Sunday, December 25, 2005

Attention Academy Members

Back home in LA. My Hawaiian travelogue to follow very soon.

Meanwhile, it’s GREAT to be in LA this time of year. It’s empty. And if you’re a member of one of the industry guilds or academies you get into movies free. Any movie that hopes to have even a ghost of a chance of getting a nomination participates. Which means every current release except FUN WITH DICK AND JANE.

A few years ago there was an indie film I wanted to see and I had a day off. It was a Wednesday. I checked the paper and saw the only place that had a matinee was the Peppertree Theatre, way the hell up in Van Nuys or Granada Hills somewhere. Having nothing better to do I drove out there. Must’ve taken an hour. The Peppertree was an old Cineplex in a dingy shopping center that time had long since passed by. It's centerpiece might've once been a Montgomery Wards.

I went up to the girl at the boxoffice, told her the movie I wanted to see and handed her my WGA card.

She looked at it and said, “What’s this?” She must’ve been 17 at the most. I explained the deal. This movie was free to WGA members. She knew nothing about it. I said, check with your manager. He wasn’t there yet. I said, check the LA TIMES, under the ad you’ll see a notice listing qualified guilds. She didn’t have a paper. I said there should be a sign-in sheet around. Is there any way to contact the manager? I’m entitled to free admission!

She looked at me with a pained expression and said, “But tickets are only a dollar”.

If there was ever a country of schmucks I would be their king.

9 comments:

Whaledawg said...

Hehe nice.

Could have been worse. You could have made her cry before you found out tickets were only a buck.

Lloyd Thaxton said...

I love to laugh out loud. You just made me laugh out loud. Therefore, I must love you.

I'll stop now before this turns serious.

Lloyd

Howard Hoffman said...

So? Did you finally get in for free or did you have to shell out the buck?

We need to know for future reference.

Ken Levine said...

I went home and told my wife the story and she said "so did you pay the buck?" YES, I'm not THAT much of a cheapskate.

Gary said...

Wonderful! Thanks.

Marc said...

Peppertree was in Northridge - and it was the shittiest theater of all time.... it's now a Body In Motion gym....

Sharone Rosen said...

Montgomery Ward would have been a step up! I believe the centerpiece of that fine center of commerce was ZODY'S. That was back in the days when SFVSC became CSUN... and the JC Penny at the Northridge Fashion Center still had a saddle and tack department on the first floor.
THANKS for all the laughs Ken. Whoever told you to start blogging was right!

Ken Levine said...

I remember Zodys well. It was the poor man's version of White Front so what does that tell you? I could reminisce for hours about the valley in the 60's and 70's if anyone would give a shit.

Llew Keller said...

I, for one would be happy to hear reminiscenes about the Valley in the 60s and 70s. I'm now at the age that I enjoy thinking about my desolate Valley childhood. Ken-this is a great blog by the way, and it's great to see that you're making good use of your time since the zenith of your career (no - not M*A*S*H*, Beaver Cleaver at KYA). In my pre-teens, I had a crush on the lady who played Annie Oakley on TV in the 50s. She did commercials for either Zody's or White Front. Do you remember?