A Little Bit of Heaven

INT. STUDIO EXECUTIVE OFFICE CIRCA 2011.

A cliched STUDIO CHIEF sits at his desk, chomping a Cigar and reading the latest Variety. Suddenly the door bursts open and a lowly DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE charges in, huffing and puffing.

DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE

Sir, I’ve got a great script you need to read right now! This is it!

STUDIO CHIEF

(Sighs). What is it this time? Battleship 2? The behind the scenes story of the making of Jaws: The Revenge?

DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE

Ha, good one. No, this time I’m serious. This script is a great twist on the tired rom-com genre. Huge four quadrant appeal with lots of stars attached. It’s called “A Little Bit of Heaven.”

The STUDIO CHIEF puts down his magazine, now paying attention.

STUDIO CHIEF

I don’t know. Can rom-coms be reinvented? The genre seems kind of tired. What’s the setup?

DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE

OK, so the story takes place in New Orleans and centers on a professional woman who just can’t settle down.

STUDIO CHIEF

Boring!

DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE

Well, let me finish. She likes to play the field and is focused on her work while her sister has moved to the ‘burbs and started a family. There’s some good tension there.

STUDIO CHIEF

I thought you said this was a twist on the rom-com. Not hearing anything like that so far.

The DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE shifts in his seat, getting ready to play his trump cards.

DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE

First, you should know there is some A+ Hollywood talent attached here. Supporting roles will be filled by Kathy Bates, Whoopi Goldberg, Rosemarie DeWitt, Steven Weber, and Peter Dinklage.

STUDIO CHIEF

I’m listening. Who are the leads?

DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE

Kate Hudson and Gael Garcia Bernal

STUDIO CHIEF

Hmm … so if Kate Hudson is the lead, who is Kathy Bates playing?

DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE

Her mom.

The STUDIO CHIEF grabs his cup of coffee, take a big swig and then spits it all over his desk.

STUDIO CHIEF

Well … that’s interesting. OK, so they don’t even look remotely alike. Since this is in New Orleans, how are their accents?

DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE

Non-existent.

The STUDIO CHIEF reaches for his coffee again but thinks better of it. He instead puts his head in his hands.

STUDIO CHIEF

All right. Peter Dinklage is a great pull. What’s his deal?

DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE

It’s actually a small but important role. He plays a gigolo hired by Kate Hudson’s character’s friend to sleep with her as a distraction from a key plot turn. He also gets to say the name of the movie as one of his lines. Funny huh?

STUDIO CHIEF

Hilarious. Audiences love that. What’s this key plot turn? Kate Hudson has done it all in rom-coms by now. I mean, jeez, she’s been in like 100 of these things already.

DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE

OK, so this is great. She gets diagnosed with terminal colon cancer.

STUDIO CHIEF

Come again?

DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE

Yeah, she gets a big promotion, loves her single life and then gets a totally random diagnosis of late-stage colon cancer. The rest of the movie is her coming to terms with her impending death, falling in love with her doctor and then dying in the closing moments of the movie.

STUDIO CHIEF

Is Kate Hudson going to go all-in and go full “Philadelphia”-style Tom Hanks to show the ravaging effects of the disease and treatment?

DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE

No. She’s agreed to wrap herself in blankets and “look increasingly tired.”

STUDIO CHIEF

I see. Oh, by the way who does Whoopi play in all this?

DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE

Oh, right. Whoopi. Well, she plays God.

STUDIO CHIEF

Are you kidding? What, does Kate Hudson’s character visit her on top of fluffy clouds while they discuss her life choices and path to redemption?

DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE

Oh, did you already read the script?

The STUDIO CHIEF, leans back in his chair. He stares off in the distance for a moment, ruminating over his life choices. He rejoins reality and locks eyes with the DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE.

STUDIO CHIEF

Honestly, this movie sounds terrible. Why would anyone want to watch it? But, this is circa 2011 and some of the top movies will be Transformers: Dark of the Moon, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Puss in Boots, Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked, Green Lantern and Gnomeo and Juliet. So let’s do it.

 

 

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