Early in our careers we writers learn a way to inspire confidence in a pitch meeting is to claim your concept is reminiscent of earlier, successful projects, which is why we say, with great enthusiasm, “It’s Casablanca meets Airplane", even if the only commonality is both films make use of airplanes.
Though meticulously not working on WGA material during the strike (something I got a jump on shortly after the last strike), I’m using the down time to flesh out a recent event in my life that's clearly destined to be a movie. On the picket line and everywhere I go, I'm greeted by gasps of horror from people reacting to my right thumb, swathed in gauze to create an enormous white mass so overwhelming as to make everything else about me extraneous. “What happened?!!” I'm asked and I see winces though I leave out the details of how I was injured when trying to catch boxes falling off a dolly.
The interest and emotional responses suggest this is crying out to be a movie. My Right Thumb, even if not as dramatic as My Left Foot, has huge potential when combined with elements of My Kid Could Paint That (though I'd admit it's my husband who's been opening jars and helping yank up my pantyhose). My ingenious solution for washing my hair -- a rubber glove with an elastic wrapped twice around my wrist to insure no water messing up the bandages -- would make for an exciting promotional trailer. I can hear the whispers in the audience, "How do you suppose she brushes her teeth?" "Do you think she can still text message?"
The surefire box-office appeal is what sustains me as I walk in the cold with a picket sign, anticipating the Tuscan villa we'll be able to buy with the increased net profits and internet coming our way.