Sunday, December 16, 2018

I Will Never See "The Good Shepherd"

by James Tripp (writer), Los Angeles, December 08, 2006

One of the benefits of being in the Screen Actor’s Guild during awards season is that you get to go to free screenings. Sometimes you get to go to screenings before they even open. That’s pretty cool---until lately. Lately the studios have been afraid that people are stealing their movies. Some people are stealing their movies. Not me.

Tonight I went to a screening of “The Good Shepherd” and before they would let me in, they wanted to take my camera phone. Are you kidding me?

“The Good Shepherd” is a movie about the start of the CIA. I think these guys have been watching their movie too many times. They thought my camera phone was a threat to Universal Pictures security.

“Name?” said a security guard.

“Tripp. James Tripp.”

“Do you have a camera phone?”

“I have a phone,” I said in an even voice, “and there’s something on the phone that looks like a camera. I forget what M said it was. Oh, never mind. He’s not in this movie. Don’t you trust me? I would never steal anything from your movie.”

“How do I know if I can even trust you?” said the security guard. “I don’t even trust me.”

I understood. I didn’t go to the screening. I kept my phone with what looked like a camera on it. I backed away slowly. I didn’t make any sudden moves. I guess I won’t see “The Good Shepherd” this awards season. If they send me a screener, maybe I’ll watch it, but I probably won’t.

Last night I went to a screening at the same theater of “The Pursuit of Happyness.” Security in the employ of Sony Pictures were pursuing me. There were two guys up front, one on either side, and they were looking back through the audience with nightscopes. They let me bring my phone in and I had it on vibrate. During the movie, my phone went off, but I was afraid to look at it to see who was calling. I got the distinct impression that if I had gone for my phone, security would have swarmed. “It’s that guy from tomorrow!” one of them would have said. “He’s going for his phone! He’s got a camera on his phone! At least it looks like a camera.”

A couple of years ago, I got frisked at a free screening of “Freaky Friday.” That was freaky. There was a Q&A afterwards with Jamie Lee Curtis. She still looked hot. I wondered if she got frisked. I thought about that just before I fell asleep that night. Maybe I’ll think about that tonight. I wonder if she got to bring her cell phone on the set. That would be a really good time to steal the movie.

“The Good Shepherd” is only the second movie directed by Robert De Niro and I missed my chance to see it. Too bad. I liked his first movie, “A Bronx Tale.” In it, the character played by that actor who was on “The Sopranos”…I think he’s in jail now…I think his partner killed someone in the commission of a robbery or maybe he did…Anyway, he’s at least an accessory…There’s no way he got into that screening tonight…Anyway, his character paraphrases Niccolò Machiavelli in "The Prince" when he asks, “Is it better to be loved or feared?”

The character played by Chaz Palminteri said something like…although it wasn’t this exactly…It was something like this...If it was this exactly, I would probably be violating some copyright law...I would not want to do that...The character that Chaz Palminteri was playing said something like, “I would rather be feared.”

About the Writer

James Tripp is a writer for BrooWaha. For more information, visit the writer's website.
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1 comments on I Will Never See "The Good Shepherd"

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By Dan Maier on December 08, 2006 at 04:32 pm
The next screening you attend, you should show up with one of those old tyme, in-car cell phones with a disposable camera duc-taped to it. When they ask for your "camera phone" hand security that and make a huge fuss. I'll go with you and capture the footage on my camera phone.
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