Archive for the ‘Fictional Writers: Writer Characters in Movies, TV Series and Books’ Category
Bradley Cooper doesn’t write in real life as far as we know. But he sure did play some remarkable writer characters in his films, the most recent being The Words.
Before talking about his character in The Words, let’s remember what Bradley Cooper has been writing:
Alias – Will Tippin
Alias is one of my favorite shows of all time. It tells the story of double-agent Sydney Bristow (Jennifer Garner) who’s working for CIA to bring down a terrorist organization network-a network that originally hired her disguised as the actual CIA.
When she realizes that she’s been working for the enemy after a very tragic event, she goes to the real CIA, and starts an even more dangerous life as a double agent.
Of course being a double agent requires her to lie to her very best friends for their own safety. This includes Will Tippin, a newspaper reporter who doesn’t let go of investigating the death of Sydney’s fiance (the tragic event that opened her eyes) and gets into a whole new level of trouble afterwards…
Will Tippin is a nice, smart and fun guy. A great friend. He was also a bit in love with Sydney, but he was unlucky when it came to timing. First there was Danny, the fiance she was mourning. And then there was Michael Vaughn (Michael Vartan), her CIA handler- who happened to be the only person she could share everything with. It’s hard to compete with that.
But worry not. Alias is too good for girls-fall-for-bad-guys cliche. Michael Vaughn, despite being a field-trained agent, was one of the nicest guys ever seen on television.
Limitless – Eddie Mora
Eddie Mora (Bradley Cooper) is a struggling writer. But when he stumbles upon a pill that allows him to use his brain in a capacity beyond his wildest dreams, he also gets to become a bestselling author – his manuscript finished overnight.
Of course the pills, fame and super talents will come with a price; threatening his and his girlfriend’s (Abbie Cornish) lives.
Limitless is a great movie for writers, becuase one part of the movie is about a fanasty coming true- ultimate creativity and productivity resulting in the fame and recognition we have always wanted (meaning we sold our manuscripts and can make a good living writing!). And of course part of it brings the price he pays because of the “unnatural” means he used to achieved this.
It doesn’t stop me from fantasizing about something that will come without the side effects and the bad guys,though. Nope, I don’t want drugs.
The Words – Rory Jansen
Rory Jansen is a struggling writer who lives with his girlfriend (Zoe Saldana).Their happiness is sometimes threatened by his unrealized dreams as he can’t find a publisher for his novel.
But during a visit to an antique shop, his girlfriend buys him an old briefcase, which turns out to hold a manuscript. As Rory devours it, he feels both mesmerized and inadequate. He starts typing it, just so he can feel like those are his words for a while.
However his girlfriend reads it, and loves it so much that she pressures him into sending it to an agent. To his surprise, the publishing house he works for (in a non-writing capacity) publishes it and he becomes a best-selling author with critical acclaim. He later successfully publishes again.
But he is being followed by an old man (Jeremy Irons), the writer of the manuscript, who later confronts him and tells his story.
As Rory struggles with his conscience, the old man doesn’t help him much with the process.
In addition to Bradley Cooper, Jeremey Irons, Ben Barnes (Irons’ youth) and Dennis Quaid also play writers. Dennis Quaid is the first writer we meet, as he tells us the story of Rory. It’s up to the viewer to decide whether Rory’s story is fiction, or a semi-autobiographic confession.
Have I missed any of Cooper’s writer characters? And what’s your favorite writer character from him?
And how about you? Have you created any writer characters?
What can be more exciting than the battle of good vs. evil when they are both smart, published authors, and their actual professions are FBI agent and English professor-turned-serial killer? Not to mention, the serial killer wants to write a second book, with the agent as the protagonist and himself as the antagonist. You get one exciting weekly thriller.
Let me lay the background first:
What The Hell Is The Following?
The Following is a thriller/drama/crime series starring Kevin Bacon and James Purefoy, who respectively play the agent and killer. It was created by Kevin Williamson (the creator/writer of Scream, I Know What You Did Last Summer, The Faculty…), and each episode feels like one well-edited, solid movie, also thanks to the brilliant cast. Whether you liked Williamson’s slashers or not, The Following is a lot more than that.
