Archive for January, 2010
ok I’ve been quiet cuz I’ve been working on my own project – but more about that later. First things first, the neck…Sly did indeed have a very serious surgery a few weeks after we wrapped The Expendables. He did it under the radar and kept it out of the press…I love that! Arnold went to visit him in the hospital and I saw him a couple of weeks after the surgery. From what he told me it was complicated and involved moving his trachea, putting in a metal plate and some very delicate maneuvering by the surgeon – the slightest mistake could have resulted in paralysis. As for how it happened – I don’t exactly remember because Sly had several injuries over the course of the film – he did so many over the top stunts and rarely used a stunt double for the fights. After one fight blood was pouring out of his ear. I do know the fight between him and Steve Austin was brutal – took place in a cave with jagged walls and a hard dirt floor – stunt pads were rarely used as that would prevent Sly from getting the full frame shots he loves so much. They both got their clocks wound in the scene that day.
As for JCVD, it is clear that during the pathetic excuse for a press conference he exhibited a real case of sour grapes. JCVD was disrespectful, insulting and showed he has no character. But then again most of us knew that. That doesn’t mean some of his movies aren’t good, he isn’t in good shape or that he isn’t a martial arts expert – just that he clearly created a mythology about what happened to make it look like he turned down Sylvester Stallone for creative reasons. Bull@#!%. I’m not going to get into a he said/he said dialogue here since I wasn’t present for the conversations. But again, my understanding is Sly really wanted JCVD and was writing a part for him – just as he did for Jason, Jet, Dolph, Mickey, etc. Doing this film was never about the money for Sly so I find it completely implausible that he tried to lure JCVD with the promise of riches. A rewarding experience, a chance to get back on the big screen in a big film and a role that would allow him to show his chops? Yes. The promise of money money money. No. Anyone who knows how NuImage operates knows that getting money out of Avi is like milking a hummingbird – he has a formula that he sticks to which is why he is successful. Sly had x amount of $ to make the film and he wanted to get the most out of it. Giving bundles to a marginal screen draw makes no sense. John Wright is right (heh heh) – the script went through over 100 rewrites…JCVD’s character was not fleshed out completely but Sly had an outline for who he was. As with the other actors, JCVD would have the opportunity to develop the character. I think it came down to how much of a team player would JCVD be – remember this was an ensemble piece – everyone had to click – ego on set would not be tolerated. My thoughts – JCVD was perhaps the architect of his own demise in terms of the film because of ego and perhaps a little feeling of intimidation. That’s my take and it is filled with a lot more truth than any speculation I’ve seen here. Get it? Got it? Good.
Ahhh I’m in a reflective kind of mood tonight what with the “blue moon” so full and luminous and a retrograde Mercury causing havoc… I’m fairly certain that wackiness will ensue. So before I head out into the land of the wild and the weird known as New Year’s Eve I’m chiming in with my take on the past 10 years…
Looking back makes me realize what a wild assed conglomeration of hideousness and hilarity the soon to end decade was. Let us not forget people…The 21st century began with the crazies in high gear as way too many people on planet earth believed the world was going to end with the advent of Y2K…But alas the world did not stop spinning on its axis, planes did not fall from the sky (yet) and cities did not come to a grinding halt. But one thing was for certain – media manipulation was officially at full tilt. And with that we were off and running as Playstation became the drug of choice, Dubya became the 43rd President of the US but not “us” and George Harrison reminded us “All Things Must Pass”. The tragedy of 9-11 brought the country together for a brief moment until the 2004 election Kabuki tore us apart again. Tsunamis and earthquakes ravaged the Indian Ocean, China and India while in the US Hurricane Katrina revealed to us this is a country still very much divided by class. Saddam Hussein was found in a rat hole, our brave men and women went to war In Viet Nam and Cambodia….oops I mean Iraq and Afghanistan… and pirates once again trolled the high seas and I’m not talking about Johnny Depp. The space shuttle Columbia disappeared before our eyes, that cute little Pope died , gay marriage became legal – sort of – and pot stores literally sprouted up over night in California. We learned that you can see Russia from Sarah Palin’s backyard, a man named Barack Obama was elected President, Bernie Maddoff made off with other people’s money, Kenneth Lay took the easy way out, banks failed, the stock market did a free fall, the dollar tanked and gas rose to nearly $5 a gallon. Meanwhile back in Iran, thousands filled the streets to make their voices heard. And the world listened…for a minute. Oh and let’s not forget about Mad Cow disease and Swine flu and anthrax.
Social networking reminded us of how much we all want to be connected.. to our IPods and Iphones and Kindles but not necessarily to each other. We waged war against terrorism but not against hunger in our own backyard. Global warming became the new buzz word. TV’s got flat, albums all but disappeared and TiVo changed our lives forever – ok so maybe just mine but it did! We met the Osbornes, LT danced with the stars, American Idol gave us mediocrity (Justin, Rueben) mixed with brilliance (Jennifer , Carrie, Kelly), Madonna stuck her tongue down Brittany’s throat, YouTube gave every moron in the world with a camera a chance at fame, Michael Jackson disintegrated, Janet Jackson showed her nipple ring and Amy Winehouse became an embarrassment to crack heads everywhere. All the while Beyonce made it totally legit to have a big ass…errr… I mean booty. Peter Jackson gave life to Frodo and Gollum, Penguins marched, Memento mesmerized, Russell Crowe beat a guy with a phone (not very Gladiator like), a little fish named Nemo made us smile, Spidey ruled, Transformers enthralled but the sequel was a snooze fest and Christian Bale and McG ruined the Terminator franchise. Pan’s Labyrinth disturbed us and we fell in love with Batman and vampires…again… as Jim Cameron…love him or hate him…delivered the best trip I’ve been on in years. Moulin Rouge, Crouching Tiger, Daniel Craig as a very sexy Bond..I could go on and on…
The Red Sox won the world series, Usain Bolt ran really really fast, Shaq and Kobe ruled, Brett Favre got very confused, Beckham bent it in LA, Michael Phelps got cozy with a bong, Danica Patrick showed the boys how girlz play, Michael Vick went to jail, Barbaro broke our hearts, ‘roids raged, Tiger got beat by his own golf club and the Steelers won the Super Bowl…TWICE (just because I haven’t mentioned The Expendables doesn’t mean I wouldn’t mention my Steelers ;]
Ok so there you have it…maybe TMI but it’s my take and i’m sticking to it. Happy 2010 everyone. Lots of good things are coming our way including the release of The Expendables and Arnold’s final days as Guv. Cheers.