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This Is Us

How can we best tell our story to the world?

According to Steven Spielberg, we can best tell our story by projecting it with the people in it…along with a little imagination and uncertainty.

Spielberg, a forthcoming HBO documentary, is a double-edged sword.

On the one hand, I (and most likely everyone else on the planet) cannot wait to see this in-depth look into everything Steven Spielberg. The man is a cinematic and storytelling trailblazer. On the other hand, the fact that an in-depth documentary about Steven Spielberg’s life has been filmed, produced and is ready for showtime HBO means that he’s lived a full life and that it’s now time to just reflect…?

Fortunately, the greatest filmmaker in history (my humble opinion) isn’t slowing down one bit.

Ready Player One, directed by the man, the myth and the legend, is set for release with high-anticipation next year. Then, of course, the famed director has another Indiana Jones film. Plus, he has at least a couple more Jurassic World’s to produce and guide during the next several years.

That’s the good news. Now here’s some more. We won’t just be entertained by Steven Spielberg’s imaginative movies about virtual reality, genetically modified dinosaurs causing chaos in the modern world or an adventurous professor from the mid-20th century. Moreover, we’ll be entertained by stories about, well, ourselves. That’s the true storytelling genius of Spielberg.

He suspends focus on himself in order for all of us to believe in ourselves in ways we never thought possible.

And an accompanying John Williams score doesn’t hurt either…

Spielberg premieres on HBO on Saturday, October 7th.

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Arrr You For Real?

Few places on Earth can bring movie magic to life like Disneyland.

Exhibit A: Johnny Depp Captain Jack Sparrow.

That Pirates of the Caribbean ride at Disneyland with the always imaginative character actor Johnny Depp was an unforgettable experience sparked by an idea that’s nothing short of genius. And it’s genuinely refreshing when an actor embraces his fantastical character as much as the fans.

In three words: Cinematic marketing gold.

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales premieres in theaters on May 26, 2017.

The Doctor is In

Image result for jeff goldblum jurassic world cameo

(Monorail scene in Jurassic World. Image from Now You Know Facts Online)

Dr. Ian Malcom’s clever book placements in Jurassic World were no coincidence.

The actor, who co-starred in 1993’s Jurassic Park and 1997’s The Lost World: Jurassic Park, will appear in Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment’s next Jurassic World film.
–Rebecca Ford, The Hollywood Reporter

Jeff Goldblum’s return sparks a few thoughts:

  • Given the late casting, was Jeff Golblum supposed to be in the Jurassic World sequel from the inception of this new trilogy’s story development? Or was this late casting news intended to keep plot details as secret as possible, on a literal need-to-know basis for the public?
  • The storytelling gate has been opened, if only slightly, to begin to gradually weave the original cast back to the Jurassic universe before a dramatic Act III entrance in the third film of this trilogy.
  • The story and character arc for Dr. Ian Malcolm must be quite good to entice Jeff Goldblum to return 20 years later.

Without context or plot details (or seeing the film, quite frankly), it’s difficult to make a final, definitive judgement on this casting move. Having said that, welcoming Jeff Goldblum to the Jurassic World sequel is very exciting. From 10,000 feet, this decision seems like a great bridge not only from the original film (and The Lost World) to this new sequel, but also in bringing back the tone and wit of Jurassic Park that was noticeably absent in Jurassic World.

Otherwise, this forthcoming sequel may feel a bit chaotic…aside from all of the dinosaurs.

P.S. I wonder what Ellie Sattler’s book title would be?

A Crash Course in Listening

“Speak softly and carry a big stick”
–President Theodore Roosevelt

Perhaps we should listen to softly spoken words and, from there, determine what we’ll carry…

Steven Spielberg is the greatest movie director of all-time. But how did he become a movie directing icon? The highly sought after position of Hollywood movie director requires mastering expensive, virtually unavailable and evolving technology, acquiring an acute knowledge of cameras, lighting and effects, gathering a Scrooge McDuck vault of gold coins for a single film and projecting an unforeseen vision of the world to be successful. People (business partners and fans alike) trust you to deliver on the biggest stage/screen. A hiccup could derail your dream in the same time it takes for two trains to crash.

Or, that’s the precise amount of time it takes for you to see everything.

Teachers come in all forms.

And when you realize that, you’ll be admitted to the greatest show on earth.