Charismatic, inspiring and Poe-obsessed literature professor, and the author of the critical/commercial flop The Gothic Sea, Joe Carroll (James Purefoy) takes his obsession with “romance of death” a bit too far and starts killing his students.
By the time FBI agent Ryan Hardy (Kevin Bacon) catches up with him, he has already killed a lot of girls-but Hardy manages to save his latest victim. Unfortunately, he doesn’t get away unscratched: Joe punctures Hardy’s heart.
After 8 years of sentence and a short time away from being executed, Carroll escapes from prison. During his imprisonment, his book and the notoriety of his crimes have gained him a cult following, ready and willing to kill to impress him.
While his first action is to go after his remaining victim, we also learn that:
1) Ryan has written a book on him, a book well-read by Carroll.
2) The Gothic Sea has turned into a hit.
3) Ryan has had an affair with Carroll’s wife Claire, who didn’t have a clue what a monster her husband was until he was caught, and not before they had a kid together.
4) Ryan has quit the FBI as his heart wouldn’t let him be a field agent anymore.
5) His “following” includes the two “nice” neighbors of the surviving victim and his son’s nanny.
After killing the girl, Carroll surrenders, knowing he can’t be executed. Not with an unknown number of following killers out there and with his son kidnapped. Ryan is called back into action, and he is more pissed and haunted than ever.
The Second Book – Killer Wants to Write It with the Agent
Carroll’s following are out there, being violent and dangerous, Claire is going crazy and Hardy has to deal with a not-so-brilliantly operating FBI. Carroll openly complains about Ryan’s first book, so Ryan asks what his sequel will be about at the end of the first episode.
Below is a part of their dialogue:
- I thought I might go more traditional this time. You know villain, good vs. evil. I need a strong protagonist so that the reader that can truly invest. A flawed, broken man searching for redemption. And that is you. You’re my flawed hero. Yes, I insured that by killing Sarah. She was the inciting incident, the hero’s call to action. This is merely the prologue, this is just the beginning.
Yes, it is a bit disturbing, but I assure you, even with all the gore, The Following is PG-13 compared to any Tarantino movie. The acting is good, the pace is satisfactory and good vs. evil had never been so literal and literary at the same time…After all, not only we have Hardy and Carroll’s books, Poe’s poems and stories are always supporting characters…
I recommend that you try the first episode. If you don’t like it, you will have analyzed a story on what didn’t work. If you do…well, there are many benefits to that (which I’ll be covering soon in another post.)
Perception’s Daniel Pierce (Eric McCormack) is a brilliant neuropsychiatrist:
- He has published 7 books on neuroscience.
- He is teaching at a prestigious university while helping the FBI solve their most complicated cases.
- He has finished med school at the top of his class.
- He can see things and make connections others can’t.
- Only the most complicated and exciting puzzles can keep his interest.
- Oh, and, he is managing all this (depending on your perception), despite/with/because of his condition: schizophrenic paranoia.
He mostly manages his condition with carefully set routines, the help of his TA and living aid Max, and through the cases his FBI agent friend/ex-student Kate (Rachael Leigh Cook) brings.
Perception is a wonderfully inspiring show, especially if you are a writer and/or you’re suffering from a health condition, mental or otherwise.
It has great acting, intriguing storylines, a well-written main character and scientific accuracy, being assisted by the leading neuroscientist David Eagleman who’s also a writer (of fiction and non-fiction, his non-fiction having been published on Wired, The New Yorker and others.)
I like breaking the don’t-watch-tv productivity tip. I don’t watch everything, trust me. I try, evaluate and become a regular watcher of shows that are smart, highly entertaining, inspiring and intriguing. It helps if there are characters you can empathize with on one level or the other, or characters whose jobs you wouldn’t mind doing (e.g. Cal Lightman’s job, Lie to Me.)
Perception is such a show, and I recommend writers to at least check it out because:
1) Perception combines drama/mystery & comic relief really well. As writers, we want to be able to pull this off well, especially in fiction.
2) The leading character’s self-depreciating sense of humor as a defense mechanism works on a writing level, but it also gives us ideas on how to manage our own conditions and issues.
