|Screenwriter Charlie Kaufman is a man with a grudge – and the object of that grudge is none other than the former scrubs-wearing TV doc turned Hollywood A-lister George Clooney. It seems that Kaufman, whose latest film Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is out this month, is still irked by the way Clooney treated his script for Confessions of a Dangerous Mind.|
In an interview in the May issue of Arena magazine, Kaufman explains the situation. ‘I was upset by the fact that he took the movie from me and then cut me out after that. I’m unhappy with the end result. And I’m unhappy with George Clooney. I had a movie that I wrote and that isn’t it.’
Clooney’s big mistake, it transpires, was to take Kaufman’s script and tinker around with it. ‘I’ve always been involved in the process with Spike (Jonze) and Michel (Gondry),’ Charlies says. ‘If there’s any rewriting to do, I do it. But with Clooney it was different…even the end of the movie is different. I mean, Clooney went on forever about how my Confessions…screenplay was one of the greatest scripts he’d read. But if someone truthfully felt that way they they’d want the person who wrote it to be onboard offering their thoughts and criticisms. But Clooney didn’t. And I think it’s a silly way to be a director.’
Thankfully Kaufman isn’t letting his Clooney chagrin keep him from planning new ways to bemuse and befuddle cinema audiences the world over. ‘Spike and I recently pitched this idea for a scary movie to Sony pictures. I don’t have a title for it yet and I’m not even sure what the plot’s going to be. But that’s the way I write: without knowing where something is going.’
You can read the full interview with Charlie Kaufman in the May issue of Arena which will be on newsstands Friday 2 April 2004. To make sure of your copy in future, click here to subscribe.