Saturday, January 29, 2011

Some Good News

Since Jeanne's passing I promised myself that I would not post again on this blog until I could share some good news. As most of you know, a little over a year ago - with a "faithful as possible to the original" feature screenplay adaptation about half done (ask anyone, the middle of a screenplay is the hardest) and with Jeanne's health failing, Jeanne and I brought famed SF and TV writer David Gerrold in to assist with the completion.

David reviewed everything we had created to that date; the original story, the previous treatments and beat sheets, the IMAX version of the screenplay we had started and abandoned, the 45 or so pages of feature screenplay and our notes, notes, notes. David then made a major change in perspective about one of the characters - a launching point for us to create a brand new treatment - we met every week and argued and refined and developed and ultimately created a completely new, more cinematic vision of Stardance guided by David's mastery of structure. We presented the new treatment to Jeanne on May 19th 2010, and she gave her glowing approval saying "All we have to do now is write the screenplay."

Jeanne passed away 10 days later. At that point I knew the most important thing in my life was to complete that task.

Since David did a lot of the heavy lifting for the treatment, I took on translating it into the screenplay - meeting with David as often as I could, especially when running into walls, until were were again about half way through. There it was again, that dreaded half way point. David and I would make great progress every time we met. I'd show him what I had done, he would edit or make suggestions, and I would be able to move forward a little. But those productive meetings were hard to schedule, both David and I are busy people with more than just this screenplay on our plates. What we needed was some dedicated time.

In December I came upon the answer: we would set aside an entire week in January and fly David to Memphis (away from the distractions of Los Angeles) with only one goal, to sit side by side and FINISH STARDANCE!

So, as Memphis was pummeled with Snow, David arrived for an uninterrupted week of writing and brainstorming and arguing and writing some more - and I'm proud to say that six days and 55 pages later David Gerrold and I finished the screenplay adaptation of Stardance.

That was two weeks ago: We're presently giving it a quick polish before sending it into the Hollywood machine. Wish us luck, you won't hear from us much until we have more real news to share.