And Hollywood Rumor of the Week honors go to the one currently catapulting around town and into our inbox, concerning a suspicious package sent to New Line president of production Toby Emmerich that reportedly contained a severed finger, resulting in their offices shutting down for a police investigation. What actually happened, as best as we can piece together, is described in the following e-mail from an operative:
A package addressed to Toby Emmerich was sent to the New Line mailroom shortly before lunch. Taped to the front was some sort of "confessional" letter from a crazed psychopath. New Line called the bomb squad. The bomb squad arrived, scanned the packaged with a portable xray, and saw "fingers" inside.
They then evacuated the building before opening the package discovering...plastic fingers. Apparently, the whole thing was a "pitch" to Toby. And just like when your guidance counselor told you that story about the kid who sent their shoe to Georgetown ("Hey, now that I've got my foot in the door..."), this one is a definite don't, fellas...
There are still several dangling threads to this curious case of overzealous pitchmanship: In one version, for example, the writer was merely trying to sell the studio on a Jane Austen adaptation, which would make his choice of a dismembered digit curious, to say the least. Nevertheless, there are lessons to be learned here about the creative deployment of body-parts in the service of furthering your screenwriting career: Next time, try a spandex singlet, beer helmet, and fake beard. It may not get your diet movie off the ground, but at least it ensures that all your hard work won't be detonated into confetti by a SWAT team who minutes ago put out an APB for The Finger-Chop Killer.