TVNewser FishbowlDC AgencySpy TVSpy LostRemote PRNewser SocialTimes AllFacebook 10,000 Words GalleyCat UnBeige MediaJobsDaily

Robert McKee Testifies About Sahara Script, Holds Nose

movieposter.jpg

Robert McKee of the eponymous screenwriting course, testified that Sahara was a bad novel and worse script. Glenn Bunting reports on the breach-of-contract case between author Clive Cussler and tycoon-turned-producer Philip Anschutz. Anschultz paid $10 million for the rights to the book, and got stuck with Cussler as screenwriter, to boot, but Sahara tanked at the box office.

McKee’s seminars are well-attended–former student, Charlie Kauffman wrote one into a scene in Adaptation. (But not McKee–Brian Cox played him, as he didn’t want to appear in a bad movie.)

The open secret in Hollywood is that McKee’s never had a screenplay produced. To be fair, he did television work for Kojak and Columbo and his scripts have been optioned, which is pretty much a sympathy shtup.

McKee’s getting paid well as an expert witness, too. $500 a hour to say things like:

Bad writing offends me.

Join the club, pally.

Mediabistro Course

Overcoming Writer's Block

Overcoming Writer's BlockUse proven tools and exercises to get back to writing! Starting July 15, learn a process that will help you pinpoint your optimal writing conditions, structure your time and build a framework to increase your productivity. Register now!