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MCN Columnists
Leonard Klady

Klady By Leonard KladyKlady@moviecitynews.com

Next Can’t Happen Too Soon…

April 29, 2007 Weekend Finals Domestic Market Share The weekend box office buzz primarily focused on next weekend’s debut of Spider-Man 3 rather than anything with currency. And it was for good reason! Disturbia was for the third weekend the top grosser with an estimated $9.1 million and a quartet of freshmen releases failed to spark much…

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Jack Be Nimble

Late Thursday afternoon I was on the phone with Seth Oster of the Motion Picture Association of America. Toward the end of our conversation he made reference to Jack Valenti and indicated he wasn’t in the best of shape since his stroke in March. I asked him if he was at home and receiving a lot…

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Shaken, But Not Destirred …

April 22, 2007 Weekend Finals Domestic Market Share While four new films entered the marketplace, last week’s top-slotted Disturbia held first place with an estimated $13.7 million gross. The freshmen class included a place position for the psychological thriller Fracture of $10.7 million; the chiller Vacancy ranked fourth with $7.5 million; Brit hit comedyHot Fuzz grossed $5.8 million…

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Be Disturbed .. Be Very, Very Disturbed!

April 15, 2007 Weekend Finals Domestic Market Share The offbeat teen thriller Disturbia took top honors in weekend movie going with an estimated $22.8 gross. Five other films bowed nationally to generally disappointing results as the industry appeared to be emulating the August tradition of dumping product. However, in this instance new entries were anticipating quick…

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The Grind Who Stole Easter?

April 8, 2007 Weekend Finals Domestic Market Share The mood was eggstatic as the Easter weekend frame eggceeded 2006 business with a quartet of new releases. However, last weekend toppers Blades of Glory and Meet the Robinsons once again held top spots with respective estimated grosses of $23.2 million and $17.1 million. Freshmen entries generally opened well…

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Thick Ice …

April 1, 2007 Weekend Finals Domestic Market Share Blades of Glory figured an impressive estimated $33.1 million to take the gold in weekend box office viewing. There was also good news for the animated Meet the Robinsons that ranked second with $25.7 million but eyes were elsewhere for The Lookout. Additionally the stealth reissue of Peaceful Warrior…

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Klady

Quote Unquotesee all »

“The core fear is what can happen to you, personally. Your body. That’s what horror films deal with, precisely. We are a very thin skin wrapped around a pumping heart and guts. At any given moment it can come down to that, be it diseases, or somebody’s assault, or war, or a car wreck. You could be reduced to the simple laws of physics and your body’s vulnerability. The edged weapon is the penultimate weapon to disclose that reality to you.”
~ Wes Craven, 1996, promoting Scream

MAMET
Well, that, to me, is always the trick of dramaturgy; theoretically, perfectly, what one wants to do is put the protagonist and the audience in exactly the same position. The main question in drama, the way I was taught, is always what does the protagonist want. That’s what drama is. It comes down to that. It’s not about theme, it’s not about ideas, it’s not about setting, but what the protagonist wants. What gives rise to the drama, what is the precipitating event, and how, at the end of the play, do we see that event culminated? Do we see the protagonist’s wishes fulfilled or absolutely frustrated? That’s the structure of drama. You break it down into three acts.

INTERVIEWER
Does this explain why your plays have so little exposition?

MAMET
Yes. People only speak to get something. If I say, Let me tell you a few things about myself, already your defenses go up; you go, Look, I wonder what he wants from me, because no one ever speaks except to obtain an objective. That’s the only reason anyone ever opens their mouth, onstage or offstage. They may use a language that seems revealing, but if so, it’s just coincidence, because what they’re trying to do is accomplish an objective… The question is where does the dramatist have to lead you? Answer: the place where he or she thinks the audience needs to be led. But what does the character think? Does the character need to convey that information? If the answer is no, then you’d better cut it out, because you aren’t putting the audience in the same position with the protagonist. You’re saying, in effect, Let’s stop the play. That’s what the narration is doing—stopping the play… It’s action, as Aristotle said. That’s all that it is—exactly what the person does. It’s not what they “think,” because we don’t know what they think. It’s not what they say. It’s what they do, what they’re physically trying to accomplish on the stage. Which is exactly the same way we understand a person’s character in life—not by what they say, but by what they do. Say someone came up to you and said, I’m glad to be your neighbor because I’m a very honest man. That’s my character. I’m honest, I like to do things, I’m forthright, I like to be clear about everything, I like to be concise. Well, you really don’t know anything about that guy’s character. Or the person is onstage, and the playwright has him or her make those same claims in several subtle or not-so-subtle ways, the audience will say, Oh yes, I understand their character now; now I understand that they are a character. But in fact you don’t understand anything. You just understand that they’re jabbering to try to convince you of something.
~ David Mamet

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