mostly the interview is about politics and how badly the world sucks at the moment. HOORAY.
As Michael asks in the film: what is it to be human, to ache?
I don’t know. It’s hard to be human. I get angry at being human and at humans and I wish there was more kindness and I could be more kind and other people could be more kind. I get very rattled just in traffic. On the road, a certain combination of selfishness and aggression exists. I think it’s analogous to look at people in cars and people online because it is an anonymous situation where you get to act on these impulses without repercussions - unless you’re in an accident - and just to be mean. I just find it so upsetting.
I was driving last night on this quiet road and this person was driving towards me and had their lights on. I flashed them to let him know, not in a rude way, that I couldn’t see. And he or she turned her brights off immediately and then turned them right back on. It was like: ‘Screw you. Don’t tell me what to do. Fuck you.’ I can’t really figure out any other version that makes sense. It just puts all of my cortisol or some sort of adrenalin nightmare stuff coursing through my veins.
The converse is true too. When I see something that’s just kind, I find it the most incredibly moving thing. It just makes me relax and tear up. When someone looks at you warmly for a second as you pass them on the street – rather than just an obligatory nod – it gives you some sort of renewed faith. (Source)
Charlie also name-checks Charlie Brooker and Black Mirror in this interview. He's done that a few times this year. Black Mirror is a great show--you ought to check it out if you haven't already. And on that note, HOLY COW, CHARLIE K NEEDS TO WRITE A BLACK MIRROR. That would be a great pairing.
And thanks to Gareth for the link.Add a comment
I'm a little wary of posting scripts these days, particularly of films (or pilots) that haven't been produced. But Anomalisa's been and gone, so... Merry Christmas! Here's what seems to be the final shooting version of the script. Need to entertain the family over holidays? Bring out some socks with button eyes and recreate the film!Add a comment
Musician Davide Dileo (Boosta from italian band Subsonica) recreates scenes from Eternal Sunshine in this video for his song "1993."
Big thanks to Andrea, who adds: "Lyrics say: 'time changed us a little, the only thing that never change (is) the war among us'."
It's really cool.
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