The last time Adam and I went out on a date night, I pulled one of my typical conversation starters. Usually they are like, "If you were an appliance, which one would you be...?" or something lame like that, but this time, I came up with one that raised his eyebrows. He was impressed.
If you could work with anyone, who would it be?
"That's actually not a bad question," he said, disarming his ammo of insults. "I won't even make fun of you for that."
I limited it to five people, and I don't remember who his were, but I sure do remember mine. So, because I know you're dying to know...this is my dream list of people I would one day get to work with.
1. Jason Katims. The creator of Friday Night Lights and Parenthood.
What I admire most about Mr. Katims is his ability to create real characters, put them in real situations and make the viewer feel something unexpected. His ability to create dialogue for so many people in one scene and still make it believable is brilliant, and I know some of the credit goes to the actors, but it is his amazing writing that brings some of my all-time favorite characters to life. In truth, I'd be happy just watching him at a roundtable of writers, listening to his process and learning exactly how he does what he does. In my mind, this man is a genius.
2. Emma Thompson, actress, screenwriter
This woman amazes me. I don't know if everyone in Hollywood fully realizes her versatility, but it absolutely astounds me. Knowing that she wrote the screenplays for the Nanny McPhee movies as well as Sense and Sensibility my respect for her only multiplied. But when you take that talent for bringing stories to the big screen and match it with her willingness to fully transform herself into the characters she's created, you've got pure gold. What I wouldn't give to sit down with her and study how she works...
3. Tina Fey, actress, comedian & author of Bossypants.
Seriously. What's not to love? My favorite thing about Tina Fey is her ability to not take herself too seriously. She's dry and sarcastic but quick-witted and clever. These are things I admire in a writer. I know that if I ever were to meet her in real life, I'd probably make a complete idiot of myself, but I'm putting her on my list because, you know, this is pure fantasy here.
4. Nora Ephron, screenwriter and author
It's not just When Harry Met Sally that makes me love Nora Ephron. It's a bunch of her movies... and the fact that she's so versatile. She writes these great stories with sharp dialogue, but she also writes for the stage and of course, traditional books. I love that this is a woman who has a brilliant sense of humor and a keen eye into the relationships that enrich our lives. I think any writer, especially one with interests in a variety of genres, (like me) would kill to sit in her presence for a day. Who am I kidding? I'd be happy to just run and get her coffee.
5. C'mon you've gotta know this one...he needs NO introduction...
There is absolutely no way I could stay coherent in a room with Robert Downey Jr. but that wouldn't stop me from wanting to try. I saw an interview with him once and I got the distinct impression that in at least some of his movies, he is a huge creative force. In fact, I think he was talking about Ironman and how he just crumpled up pages and they started over. Adam actually reminds me a little of RDJ, and it's that blatant creativity that I admire so much. I'd love to observe the creative process of someone who I think is pure talent.
I told you this was a dream list.
What about you? If you could work with anyone who would it be? (Or am I the only weirdo who thinks of these things?)