Spotlight on J Michael Straczynski: Always an interesting speaker... "Writing is about touching passion and coming back and telling what it's like." When an audience member attempted to address him as Mr. Straczynski, he told him, "Call me Joe. Even I can't say Mr. Straczynski without blowing out an incisor."
He described his chats with Warner Brothers, thus: "It's like talking to a goldfish." and "It's like a cat staring at a doorknob." He has secured the rights to the Lensman books and has just started working on a screenplay. He describes the author as "an engineer who was afraid of girls". Ron Howard to direct.
Regarding college... In grad school he ended up with a negative GPA. "Somehow I owed them a point." Ha! "They asked me to leave and I did." A couple of universities have invited him to teach, but he wants to teach at a junior college, because he spent a lot of time at JCs. Yay! That's so much awesome. I work at a CSU, but I love our JC. They teach all the courses I really want to take.
He posed a question, which was asked at an Israeli convention.. if Israel was located on a planet with an eight day rotation, when would the sabbath be? He received an email a week later, informing him that fights broke out at the convention over his question. Years later at a different convention, a fan was getting his autograph, said he was in the Israeli military, pointed to a chipped tooth, "...that was you." He was present at that convention.
Joe has a good relationship with city officials. He was notified by City Hall that they were discarding old court transcripts and discovered one they thought he'd be interested in. He read the transcript and wrote a rough draft screenplay in eleven days. He was fascinated by the story. In 1928, a woman's son disappeared. The boy was found months later, put on a train and shipped back to her. But, she claimed he wasn't her son. The police insisted that he was. The woman was eventually institutionalized. Murder and mayhem follow, but Mr. S wouldn't elaborate. Ron Howard read his rough draft and wouldn't let him alter a word of it. He'll produce and Clint Eastwood will direct. Angelina Jolie stars as the mother. Title is The Changeling.
Comic-Con Independent Film Festival: Saw this hilarious short, Signerz.