Frank Darabont defends TPM!!!!

Discussion in 'The Phantom Menace' started by Luukeskywalker, May 11, 2003.

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  1. Shelley Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 9, 2001
    star 5
    and it still doesnt make sense that Lucas asked Darabont to write TPM, but then went ahead and wrote it himself anyway.

    Did you even READ the interview?
  2. JenX Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 26, 2002
    star 3
    Neither is the bashers' messiah, Gary Kurtz,

    Well he's not my messiah.

    ...who was fired because of his incompetence...

    Well, I'm hoping you'll post the evidence...

    ...but bashers still insist his word should be treated as if God spoke it.

    I don't treat his words as if they were spoken by God, and I think you may be exaggerating things just a touch.
  3. Darth_Insidious Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2002
    star 4
    Possibly for the same reason you constantly ignore proof that Kurtz wasn't fired?

    IGNFF: Would you say, in trying to transition out of Star Wars, that your departure was acrimonious?

    KURTZ: No, no... I think it was... I think we both were frustrated and decided we just didn't want to work together anymore for the time being.

    IGNFF: So it was a mutual ...

    KURTZ: It was pretty much a mutual thing, yeah.


    And I think I'll just throw this in too:

    IGNFF: How would you characterize your relationship with George now?

    KURTZ: I think it's pretty normal. He is very busy, and a very reclusive character, but I talk to him once in a while. I saw him at the Special Edition premiere here in London and I've seen him a few times. We both went and spoke at this 25th anniversary screening of American Graffiti at the Motion Picture Academy. I've talked to him on the phone a couple of times ? not very often, because it doesn't seem to come up.


    Funny, according to you he's a bitter guy who doesn't like George. And yet they still talk on the phone.

    As for the actual topic of the thread:

    George Lucas approached me with the idea of my performing writing services on 'Phantom Menace.' (Please note that I'm being very specific and accurate when I say 'writing' services. At no time was there any discussion of my directing, because George was 'always' going to be the director of the film.) My agent, Robert Stein, contacted a British attorney representing George to see if a deal for my writing services could be negotiated. It was during this round of phone conversations that George's attorney made us aware that Lucasfilm did not intend to become a WGA signatory on the project. In other words, it was a non-guild job.

    After realizing that George was not going to budge on this issue, my agent and I regretfully broke off further negotiations. I called George personally to explain my reasons. He, in turn, explained his. It is no secret that George has a long-standing enmity with both the WGA and DGA, which is why he renounced his membership in those guilds years ago, and why he now doesn't wish to become a signatory. I told him I understood that his feelings were deeply rooted, but that he couldn't expect me to take sides against my own guild for the sake of a writing assignment. He understood my position, we agreed my involvment on 'Phantom Menace' was not meant to be, and we parted friends. It's that simple.

    - Frank Darabont


    Frank Darabont Refutes TPM Rumors
  4. Darth_Insidious Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2002
    star 4
  5. Shelley Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 9, 2001
    star 5
    Darabont explained it himself. In short, it was always the plan for Lucas to write the story himself and then bring in another writer for the second phase, but once Lucas got on roll, there was really no point in the writing process where it would have made sense to bring in another writer. And as I said, Darabont enthusiastically supports Lucas on this.

    Oh, but Durwood, he only said that because he wanted to work with Lucas again. Even though he thought TPM sucked, like everyone did -- anyone who says they liked it is "just being nice" or "doesn't want to be fired."

    I mean, of course Darabont would lie and say he thought TPM was really good, because he wanted to work with such a sucky director/writer again. And Lucas fires everyone who disagrees with him or criticizes him, which is why Ben Burtt is shown criticizing the rough cut of TPM on the "Beginning" documentary and somehow wasn't fired. And that's why Lucas said, when someone described himself as having a reputation as a troublemaker: "That's why we hired you."

