Have You Seen It? – Beverly Hills Cop
By Katy Daly, Managing Director
Here at AFF, we LOVE Daniel Petrie, Jr. Mention his name in the office and everyone will start spouting off their favorite Dan-moment from festivals past or reciting a line from one of his movies. To say that my fellow staff members had anything less than shock and horror on their faces when I casually mentioned I had never seen Beverly Hills Cop would be an understatement. I told them all “It’s fine guys, I’ll watch it someday.” But, that just wasn’t good enough. Not only would they choose a date and time for me to watch it, but they would also make me write a blog post detailing my experience. Usually this would totally stress me out, but throw Dan in the mix? NO PROBLEM.
So, I called our local video store and asked them to put a copy on hold. The girl at the store was not only more than happy to put it on hold for me, but also went on and on about how great/funny/awesome this film was. Needless to say, I was intrigued. I came back to the office, fired up the DVD player, and pushed play. As soon as the music started playing, staff emerged giddlily from their offices exclaiming “OH MY GOD, I LOVE THIS MOVIE.” This happens a lot around here. As one of the few non-film buffs in the office, I usually nod my head in agreement and continue on with whatever I was doing because I’ve probably never seen the film. This time though, the pressure was on. I watched the opening credits and instantly got excited when I saw “Screenplay by: Daniel Petrie, Jr.” and heard the usual “Dan is the BEST!” I nodded my head in agreement because I too, think Dan is the best.
Two years ago, during my very first AFF I had the pleasure of working with Dan on a live, staged script reading of Norman Lear’s un-produced teleplay “Guess Who Died?” I was coordinating the reading and Daniel Petrie, Jr. had signed on to direct, but it wasn’t until long after the reading and the festival were over that the coolness of this set in. In the months leading up to the festival Dan and I, along with Norman Lear’s team, exchanged many emails and phone calls. By the time the festival rolled around I had probably talked to Dan about a hundred times, so when we set a time to meet to discuss details of the reading it was no big deal. We sat in the bar at the Driskill and started to talk about casting. It wasn’t long (like, seriously, we had probably been in the bar for a total of 5 minutes) before an aspiring screenwriter walked up to Dan to say “hi” and tell him what an inspiration he was. And do you know what Dan did? He turned around and talked to that guy for the entirety of our meeting. IT. WAS. GREAT. At a certain point Dan said something along the lines of “Beverly Hills Cop was nominated for an Oscar” and I thought to myself, “OH MY GOD, that is why we have that poster hanging in our office! Don’t tell him you’ve never seen it; don’t tell him you’ve never seen it…just pretend like you are film geek and nod your head like you know what they are talking about.” So, I did just that.
Now, even though I am still not a film geek (nor will I probably ever be one), I finally know what I was missing! This movie is GREAT. It’s funny, serious, light, and suspenseful. Not to mention that music, am I right? This year, when I see Dan sitting in the Driskill Bar I can have my own moment of walking up to say “Hi, I love your work!” And you know what the best part of my job and the annual Austin Film Festival is? You can too!
Joining us for our Launching Your Writing Career event in LA? Daniel Petrie, Jr will be there as well! Get tickets here.