Last week, low culture presented “Be Excellent to Each Other: A One Act Play,” in which fictional versions of the actors Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter discussed their lives and careers.
At the time of that writing, we had no idea that Missy Schwartz, a writer for Entertainment Weekly, one of the nation’s most respected and highly regarded weekly entertainment magazines that focuses on entertainment and comes out on a weekly basis, was working on a “Deal Report” column about Alex Winter (with additional reporting by Geoff Keighley, Michelle Kung, and Adam B. Vary):
Remember Alex Winter? He was Bill to Keanu Reeves‘ Ted. Now he’s set to write Napster: The Shawn Fanning Bio Project for Paramount/MTV Films. Winter penned a version of the script as a TV movie in ’03, but the story of the college dropout who developed music-file-sharing was so rich that Paramount decided to make it a feature. It’s about “a punk kid with a lightning-bolt moment,” says Winter, “who takes that dream into the shark-infested deep end of the big-business world and then has the whole thing blow up in his face.” Winter also plans to direct Acts of Charity, an indie political satire with Alan Rickman, this year. Excellent! (Entertainment Weekly, March 11, 2005.)
Had we known that Entertainment Weekly was working on this story, we would’ve instead focused on Curtis Armstrong, one of America’s greatest character actors who is back from his post-Revenge of the Nerds exile with roles in Dodgeball, Ray, and Man of the House. (The latter of which is out now.)
We would’ve written a gag intro hailing a familiar but semi-unknown actor who’s worked with “greats” like Tom Cruise, John Cusack, and Bruce Willis then thrown in Steve Guttenberg to be funny, before launching into a short, pithy piece that argued, far from being a relic of the 80’s (we’d mention Bronson Pinchot here), Armstrong’s been working more or less steadily since the days of Duran Duran (a slightly decontextualized reference that would nonetheless ground the piece in a certain time period). We would’ve concluded by suggesting that one day (god willing), Armstrong might be the first Oscar winner to ever have a character named Booger on his resume.
low culture regrets the error.
Earlier: New York Second;
Twentieth Century Fox, meet award-winning director Chris Cunningham.
Related: Paramount/MTV Taking a Napster