    Everyone who says they like the prequels are lying or else deluded. Only people who dis the prequels are telling the truth, because "they aren't deluded." (Direct quote from a basher.) People who like the prequels "are drooling Lucas-worshippers would sit there mesmerized if Lucas presented us with two hours of blank film." (Direct quote from a basher.) People who like the prequels "don't know a quality film and prefer style over substance." (Direct quote from a basher.)
  6. Shelley Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 9, 2001
    star 5
    KURTZ: It was pretty much a mutual thing, yeah.

    Yeah, if you can call Lucas canning Kurtz a "mutual thing."

    Why should I believe anything Kurtz says, especially since he talks about stuff he couldn't possibly know -- like, "Lucas is surrounded by yes-men." How would he know? He hasn't worked with Lucas in over 20 years. Oh, and "Lucas came up with the 'Leia is Luke's sister plot twist on the set of ROTJ, because he needed an impetus for Luke to attack Vader." How would he know? He wasn't on the set of ROTJ. Oh, and "Lucas chose Richard Marquand because he was malleable." How would he know? He wasn't involved in the process of selecting a director for ROTJ.

    Oh, but I forgot...only people who bash the prequels ever tell the truth. Everyone else is lying. You can never trust anyone who says they like the prequels, but anyone who doesn't like them is to be trusted implicitly and their words held up as holy objects. No one really likes the prequels; people just delude themselves into thinking they like them. In the words of one basher: "You're amazing...you've actually managed to convince yourself that TPM was a good movie." (Direct quote.)

    KURTZ: I think it's pretty normal. He is very busy, and a very reclusive character, but I talk to him once in a while.

    Proving Lucas isn't bitter toward Kurtz even though Kurtz does little but badmouth him and arrogantly present himself as the real talent behind Lucas's movies. If Kurtz spent half the time focusing on his own career as he spent sniping at Lucas, he might actually have a career.

    Funny, according to you he's a bitter guy who doesn't like George. And yet they still talk on the phone.

    Yeah, it's nice of Lucas to not be bitter toward Kurtz, considering how bitterly Kurtz snipes at him and says all the SW movies that he, Kurtz, didn't produce "have no depth." I wouldn't talk to Kurtz on the phone at all if I was Lucas.

    Please explain to me how the quote from Darabont proves your accusations against Lucas.
  7. JenX Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 26, 2002
    star 3
    Shelley, here is another direct quote from a basher which I think is a lot less offensive then the ones you've quoted:

    "Just out of interest, Shelley, is it true that Gary Kurtz was fired? Do you have proof?"

    I note* that you have said that it is "funny" how Darth_Insidious keeps ignoring the questions you have repeatedly asked, so I'm hoping that you might possibly answer mine.

    Thank you :)


    Editted to add

    * Before she editted it, Shelley's last post contained the following paragraph:

    Funny how you keep ignoring the question I've asked you repeatedly: why are you still responding to my posts? When you called me pathetic and otherwise insulted me, you said you weren't going to respond to my posts anymore. Why are you still responding to them?
  8. gezvader28 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 22, 2003
    star 4
    Shelley your continued attacks on Gary Kurtz are more and more repellant. Your remarks say everything about you and nothing about Gary Kurtz.

    He was not fired.

    And he WAS on the set of ROTJ, as I've explained to you before - check the Official Collector's Edition Souvenir magazine of ROTJ 1983, there are photos of the production credited to -

    Gary Kurtz.

    gez
  9. Darth_Insidious Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2002
    star 4
    I've just had this wonderful idea. You know how you've got your "Post proof or retract" catchphrase? I think I'll take that, change it a little bit, and make my own. I'll call it "Post proof or shut up about it". Let's see how it works out:

    You don't have any reason to assume that Kurtz is a liar. Lets see some direct quotes from him contradicting what he's said before. Post proof or shut up about it.

    Kurtz has had very little to say about George since their split besides some isoltaed interviews. Where are you getting that he spends so much time sniping at George? Post proof or shut up about it.

    Kurtz has positive things to say about George as well, such as that ROTJ is a better movie because George vicariously worked through Marquand. Where are you getting that he has only negative things to say? Post proof or shut up about it.

