Adventures in Paradise by Elan Durham europabridge, Alastair Campbell, Anne Diamond, Aurora Blunton, Clifford Irving, Clive Reade, Dan Hodges, Died of TV GUIDE: Open Letter to Hugh Grant by Elan Durham europabridge, Elan Durham, Fascist Populism, George Orwell, Hackgate, Hugh Grant, Leveson Commission, Milly Dowling, NOTW, Paul McMullan, Piers Morgan, Press Reform, Princess Diana, Richard Nixon, Screwball Comedies, Social Protest, Tabloid McCarthyism, The New Statesman, The Prime Minister, The Royals, TV Guide
Hello all … europabridge here, author of the original Hackgate screenplay ‘Adventures in Paradise‘ and other film projects … MFA, ex-academic, world traveler, and future expat in London and Cornwall … we hope.
A few thoughts relating to my own Hackgate-inspired ‘Adventures in Paradise’ romantic comedy-revenge caper.
Rather than imagine a world where all inequalities or absurdities are erased, which is impossible – I like to imagine a world that functions with an overall sense of fairness and reason, as opposed to being guided by an ethos of all the spoils going to the rottenest. Of course, my imagination only works in the fictional world, which is why I write screenplays!
In this context, I am reminded of Dan Hodges original response to Hackgate in The New Stateman. Yes, Hackgate happened, and it will happen again because the people want it. They want to hear Hugh Grant‘s conversations, they want to capture those tunnel death photos of Princess Di, and they want to know who’s shagging whom, in the ever-shifting power plays from London, New York, Paris, Hollywood, and DC … because, don’t you know … ‘Nobody rides for free … Pay up or play!’
Information is knowledge. And misinformation is also a kind of power that can be used against whomever we want to harm or control for political purposes or financial gain, or just for malicious sport, as I have learned watching this and other media debacles unfold in print and online.
‘Reputation, reputation, reputation! O, I have lost my reputation. I have lost the immortal part of myself, and what remains is bestial.‘ What remains is bestial after personal agency, privacy, family, career, and personhood have all been invaded by these stalkers aided by their legal ‘right to know’… But writing ‘Adventures in Paradise’ has resulted in a much more entertaining, witty, and enduring experience than this blog rant. Perhaps it is also my tribute to a women who dared to forge ahead in Aurora Blunton … as she is my own Leveson Inquiry.
(Aurora c’est moi! Sorry Flaubert.)
Aurora is a celebration of the kinds of female characters I grew up looking at in movies starring Audrey Hepburn, Katharine Hepburn, Carole Lombard, Greta Garbo, Irene Dunne, and Myrna Loy … She is light as a feather, has the gravitas and intelligence of a British barrister, and the appeal of a major movie star. (Only in my movies!) Clive Reade is my old world Hollywood hero, the Cary Grant we all still crave for in our leper-skinned, anti-hero comic book age. And he is most definitely NOT the schmuck foisted upon us by Hollywood executives, because his twitter following exceeds the 3.5 million mark.
AIP is a statement about the life of the community, the tabloid press and its standards; celebrity, the pursuit of a story no matter how absurd or ludicrous, and the glare of the limelight … no matter how lurid.
Hacking, expressions of online hate, stalking, revenge porn, and tabloid gossip go much deeper than casting aspersions upon a person’s life, political views, or status in the community. They represent an effort to change the course of human history by creating a social corrosive so strong it etches away and destroys all evidence of civilized discourse, such that no human witnesses remain. Just players in the game.
Stalkers and hackers conjure up a thumbs up or thumbs down agenda for whatever hapless dunk-drunk draftees end up in the docket of world doom … Can’t you just hear the roar of the crowd? See the down-pointed thumbs? Unholy wieners and stale beer! Talk about fascist populism … And the British public subsidizes this kind of hooliganism with more than half a billion dollars of tax pounds per year.
‘Adventures in Paradise’ is my response, a fleet-footed film for people with enough brains to think, also a window to escape through for a few hours, to have a laugh, or the last laugh … For the rich, the poor, the press, the hard-pressed … hopefully to live on in the public imagination for decades.
Perhaps we can all agree upon one thing: At the end of the day, people need a break from reality. I do not trivialize the events of Hackgate but rather I want to place them in a context people will enjoy watching, a context that endangers no one, but manages to address all the key issues while entertaining, and distracting for a few hours – memorably.
Finally, it is probably more accurate to call ‘Adventures in Paradise’ a dramedy – a mixed genre film sprinkled with romance, revenge, satire, glamour, travel, tabloid intrigue, corruption, and betrayal – one that ends happily for my hero and heroine. I really do love the way the story ends – every moment of happiness hard earned and believable.
Thanks for stopping by … And feel free to contact me with queries.