In 1978, much to my Grandmother’s chagrin, my step-Dad took me to see SUPERMAN. She said to him, “You shouldn’t bring him to a public theatre. What if he gets Polio?” No one had told her, it seems, that Polio had been cured in the two decades prior to my Superman matinee. Gratefully, she relented, and when Superman turned the Earth backwards to save Lois Lane, I knew I needed to be a part of a world where such things are possible.
A year or two later, my mother took me to see KRAMER vs. KRAMER. I’m not sure why. Maybe as a product of divorce, she felt we both needed something to remind us we weren’t alone. I was so captured by whatever Dustin Hoffman did in the movie, that after it was over I said to my mother, “I want to do that.” She said, “You want to fight for custody of your child after your wife leaves you unexpectedly?” I said, “No, not that.”
In college I tried acting. I had a girlfriend who I’d starred in a few plays with, before directing her in a production of Sondheim’s INTO THE WOODS. On opening night, she pulled me into a soft embrace and said, “God, you’re such a better director than you are an actor.” Around the same time, I saw DIE HARD opening weekend. Most of my career is an homage to that film, including the sparks raining down from the ceiling at the end of The Passage, coming soon to FOX.
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