    My quote from Darabont proves that he's not telling the truth right now. Three years ago, he said that he didn't end up writing TPM because he didn't want to go against the group he was a member of, the WGA. Now he says he didn't end up writing it because George just kept going with it himself.

    Two direct quotes from the same person at two different times contradicting themselves is called a lie. Much like George lied about how he always originally intended to have Greedo shoot first. And then he goes even further, by having the audacity to insult my intelligence by saying that he really always did shoot first, but it never came across that way in the film.

    You know who hasn't been caught in a lie? Gary Kurtz.

    On a side note, I think my "Post proof or shut up about it" experiment worked out quite nicely in this first test. Further trials will determine it's lastibility, though I don't intend for it to run as long as your "Post proof or retract" line has, because that's gotten very repetetive and boring. Get a new one buddy.
  10. Shelley Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 9, 2001
    star 5
    I've just had this wonderful idea. You know how you've got your "Post proof or retract" catchphrase? I think I'll take that, change it a little bit, and make my own. I'll call it "Post proof or shut up about it".

    I'd love to see you post proof of your assertions that Kurtz made Lucas care about story rather than effects, or retract. And post proof that Han Solo was originally slated to die like Kurtz wanted, or retract. Or that Kurtz was what made ANH and ESB great, or retract.

    Let's see how it works out:

    You don't have any reason to assume that Kurtz is a liar.


    Yes I do.

    Lets see some direct quotes from him contradicting what he's said before. Post proof or shut up about it.

    I did. Kurtz says Lucas is surrounded by yes-men. How would he know? He hasn't worked with Lucas in over 20 years. Kurtz said Lucas hired Marquand because he was malleable. How would he know? He wasn't involved in the decision to choose a director for ROTJ. Kurtz said that Lucas decided to make Leia Luke's sister on the set of ROTJ, simply because he needed a reason for Luke to attack Vader. How would he know? He wasn't on the set of ROTJ.

    Kurtz has had very little to say about George since their split besides some isoltaed interviews. Where are you getting that he spends so much time sniping at George? Post proof or shut up about it.

    You posted the proof yourself. He's given two interviews in as many years in which he did little but snipe at Lucas.

    Kurtz has positive things to say about George as well, such as that ROTJ is a better movie because George vicariously worked through Marquand. Where are you getting that he has only negative things to say? Post proof or shut up about it.

    Oh, let's see...THE ENTIRE INTERVIEW, in which he says that ROTJ and the prequels have no depth, that Lucas hired Marquand because he was a puppet, dredging up that nonsense about racist caricatures in TPM...

    My quote from Darabont proves that he's not telling the truth right now.

    Post proof or retract.

    Three years ago, he said that he didn't end up writing TPM because he didn't want to go against the group he was a member of, the WGA. Now he says he didn't end up writing it because George just kept going with it himself.

    Uh...no. He said there was no chance of him directing it, because Lucas was always going to direct it himself. Here's what he said:

    George Lucas approached me with the idea of my performing writing services on 'Phantom Menace.' (Please note that I'm being very specific and accurate when I say 'writing' services. At no time was there any discussion of my directing, because George was 'always' going to be the director of the film.) My agent, Robert Stein, contacted a British attorney representing George to see if a deal for my writing services could be negotiated. It was during this round of phone conversations that George's attorney made us aware that Lucasfilm did not intend to become a WGA signatory on the project. In other words, it was a non-guild job.

    After realizing that George was not going to budge on this issue, my agent and I regretfully broke off further negotiations. I called George personally to explain my reasons. He, in turn, explained his. It is no secret that George has a long-standing enmity with both the WGA and DGA, which is why he renounced his membership in those guilds years ago, and why he now doesn't wish to become a signatory. I told him I understood that his feelings were deeply rooted, but that he couldn't expect me to take sides against my own guild for the sake of a writing assignment. He understood my position, we agreed my involvment on 'Phantom Menace' was not meant to be, and we parted friends. It's that simple.


