September 18, 2008
My Hero (Right Now)
Diablo Cody makes me smile.
Yeah, she's the former stripper chick who won an Oscar for writing Juno and is now working with Spielberg on her own Showtime series starring Toni freakin' Collette.
She makes me look forward to the day when I'll work alongside my own childhood idol, have an assistant who can watchdog my Facebook account while managing my iPhone address book and attend random movie premieres simply because my mere presence can up the pedigree quotient of the red carpet.
Little did I know Ms. Cody has a significant number of haters, and yesterday she posted a blog on her MySpace addressing said hate. It is something I couldn't have written better myself and reminds me why I j'adore her so:
1. She's proof that a writer in the twilight years of his/her 20s can cause a seismic shift in Tinseltown.
2. She's one of the few writers whose words jump off the page, slap my chubby cheek and make me bust a gut in the middle of the workday (her acute observations are the stuff pop-culture fanatics' dreams are made of).
3. She's a contributing scribe for my Bible, Entertainment Weekly; I absorb her columns with relish.
4. She's not ashamed of her past; instead, she uses it as a source of inspiration from which she can propel herself further into her challenging and often schizophrenic career. Likewise, she's not afraid to point out the hypocrisy from her critics (as you'll see below); she dishes back without coming off as having been consumed by an ego.
5. Um, hello...an Oscar and Spielberg.
Here's her blog. For you sensitive readers out there, it's rated R. But it's a soft R:
A while back, there was a thoughtful article in the above-mentioned publication [Variety] about Ellen Page and myself. The article was mostly about how passionately some people hate me. As I explained to my therapist the following day (ha) it's kind of weird to read something like that about yourself. On one hand, you feel defensive. On the other hand, you feel puzzled. You feel compelled to identify what it is about you that might inspire such vitriol. (I personally suspect the hate isn't that widespread; it's just loud.)
I thought about it. For months. I even wrote a screenplay on the theme. And then, finally, I figured it out.
I have a response to those who are still boring enough to lob insults in my direction. (Those of you who are friends, fans, enablers, or dislike my writing for legitimate, rational, nonpersonal reasons can tune out now if you like. This isn't for you.)
Anyone else? Bend thine ear:
I am not Charlie Kaufman or Sofia Coppola (much as I supplicate at their Cannes-weary feet.) I'm not Paul Thomas Anderson. I'm not even Paul W.S. Anderson. I am middle-class trash from the Midwest. I'm a competent nonfiction writer, an admittedly green screenwriter, and a product of Hollywood, USA. I am "Diablo Cody" and if you're not a fan, go rent Prospero's Books again and leave me the fuck alone.
I may have won 19 awards that you don't feel I earned, but it's neither original nor relevant to slag on Juno. Really. And you're not some bold, singular voice of dissent, You are exactly like everyone else in your zeitgeisty-demo-lifestyle pod. You are even like me. (I, too, loved Arrested Development! Aren't we a pretty pair of cultural mavericks? Hey, let's go bitch about how Black Kids are overrated!)
I'm sorry that while you were shooting your failed opus at Tisch, I was jamming toxic silicon toys up my ass for money. I get why you're bitter. I took exactly one film class in college and-- with the curious exception of the Douglas Sirk unit—it bored the shit out of me. I also once got busted for loudly crinkling a bag of Jujubes during a classroom screening of Vivre Sa Vie. I don't deserve to be here. We've established that. But I'm here. Five million 12-year-olds think I'm Buck Henry. Accept it.
(Incidentally, if you were me for one day you'd crumble like fucking Stilton. I am better at this than you. You're not strong enough, Film_Fan78. Trust me.)
I'm sorry to all those violent, semi-literate fanboys who hate me for befriending their heroes. I can't help it if your favorite writer, actor, director, or talk show host likes me. Maybe you would too, if we actually met.
I know my name is fake and that it annoys you. What, do you hate Queen Latifah and Rip Torn, too? Writers and entertainers have been using pseudonyms for years. Chances are, you're spewing bile under an assumed screen name yourself. I'm sorry if you think I'm like some inked-up quasi-Suicide Girl derby cunt from 2002, but I like my fake name. It's engraved on an Oscar. Yours isn't.
Listen: I've been telling stories my whole life. Even when I was a phone sex operator, I was the Mark Twain of extemporaneous jerk-off fiction. I took every perspiring creep on a fucking journey. I don't know how to do anything else.
I'm going to make more movies and shows. I doubt they'll all be good, but that's the nature of this life. Even though the public only knows me from one book, one movie, and several aborted blogs, I've spent the last few years hustling like Iceberg Slim out here to prove myself professionally. The people I currently work for, and with, are more than pleased with my post-Juno output. My pilot was so good (thanks, Toni Colette!) that it got picked up for series. That is rare, children. That is blue-rare.
In summation: you try it.
This is the last I have to say on the subject, unless I'm provoked by a journalist in which case I'll gladly reload. With relish, as Betty Rizzo might say. That said, I'm a 30-year-old woman with a dwindling interest in blog culture, and I don't have time to address this bullshit every time one of my projects comes out. I'm in love, I just bought a house, and my boss made E.T. I kind of have to focus on reality.
And drinking. I have to focus on drinking.
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