Posted on Tuesday, May 29th, 2012 by Russ Fischer
We like Bobcat Goldthwait. In fact, we like him quite a bit. It’s great to see a guy who could have fallen into replaying one career moment take charge of his own path and make the stuff he wants to make. Goldthwait’s new film God Bless America is in some theaters now and also playing on VOD. The movie has been finished for a while — it premiered last September at TIFF — and so it isn’t unreasonable to hope that, in addition to promoting the film, Goldthwait has some new stuff in the works.
Jeff Goldsmith did a Q&A with Goldthwait after a screening of God Bless America, and the conversation is presented on Goldsmith’s Q&A podcast. During that conversation, which is initially derailed by Goldsmith’s questions about the 1988 film Hot to Trot, Goldthwait mentions a few possible follow-up projects that he wrote before making God Bless America. Some of them are nuts. Check out his comments below.
First up, we’ve known for a while that Bobcat is working to turn the Kinks’ record Schoolboys in Disgrace into a musical, and that is still in the works:
I’ve been working with Ray Davies on that, trying to get a cast together.
But the podcast also sees the writer/director throwing out a bunch of other film ideas, a couple of which are just as crazy as God Bless America, if not more so. One he wrote after World’s Greatest Dad is called Anklebiters:
There was a minister in Wisconsin who got arrested because he’d been stealing aborted foetuses and having Christian burials for them. I thought this just writes itself. Zombie foetuses, you know?
Another could be a genre film, kind of a western, that he talks about being a new Billy Jack movie where the character is gay. This would be called Rio Malo, and he explains “I want to make a movie that if you were a gay thirteen year old boy it’s going to be the best movie you’re ever gonna see except 300.” Which sounds great.
I wanted to have this really ass-kicking marine who gets kicked out during Don’t Ask Don’t Tell and he goes into this homophobic town and they call him fag at the bar when he’s just trying to get a drink and he says “I’m gonna need you to stop saying that word.” And he says “What, fag, what are you going to do?” [The guys says] “Well, I’m gonna dislocate his shoulder, I’m gonna gouge his eyeballs out and I’m gonna kick you in the larynx and you wanna know something? There’s not a goddamn thing you can do about it.” And in the script it just says “And he does.” He goes back to the bartender and he takes the shot of whisky and he throws it down and “Is there any place for a man to stay in this town?” and it cuts and he’s in bed with the bartender.
He says he wants the jokes in that one to be about perceptions, not about the gay community. But there’s a problem, because a lot of action actors don’t want to make out with guys on screen.
There’s another one, which his wife called “wholesome” after reading the script, called Planet Bill. He explains that one, which he calls both a Miracle on 34th Street kind of movie, and a Michel Gondry-type film, as follows.
When I was a kid I had an imagination and if you have an imagination and you’re a kid, you’re ostracized… you’re a teachers worst nightmare if you’re a kid going “We don’t really know when Jesus was born they just picked that day.”
It’s based on my childhood… the little boy is seven and [he's looking out the window in class] and an octopus shoots out from the manhole cover and grabs a sewer worker and the teacher starts yelling at the kid and he looks again and there is no tentacle. He looks out the window again and there’s a cowboy on an ostrich and another ostrich with a saddle and he’s like “C’mon, c’mon” but then he looks and there’s no ostrich. And then he looks out the window and there’s this weird hobo in ’69 spacesuit with a black umbrella waving at him. The teacher yells at him, but he looks back and [the hobo] is still there. I wanted to do a Miracle on 34th Street kind of movie.
Finally, he jokes about trying to get Savage Steve Holland to bring the cast of One Crazy Summer together for a new film. This one will never happen, but it’s a great idea.
We’re all our age now, and at the end of One Crazy Summer, Cusack’s character wants to be an animator, and our idea for One Crazy Autumn (laughing) is he goes off and becomes a huge animator, like he’s running Pixar, but he’s lost his sense of humor and he doesn’t have his old friends around him any more. Not based in reality at all. And we get all the cast back together and we try to save him from himself. And from making The Raven.
All good stuff, and you can hear the comments at the one hour, twenty-one minute mark in the podcast. The whole thing is worth a listen, especially as it gets weird early on. [Jeff Goldsmith via Bleeding Cool]