THINGS I HEARD PEOPLE SAY THIS WEEK

Full up.
  1. “I made this film because I wanted to include my heritage in a movie, in almost all old movies there are only Americans.”
    Our Movie Makers squad in Compton had their Big Pitch this week - executives from William Morris watched trailers and heard pitches from our young filmmakers on their recently-completed movies. This was 12-year old Joshua’s response to “why did you choose to write this script?”
  2. "Michaelangelo wrote that?!”
    One of the 3rd graders in my SAG BookPals classes. It’s National Poetry Month. Today, after our usual dose of ‘James and the Giant Peach,’ I read ‘Life Doesn’t Frighten Me’’ by Maya Angelou. We discussed how fears are not isolated (and shouldn’t be stereotyped) to kids or adults or girls or boys… and how to overcome or embrace fear. Check out the Maya Angelou reading the poem herself, via Brain Pickings: https://soundcloud.com/brainpicker/maya-angelou-reads-life-doesnt
  3. “There is a kind of alchemy between the ‘country’ and the ‘hood’ - two places also similar in the way minorities are disregarded or overlooked.”
    I went to Pop-Up Magazine at the Ace DTLA last night - what an incredible live event. It’s like someone discovered the perfect way to fill 2 hours of an evening. Top 5 things I’ve ever attended in my life, easy. So many thought-provoking and heart-warming stories and performances. This quote was from Ava Duvernay, but there was no shortage of memorable moments (3.17 seconds, I learned) from the evening. A tip of the tip of the tip of the iceberg: https://popupmagazine.com/goodnightla/
  4. “I absolutely think there’s a privilege that is out there. And a lot of people are naive to it. Once you become aware and see it first hand and how it affects folks who don’t have the same access to that privilege in the same way you do, it affects you."
    I had so much fun with my best friend on the podcast. He just returned from a 15-month, 40-country trip around the world - we talked about that journey as well as growing up in rural Southeast Georgia. This quote was from him talking about his identity as a straight white male (who has been on the receiving end of much of my philosophizing over the last few years). If you’d like to listen more: https://soundcloud.com/massandvolume/episode-8-sega-with-lee-padgett
  5. "There are stars exploding around you / and there’s nothing you can do”
    Returned to @thebroadmuseum this week and watched most of the film installation “The Visitors” by Ragnar Kjartansson. Maybe the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen in a museum. 9 screens, each showing a different musician playing an instrument and singing in the same house over the course of an hour. There are only 2 different lines of lyrics, and this one got me. Impossible to sum up, but this is close: http://arthopper.org/ragnar-kjartansson-the-visitors/
  6. “When there's poetry in dialogue - it’s hard to play the poetry. But normal people speak poetically in high stakes situations - or when they have a rich life. In intense moments of life - intense moments of joy, intense anger, intense betrayal, intense loneliness - even the most brutish of people will speak poetically."
    One of the better notes from scene study class that can apply to writing, listening, speaking, and living.
  7. “You guys look like a perfect family!”
    I had a callback for a car commercial, and the casting director built “families” - mine consisted of 3 other ethnically ambiguous females: a wife too attractive for me, and two daughters far too attractive to be related to me. We also shared none of the same ethnic mix, so this was kind of a “you all look the same to me” type of compliment. In any case, I imagined my life with this woman and our two kids, getting into our sensible SUV for a hiking trip… and then I didn’t book the commercial.
  8. “Keep making decisions like the ones that landed you in this program.”
    Advice from one of the executives to the middle school filmmakers at the end of the Pitch session. It summed up so much, so simply.
  9. “I’m trying to live a season-free life.”
    I love the idea of joy being evergreen - I heard this comment out and took it to mean life doesn’t have to have periods of drought and excess - we’re in charge of making sure it’s as consistent as the Los Angeles climate: 72 and Sunny.