3) He writes to keep sane, and well, he is full of ideas all the time so he needs different media to convey them. He lectures, aids FBI and writes books.
4) He is a writing success despite his condition.
5) The show presents the very exciting field of neuroscience. I’ve been reading about it since I started watching the show.
6) There is a fictional role model, as well as a real one (the consulting neuroscientist/writer David Eagleman who was born in 1971!)
7) It gives you nice little flashback into university years. I only had a couple of inspiring lecturers, so I wouldn’t have minded one like Pierce: always engaging, always relevant.
If you are collecting reasons to go back to college, this might warm you up further to the idea. Just remember, not all campuses are that nice and a lot of the lecturers tend to be boring.
8) It’s possible to be a writing expert and expert writer at the same time. Writers might lack the professional knowledge and need to interview experts. Experts might lack the writing skills.
Pierce (and Eagleman) possess both. Oh, I should add that Eagleman brainstorms with Perception writers about the possible scenarios too.
9) It provides therapeutic entertainment. Just listen to the lectures where he covers lying, fears, reality…
10) And the series has an overall appreciation of individuality and life.
Have you watched it?
P.S. To read more about perception, you can check out its review here.
27 Dresses – Getting Involved with Your Resource & Letting Your Source Know The Actual Story
A little on the writer who wrote the movie: Aline Brosh McKenna
27 Dresses is a fun romantic comedy from 2008, starring Katherine Heigl, James Marsden and Edward Burns.
27 Dresses isn’t just a good example for having a writer character, but it is also successful on its own right as a film. Having made $160,000,000 at the box office with its $30,000,000 budget, it is an encouraging example for writers who want to sell their romantic comedy scripts. Since its dialogue is pretty witty and more original than most romcoms, taking a look at the screenwriter Aline Brosh McKenna’s other work is a good idea.
She has written or co-written We Bought a Zoo (starring Matt Damon and Scarlett Johansson), Morning Glory (starring Rachel McAdams, Harrison Ford and Diane Keaton), Laws of Attraction (with Pierce Brosnan and Julianne Moore) adapted script of Devil Wears Prada (starring Meryl Streep.)
And while all of these movies weren’t hits, she has been able to sell her work since the late 90s, and it is hard not to be impressed when you look at who has said yes to her stories.
Now that you know a bit more about the writer behind the writer (played by James Marsden), let’s look at the movie- though you might want to stick to my movie review if want a less detailed (and not-spoiled) summary where I focus on the whole movie-and not just Kevin.
Still with me? Great.
The Writer Character : James Marsden
Kevin Doyle (James Marsden) is covering weddings (under the name of Malcolm Doyle) for the commitments section of the New York Journal and dying to get out of it. Unfortunately he is quite good at it, and his editor doesn’t want to assign him something else. And while he can make women swoon with his romantic words, he is really a cynic who doesn’t believe in any of it.
Jane (Katherine Heigl) is a big fan. A true romantic, she collects his articles and hopes that one day she will also be a bride at a dream wedding. And if there is anyone who can handle planning a wedding, it is her. She has been a bridesmaid 27 times, helping the brides do everything from dress selection to cake tasting. She doesn’t mind helping them, but she’d be much happier if the man of her dreams, her boss George (Edward Burns), just fell for her. But not only George is unaware of her affections, he sees her as a good friend and an assistant.
It’s during a wedding craze (and by craze, I mean two weddings in one night!) that she meets Kevin. He is instantly entertained by her efforts, and when he gets to ride the cab with her, he realizes that she is a rare species. Sure, she loves her weddings like most women- but she has met been to 27 weddings as a bridesmaid, and has switched back and forth between two weddings and two dresses in one night.
So he doesn’t return the planner she forgot on the cab until after he pitches his story idea to the editor and gets the promise of finally leaving commitments if he can pull it off. And when he returns the planner, he has made sure Jane will call him.
But for all Jane knows, Kevin is a cute albeit extremely cynical guy trying to get a date- and she is too busy trying to get over the fact that her boss falls for her sister Tess, almost as soon as he meets her. Then they decide to get married, and Kevin gets to cover the wedding.
