July 3, 2009

AHtv Episode 9 - There's Something About Bagels

This is the story of Awkward Haiku (tv) Episode 9--the one that got too big too fast.

The episode was the result of a script dropped off at the Awkward Haiku offices, made by two plucky cultural stereotypes who had a dream. This dream was of culturally exploitative sex comedy. Their short script was hopefully the start of something big, but instead it got caught up in the machinery of big budget movie making.

The script was edgy, daring, maybe a little dumb. But we at Awkward Haiku (tv) believed in it just enough to shoot it. And we spent 3 long months creating a piece of art. It was like nothing you've ever seen. It had the geometrical composition of Kubrick, the pacing of Bergman, the intellectual rigor of Bresson, and the heart of Tarkovsky. And it had lots of sex and jew jokes.

So what happened? Big business got in the way. We were a little over budget. The average cost of an AHtv episode is -$3 (usually we can find about $3 in change while we shoot). The most expensive earlier was #5 when a junior staffer accidentally bought a drink. That had been known as our Cleopatra until this. But #9 was expensive. I won't get into the details, but suffice to say it cost more than -$3. A lot more. Because of the amount of money involved, corporate got scared, they needed something that could get their money back to them. And was There's Something About Bagels a safe G-Rated family film featuring a talking donkey? I don't think so. The sequel might feature one.

The suits saw a rough cut, and they freaked. And freaked. After more than 50 pages of notes, and a few more edits, they'd had enough. They took it out of our hands, and butchered it. From an original running time of 113 minutes, they cut it down to about 3 minutes. And when they tested it to a bunch of teenagers in San Fernando, it bombed. So what did they do? They did what all suits do when they get scared. They ran. They sold the footage and film rights to a bollywood production firm, which is currently shooting a remake with an unpronounceable name that translates as "It's all Crazy Like Mint!"

We can't show you the episode as we shot it. It's locked away in a vault in Mumbai. But we can let you have something. Here's the script for our little transgressive epic. And maybe someday the world will recognize the genius that is--There's Something About Bagels
Title Page
Page 1
Page 2
Page 3
Page 4
Page 5
Page 6
Page 7
Page 8
Page 9
Page 10
Page 11
Page 12
Page 13

1 comment:

Matt said...

I forgot how much I liked this screenplay. Let's do it.