A movie of my life is not going to happen and I think I am actually glad that Convergent’s plan fell apart.
Their interest in my screenplay came from a long-held desire on the part of Convergent, a national pay TV English-language broadcaster, and Télé Cinq, a national pay TV French-language broadcaster, to work together. Convergent owns OutTV, Canada’s LGBT pay TV channel and Télé Cinq serves Francophones outside of Quebec and since my story has a gay minor theme and is a bilingual story at its core, Uncle Gus’ Monkey was an ideal property for them to develop together.
It always comes down to people: Brad runs Convergent and a friend of his ran Télé Cinq but she was fired after I signed the contract with Convergent.
My contract sold all my rights to the story and bound me to the project as writer through both pre-production and the production schedules but my attitude towards my past has changed since signing it.
In 1990 I stopped to help a guy in distress. He turned out to be a mugger who forced me to drive to two different locations whilst he held a knife to my throat. When I got away and went to work, I had a “guess what happened to me” attitude as I burst into the office and my co-workers were fascinated.
Then our boss, a dear friend, arrived and I lost it. I had a horrific breakdown. The cops were called, the guy got caught and he was charged with kidnapping. Imagine that! Me; kidnapped.
My point in recalling that story is that I wrote my screenplay in the same “guess what happened to me” headspace that possessed me after the kidnapping. Now those events, too, have caused a breakdown that has brought about a change in my feelings — and not just about my history. I have a new relationship with privacy. I’m far less inclined to share; there’s now a ‘line in the sand.'