Now poor Jane has to plan the wedding, and to face the fact that her favorite columnist is no romantic. He’s just some other guy who thinks marriage is slavery and wedding industry is out to get everyone. But Kevin charms his way back into Jane’s company since it is for “Tess and George”.
But while collecting the material for the paper, Kevin develops a crush on Jane-who has turned out to be a lot more fun and interesting than he initially thought. Jane is also starting to think he is not all bad, especially when she notices that his cynicism might be about to fact that he was once left by his wife for another guy.
But of course we have 2 conflicts for Kevin: he has to change his story before his editor can run an article that doesn’t make Jane look that great, and he has to make Jane realize that she does deserve better than just the fantasies of a guy she can’t have.
And just when Kevin might have gotten what he wanted – Jane romantically interested in him, he has unfortunately gotten the other thing he wanted: his story on the front page, his possible ticket out of the section. Of course things go horribly awry when Jane sees it. Then there is also the spoiled Tess, supportive George, Jane’s frustration with Tess and anger towards Kevin…
Yes, I know you know who will get the girl and why, but it is a worthy ride as the dialogue is a lot of fun, and the casting is just right- especially James Marsden who doesn’t annoy anyone apart from Jane-and we all know how her mind is going to change.
Ethics, Professionalism and Courtesy
But the movie’s delightfulness aside, it does bring up questions about professionalism and ethics, doesn’t it? If I were Jane, and met a very cute guy who seemed to want to hang around with me, I wouldn’t suspect that it was for a story. Even though he told her he was a writer, she didn’t know what he wrote.
And even after she knew, she thought he was just getting info for Tess’ wedding – and stayed longer for the company, though I might have been suspicious about all the pictures he took. But then again, he never wrote an article on a perpetual bridesmaids’ misfortune before so why would he start?
If I found out what Jane found out, I’d be pissed too. And if I were Kevin…well, I don’t know. I would like to think I deserve my high horse and wouldn’t write things I didn’t want to. And even if I did end up with an only chance to get to a better column, I’d like to think that I wouldn’t use anyone for it- crush or no crush.
But being stuck doing something you despise can get to your head, and if I were dumped by my spouse for a friend of mine, and forced to produce wedding article after wedding article – after going to the weddings, of course, I would probably be at least tempted. (As romantic as I am, I do agree that most weddings have the food and music to torture people. There can be no other explanation!)
Were you ever in a similar situation as Kevin? Were you tempted not to reveal your true intentions to your source/inspiration?
I know we are the writers, but what would you if you were Jane? (and she did slap him, didn’t return any calls and didn’t seem to forgive him fully after his heartfelt speech.)
My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend Writing Character: Ethan played byChristopher Gorham
Ethan is a writer who can’t get published. His last novel is turned down because it is not realistic enough where it matter (and it is also not appealing enough to women’s fantasies of Mr. Right. ) Baffled and ready to give up, he goes to a café. There he meets the beautiful Jesse (Alyssa Milano). They like each other, and she says that she is all the inspiration he needs. They start dating, Ethan keeps writing.
Unbeknownst to Ethan, however, Jesse is also dating Troy (Michael Landes) – a guy who seems to be Mr. Right personified: He is a successful advertising executive with his own company whereas Ethan is living rent free in his flat as long as he performs his super duties.
Jesse feels bad, as she starts falling for both and both men start falling for her. She will have to choose pretty soon….
The Novel, and The Movie Twist
(This part of the post features spoilers for the movie. You can read the unspoiled review for the movie on my entertainment blog.)
The movie has us believe that Jesse is a two-timing girl who doesn’t quite deserve wither of these too-good-to-be men. But as it turns out, Jesse is not two-timing. Troy doesn’t exist.
Troy is the male protagonist Ethan creates to please his publisher, who just happens to be the improved version of Ethan. And while we often see Jesse conflicted, it is never openly said that she needs to choose between two guys. As it turns out, while she has been keeping a secret from Ethan only to ensure his happiness, it is not about another man.
