Friday, May 8, 2009

Grandma, Red Shirts and Fred

Lots of movement on several fronts.

On Wednesday, I finished my rough draft of Grandmother Clock, the dark children's fantasy I've been working on for about two years. This was the longest and hardest write I've done since Undergrads, and for similar reasons. I'm rushing now to get a working draft done to disseminate before we take of for Hawaii on Monday. If you want to read it, shoot me an email. Just remember that all the regular first draft provisos still apply.

About a month ago, I was contacted by a very talented pair the AFI class of 2008, the year after mine. Tom Mahoney and Nick Simon, the producer and director of The 7th Claus, went flipping through the 2007 screenwriter's pamphlet looking for projects, and Red Shirts caught their eye. Which is not a surprise if you consider we share a favorite AFI instructor, Star Trek alumna D.C. Fontana. We met and they pitched me an idea for the project that I instantly dug: why not set it in 1960s TV sci-fi, with all the ridiculous sets and costumes and hairdos and social attitudes? The idea excited all of us and breathed new life into an otherwise dormant project. Tom and Nick took the project to AFI class of 2004 producing alumn Brian Udovich, who I first met here, and got him similarly stoked. We're all four in the early stages of some pretty thorough research. (Translation: we're gonna be watching a lot of original series Star Trek.) I'm excited to see where this goes.

I've mentioned before that Fred, Prince of Darkness, my animated sitcom pilot, has been on hold for about a year. We need character and concept art to complete our pitch package before we take Fred out to share. Three times last year, Jonah hired an artist, and three times the guy flaked out before producing anything. Finally, though, we found our guy: Aussie comic book and pinup artist Martin Abel. His style is perfect for Fred, both hilarious and edgy while not sacrificing character for look. If Hopjockey were ever a comic, I'd go to this guy. I'll be sharing some of the concept art here in the next few days.

So yeah, things are good. Maybe the cookie was right.

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