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Roberto Orci And Alex Kurtzman Talk Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen And Star Trek

DarkHorizon.com just had a sit down with two of Hollywood's most successful Screenplay Writers in the business. Find out how Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman deal with the positive and negative reviews from the critics, and also what it's like to work with two of Hollywood's most successful directors.
DarkHorizon.com: How seriously do you take the good with the bad? I mean, Star Trek received over 90 percent rave reviews, while Transformers, not so much. Do you take it seriously? Do you ignore it? Why do you think this is?

Orci: We take it seriously, in as much as a real fact of a media blogosphere dialogue. And as its own phenomenon, that’s a fascinating thing to engage in one way or the other. We tend to separate that from what an audience feels. And we tend to go by the audience. You know, you always want to make sure that you don’t overlook a valid opinion that has something constructive to say, merely because it’s negative.

Kurtzman: Nobody can honestly say that they don’t care about reviews. Like, nobody. But we knew the minute we agreed to do Transformers 2 that these were gonna be the reviews, no matter what we came up with. And that’s just a fact of life that you accept going into it.

DarkHorizon.com: Let me ask you this. You’re working with two very, very filmmakers, with Abrams and Bay. And I’m just wondering when you’re working on a Bay film, what the different process is in writing a script, for a director who has very different visual sensibilities to somebody like J.J. Abrams?

Kurtzman: I mean, it’s a very different process. They’re very different directors. They look for very different things.

Orci: But part of that difference comes from the fact that they’re different franchises. They require different things.

Kurtzman: Yeah. That’s right.

Orci: You know, it’s not just that we’re writing for Michael Bay. We’re writing for Transformers. And Michael Bay is perfect for Transformers. And J.J. is perfect for Star Trek, because what Star Trek requires is something else. So, we tend to look at it as, the show is the boss. All of our boss. And we’re servicing that more than anything. You know, in terms of differences in the experience. Obviously, Transformers 2 was unique, in that it went down in the middle of the strike. We were writing the movie three months before it was about to be shot, therefore we were handing Michael pages that night. You know, every night, so they could be prepared. Which was different than Star Trek, where we had six leisurely months to go write two drafts.

DarkHorizon.com: Right. And Star Trek is very much a character-based film. I mean, you’re dealing with both iconic characters, but also you’re developing relationships in that particular movie. This one, you’re really creating, I guess, a lot of set pieces for Michael to work with. And I’m just wondering, how frustrating is it for you when you do have such limited time? And does that affect the final product, as screenwriters?

Orci: In terms of “frustrating,” we try to think of it as just an interesting challenge. I mean, putting together a movie of this size, coordinating with Michael and production and the military and Hasbro, is a fascinating thing to do. You know, we try to sort of learn and enjoy, and not be paralyzed by the fear of it. On the other hand, it’s not to say – it’s just a different experience, going off to write a script for six months, you know?

Head on over to the above link for the rest of the interview.

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jman77
6/30/2009
comicbookmovie.com

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