So Ethan doesn’t give up fighting for Jesse in the end. He also doesn’t give up writing his novel- which finally gets him a publishing deal. We learn about “Troy” the moment Ethan provides us with the manuscript called Troy Meets Girl.
A Romantic Movie with a Creative Ending, and a Fictional Writer We Can Be Inspired By
While I was rooting for Ethan the entire time (both for his book and girl), I could also totally see what the publisher was talking about. We don’t want to finish a romantic novel or a movie and say “That would never happen”. We want to say “That might happen, and I hope it happens to me”. And that is what the movie does.
Can we believe a decent guy being a writer, barely making ends meet but yet reluctant to make ends meet? Absolutely. Can we buy Christopher Gorham as a cute, albeit not gorgeous, movie lead? Definitely. And we can definitely see that his character is realistic. As sweet as he is, he is still a guy who loves Star Wars, hates musicals and can’t really see why the girls can’t get sick of Mr. Darcy.
So while it is not the best movie out there, it is inspiring, uplifting and motivating- whether you want to find The One, or make your writing dreams come true. Give it a shot- both to the movie and your writing. OK, especially to your writing.
If you liked this post, you might want to read posts from my Fictional Writers: Writer Characters in Movies, TV Series and Books category.
Straw Dogs : Creating the Perfect Writing Environment, and The Writing Retreat from Hell
This post’s writing character comes from the 2011 remake of Straw Dogs. This new version stars James Marsden and Kate Bosworth.
The Writer Character and The Perfect Writing Room
American screenwriter David Summer is working on a movie script that takes place during WW2. His actress wife Amy’s old family house in the south sounds like a perfect writer’s retreat. And it is indeed beautiful: It is big, has a gorgeous view of the lake and a wonderful study room.
Soon David transforms the room into a writer’s haven: the pool table is covered with models of WW2 houses and streets, the walls now carry a large green board for all his notes and he has even surrounded himself with books about the era. He listens to classical music as he writes- not necessarily because it is his favorite, but because it goes with his story.
The Writing Retreat from Hell
The problem is, the house is in a remote area of a small town. The house doesn’t get cell reception. I missed why they don’t have a phone in the house. Yikes.
The town folk are not very tolerant or open-minded, and soon they gain enemies without trying. It doesn’t help that David’s world views, and his wife’s behavior is enough to trigger the animals in their employees- the Amy’s ex Charlie (played by True Blood’s Eric-Alexander Skarsgard) and his crew, who were hired to repair the roof.
As great as the house and his room is, their life turns into a nightmare. They’re terrorized, and David decides to fight off their attackers one by one, even if that’s the last thing he’ll live to do. For the details on the terror, you can read my Straw Dogs movie review.
The Writer’s Story and His Life Overlap
In David’s story, a country’s soldiers beat the other country’s soldiers even though they are outnumbered.
In the end (yes-here come the spoilers), David manages to get rid of (=kill) a group of armed and irrational men with the help of his brains, and his frantic wife.
Finding The Perfect Writing Retreat in Real Life
Of course in the end, the perfect writing retreat wasn’t worth it. He and his wife were probably scarred for life.
But then again, as much as I like my lake views, I could never write alone in such a place, with just one person to keep me company, unless of course that person is Nikita or Sydney Bristow or John Reese…
But why leave the city? You can always opt for a nice holiday resort where you can be as alone as you want, and you can deprive yourself from technology only as much as you choose to for those flowing writing periods.
Yes, I often mute my cell-phone when I work. I try not to pay attention to the internet. And no, I am not always successful in turning off my distractions. But I like the fact that there can be distractions, and several ways of communicating with people outside my house.
Maybe it has a lot to do with growing up in a city, where we lock our doors and bolt them, even in the safest neighborhoods. Where there are houses and shop nearby. Where people don’t really care what you do, or what you believe in.
Or maybe it is and reading about and watching way too many “cabin-in-the-woods”, psychos-attack-ordinary-couple type of stories. But remote town houses freak me out. No technology? In the middle of nowhere? No thanks!
How do you feel about writer retreats? How isolated do you like to be while you are writing?
Would you like a cabin in the woods, or a town house like the one in Straw Dogs?
