Here it is: I'm sick of this Hollywood strike. I'm sick of hearing about it, I'm sick of writing about it, I'm sick of thinking about how many films could potentially suffer because they're being rushed into production faster than folks have time do dry the ink on their screenplays. It's ridiculous. I'm sick of reading quotes and analysis -- I'm sick of the words "new media" -- and I'm sick over the fact that, amidst all this, I haven't heard one person mention the average moviegoer. The person who's taking their wallet on a Saturday night, and shoveling out an absurd amount of money (if we're to include their hungry dates and/or children) to help pay the salaries of those who want to walk off the job.
"Oh, but the writers! It's the writers that are being shafted!" Yeah, talk to me when they're not making high six-figures on a script. I'm sure not all the writers are making that kind of money, but none of them are making minimum wage, busting their ass to put food on the table, living paycheck to paycheck while their significant other works three jobs. Perhaps there are working writers who don't make a fortune, but I doubt the extra "new media" dollars will help them get off welfare. I'm not exactly sure what the actors (SAG) and directors (DGA) are looking for (enough money to stop waitressing at Outback Steakhouse?), but how about we settle these damn disputes already. Is it really that hard? Do human beings exist out in Hollywood, or are they all designed to bleed absurd amounts of money out their ass?
Here's what I suggest: How about WE strike. What are WE getting? I didn't see a studio executive standing outside my screening of The Brothers Solomon with a coupon for a free tub of popcorn and a "Thank You" note after I spent 10 bucks on a ticket and another five on a small soda that gave me more gas than a 24-hour Taco Bell binge. They're threatening to walk off the job on June 1st -- how about WE stop seeing their films when that happens? There are plenty of things I could spend my money on (whatever little I make doing this -- yup, I don't have the luxury of being in a guild) -- perhaps I'll read a book. There's a friggin' thought! I'd like to know what Hollywood is giving us. You don't hear much about that, do you? Best case scenario: There's no strike and we continue to get crummy movies. Worse case scenario: There is a strike, we have to read about it twelve times a day, and we still get crummy movies. Man, do I wish us moviegoers had our own guild. Then we could threaten to strike, demand that with every fifth movie ticket we buy, we get two free. Demand that those so-called "value meals" inside theaters actually live up to what they're preaching, instead of raping the word for all its worth. What value? 13 bucks for a soda and a popcorn is a value? On what f**king planet?
So let's band together and strike on June 1st. While the actors, writers and directors fight over how many bags of money they get to stick under their pillows at night, we'll just do something else. Like read a book. Or take our loved ones out for dinner. Maybe then -- get this -- someone will actually appreciate us.