Variety’s 10 Screenwriters To Watch

Variety has released their annual 10 Screenwriters to Watch issue. The 2007 edition features the following screenwriters:

Michael Bacall (Manic, Bookies, Justice Deferred, Hole Shot, In Search of Captain Zero, Prey, The King of Kong, Psycho Funky Chimp, and Edgar Wright’s Scott Pilgrim’s Precious Little Life)
Age: 34
Inspired by: The Coen brothers, Paul Schrader, Don DeLillo, Dr. Seuss

Dana Fox (The Wedding Date, What Happens in Vegas): “That’s going to be really, really hard. I’m glad I learned the lesson, ‘Failure is OK.’ ”
Age: 30
Inspired by: “The J’s — Jim Brooks, John Hughes, Jay Roach; the movie and the music of ‘Once’; and my friends.”

Kelly Fremon (Ticket to Ride, Intimate Strangers)
Age: 27
Inspired by: John Hughes, Christopher Guest, Alexander Payne, Nick Hornby and David Sedaris. “I love stuff that’s funny because it’s true-to-life, like when you see a character who reminds you exactly of one of your relatives.”

Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen (Superbad, The Pineapple Express): “It’s mostly out of fear,” Rogen says. “I will never pretend that I will know exactly what will make people laugh every time.”
Ages: Goldberg, 24; Rogen, 25
Inspired by: Goldberg: “The Simpsons,” “The Kids in the Hall” and “The Twilight Zone”; Rogen: “Quentin Tarantino (‘Pulp Fiction’ was mind-boggling to me when I was young) …, ‘Seinfeld’ and ‘The Simpsons’ — I think those were equally of importance.”

Jessica Goldberg (Absent Hearts, Amadou Ly): “I love films where the political meets the personal in people’s lives — really intense portraits of human beings.”
Age: 34
Inspired by: Character-driven pics like “Nashville” as well as several by Martin Scorcese; a favorite legit production: “The Pillowman” by Martin McDonagh

Jason Dean Hall (Rodney on the Roq, Easy, .08, Burns): “I don’t want to be the guy who writes the same movie over and over again. If I’m not challenged, I’m not inspired.”
Age: 32
Inspired by: Hal Ashby films, “Five Easy Pieces,” “The Godfather,” Michael Mann films, novel “The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay”

Joshua Zetumer (Villain, The Infiltrator): “I’d love to do a big science-fiction epic fantasy. It’s about time my characters started having some fun.”
Age: 26
Inspired by: Film noir, early-’70s American cinema (“‘Chinatown’ has influenced my work more than any other film”); and Stanley Kubrick

Christopher Landon (Larry Clark’s Another Day in Paradise, Blood and Chocolate, Disturbia, The Lesson, Unman, Wittering and Zigo, The Flock, Burning Palms)
Age: 32
Inspired by: Alfred Hitchcock (” ‘Rear Window’ is one of my favorite films”). “It might sound corny, but my dad (Michael Landon) was a big inspiration. His work was very much grounded in the emotional, and I really think I did learn that from him.”

Peter Straughan (Sixty Six, Mrs. Ratcliffe’s Revolution, Men Who Stare at Goats, Our Brand Is Crisis, Second Lives, How to Lose Friends and Alienate People)
Age: 38
Inspired by: “The Coen brothers were a first love for me; Hal Ashby; and Mamet when I started off in theater was a big inspiration.”

Danny Strong (Sydney Pollack’s Recount)
Age: 33
Inspired by: “Arthur Miller is just my biggest inspiration. His stories are dramatically so exciting and engaging. They grip you by the throat and don’t let you go. And then when it’s done, it has such a moral clarity to it. He’s able to grab you viscerally and stimulate you intellectually at the same time.”

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