Warren Miller’s Avant Garde!® If you don't do it this year, you'll be one year older when you do.
EXT. OFFICE DOOR – NIGHT
Sign reads ‘Warren Miller Productions”
Three film executives sit at table: CHARLIE, MARIA, JIM. Expensive suits, watches, espressos. WARREN MILLER sits quietly to the side, wearing a beret, a ruffled artist’s shirts, and capris.
Maria, what we got for Q2?
Revenue’s up 7.8%, gross profit 11.2%
That’s great –
for normal people. Time Warner shareholders expect
grarly growth – like growth so epic your face will melt off.
CHARLIE pauses, then laughs. The other execs obsequiously join him.
(deadly serious again)
Doug, product placement update?
We’ve got Joe Camel and Bud Light Buddy in the new kid’s skiing videos…
Cigarette and beer, in a children’s film?
DOUG nods nervously
We are winning. Bi-winning!
Alright, the next Warren Miller feature, premiering at the
2011 Vail Film Festival. Ideas?
Well I’ve got this idea…
Warren, please. You’re here in name only.
(to the executives)
Can I get some winning ideas?
Uh, how about…like…guys on skis…jumping off cliffs….?
And…folksy narration…with family-friendly jokes…?
Brilliant. We are Vatican assassins!
Warren stands up.
But I have a vision, something fresh, something new,
I want to make an art film!
(aside, to execs)
Here we go again…avant garde, or should I say, avant ski?!
The three execs snort laughs.
All my life, I’ve made these campy ski films. But I have this vision –
inspired by Bergman, Kurosawa, Brakhage, It’s only by breaking through…
…artistic boundaries, that we find ourselves – and true success.
I must express myself as an artist. If I don't do it this year,
I’ll be one year older when I do.
Uh, Warren you’re making a ski film. No art.
I won’t sell out to the man! I…
Uh, Warren, you already sold out to the man. Time Warner. We OWN you.
Now listen up, I’m only babysitting this division until I break into features. And there’s
only one kind of film you’ll be making, a SKI film, capiche?
Charlie produces a white rabbit, and puts pistol to its head.
Capiche? Now get to work, or the ski bunny dies!
Warrren slumps in resignation.
EXT – NIGHT
Warren Miller walks a desolate road. Charles Bukowski, sodium lights. The deepest despair. Suddenly, he smiles, a brilliant idea!
FLASHBACK OR V/O
There’s only one kind of film you’ll be making, a SKI film, capiche?
An arty ski film, a skiing art film…
Intangible, black and white images. Abstract close ups and cut aways of ski images. Rhythmic editing.
A rhythmic Phillip Glass-style score.
WARREN (voice over) As I caress my boards With fiery hot crimson wax And sharpen the blades
And glide through crisp air On a spider’s web of steel To the powered peaks
On to the Back Bowls And the soft magic white carpet of Blue Sky Basin
Prima and Pronto The crystal dawning in my mind Skiing is my soul
INT. THEATER - NIGHT
The film ends. SILENCE.
Warren smiling blissfully.
CUT TO or PULL BACK TO REVEAL
The audience stares silently at Warren Miller’s film, mouths wide open in disbelief. CHARLIE stunned, shaking in anger. One person tentatively starts to CLAP. Others slowly join in, with increasing intensity. Finally, the audience stands and burst into a thunderous standing ovation.
EXT. THEATER – NIGHT
WARREN MILLER exits happily. CHARLIE intercepts him.
What the hell was that, Warren?! I gave you explicit orders
to make a ski film! I am going to cut off your head and..
BILL LEVASSSEUR cuts in.
Mr. Miller, that was absolutely brilliant, I’m, I’m speechless,
On behalf of the Vail Film Festival, we would like to offer you a
contract to make your next film, $100 million budget, anything you want.
Excuse me, I’m with Time Warner. We own him.
Oh. Didn’t you get the memo? The Vail Film Festival has had a very
successful 2011 event, and we used the proceeds to acquire
(displaying document with gold seal and blue ribbon)
Time Warner this morning. Oh, and ah, you’re fired.
Defeat is not an option. You picked a fight with a warlock..
(clapping hands, chop chop)
Two guards appear instantly and whisk away CHARLIE.
BILL So, Mr. Miller, $100 million budget, complete artistic freedom,
just sign on the dotted line.
(handing over contract)
Thanks, Bill, but I’m, I’m gonna pass. All is need is my Olympus
and an artistic muse.
(smiling, hand to heart)
A genius at work.
Roll credits as festival goers are interviewed.
The way he captured the fragmented reality of human
consciousness, it was like, like, totally…
Clearly Warren Miller has become the most important filmmaker
of our time. He’s the Bresson, the Herzog of our generation.