CANNES – The good thing about the Cannes Film Festival is that it is an international film festival. This means that as well as films from Hollywood, there are also films from other countries, like New Jersey, or Chicago. I’ve been trying to expand my knowledge beyond the Hollywood fare and so I’ve made a real effort to go and see some ‘World Cinema’. I liked it but I have some suggestions.

  1. Do it in English. I mean I know that in other countries, there are other languages, but really if I wanted to read I’d go to the library. So just make your film in English. Look at Siegfried Conneritz, he used to act in his native German and no one knew who he was. He changed his name to Sean Connery, took a few English lessons and, aside from the heavy German accent in Highlander, things went really well.
  2. If your film is Canadian just pretend it’s the US. We use Toronto for Chicago all the time anyway so even if the film is set in Toronto we’ll just assume it’s Chicago and you’re being cheap.
  3. Enough of the long shots where nothing happens, slowly. I know it’s cheap, but people paid money and they want to see some money up on the screen. Ditto for depressing social topics. Sure you might be having a probably being an unmarried woman in the Sudan, but give her a robot buddy and you’ve got social issues and ENTERTAINMENT.
  4. Think seriously about getting Dennis Quaid. The man will do anything to keep his air miles topped up and people remember him from Great Balls of Fire. As my doctor calls it.


Michael Douglas today

CANNES – Everything is going wrong. First of all the sun starts shining. Then Steven Soderbergh makes a film accusing Liberace of homosexuality. Finally I have to spend all afternoon listening to a bunch of assholes pitch story ideas.

Here’s a sample.

  • a mash up of The Titanic and The Shining called the Shite-anic.
  • A white house is attacked by terrorists who believe it is the White House. Called Olympus F*cked Up
  • A sequel to Movie 43 to be called Movie 86.
  • Justin Timberlake gets captured by Armenian terrorists and punched in the face ever three minutes for a week. That wasn’t a movie pitch, so much as an idea I had.
I swear to God someone needs to come to the South of France and rescue me. If I hear a sentence that begins ‘There are these zombies …’ I swear to Kubrick I’ll kick someone right in the ganglies.


CANNES – The traditional Lars Von Trier hunt took place today. It started quite early this morning with festival organisers warning that the Danish director could be wearing multiple supplies and was being assisted by Leos Carax who had been spotted driving a derivative limousine.

Spottings were being reported throughout the afternoon but they all turned out to be false alarms. Finally, at Happy Hour in the Estonian pavilion – scheduled daily from 5.15 to 5.17 – Von Trier was caught by Alexander Payne as the comedy director of Dogsville wept into a small plastic beaker.

It was thought that he was going to sell his tears as a cure to leprosy to some sub-equatorial African nation, famous for its imaginative breaches in human rights.

Tonight outside the Majestic hotel, Mr. Von Trier will be ceremoniously burnt in a huge wicker Nazi, in what has become a highlight of the festival since 2011.


Studio Exec has laid his grubby hands on the unpublished dairies of actor and heterosexual moustache wearer Burt Reynolds and we are going to publish and be damned.

October, 1980

I don’t know what is it about the onset of Autumn but my spirits definitely take a dip. I went for a moustache trim and even Elmore detected a slight droop. Luckily, Hal comes round with a script. I say script, it’s really a collection of napkins and beet mats. The Cannonball Run it’s called. I phone the costumers and they bring round their best Napoleonic uniform.

November, 1980
Turns out I should have paid more attention to Hal when he was talking. It’s going to be a Smokey and the Bandit kind of deal. Well, that worked so why not? There’s a role for Dom DeLuise and Roger Moore (?) I know.

February, 1981

Shooting seems to be going well. Except for the usual rough and tumble. Dom seems confused about his character. He keeps turning up dressed as ‘Captain Chaos’, but Hal just falls about laughing and tells me to go with it. 

March, 1981

We finished filming a week ago. But Hal says he still needs the blooper reel. Unbelievable. We have to make mistakes on purpose and crack up and everything. He’ll put it at the end of the film. It is by far the hardest part of the shoot. Dom is as a funny as a baby’s grave.   


HOLLYWOOD – The Studio Exec has laid his grubby hands on the unpublished dairies of actor and heterosexual mustachio wearer Burt Reynolds and we are going to publish and be damned.

The Burt Reynolds diaries continue:

April, 1976
Hal comes round with a script. Smokey and the Bandit. Who am I? I ask. The Bandit of course, he tells me. I tentatively agree. I should start growing my mustache and I ought to watch Viva Zapata!

26th June, 1976
My Mexican accent it eeess porfect!!! The mustache is looking chubby and I’ve been on the sun bed every day this week and then Hal comes round and says what are you doing? Didn’t you read the script? It’s got nothing to do with Mexican revolutionaries and gringos. It’s about beer smuggling!?

March, 1977
At last we begin filming and it looks like it’s going to be fun. Only problem is Jackie Gleason isn’t sticking to the script. Keeps just making stuff up. I say to Hal, ‘He’s just making that stuff up.’
‘He’s “improvising”,’ he tells me.
‘I know,’ I tell him. ‘It’s irritating me as well, that’s why I’m telling you.’

15th March, 1977 
Sally’s doing well as Frog. She said the script is shit but she’ll do it for love. I’m crazy about that gal, though she will keep talking about her dream to one day play Mrs Lincoln. Poor deluded ditz.

19th May, 1977
New York for the premiere of Smokey. Everyone seems to be happy with the film and we think we have a hit on our hands. I’m happy for Hal, who everyone thought was just a dumb lunkhead and now he’s shown them. The film’s going to open wide next week. There’s not much competition out there. Some kids film called Star War.