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Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Spielberg Finds Bus, Throws Lucas Under It....Again

You may not want to "friend" Steven Spielberg on Facebook just yet.  Don't worry, you won't get a virus - you won't get much a of a friend either.  Sure he has some great qualities: he is one of the best directors of all time (Jaws, Schindler's List, Close Encounters), he has some Oscars, he seems like a nice family man, he has an awesome beard - beyond that is where his struggles begin.  As a friend, he will stick by you think and thin. Great!  But, he lacks one important trait - the ability to tell a friend the truth.

A good friend has the guts to tell it to you like it is, to protect you from yourself and your own stupid ideas.  Spielberg has failed that test multiple times.  A few weeks back he has made the decision to redeem himself for a mistake from his past; his foolish digital altering of the classic, E.T.  Admirable to admit your mistakes and better yet, fix them.  Where he falters is he did not use that redemption as an opportunity to grab his buddy, George Lucas, by the beard and shake some sense into him to do the same thing.  George needs a good beard shaking, someone to tell him to stop altering his films - that beardshaker was supposed to be his self proclaimed friend Steven Spielberg.

During my youth, if my friends never steered me in the right direction from my poor decisions I would probably still be sporting a mullet and possibly would have given up my dream of becoming a dentist and gone into a less lucrative career in the arts - oh wait... well at least they got me to ditch the mullet.

Now again, just a few weeks later, Spielberg is proving again that he may not be the level of friend worthy of singing the Golden Girls theme to.  He spoke with the press about the mistake made with the last installment of the Indiana Jones films, "Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull" and used the opportunity to throw Lucas under the bus.  Nice friend.  Sure he took the hit on one poor aspect of the film - the infamous Nuke the Fridge sequence (video below) - but he also took the time to point out that Lucas made the worst decision ever executed in an Indiana Jones film, (SPOILER) the inclusion of (I SAID SPOILER) aliens.  Not only did he blame Lucas for the huge misstep, he also admitted to not doing anything to stop it - in other words he not only let Lucas keep his proverbial mullet he was in the barber shop with him and did not offer the much needed friendly hairstyling advice.

"Blame me. Don't blame George. That was my silly idea," he told Empire.
"People stopped saying, 'Jump the shark'. They now say, 'Nuked the fridge'. I'm proud of that. I'm glad I was able to bring that into popular culture."

Despite the criticisms, Spielberg said he was "happy" with the film but "sympathises" with people who didn't like the extraterrestrial plot developments.
"George and I had big arguments about (that). I didn't want these things to be either aliens or inter-dimensional beings. But I am loyal to my best friend. When he writes a story he believes in - even if I don't believe in it - I'm going to shoot the movie the way George envisaged it.
"I'll add my own touches, I'll bring my own cast in, I'll shoot the way I want to shoot it, but I will always defer to George as the storyteller of the Indy series. I will never fight him on that."

Steven, that is all fine.  You are excused...from nothing.  Shame on you.  Big finger of shame!  A friend needed you and you threw your hands in the air and walked away.   Would Thelma step out of the car when Louise wanted to go on a one way trip, would Lewis tell Clark he did not feel like walking today, would Piglet not help Pooh find the honey?  Hell no.  Friends stick by their friends.  I once wanted to invest all my high school graduation money into a converting my old Mercury Cougar into a convertible, my friends talked me out of it.  So, I used the money to buy a timeless media device, a Sony Discman.  (Who doesn't have one of those on their belt clips?)  That is what friends are for.

Spielberg also admitted during the interview that a new Indiana Jones was in the works.  Let's just hope Steve can find it in himself to man up and tell George what the truth - otherwise we may be watching Indiana Jones and the Temple of Howard the Duck.

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