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Art and soul
Hollywood insider attributes film success to those virtues 

Feb. 13, 2007
By Andrew Johnson

Dig into your soul and offer what you have. Bobby Moresco, Academy Award winning writer and producer, handed that mantra to an audience from all walks of life, ranging from aspiring film makers, both young and old, to people with nothing more than an interest in film. The event was part of the Grand Opening Celebration of Baker University Center on Feb. 10.

Photo by Eric KayneHosted by University Program Council, Black Student Cultural Programming Board and International Student Union, Moresco interacted with his audience in a casual and lively Q&A forum, dispensing advice to Hollywood hopefuls and giving an insider's perspective to the supposed glamorous and glitz-filled Tinsel Town.

When discussing his racism-themed "Crash," he maintained that he and co-writer and director Paul Haggis were looking for truth, not sending a message.

"If you want to be a writer, you should ask questions about the human condition," Moresco said. "Paul wanted to understand how strangers affect other strangers in a city like Los Angeles. I wanted to explore the notion of fear - how fear drives us to say and do things we would never ordinarily do."

Moresco proceeded to advise the next generation of filmmakers, stressing that art should be held above all else, above the business, money and egos.

"You write a screenplay in hopes that some day, three or four hundred people sit in a dark theater and have a communal experience," he said. "Hollywood is a business; they care about making money. Your job is to care about the film."

As it is the filmmakers' job to be responsible for the film, Moresco emphasized research and knowledge as two pivotal tools to a successful motion picture. He said future cinema scribes should become intellectual sponges, studying and soaking up as much knowledge as possible before taking on the movie-making process.

"Learn more about what you want to do than anyone else," he said. "Become better at film making than anyone else, then find out what you as a human being want to say."

The writer and producer warned those wanting a shot at movies about the difficult road that lies ahead, again emphasizing the importance of art and passion over money.

"If there's something else you can do and be happy, go do that. It (filmmaking) is too hard," Moresco said. "No one can stop you from making your film; they can only stop you from getting paid. That's the choice you make as an artist."

Audience members appreciated Moresco's insight into the movie industry as well as the laid-back demeanor, saying that the casual atmosphere made the session more comfortable and open.

Junior Kat Fralick said she admired Moresco's attitude and was thankful for the information.

"The amount of things he was saying blew my mind open and told me I didn't know anything," she said.

Freshman Paul Curtin agreed. He also respected Moresco for his information and candor.

"It was refreshing to someone in Hollywood who is a real guy," he said.

Andrew Johnson is a student writer for University Communications and Marketing


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Published: Jul 20, 2006 3:50:00 PM
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