And If you have you seen the movie, what do you think Amy and David should have done?
For more writer characters, you can read:
18 Movies with Writer Characters featuring Michelle Pfeiffer, Jennifer Aniston, Anne Hathaway and More
The Writer, His First Novel and The Worst Fan Ever
David Norton (played by Timothy Hutton) is an accomplished sci-fi writer with many bestselling books under his name. He travels with his girlfriend Jane to a writing conference in Majorca where is the headlining guest. Things are pretty good, so he even takes the chance to ask Jane to marry him. Jane says yes, and the only thing that seems weird is a fan who is obsessed with David’s first book, Gloomy Sunday.
Gloomy Sunday tells the story of people who have been implemented with a trigger in their necks: as soon as they hear the melody of the song Gloomy Sunday, they kill themselves. It triggers have been placed by the government, and it is the perfect elimination method as all deaths appear to be suicides. On the night of the conference, David’s non-depressed girlfriend jumps out of the balcony after she receives a phone call. The same thing happens to a woman named Silvia, who falls out of her balcony as soon as she hears the music of Gloomy Sunday.
Apparently, that obsessed fan is a former scientist named Frank Kovak (David Kelly) who actually did something quite similar back in his day: he experimented implementing triggers in humans. But of course his studies weren’t welcome by everyone, and he was no longer funded. Then David’s Gloomy Sunday came out, and he kept experimenting with humans- making the trigger Gloomy Sunday. Now, he wants David to write the story Frank has helped create- with only one difference. Of course this time, the deaths are genuine, and what the protagonist goes through is pure reality…
While The Kovak Box is an intriguing yet not impressive movie, the story is really interesting. I’ve always been drawn to movies centering around writer characters, hence the total category on this blog dedicated to them.
Obviously, writer and deranged fan has been written before by Stephen King. Misery, anyone? But as opposed to taking an injured writer hostage, the fan in The Kovak Box makes the writer write the story he wants, and his first victim is the writer’s girlfriend
While the director and writers didn’t make the most of the potential, The Kovak Box is still recommended to Timothy Hutton fans and writers. It might while brainstorming fiction ideas. I’d not say no to a remake, with making the story tighter, darker and a bit scarier. What do you think?
Daydream Nation is a drama from 2010. It is a little fun, a little depressing and a tad annoying. It is also heart-warming in a weird sorof way. While it is not a must-see movie in any way, it is also not a waste of time for those who like its actors (Kat Dennings, Josh Lucas, Reece Thompson, Andie MacDowell) or writers who, like me, enjoy seeing movies with writer characters. You can read more about the movie on my movie blog. But here, let’s get to our writer character:
The Writer Character
Barry Anderson (Josh Lucas) is the English teacher of a depressing industrial town’s high school. There isn’t much excitement going on in his life, and it is hardly a surprise when he jumps at the opportunity to fool around with his new student Caroline (Kat Dennings). While any teacher sleeping with his under-aged student is sure to ring loser bells, you can hardly blame Barry. He lives in a town where everyone seems to be going through a drug addiction, some level of depression or both.
Barry is happy in this relationship, and informs Caroline that she has inspired his writing and he is working on his novel. He even has an agent.
The Writer’s Story
Then one day Caroline gets to read his book, and it is just too much like a memoir. Unfortunately, Barry’s past has been even more pathetic than his present, and Caroline doesn’t like how she is represented in his novel. She decides to break things off, but when you are your boyfriend’s only muse & hobby, it can get tricky to get rid of him.
The issue here is that Barry didn’t even attempt to add a slice of fiction to his characters. Along with Caroline, we learn that his return to town as a teacher was an obligatory move when he failed in the city, both professionally and romantically. We learn that this 30-something guy is not really all that wiser or more mature than his druggie students. We finally see how much of a loser he really is, and that he makes no effort to change things.
Writers always debate whether you should write what you know or not. It actually depends on one thing: You! I always believe in writing what you love, because writing something you don’t care about is bound to be a disaster. So it doesn’t matter if you know the subject, because you can always educate yourself along the way. You just need to be passionate about what you are writing.
But usually, what you know (or you come to know through research) works best when combined with the depths of your imagination.
