Thursday, October 08, 2009

Merrill Markoe's talking dog script/novel, the movie

Now showing at My Book, The Movie: Merrill Markoe's talking dog script/novel.

The entry begins:
In 1986, when Ronald Reagan was President, Paramount bought a screenplay from me about a girl who worked at a magazine, was about to turn thirty and her talking dog. It was called “Me and My Boy.” I had decided to write a talking dog movie because I was working on The Letterman Show, and noticed that the short movies that I shot from the point of view of a dog seemed to have wide appeal. Also I lived with four dogs and in 1986 the talking dog genre, which I’d always liked, was lying fallow.

Attached as producers were the team of Lynda Obst and Debra Hill.

So I wrote a few drafts that everyone liked. And the movie almost got made. Then it didn’t.

Instead it went in to “turn around.” For a while it was shepherded by Bernie Brillstein who was running a studio that year. I was attached as director. I even got a shooting schedule.

The chorus of this particular song is well known in Los Angeles but everyone adds their own verse. Almost got made, then it didn’t. Lather, rinse, repeat.

For a while it moved from place to place. I rewrote it over and over. At some point, I threw up my hands in despair. If this movie ever got a green light, I promised, I would rush in and tailor it to the cast. Never happened.

Over the next few years I heard rumors that Lynda and Debra had hired other writers. Some of them contacted me. Lather, rinse and repeat. George HW Bush became President, then Bill Clinton. By now it was hard to find a movie, sit com, animated show or commercial that didn’t contain at least one talking dog.

I lost track of my script.

In 1999, I met Nora Ephron. “Whatever became of that dog script?” she asked. So I...[read on]
Visit Merrill Markoe's website.

Merrill Markoe is the author of three books of humorous essays and the novels It’s My F---ing Birthday, What the Dogs Have Taught Me, and Walking in Circles Before Lying Down, and Nose Down, Eyes Up, one of 7 books for dog lovers selected by Oprah and associates.

The Page 69 Test: Nose Down, Eyes Up.

Read--Coffee with a Canine: Merrill Markoe & Jimmy, Ginger, Puppyboy, and Hedda.

My Book, The Movie: Merrill Markoe's talking dog script/novel.

--Marshal Zeringue