Scott Phillips. Writer of Films. Director of Movies. Lover of Trek. His credits include writing the cult-classic DRIVE, being the auteur behind zombie epic STINK OF FLESH and the phenomenal low-bud film GIMME SKELTER, scripting the CW Kids action series KAMEN RIDER DRAGON KNIGHT and authoring several novels and short stories. His friends and coworkers have included B-movie starlets, Steven Seagal, various porn stars, the Chairman of Iron Chef America, Leatherface and Lloyd Kaufman... Now he's come to the ECN to tell tales and ripping yarns of derring-do in moviedom. Check out his official site and buy his short story collection TALES OF MISERY AND IMAGINATION and his examination of B-movie fantasmagory, ON ANY SCREEN on Amazon. This particular story has been regifted by Scott from his earlier column 'Hollywood & Whine' but at least 4 words have been changed, so we can call it a new story, right?
This is the story of sex and the single screenwriter.
(Please note that some content may not be suitable for children)
Down But Not So Dirty In Los Angeles
What better way to kick off my new column here on the ol' Eye Crave Network than to talk about sex in Hollywood? And man, I really wish I could do that, but sadly, all I can talk about is the decided lack of sex in Tinseltown, at least for this particular screenwriter. I even had two separate shots at it, since I lived in L.A. in 1995 and again from mid-1998 to early 2000, and I still couldn't notch the bedpost.
Let's start with some backstory: I'm yet another of those guys who made short films as a kid (only we didn't have video cameras, we had to use actual film, which was a colossal pain in the ass), and I started writing feature-length scripts when I was 18. I was too big a chicken to move to L.A. until much later, though. In 1993-'94, I owned a video store in Albuquerque that specialized in horror, cult, Asian action and all manner of oddball movies. In July 1994, I sold the video store to one of my customers, then wrote a script called Road to Ruin, which in my fevered mind I pictured as a vehicle for Jackie Chan and Sylvester Stallone. Figuring the time had come, I moved to L.A. in February of 1995. As luck would have it, a friend of mine knew Linnea Quigley, and I wound up renting a room in Linnea's house. Now, that right there seems like a recipe for wanton adventure, but aside from coming home from work (at a makeup effects house) one day to find Lorissa McComas (star of Lapdancing, a terrible flick which nevertheless gets my highest recommendation) rolling around topless by the swimming pool while Linnea snapped photos of her, nothing much happened that could be called arousing.
I'm trying to remember if I ever even came close to an opportunity to score in 1995... part of the problem was that, well, I was a screenwriter, and I'm sure you've heard the old joke about the actress who was so dumb, etc. Worse yet, I was a screenwriter who had only been paid to perform the function one time, when Jeff Burr hired me to rewrite a script he had lying around. Technically, I was an occasionally-employed makeup effects guy and sometime-cheeseburger-fetcher -- and who the hell wants to bang a cheeseburger-fetcher? Okay, besides Kevin Smith?
Perhaps more backstory is in order to better make the case against myself: I should explain that I've rarely been one to successfully close the deal, thanks to my shyness and inability to believe that any woman would ever want to sleep with me. To illustrate: when I was a teenager, a saucy young lady opted to make out with me. During this procedure, she unfastened my belt and pulled it out of my jeans. In response, I actually thought the following: She just wants me to be comfortable. Need I say more? I pretty much need to be clubbed over the head and dragged back to the cave.
So, yeah, 1995 was a dry season. However, in July, my manager successfully closed a deal, this one for the sale of Road to Ruin, which wound up being called Drive and was shot the following year, starring Mark Dacascos, Kadeem Hardison and Brittany Murphy. I did wind up on the receiving end of a squealie hug from Brittany, so that's gotta count for something.
Inexplicably, I moved back to Albuquerque after selling that script, but kept my hand in the game by traveling regularly to Hollywood. I don't like to kiss and tell, but things got a little better once I was back on my home turf, and eventually I wound up living with a girl. She wanted to move to L.A. and I felt like it was time to be back there, so in July of 1998, we landed in North Hollywood. In January of 1999, she dumped me for the Art Director on Hustler's Honey Buns magazine. And so I returned to the actionless ways of the loosely-employed screenwriter.
Admittedly, in 1999 there were a couple of opportunities to take care of the devil's business, but one of them involved a dumpy chick who kept trying to talk me out of being a writer (now that I think about it, I probably should've married her), and the other involved another man's wife (and the less said about that, the better). My manager thought I should ask out the cute sacker-girl at the grocery store I shopped at whenever I could afford food, but considering that she was in a much higher income bracket than I was, I figured nothing good could come of it.
In February of 2000, I moved back to Albuquerque once again, where, oddly enough, the situation improved considerably. I've been with my current girlfriend since late 2005; she appears to be aware of the fact that I'm a screenwriter, but continues to come home at night. Of course, our relationship is kind of like that of Wez and the guy in the Kajagoogoo wig from The Road Warrior -- and I doubt I have to mention I'm the dude on the back of the bike.