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I've been working on this feature script for Master Class, a play by Terrence McNally that won a lot of Tonys.
We really love all sports, but we don't think in the long term. The reason we did Kingpin was because there was a script we really liked and we saw the possibilities.
In 'Law & Order,' your main job is to stay out of the way of the plot. On another show you'd receive your script and see stuff that seems challenging and feel excited that the writers thought highly enough of you to write it for you.
Basically, the actor's job is to pay attention to the script.
We all write, but the script is a blueprint. We can lose whole scenes when we're shooting.
I choose my work very carefully, always for the script and the director, and I don't think that's going to change. My work is like a house. It's built on very strong poles.
When I read a script and have my first interaction with this character, do I feel like there's something I'm gonna' learn here? If I feel like it's something I've done before, then what's the incentive for me to do it?
But you're not necessarily ever going to be handed a script where you can say: it's all done and perfect.
You can win more arguments then you might think as a writer, even though you legally have no recourse, and your script can get muddied and altered in any way possible. You can use reason, logic, and passion to argue persuasively for a case in your favor.
In the original script, my character was a basketball player rather than a boxer. I didn't think I could pull that off. I'm a little short to be a basketball player!
Anyway, he and I worked on the script together, and I must say he was a joy to work with. Very enthusiastic.
Howard Minsky had gotten the script to her agent prior to my involvement.
I feel as though my career really hit its high point when I was cast as a supporting actress in 'American Wedding'. I thought the script had a lot of depth and intelligence, and it really just jumped off the page.
I kind of went into soap opera with 'General Hospital' in the '80s. It's like theater because every day it's a new script, which really doesn't have a beginning, middle or end like a play or a movie script. So you have to be on your toes and bring it every day. And you have to be spontaneous, which is really how I like to work.
Often when you get a really good script, and you receive the new pages, you see that the entire thing has been dumbed down. Films in the '30s and '40s, that were huge blockbusters, were very sophisticated in their language, and the ideas they brought. There were no questions about whether the audience would get it or not.
If the story's interesting and it's a compelling script, I'd be thrilled to be a part of it.
Most of the time when I receive a script, it says something like 'Rosenberg is the fat, slovenly Mayor, who doesn't want the kids to use the skateboard park', or 'Stein is a pompous, rotund attorney, imposing to all.' It would be so freeing to get a script where my character is simply described as 'A Man'.
I do actually dabble in a bit of poetry! And I'm yet to pen a script, but it is something that I've been telling myself I want to do.
Why hire these geniuses if they're forced to stick with the script? You want to empower your actors as collaborators.
I was totally involved in Bobby's World from the time we started the idea to sitting with the artists on how he would look, to the script meetings, the music, the lyrics, the songs.
I always choose my projects for the script or what the director want to tell with that story. And if I like the story.
I've always felt that I'm in a spontaneous business and if you script something, if you plan something, it will sound that way.
Dave Chappelle asked me to come do his show. I read the script, and I said, 'Has he lost his mind?'
The only description for Nolan in the script was that he's a very bad dresser. I put on a red windbreaker and every other ugly, ill-fitting thing I could dig out. He was potentially written as a clean-cut nerd, but I wanted a darker spin.
I play Father Francis in 'The Exorcist Prequel.' It's fantastic. We are shooting in Morrocco and Rome. Paul Schrader is directing; Stellan Skarsgard plays the younger Max Von Sydow character. It's just a fantastic script. It's a very eerie, very scary script. It encomposes a growing dread that I think is really appropriate for the film.
It was pretty much the way that it was when I first read it, although one exception would be that some ideas that I had were also incorporated into the script.
Simon Monjack had nothing to do with 'Factory Girl.' He filed a frivolous lawsuit against us... making bogus claims that we had stolen his script. He held us literally to hostage and we were forced to settle with him as he held our production over a barrel.
I really like acting but, just now, the more I read a script I find myself thinking I'd like to direct rather than act.
I read a script and I know immediately whether that role is for me or not.
Of course, I'm not allowed to talk about the script, but I can say it is a really good story.
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