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David Poland

By David Poland

Lunch With Don Murphy Redux (aka Part 2)

More talk about Shoot ‘Em Up, sequels, and lactating hookers.
Part 1

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14 Responses to “Lunch With Don Murphy Redux (aka Part 2)”

  1. Noah says:

    Gosh, I just want to hug him. I thought it was really interesting that he said he only wants to work with folks he enjoys working with, ideally. If you’re there, Don, I’m curious how important awards would be to you? Basically, would you want to work with a douchebag director who you thought was amazingly talented because you knew he could help get the film nominated? Or are you more comfortable in the realm of action flicks and comic book movies?

  2. Sorry to change the subject, but you guys are all asleep right now.
    Ingmar Bergman has died. Very sad loss, indeed.
    And unlike Robert Altman, Bergman didn’t get the chance to even win an honourary Oscar despite being nominated for nine of the buggars. I need to catchup on my Bergman films though. Too many having been hanging around my DVD queue without ever getting towards the top.

  3. Ian Sinclair says:

    RIP Ingmar. It’s hard to feel too much grief over a person who had such a fulfilling career and died at 89.
    Re: Don Murphy. The alarming metamorphosis of a one-time fire-breathing internet demagogue into a fluffy, french-fry frolicking teddy bear continues unabated.

  4. Joe Leydon says:

    Kamikaze: Well, he got the Irving Thalberg Award. That should count for something, right?
    BTW: When he was up for Best Original Screenplay for Wild Strawberries, Bergman lost to… Pillow Talk.

  5. The Pope says:

    I know this thread is supposed to be about Don Murphy, but since Kamikaze mentioned the passing of Bergman, let’s not totally bash the Academy. Three of Bergman’s films won Best Foreign Language Picture: The Virgin Spring, Through a Glass Darkly and Fanny and Alexander. Not that Bergman ever cared for such accolades. To my knowledge, he never turned up once. He was one of the most astonishing talents the 20th century saw, and given that he was 89, let’s celebrate what he gave us and not dwell on what the Academy did or did not give him.

  6. Don Murphy says:

    Noah- I don’t care about awards (though I wouldn’t say no) I just want to make films that I think are cool. And no, fuck all douchebag directors whoever they may be. Only good ones should be tolerated.
    I had a Priest at Georgetown who taught a Berman class and managed to see a large portion of them that way. His worldview and style was unique and amazing. RIP.

  7. Don Murphy says:

    can’t fix the typo

  8. mutinyco says:

    Yes, Dave, from $50,000 for an ILM clip to Mutiny City News for $0. The internet has come a long way…

  9. T. Holly says:

    Maybe I’ll deal with this later, right now I’m in mourning. Well’s has an obit up, at least.

  10. Hallick says:

    I woke up this morning to the news on my clock radio telling me that Tom Snyder passed away too. His final series on CBS was one of the last long-form interview shows on television, and I’m eternally grateful for the Harlan Ellison, Robert Blake (before the murder, fascinatingly), Bonnie Hunt, Roger Ebert, etc. sit-downs he did. There’s still Charlie Rose, but Snyder’s show had a lot more freewheeling fun and he really could reach his guests on an emotional level. Goodbye, Tom.

  11. jeffmcm says:

    Gone to that big spider in the sky, RIP Bergman.

  12. Cadavra says:

    Well, someone SHOULD teach a Berman class. Shelley, that is.

  13. The Carpetmuncher says:

    I thought Tom Snyder was great, and was lucky enough to meet him on a number of occassions. Great guy. He will be missed…

  14. On the news down here they had a story about him and on the bluescreen area behind the newsreader where they have an image relating to the story they had Bergman’s name but it was spelt wrong! It was BERGMEN and I was all “Geez! Spell it right!”
    Joe, good point, I didn’t realise he won that.

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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