    Two direct quotes from the same person at two different times contradicting themselves is called a lie.

    You have not provided two direct quotes from the same person at two different times contradicting themselves. So Darabont is not lying.

    Much like George lied about how he always or
  11. gezvader28 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 22, 2003
    star 4
    I'll say it a bit louder this time 'cos some people are hard of hearing -

    Return of the Jedi Official Collector's Edition. this was the souvenir mag for ROTJ in '83. Check the photos - some of them are credited to Gary Kurtz. He WAS on the set of ROTJ.

    Got it now?

    g
  12. DrEvazan Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jun 19, 2002
    star 4
    "Post proof that he didn't always shoot first, or retract."

    you've seen Star Wars havent you? the original version? or is this yet another instance of you opining on a film (TTT, Hidden Fortress) before having seen it? ill have to look a little harder but i believe you have more than once said you dont like the change Lucas made in the SE of Greedo shooting first.
  13. Shelley Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 9, 2001
    star 5
    you've seen Star Wars havent you? the original version? or is this yet another instance of you opining on a film (TTT, Hidden Fortress)

    When did I opine on a film before I had seen it? I recall you accusing Lucas of ripping off THF, saying he stole whole chunks of it for ANH, and me pointing out that the two characters you say he ripped off for R2-D2 and C3PO, were human, not robots. That was before I saw THF, but I didn't opine on the movie. I didn't opine on it until after I'd seen it, and I still fail to see how Lucas stole whole chunks of it.

    before having seen it? ill have to look a little harder but i believe you have more than once said you dont like the change Lucas made in the SE of Greedo shooting first.

    No, because the effect looks dodgy. But what does that have to do with Lucas allegedly lying?

    In the pre-SE version, you see Han say "Yes, I'll bet you have," then BOOM and a cloud of smoke, then Greedo's head goes THUNK on the table. You never clearly see who shoots first.
  14. DrEvazan Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jun 19, 2002
    star 4
    you had plenty to say about Gollum without having seen the film in the Jar Jar V. Gollum thread.

    you dont really want me to pull up the quotes do you?
  15. Darth_Insidious Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2002
    star 4
    No Shelley, it's gotten repetetive because you've spouted it over and over again in vain attempts to cover up your lack of proof for nearly everything that flows from your mouth.

    I've got an idea. Let's go through the argument, point by point, so that everyone here can see for themselves who is the one that isn't backing up their assertations. And once we've sufficiently discussed one matter, we'll move on.

    We'll start with my claim that George has lied in the past.

    My claim is as follows: all the evidence that we have points to Han originally being the one to shoot first. This is back up by:

    a) Not one single draft of Star Wars, not one called for Greedo to shoot first. The screenplay drafts can be found here.

    b) Gary Kurtz, who was present during the production of ANH, has stated the following:

    IGNFF: You're the person to ask about this ? when you're talking about these kind of special editions and changes and are they due to an original vision or changing sensibilities ? I have to ask you about your thoughts regarding the infamous redo of the scene with Greedo in the cantina.... the whole shooting first thing.

    KURTZ: Yeah, I really was livid about that one. I think it was a total ? it ruins the scene, basically. The scene was never intended that way. Han Solo realized that Greedo was out to get him and he had to blast him first or he would lose his life. It shows you how much of a mercenary he is. That's what the point of the scene was. And so the way they've changed it around, it loses the whole impact of that whole aspect of it.

    IGNFF: Do you think that's due to George's changing sensibilities as opposed to his argument that, "No, that was my original intention"?

    KURTZ: Well, he can say that was his original intention, but we could have shot it that way very easily. There was no reason that it couldn't have been shot that way. It was shot and edited the way it was because that's the way the script was. That's what he wanted at the time.


    There is nothing to suggest that Greedo was originally supposed to shoot first. Yet, in a quote which can be found here, George says the following:

    It was always meant that Greedo fired first. In the original film you don't get that too well.