Barry doesn’t have much of one, and “what he knows” isn’t what he loves. It is what he despises. You could argue that a memoir, how depressing it might be, can serve as a therapy for the writer, at the very least. Unfortunately, Barry ends with 0 self-development, minus a girlfriend.
The Writer behind “The Writer”
All in all, as depressing and weird Daydream Nation is as a story, it is more entertaining and interesting than Barry’s “fiction”. I just hope that it wasn’t a memoir of the writer/director Michael Goldbach , as the movie also features a serial killer on the loose…
Me, The Writer
I once read that readers want sexy, engaging characters through journeys that entice them. And I agree. There was nothing enticing or engaging about Barry’s loser story. If he detested living it himself, what are the odds of anyone enjoying it?
I am in the midst of writing a novel that is a mixture of what I know. And I’ll confess that there is a part of me in some characters. But what happens to my characters in the novel didn’t happen to me. And for me, that is the exciting part!
You, The Writer
How about you? What do you think about writing what you know/live? How do you feel about writing stories based (solely) on your experiences? Please let me know in the comments!
18 Movies with Writer Characters featuring Michelle Pfeiffer, Jennifer Aniston, Anne Hathaway and More
Writers have always had a great place in the movies. Not just because they write the scripts, but scripts about writers have always been a favorite of Hollywood. I always find it interesting to check out our occupation on the big screen. The movies don’t have to focus on a writer’s career or they don’ need to take place in the world of publishing. These movies all have leading characters that write for a living, in one form or the other. The numbers don’t represent my love for the movie, they are there to make the list post.
John James’ (Costner) wife has left him so he moves to the country with his two kids. While his beautiful house and the somewhat remote location might be ideal for writing, it turns out it is the beginning of a nightmare.
2. The Best Man starring Stuart Townsend and Amy Smart
This is a sweet romantic comedy where writer Olly (Stuart Townsend) meets the fiancé of his college friend and falls head over heels. It might help his conscience a little that his friend is a big jerk and Olly is a really nice guy.
3. Love Actually starring Colin Firth, Hugh Grant & Liam Neeson
This is a romantic comedy/drama written and directed by Richard Curtis. When writer Jamie (Colin Firth) catches his girlfriend cheating with his own brother, he goes to his house in the woods to write. Here, he hires a Portuguese Aurelia (Lucia Moniz) to do his housekeeping. Despite the fact that he can’t speak Portuguese and she doesn’t know a word of English, they fall in love. This movie features one of the most successful ensemble casts of all time, featuring Colin Firth, Hugh Grant, Liam Neeson, Bill Nigh, Emma Thompson, Alan Rickman, Keira Knightley and more.
4. The Devil and Daniel Webster starring Alec Baldwin and Jennifer Love Hewitt
When struggling and almost starving writer Jabez Stone (Alec Baldwin) loses everything and kills a human being by accident, making a deal with the devil (Jennifer Love Hewitt) seems like his only solution. The movie is also known as Shortcut to Happiness.
Burke Ryan (Aaron Eckhart) has become a bestseller with his book on loss. He has written it to cope with the death of his wife. It has also provided a great distraction with all the book tours and workshops. But he will be confronted with his own feelings eventually, especially he wants to have a shot with Eloise (Jennifer Aniston).
Screenwriter Hudson (Perry) is experiencing a whole new level of depression. He was never the happiest bloke around but for a while, he is unable to feel anything. It is killing him that he is feeling so detached. He can’t feel alive or connected. The movie tells the tragicomic story of Hudson as he tries to juggle his creativity, friendships, love life and depression.
7. I could never be your woman starring Michelle Pfeiffer and Paul Rudd
Rosie (Michelle Pfeiffer) is pretty, 40, a single mother and the writer of a popular teen show. Things get complicated when she falls for the cast’s newest member: The 29-year-old Adam (Paul Rudd).
8. Becoming Jane starring Anne Hathaway and James McAvoy:
Becoming Jane is a delightful romantic period drama that tells the semi-fictional life story of the popular author Jane Austen (Anne Hathaway) and her romance with Tom Lefroy (McAvoy).
