Monday, November 26, 2012

Our Day with Ally Sheedy

The 1970's are considered to be the height of American cinema. That storied decade gave us The Godfather, The French Connection, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Dog Day Afternoon, Manhattan and Jaws.

Sadly, the 1980's followed with such stellar films as Yentl, Ishtar, and Over The Top.

1985 also gave us the Breakfast Club, a breakout vehicle for many brat packers including Judd Nelson, Emilio Estevez and Anthony Michael Hall -- all of whom went on to make a huge impact on the thespianic arts.

I know that for many The Breakfast Club has a lot of nostalgic value. For me it has none. Well, almost none.

You see following its release, another star, Ally Sheedy, also found instant fame and was quickly catapulted unto the A list of actresses. Determined not to become a Rom-Com princess in the John Hughes fantasy world, Ally began searching out meatier, more dramatic roles. And she became a Method Actor.

So when she agreed to play the character of a fast rising Art Director at a hip ad agency there was only one thing to do -- hang out with a creative team at Chiat/Day.

Perhaps because all the other teams were involved with some award-winning campaigns, and because we were not, we were chosen for the task.

The plan was for Ms. Sheedy to spend an entire day with my partner and I to get a feel for what we did and how we did it. If memory serves, she strolled in around 11 o'clock. We exchanged some small talk. She was very pleasant. And then she watched as my partner kerned some body copy and asked me to fill in some widows on a 1/2 page ad for the 1991 Nissan Maxima.

Hardly the stuff of Shakespeare.

She took us to lunch at the Rose Cafe and returned to the office so she could watch us get briefed on a new assignment and shoot rubber bands at the other creative teams in the adjoining cubicles. In addition to her high cheekbones and strong chin, Ms. Sheedy has been blessed with a quick mind.

Because by 2:30 PM her limo showed up and she was out of there.

We eagerly awaited the movie's release. Hoping to get a screen credit as technical consultants. But like so many Hollywood dreams, we were crushed. We found out the film got shit-canned.

Apparently the studio execs came to the conclusion that movies about people in advertising are just not that interesting. I could have saved them millions of development dollars. I have 4 half-written screenplays to that effect.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It appears that Ally picked up all she needed to know about advertising in 3.5 hours. To think that you can spend 4+ years in a university and still not know shit. That she decided not to do the movie (maybe?) is testament to her good taste.