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Screenwriters to Watch: Political Stories Hot in Hollywood

Screenwriters to Watch: Political Stories Hot in Hollywood

For Variety’s special 10 Screenwriters to Watch issue, which usually favors Hollywood talent, I had the opportunity to profile two upcoming scribes. While the two men couldn’t be further in style and personality, they both coincidentally share a interest in geopolitics, post-9/11 realizations about the ways of the world, and scripts that deal with international intrigue (Matthew Michael Carnahan’s The Kingdom and Kelley Sane’s Rendition). If the industry is going gaga over guys like this and a gal like Helen Crawley, who wrote the wartime “Hearts and Minds“, I suspect we’ll be seeing more Syrianas and political dramas coming out of Hollywood soon.

I was also happily surprised to see on the list foreign talents, Aussie rocker Nick Cave (The Proposition) and Brit playwright Martin McDonagh (“The Beauty Queen of Leenane”) and a big shout out to Craig Zahler, my NYU film school alumn. Congrats Craig!

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Danielle DiGiacomo

That’s great that Hollywood is finally getting political, and kudos to George Clooney for his work helping with that. Hell, if it takes one of the most perfect, charming men alive to do it, so be it! I also wanted to note that there are some worthy political docs coming out that are lower profile than the fame-fueled Al Gore doc. CAN MR. SMITH GO TO WASHINGTON ANYMORE? directed by Frank Popper, a first-time filmmaker, just won the Audience Award at Silverdocs. It is about a 29 year old political underdog running for Congress. There is going to be a screening on June 18th at Makor (35 W. 67th Street) at 7:30 pm, followed by a director Q & A and a free reception. So I encourage anyone who is interested in politics (and good documentary) to come out and watch the film!

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