9. Adam starring Hugh Dancy and Rose Byrne:
Teacher and children’s books’ writer Beth falls for Adam, her new cute neighbor with the Asperger’s Syndrome.
10. Dedication starring Billy Crudup and Mandy Moore:
Obsessive-compulsive Henry (Billy Crudup) writes children’s books. He is definitely not one of the easiest guys to get along with. Lucy (Moore) finds this out the hard way when she needs to work with him as an illustrator. Of course things get more complicated as Henry starts to fall for her.
Zach (Trevor Wright)’ s only consolation is surfing. He is trying to be both uncle/father/older brother to his 5-year-old nephew Cody as Cody’s mom/his sister is not the most responsible mother around. He has postponed his dreams and his life. His on and off relationship with Tori isn’t helping him either. However when he runs into Shaun (Brad Rowe)-older brother of his best friend- things begin to change. Shaun has become an accomplished author and he is back in the neighborhood to write. They share a connection, however the connection seems more intense then Zach can handle. He can’t be falling for a guy, can he?
12. Romancing The Stone Starring Kathleen Turner and Michael Douglas
Bestselling romance novelist Joan Wilder (Turner) needs to get out of comfort zone when her sister is kidnapped in Columbia. She will have to go through a challenging and romantic adventure as she meets and joins forces with adventure lover Jack Colton (Douglas). Directed by the Back to the Future series’ director Robert Zemeckis.
*** Spoilers about Before Sunrise, beware!!!!!!
Before Sunset is the sequel to Before Sunrise. In the first movie Ethan Hawke’s Jessie and Julie Delpy’s Celine had met on a train and decided to get off and explore Vienna together. The very next day, they had to say goodbye as she had to go back to France and he had to return to the States. They promise to see each other in 6 months. The second film starts in Paris, 9 years later. Jesse and Celine haven’t been able to meet as they arranged. Jesse has written a book about their relationship and has become very successful. Paris is the last stop of his book tour. As they walk around Paris and catch up, old feelings come to surface.
14. Blood and Chocolate starring Hugh Dancy and Agnes Bruckner:
Vivian (Bruckner) is a shape-shifter- she can turn into a wolf. Aiden (Dancy) is a graphic novels writer who is Hungary for research. When he meets Vivian, he is immediately smitten. But Vivian may not be all that willing for a romance with her secret.
15. The Holiday starring Kate Winslet
Journalist Iris (Kate Winslet) has been desperately in love with Jasper (Rufus Sewell) for years. However Jasper is more interested in being friends with benefits and occassionaly using her as his editor and critic. While Jasper is not a main character, he plays a big part on Iris’ actions and decisions. The movie also stars Cameron Diaz, Jude Law and Jack Black. Written and directed by Nancy Meyers.
16. Misery starring James Caan and Kathy Bates:
Based on the novel by Stephen King, Misery is about a bestselling writer Paul Sheldon (James Caan) and his obsessed fan Annie (Kathy Bates).When Sheldon has an accident and rescued by Annie, he has no idea that Annie will be his biggest nightmare and there will be one hell of a hostage situation.
17. Purple Violets starring Patrick Wilson and Selma Blair
Patti (Blair) is trying to be an accomplished writer. She doesn’t have the best husband in the world and when she runs into her college boyfriend, who is now an accomplished writer, sparks start flying all around. Written and directed by Edward Burns, who is also co-starring with Debra Messing.
18. The Leading Man starring Jon Bon Jovi and Thandie Newton:
Playwright Felix Webb has a problem. He is in love with somebody else- actress Hilary (Thandie Newton) in his play. It doesn’t help matters that he is married with kids. He wants to get rid of his wife, also a playwright, Elena (Anna Galeina) as quickly as he can. He sees solution in the form of Robin Grange (Jon Bon Jovi)- a Hollywood star who will be starring in his play opposite Hilary. He wants him to seduce his wife. Being mischievous, seductive and sexy by nature, Robin agrees. After all, Elena is beautiful. But of course trusting Felix might be a mistake as he might try to seduce Hilary in the process as well. Now Felix wants to get rid of Robin, for good…