John August, the screenwriter frequently employed by Tim Burton and writer/director of soon-to-be-released The Nines, has been guest blogging over at EW's PopWatch. (August is no stranger to the world of blogspots, having for a number of years now applied his know-how to his own, screenwriter's resource blog—to our knowledge, the one place on the internet where aspiring Hollywood scribes can get solid advice on how best to answer the questions that might one day be asked of them for DVD bonus materials.) In today's PopWatch post, August expresses his understandable frustration with ill-informed junket reporters:
Here was the worst question of the day: "Have you ever seen a ghost?"
I was too polite to call this lazy reporter on her hackery. She clearly had not seen the movie, or read the production notes, and was sitting down for this interview after only seeing the trailer. She'd mistakenly thought it was a haunted house movie. It's not.
I answered the irrelevant question as earnestly as I could, knowing that in four minutes and 12 seconds, another reporter would be sitting in her place...
The shamed reporter—who August mercifully denied to identify by name and affiliation—obviously has a great deal to learn about eliciting fresh material from above-the-title talent exhausted from hours of unimaginative interviews. For starters, merely watching the film's trailer is almost never enough preparation, but maybe the weary directing veteran of one feature might make an allowance when that trailer is deftly cut to give the impression that a triptych starring Ryan Reynolds that "explores the relationships between author and character, actor and role, creator and creation," is instead a haunted house movie that might draw the Amityville Horror crowd to its opening weekend.