    Now I've shown my case as to why George is lying about this. You can go ahead and post your case that he wasn't.
  16. Darth_Insidious Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2002
    star 4
    And what you just posted, about not clearly seeing that Greedo shoots first, is not plausible. There was only one blaster shot that was heard. Had Greedo indeed originally shot first, we would have heard two.
  17. DrEvazan Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jun 19, 2002
    star 4
    i was just going to add that. there is only one blast, so actually not only does Greedo not shoot first, he doesnt shoot at all.
  18. Shelley Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 9, 2001
    star 5
    you had plenty to say about Gollum without having seen the film in the Jar Jar V. Gollum thread.

    you dont really want me to pull up the quotes do you?


    I said Gollum didn't look that impressive, based on the clips I'd seen. And after seeing the movie, I'm even less impressed.
  19. Shelley Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 9, 2001
    star 5
    No Shelley, it's gotten repetetive because you've spouted it over and over again in vain attempts to cover up your lack of proof for nearly everything that flows from your mouth.

    Change that around to: the insults and hateful words ("Get that through your thick head" "Pathetic" "You make a fool of yourself every time you post" "A fan of the prequels talking about good acting is one of the most laughable things I've seen on these forums") you've spouted in your vain attempts to cover up your lack of proof for nearly everything that flows from your mouth.

    You've yet to provide a single shred of proof that Kurtz made Lucas care about effects over story, that he's what made ANH and ESB great. You've yet to prove that Lucas is a liar, or that Frank Darabont is a liar.

    My claim is as follows: all the evidence that we have points to Han originally being the one to shoot first. This is back up by:

    a) Not one single draft of Star Wars, not one called for Greedo to shoot first. The screenplay drafts can be found here.


    And...? How do you know Lucas didn't plan to have Greedo shoot first, but then changed his mind?

    The only draft that even resembles the movie that we got was the published one. So saying the other drafts don't show that is a moot point.

    KURTZ: Yeah, I really was livid about that one. I think it was a total ? it ruins the scene, basically.

    OK, so he gets all histrionic about it.

    The scene was never intended that way. Han Solo realized that Greedo was out to get him and he had to blast him first or he would lose his life. It shows you how much of a mercenary he is. That's what the point of the scene was.

    No, that's what he THOUGHT the point of the scene was.

    And so the way they've changed it around, it loses the whole impact of that whole aspect of it.

    What whole aspect of it? How does he know that that's what Lucas intended?

    KURTZ: Well, he can say that was his original intention, but we could have shot it that way very easily. There was no reason that it couldn't have been shot that way. It was shot and edited the way it was because that's the way the script was. That's what he wanted at the time.

    How does Kurtz know? Can he read Lucas' mind?

    There is nothing to suggest that Greedo was originally supposed to shoot first. Yet, in a quote which can be found here, George says the following:

    It was always meant that Greedo fired first. In the original film you don't get that too well.

    Now I've shown my case as to why George is lying about this. You can go ahead and post your case that he wasn't.


    I did. You have provided no proof that it wasn't Lucas' original intention. As for "you only hear one blaster shot," actually, it doesn't sound distinctly like one blaster shot.
  20. Darth Geist Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 1999
    star 5
    I have to go with Insidious on this one, Shelley. Thus far, all the evidence on the table is in his favor.
  21. JohnWilliams00 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 29, 2002
    star 4
    Gary Kurtz was responsible for finding director Irvin Kershner, writer Lawrence Kasdan, and puppeteer Frank Oz for ESB, not Lucas. If those things never happened for Star Wars 20 years ago, the series would not be the same. The prequels may never have existed if it were not for the astounding success and influence of ESB in 1980.

    Continue calling Gary Kurtz a non-entity behind Star Wars' success all you want, you'd still be wrong. Most of what some of you fans are enjoying this very day (the Prequels) owe a lot to the success of ESB, and it didn't become a masterpiece or a classic through some relaxed, low-key atmostphere. It was made through a lot of intense, hard work and many, many thorough (some heated) discussions. I frankly think that's where the best work comes from.

