David Permut, Marshall Brickman and Clarence Conly
In looking through a box of photos and documents this morning, I came across a note to me from David Permut who was the first producer (Blind Date/Dragnet/The Marrying Man) to make an offer on a story from my (Interview) TV series. It was clipped to several pages of a treatment written for the project (titled The Pursuit of Happiness) by Marshall Brickman who was Woody Allen's co-writer on Sleeper, Annie Hall and Manhattan and also
wrote and directed The Manhattan Project. Later, Marshall
co-wrote Manhattan Murder Mystery with Woody. I'd forgotten he had changed the character name from Clarence to Chester.
Following on the reception of our project (based on the Stevie Williams
story), David Permut asked to see some other
episodes for development consideration. I sent some cassettes to his
office and a few days later David is calling me saying we had another
winner. "Which one?" I asked since I'd sent a random selection of four
tapes that were within my reach at the time. "Clarence Conly, of
course!" was his reply. The story was about Clarence, a meek assembly
line worker at the GM plant in Van Nuys who wins six million dollars in
the lottery and parlays it into a nine million dollar debt. A few
minutes into the taping, I began breaking up as the actor was giving
such a marvelous performance as this hapless character and I could not
contain my laughter. As we continued taping, I felt that my
uncontrollable response was ruining the show but that we could tape it
again after I'd gotten the laughter out of my system.
Later when we looked at the show, I realized that any interviewer in his right
mind would also be laughing at the improbable, yet earnest, responses
'Clarence' was giving:
Me (as interviewer): "If you could do it all over
again, would you do it differently?"
Clarence: "No, I would probably
do it all the same"
Thus ensuring he would end up with a monumental debt again. We'll
let well enough alone, I decided, and it was the right decision as
David was still laughing at what he had watched when he got me on the
phone. We made the same deal as before but this time, I had something
in mind. "Have you given thought to a writer/director?" I asked him. He
said he hadn't. "What if I can get Marshall Brickman interested?"
David replied, "Perfect!"
I'd never met Marshall but felt he had the flair to deal with 'Clarence' having collaborated so
well with Woody Allen. I called Marshall's agent in Century City and
asked simply, "Do you know who David Permut is?" He did, indeed, came
the immediate response. I told him that David and I had a project that
we would like to propose to Marshall Brickman as a writer/director.
Would he care to receive the submission? Yes, he would, and so it was
that I sent over a tape of Clarence Conly (Interview).
How to Shoot a Feature Film in 15 Days (And Survive to See Profits)
Click to buy on Amazon
Click to view on Amazon
Examples of Responsive Reactions
Click photo to see example clips from Stephen's movies
Action/ReAction at Stella Adler
Point of Departure
A Series of ONE...
Stephen and Dragonuk
Stephen Mitchell webinar for Stage 32
Ferrari GTO 3987 at speed by Yan denes
Ray D. Shosay's Journal
Dispatches from a (junior) suite in Paris
Ray D. Shosay's Journal (excerpt)
"Saturday, January 27, 2007
They say you can fool some of the people all of the time. Accordingly, I think we should concentrate on this group initially. We can move on to the people you can only fool some of the time at a later date if we deem it necessary. I hope to hear back from my agent about this as soon as he's out of rehab, as I don't think my messages have been getting through."
Ignorance is Bliss by Stephen Mitchell
Kindle or Paperback versions
Exerpt from Ignorance is Bliss
"Out of the corner of his eye, Martin saw Martha shift in her seat. She leaned forward, as though something was about to be decided. This caused her breasts to push up against the neckline of her dress in a way that couldn't be fully appreciated out of the corner of one’s eye. So, Martin turned his head to look directly into the abyss of her cleavage. He was vaguely aware that Murray was talking again."
Carrera Panamericana (1950-54)
Click on poster to buy the poster and DVD
Ferrari GTO 3987
Elysée Wednesday: Drive!
Click photo to watch on Amazon Direct Video
“You ought to meet Steve. The two of you have the same kind of Ferrari.”
Ferrari Berlinetta Lusso
One evening, I was enjoying a John le Carré novel and a glass of Bordeaux...
L'art de l'automobile
My first Lusso prior to restoration
It was only after Sinatra was gone...
Once upon a time...
Meeting Enzo Ferrari
I came across this on a late night stroll in Paris near the Louvre.
I bought Bentleys in England and Ferraris & Maseratis in Italy to re-sell in Los Angeles as a teenager. I met Enzo Ferrari, Juan Fangio and Steve McQueen. I 'grew up' on the set of Mission: Impossible and other episodic TV series of the era. For a few years, I owned a Ferrari GTO that is owned by Ralph Lauren today and valued at approximately $52M. I began my film career by writing, producing and directing Montmartre in Paris in French. I founded and ran a repertory company for film & TV for 20 years in Los Angeles. I created a TV series which had fans that included Marlon Brando. I authored the first new acting technique--Action/ReAction--that was not based on Stanislavski's Method. I am currently writing my third novel and shooting my spy thriller Exigence. If you can't make movies, live your life as though you were in one...