film & theater

{ film & theater }

I’VE WRITTEN TWO FEATURE FILM SCREENPLAYS, and both are unproduced. The first is called Warp, an original science fiction comedy (Men In Black Meets Time Bandits Meets Indiana Jones) that I wrote with my friend Bruce Feirstein for Walt Disney Pictures. The second was an adaptation of my novel Turn of the Century  for Village Roadshow Pictures and the director Curtis Hanson. Turn of the Century is now under development by Das Films; Peter Bogdanovich is adapting it to direct.

HomeAnd I’ve, um, acted. In a short film comedy from 1994 called Home, I am the fawning protégé of a Peter Eisenmanian architect played by John Glover. (I appear in a single scene, at left, and have six words of dialogue: “Sir?… Genius! He is a genius!”) In this video shot backstage at The C0lbert Report in 2009, I make fun of myself — specifically, of my book Reset.

Lisa Birnbach, Jamie Malanowski and I created Loose Lips with the director Martin Charnin. We unearthed actual verbatim transcripts – from government wiretaps, voiceover recording sessions, courtroom and congressional testimony, wherever – and turn them into a satirical stage revue. Stage dramas based on transcripts have been around for years, but Loose LipsLoose Lips may have been the first theatrical comedy drawn from such sources. The 1995 debut production ran for six months at the Triad Theater in New York, starring Bebe Neuwirth and Peter Boyle, and a production at the Santa Monica Playhouse starring Martin Mull and Buck Henry opened later that year and ran for several months. In 1998, inspired by the tape-recorded Clinton-Lewinsky-Tripp revelations, there was a limited-run New York revival starring Andy Richter.

In 2003 and 2004 I wrote the book for a musical called Broomhilda (Men In Black Meets Harry Potter Meets Urinetown); Martin Charnin wrote the lyrics, and the score was by the late Leroy Anderson. And in 2005 David Rockwell and I started developing a musical for Broadway about Harry Houdini; the book is by Aaron Sorkin, the songs are by Stephen Schwartz, and Hugh Jackman will star when it opens in 2014.