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Darabont is one of the better screenwriters and directors we have today. I mean, he doesn't make movies about horse-fucking, but he's still pretty good.

Posted by elswinger | April 20, 2007 12:18 PM

oh please Elsie, the Henry Cowell

let us read tomorrow your obituary from marraige-guano overdose. actually, maybe just zone-out dude on darabont's 'buried alive' from '90.

Posted by darling463 | April 20, 2007 12:35 PM

I met Frank Darabount in a screenwriting class when I lived in L.A. In the class we dissected The Shawshank Redemption. As it happened, I had been at a test screening for the original cut which was slightly longer.
A couple of things that struck me was that he was very thoughtful about his work which is why he turned down a lot of money from Rob Reiner to direct Shawshank in the first place.
He also was very upset that his first big screenplay Mary Shelley's Frankenstein was destroyed by Kenneth Branaugh. Which if anyone has seen the film can attest to. It's absolutely unwatchable. I doubt if Robert DeNiro can ever forgive Branaugh for humiliating him so. My personal opinion of that film is that Branaugh got so into the role of Frankenstein that he created this ridiculous piece full of self-adoration that itself became a "monster."
Anyway, I think Darabont is sincere. He's a successful writer. Why shouldn't he care about his work?
Screenplays for the most part live only if the film is produced. The studio owns the script. You can't just go off and make your own rival film. And you can't really publish it. At least seldom do. So, I'd be pretty pissed too!

Posted by D. | April 20, 2007 12:52 PM

Lucas certainly has demonstrated with his own recent work he knows nothing about writing a good screenplay.

Posted by Joe | April 20, 2007 12:55 PM

Dang it, Joe, you beat me to it.

But, yeah, Lucas doesn't know a good script from his ass.


One of the things I hated most about Branagh's Frankenstein was its complete lack of attention to the novel. Wasn't the point to make it more in line with the original story than Whale's version? Stupidity and madness.

Posted by keshmeshi | April 20, 2007 1:02 PM

My absolute, favorite comment on the role of the screenwriter came from an author, who's name I can't recall, who said that writing scripts was like being a plumber, once you've installed the toilet, you don't go back to see if someone's crapping on it.

Posted by E. Steven | April 20, 2007 1:25 PM

Ah, I just remembered the guy who made the Plumber analogy. Tony Gilroy!

Posted by E. Steven | April 20, 2007 1:38 PM

As a graphic designer in-house for a mid-sized corporation, I can completely sympathize with Darabount. I've spent months on work that I thought was absolutely spot-on for our demographic, only to have the stubborn and frankly clueless CEO scrap it in favor of something generic and ugly. It's truely heart-breaking to see so much work go down the drain.

Posted by Colin | April 20, 2007 3:37 PM

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