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David Poland

By David Poland

Is The Deep End Too Shallow Or The Shallow Too Deep?

From Today’s THB
“When MovieCityNews came into the world three years ago, it was simpler. Instead of rewriting other people’s stories as our own, we linked to the papers and web sites who we felt did the best job with the stories or if we could, to the reporter who originated the story. We also created our own content – and a lot of it – with writers who were veteran professionals more than capable of handling top reporting jobs at any outlet.
But as the blog world grew, the discussion about the aggregated stories expanded. A thrown telephone could be discussed for months. And, as usual, the really important stuff that is hard to report slipped between the cracks in most quarters. Suddenly, tiny stories that were really quite meaningless started to become “news” because there were so many people looking to make news, that they needed more fodder.
And now we see a more aggressive approach to the web by traditional media. On the film side, there is The Hollywood Reporter’s Anne Thompson assuring on hiring that her weekly column will be freely accessible on the web and then starting a blog of her own under the Reporter banner. The L.A. Times starts The Envelope, featuring a grand total of zero writers who have ever delivered news on a daily basis scrambling to do daily news (in an arena where there is almost no real news

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25 Responses to “Is The Deep End Too Shallow Or The Shallow Too Deep?”

  1. BluStealer says:

    Don’t listen to the naysayers who tell you “not to do something” or even worse call you smug or other names.
    It takes as guys say balls to be a leader. Be that leader.

  2. Josh says:

    Stick to anything you want to write about, David. That is your privilege.

  3. Angelus21 says:

    I read Defamer for good laughs. I read The Hot Button for good industry, all encompassing stuff. I read ESPN for sports. I don’t read The Hot Button for sports, ESPN for movies or Defamer for anything more than laughs.

  4. jeffmcm says:

    Gotta love defenses of authority.

  5. ManWithNoName says:

    DP, is there a reason you put the comment raving about the column first, you smug, self-serving POS.

  6. Richard Nash says:

    I would love to know who the kinds of people are who take the time out of their days to write in to David about how much they hate what is he is doing. Are you that lonely and have that much time on your hands?
    If you have severe problems with what he’s writing about why don’t you get proactive and start a “Cold Blog” or something.

  7. jeffmcm says:

    I don’t want to condone the haters out there with their rants, BUT, I’ve been reading Poland for about six years now and he’s gradually spent more and more time covering things like other writers and media trends and relatively less time actually reviewing movies. Just my observation.

  8. Sanchez says:

    Isn’t that part of his being in charge of MCN? To cover other writers and how others perceive the industry?

  9. David Poland says:

    First… I have no problem with the first e-mail at all. The reason I posted it is because I believe there is a significant percentage of people who read me who agree with it.
    And there are others who agree with the second e-mail.
    And the majority is probably somewhere in between.
    I don’t know, J-Mc. There was a lot of (too much) AICN in the early years. And I feel like I don’t have to write about every movie I see, as I once did. There is still a lot of movie writing here. But there probably is a little less.
    But man, I do write a lot. I would guess that even as it is, I write more actual content about movies themselves than 90% of critics.

  10. Blackcloud says:

    “that german word I can’t spell about taking joy in the misery of the elites,”
    Schadenfreude: joy in the misfortunes of others (not just elites).

  11. PandaBear says:

    Can I see thankfully you are NOT AICN?

  12. Blackcloud says:

    Lisa: Dad, do you know what Schadenfreude is?
    Homer: No, I do not know what shaden-frawde is. [sarcasm] Please tell me, because I

  13. jeffmcm says:

    DP, perhaps we need a graph for your writing output over the years. If ‘movie commentary’ has stayed roughly level’, and ‘AICN attacks’ has gone down by, say, 50%, then ‘old-media/new-media observations’ has probably gone up by about 300%. Mostly I guess a result of your self-employment and greater writing output.

  14. Crow T Robot says:

    GUN STORE GUY: ‘There’s a five day waiting period on the handgun.’
    HOMER: ‘Five days?’ But I’m angry NOW!!!’
    GUN STORE GUY: ‘Yeah, well, that’s the law.’
    HOMER (grumpy): ‘I’d kill you if I had my gun…’
    (Blackcloud, you’re such a Simpson’s quote baiter, dude. And I’m such a bitch for it.)

  15. Blackcloud says:

    Yes, it’s true, I have a problem: I quote The Simpsons too much. That Schadenfreude one was a curve ball, man, and I just couldn’t resist swinging at it. I’ll try to cut down on the references from now on. But can you blame me? They really do apply to everything. Truly, they are cromulent.

  16. Angelus21 says:

    Stop right there! I have the only working fazer ever built. It was fired only once to keep William Shatner from making another album.

  17. Blackcloud says:

    ^ LOL
    What’s that law about how the longer a web discussion goes, the likelier it is that someone will invoke the Nazis? I think there must be a similar one for The Simpsons.

  18. Crow T Robot says:

    Marge: “How could you? Of all the terrible things you’ve ever done in your life, this is the worst, the most despicable!”
    Homer: “But Marge, I swear to you, I never thought you’d find out!”
    Okay. No more quotes, Blackcloud. I promise. Let’s keep off the Simpsons grass. We could sit here and trade em back n forth again and again. But who would dare talk in circles on a blog?
    In fact any more references will be met with a glove slap. So shut your big yap!

  19. bicycle bob says:

    the simpsons. greatest show ever.

  20. Sanchez says:

    It peaked 5 years ago. I am not bashing it. Simpsons at 50% is better than 99% of everything else out there.

  21. KamikazeCamelV2.0 says:

    The best thing about that quote is that it’s from when Homer hid the gun in a fridge crisper. heheh.

  22. Blackcloud says:

    It doesn’t get commented on much, but the show really misses Phil Hartman.

  23. KamikazeCamelV2.0 says:

    Everyone and Everything misses Phil Hartman.
    (er, of those that had some connection to him obviously. ER doesn’t miss him or anything like that)

  24. Angelus21 says:

    I miss Lionel Hutz.

  25. Blackcloud says:

    Troy McClure. “From chimpan-A to chimpanzee.”

The Hot Blog

Quote Unquotesee all »

It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon