Me and my producer

For about an hour on Saturday I spoke to ‘my’ producer in Europe. It was about 3.25am there and she had just come home from dinner with a bunch of French and American collaborators. She was very tired, but wanted to talk.

We talked quite a lot about the book, but also about other things. She continues to believe I’m some sort of prodigy, once more being laudatory of my mind, which she thinks is special, and adding to it now my writing ability. Though it was fulsome it felt less hyperbolic than before. She came across as a force of nature, intelligent and fierce and full of energy and ambition. She is one of these people who can’t sit still doing nothing when there is so much to be done – the perfect temperament for a movie producer I would think. Though at times it felt a tad over the top I have no doubt that she was genuine in all she said.

She told me stories in passing of some of the projects she’s working on and the famous screenwriters she has doing work for her. She told of her dealings with Hollywood and trying to get through the studio system to speak to the key people. Money talks, it seems. It was fascinating to listen to.

Of my book she said exactly the right things. It was reassuring because she said the things I wanted to hear, and because in saying them it validated her opinion in my eyes. She commented on how dark and ‘noirish’ the book is, which is just the mood I was looking to evoke. She said it was so vivid that she felt as she was reading as if she was walking the streets of Melbourne. That too I hoped to achieve – much of the mood comes from the spirit of the place, and Melbourne in winter is both stylish and atmospheric.

It’s clear she has a fascination for me also – this virtual stranger on the other side of the world who (according to her) possesses a rare insight. I’m less comfortable with this. She wants to know everything about me as if there’s a secret that explains my supposedly unique take on the world. I don’t mind people being fascinated with me, but as a general rule I like to be in control of the situation. And I prefer the fascination to be mutual. In this case it’s something I have to bear. It’s not so hard, and the pay-off potentially could be very positive – though I still can’t believe it.

In the meantime I got off the phone on Saturday feeling validated and motivated. I believed it’s a goer, one way or another, and that I have the goods – whatever they are. I went away and into my head was a screenplay idea from about 7-8 years which suddenly I wanted to work on as my next project.

How this all turns out no-one knows, but it’s a fascinating ride.


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