Wednesday, May 27, 2015

How “Aloha” will become the new catch phrase in Hollywood

“Aloha” is one of the most beautiful words in the English language. 
And I appreciate its beauty not only as a writer, but as a native Hawaiian.
The word “Aloha” is often voiced when one greets another person, but is also used when one wishes to express goodbye.
Natives originally used “Aloha” to convey the hope and anticipation that only a short time would past before the two people exchanging the word would be reunited.
One word, two common uses, a deeper third meaning.
But after May 29th, I believe those who work in the Hollywood Industry will hijack the word “Aloha” and tarnish its historical beauty -- One word, two common uses, a deeper forth meaning.

This week Sony Pictures will be releasing the latest film from Cameron Crowe, the writer and director of such great movies as “Jerry McGuire,” and “Almost Famous.” Unfortunately, Mr. Crowe is in the midst of a losing streak, and this latest film, "Aloha” doesn’t appear to be the movie that will help him break his creative and box office slump. 

If you don’t trust my ability as a prognosticator, I urge you to take in the words written by Amy Pascal, who greenlit the film as the head of the movie studio. She thinks the movie sucks --

“I don’t care how much I love the director and the actors.
It never, not even once, ever works.”

We’re privy to Ms. Pascal’s candid email summation to her  colleagues because of the recent terrorists’ hacking into the Sony Studio computer system. And what the cyber-terrorists/NYTimes wouldn’t reveal, WikiLeaks recently made public. 
Earlier this year, Pascal was fired from the studio, no longer in charge of this week's distribution of the movie “Aloha.” Tom Rothman, a veteran studio executive who replaced Pascal as the Sony Studio head, has the tough job of walking the thin line of publicly expressing support for a prior regime’s project, while at the same time -- dooming “Aloha” with Machiavellian apathy.

“No one is hiding from this film,” said one person associated with “Aloha” in Variety
Perhaps the above quote is sincere and comes from someone not associated with the P.R. firm handling the marketing of the film. Regardless... this is the point I'm attempting to make --
There are many in this town who have nothing to do with Crowe's movie and relish the film's impending crash and burn because of the oportunity to add a new word to the Hollywood lexicon for failure.  
Don’t be confused when witnessing a producer... agent... entertainment lawyer... maybe even the guard at the studio gate shouting the word “Aloha” to someone they clearly despise.  The entertainment Industry has a sorry past of taking the hip catch-phrase/ memorable gesture in produced movies and recycling the moment as a weapon to use against someone who has hit an Entertainment Career Detour. 

“Hasta la vista, baby” was the Valedico du jour after “Terminator 2” became a hit movie in the 90s.

And two decades before, the classic Industry send off for failure was the full face kiss Michael Corleone gives his brother Fredo in “GodfatherII."  

For the purpose of giving back to the industry, I’ve collected some commonly used phrases used today in Hollywood so the younger generation coming up through the ranks will better understand that there are often times in this Industry when “Hello” actually means “Goodbye” --

“Who are you… and how did you get on the lot?”

“Thank you for your submission. Your script was covered by one of our best Interns...”

“I had my agent call your agent. It turns out you don’t have an agent… or a manager. But we have a bigger problem -- you also don’t have a lawyer. So right now, my lawyer is just sitting in his office… not sure who he should call…”

“I’m sure you’re really important, but I still need to see your badge”

“Go ahead and use that phone to try and contact your agent. Let’s find out together if he answers your call.”

“My assistant read to me the evaluation on your script this morning. Brace yourself because what I heard from her was not good news...”

“I heard someone here really liked your script, but unfortunately we're no longer accepting any script submissions outside the 310 area code.”

“I saw your movie at the premiere party. But that was a long time ago. At least nine months, right? Have you ever tasted champagne from a bottle opened nine months ago? There’s no bubbles rising to the top. Just the taste of sour grapes.”

“I hear it’s a red tide. You’re gonna need your thick, old school surf board to handle this wave. Aloha…”

The above quote came from a phone call just this morning.
From my manager.  
We’ve been together for over 15 years.
He’s not even waiting to use the new exit word until after the movie’s opening.
That’s how quickly a lei around your neck can turn into a dead albatros.