IMDB.com, credit and fame meters

February 28, 2008

My life is complete now. I now can be found on Internet Movie Database (IMDB.com) as an actual contributor to film/television.

I feel like Navin Johnson (Steve Martin) in “The Jerk”. “The new phone book’s here! The new phone book’s here!…Page 73 – Johnson, Navin R.! I’m somebody now!”

Last year I received an email from writer/producer Lee Goldberg indicating he was in the process of writing a movie-length television pilot called “Fast Track: No Limits”. Lee is one of television’s elite writers with credits ranging from “Spenser for Hire”, “Hunter” and “Cosby Mysteries” to the first season of “Baywatch”. (Baywatch wasn’t a particularly tough gig, seeing that “hot girl in bikini walks by” often sufficed for script content.) Lee is actually best known for producing Diagnosis Murder, which makes him a celebrity in retirement communities from Palm Beach to Fort Lauderdale. He is also a respected mystery writer with numerous books to his credit.

“Fast Track: No Limits” was designed to be car-action-centric and focused plot-wise around an American girl running a mechanics shop in Germany (where the pilot was based, filmed and destined for broadcast on an English-language network.) Lee needed a car guy to assist with ensuring the movie was realistic and factually correct. Although I give him credit for owning a Miata, Lee would never be mistaken for a car crazy enthusiast.

This is where I came in. I enjoyed giving input about the cars specific characters should drive, what technical problems could plague cars, and what (based on Lee’s fabulous character development) the solutions/responses might be.

My work…if you can call it work…earned me a credit for Technical Consultant. I would have loved to get a chance to drive the cars, but an amazing group of stunt professionals were called-in to perform the jaw-dropping race scenes. Still, just to get the call to help on the production and an official credit in the movie, I’m tickled as pink as Suki’s Mitsubishi Eclipse in “2 Fast 2 Furious”.

It’s not that it’s my first time working on a television or movie project. I wrote my first television advertisement script at the age of 11 (with classmate, Kevin Bleyer, who is an Emmy Award-winning writer for “The Daily Show”.) This ad for the Diabetes Bike-A-Thon ran for several weeks in the Seattle market. (I’ve also written and performed the voice recordings for dozens of radio advertisements.)

A couple years ago, I was honored to get the opportunity to help out Jay Rowlands, the great director/star/writer of the vintage car racing film “Clutch”, which will be released in 2008. My capacity was more of a business and marketing consultant, offering ideas for distribution, co-marketing, licensing, PR, and funding.

All of my past work in non-print media, however, has been uncredited in the eyes of the Internet. Now I have an IMDB page dedicated to my tiny, yet everlasting entertainment legacy. Heck, there’s even the IMDB “Starmeter”, which indicates my star stock is down 67% this week…probably because “Fast Track: No Limits” ran last week on German television, and this week I’ve done nothing to keep up my stardom. I need to find another movie or television project to prevent me from falling into last place on IMDB’s ratings. I’m not sure who is in last place right now, but I’m guessing it is on the level of some guy who got coffee during the taping of “Love Boat”.

Actually, I heard “Fast Track: No Limits” has just been released on DVD in Spain…so I suppose I can now officially say “I’m big in Europe”.

If I want to retain my fame (which IMDB indicates is fleeting), I’ll need to get working. Maybe I’ll adapt “Sam Barer’s Four Wheel Drift” for the screen…or a television reality show…

Advertisements