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David Poland

By David Poland

The Writers Strike Back

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22 Responses to “The Writers Strike Back”

  1. anghus says:

    is it wrong that i want the strike to end so i no longer have to endure these awful attempts at humor?
    its painful.

  2. BTLine says:

    Good Lord. I made the mistake to watch this video. (I succefully avoided all the others).
    Writers are overpaid.

  3. The Pope says:

    I’m not too sure. If the writers are on strike, I get the feeling that the person (people?) behind this are not actually writers. The jokes are incredibly lame.
    I say bring an end to the strike so we don’t have to endure cruddy rewrites by non-writers.

  4. martin says:

    The talented writers are finding better things to do with their time, I’m sure.

  5. IOIOIOI says:

    This stuff never ends. The perils of having a writers strike in this modern technological age. Balls. Total and utter balls.

  6. Sunday Silence says:

    Well the writers are always saying that they’re striking for the guys out there who don’t make the big bucks. Maybe the hacks that wrote that video are some of the guys they are referring to.

  7. IOIOIOI says:


  8. LexG says:

    A recurring sentiment echoed in a few comments above and in the general discourse is that somehow everyone in WGA is automatically a genius, and any prospective “scab” or non-professional fill-in/substitute “writer” would have to be some talentless hack.
    Let’s not forget there are brilliant, witty, incisive, clever writers all over LA (hell, all over the country) who might be every bit as talented as your typical WGA member, but didn’t have the connections, the family name, or the stroke of luck to get into the guild, and probably never will.
    I don’t know, it just kind of rubs me the wrong way when I hear, “Can the REAL writers come back to work…” as if the “magical,” arbitrary and fortuitous accumulation of WGA points somehow turns one into some Faulkner.

  9. IOIOIOI says:

    The REAL WRITERS of the SHOWS that we love, need to come back to work. Excuse people for not clarifying enough for you.

  10. RDP says:

    I would agree with you, Lex, but I did suddenly become an amazing writer the second my Guild card came in the mail.
    Up until that moment, I totally sucked.

  11. bipedalist says:

    I too watched the first bit and then quickly turned it off. Really really lame. Surely with all of these writers out of work someone could come up with something clever. Jeez.

  12. Alan Spencer says:

    These comments made me laugh. You expect “A” material for free? This was just something I slapped together on my laptop in under an hour. It wasn’t even “written” per se so it doesn’t represent any Guild members except moi. This little ditty was intended “for the room,” replicating all the moves that have taken place on our chess board where the striking writers are lowly pawns trying to upgrade to rooks, so I never expected it to play in Peoria… or in your cases, Duarte.
    And to my friend BTLine, use spell check.

  13. Joe Leydon says:

    RDP: So all I need is a Guild card? Or are there some writers even a Guild card can’t help?

  14. Awards Daily says:

    Alan, I’m apologizing for my dumb comment above (as bipedalist). It is a stupid thing to say – we all can be so easily cruel on the net and it’s so wrong. I am well known for putting my foot in it over and over again. 🙁 Sorry.

  15. Alan Spencer says:

    Thanks bipedalist. What I hate hearing is all the maligning of WGA members as some sort of collective schadenfrued. Posters like these folks keep calling us a bunch of hacks who are “overpaid” and it’s all bulls**t. Seeing our work endlessly streamed without compensation while advertising revenue is being generated is beyond maddening. Our opposition is actually trying to maintain their own brand of legalized piracy.

  16. RDP says:

    “RDP: So all I need is a Guild card? Or are there some writers even a Guild card can’t help?”
    If it worked for me. It can work for anyone.

  17. Aladdin Sane says:

    An hour working on shit doesn’t make for an excuse of shit. Sorry, someone had to say it. The fact of the matter is that even if you’re not speaking for the entire WGA, the fact that you’re representing their interests in the video, people will perceive it as the WGA having something to do with this.
    So my question is, what exactly would your “A” material look like these days?

  18. Alan Spencer says:

    Hey, Aladdin. I guess I’ve forgotten anonymous posting is invariably about schadenfued and rage. Nobody mistakes the multitude of videos on You Tube as being official WGA handiwork, although they do condone the assorted messages. I probably should have ignored this thread altogether, but I do have way too much time on my hands between picketing and planned disruptions. I have no control over the blogs who subsequently picked up on it and spread it wider than planned.
    With a strike on, I can’t do much… but I will have my first book published in the fall.
    Anyhow, I’ll let you get back to your skinhead mixer.
    In the future, if you want to contact me correctly with your real name, feel free.

  19. Aladdin Sane says:

    Skinhead mixer. That was funny.
    It’s the internet stupid. I doubt you or I would have anything to gain if I was to reveal my true name. I’m so far outside the business, I may as well be on Mars.

  20. Alan Spencer says:

    “Skinhead mixer. That was funny.”
    It was a reference to a post you made on another board.
    “It’s the internet stupid. I doubt you or I would have anything to gain if I was to reveal my true name. I’m so far outside the business, I may as well be on Mars.”
    I was just calling you out for an anti-semetic “joke” you made on another message board. Pseudonym or not, I’ve just emailed the blogger and recommend it be deleted.
    Trust me, what you posted there was the height of stupidity.

  21. Aladdin Sane says:

    I’m not too sure what you’re talking about now, so maybe you’d like to point it out to me.

  22. hendhogan says:

    if you care to see some clever stuff from the writers, i would recommend punching in “strike life” in youtube. there are a series of them and i think most are quite clever.

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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