    And from my point of view, George has everything he could ever ask for today. He's no longer shackled by limited technology or money or time. He doesn't have anyone barking at him when he's making decisions or writing. He doesn't have to request or beg for good talent....they go to him because of their love of Star Wars. King George has everything before his feet.

    Then how come George has still managed to make the worst films in the series (one of them is one of the worst films of last year)? It would seem like, for Star Wars at least, the more you have, the better a movie should be. If this is George's unbridled vision, goodness, give me a younger, poorer, more stressed-out George anyday. Sometimes I can't believe American Graffitti and Attack of the Clones are made by the same man.







  22. Darth_Insidious Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2002
    star 4
    Right, so that's your whole "case" Shelley?

    Quick poll: who's case is more convincing and factually supported?

    Already got one from DG that agrees with mine :)
  23. Shelley Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 9, 2001
    star 5
    Gary Kurtz was responsible for finding director Irvin Kershner, writer Lawrence Kasdan, and puppeteer Frank Oz for ESB, not Lucas.

    How so?

    Quote from Frank Oz:

    So how did you first get involved with Star Wars?

    I was doing the Muppet movie in Los Angeles, and met Gary Kurtz, who was doing Empire. They had the character Yoda and they needed someone for him, so they went to Jim (Henson). And Jim was too busy, so he recommended me. I was in my trailer the first time I saw the drawing of Yoda, and for some reason it clicked into me, and I read the plot and just got the character.


    Quote from Lawrence Kasdan:

    I had done the sequels to the "Star Wars" movies because George had asked me to do it. You know, I had finished "Raiders," and he asked to come in and help him out with "Empire" ? he was in a spot. And it was great fun, and it was over relatively quickly. Then I went off and I made "Body Heat" ? partially with the support of George ? and I had a directing career that was going pretty good. He asked me to come back and just write "Jedi" because he was really desperate at that point. We did it together, and we did it really fast; I felt like it was a job of work. But I?m not a huge sequel fan, and I didn?t see any reason for me to be working on the "Indiana Jones" series.

    If those things never happened for Star Wars, who knows where Star Wars would be today? The prequels may never have existed if it were not for the astounding success and influence of ESB in 1980.

    How so?

    Continue calling Gary Kurtz a non-entity behind Star Wars' success all you want, you'd still be wrong.

    Who said he was a non-entity? I just don't think he's the main reason behind the greatness of the OT, the way so many bashers do, offering no proof.

    Most of what some of you fans are enjoying this very day (the Prequels) owe a lot to the greatness of ESB,

    How so?
  24. Shelley Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 9, 2001
    star 5
    Right, so that's your whole "case" Shelley?

    Quick poll: who's case is more convincing and factually supported?

    Already got one from DG that agrees with mine


    Wow, and Darth Geist is a basher just like you are.
  25. JohnWilliams00 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 29, 2002
    star 4
    Who said he was a non-entity? I just don't think he's the main reason behind the greatness of the OT, the way so many bashers do, offering no proof.

    I don't think we ever said he was the MAIN reason. I believe ANH and ESB, and to a lesser degree ROTJ, were great, because of of the right mix of collaborators at that time. So I give nods to the men like Kasdan, Kershner, Oz, and Kurtz for their varying input. (as much as you hate seeing Kurtz' name in that group)

    You don't major in film and art from USC and offer absolutely no input or contribution at all. Kurtz was a producer on American Graffitti, ANH, and ESB, and that leads me to believe Lucas liked him enough to have him on board. It was only during ESB where there was some strife, mainly with the budget, since so much was riding on this sequel at the time.) I don't think Kurtz is a bad man. I even suspect that if George and Kurtz were working on a smaller, NON-Star Wars film instead (like Graffitti), they would have continued their partnership. I think George may have liked Kurtz but when it came to the high-profile SW films, they decided to split.

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