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The Horse’s Mouth 8: The Importance Of Feeling Important

Deadline logo Deadline 5/26/2017 Anita Busch

The Horse’s Mouth is an ongoing feature with a collection of the more head-scratching comments and/or crazy conversations we’ve had with people in the industry that made us laugh. We thought we’d share them with you as we roll into Memorial Day weekend:

PUBLICIST: Can you capitalize his title in front of his name?

REPORTER: Why?

PUBLICIST: It makes him feel more important to have it capitalized.

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PRODUCER: I have no movies. I lost my job. I gotta get off the phone to yell at my gardener so I can feel important.

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REPORTER: Checking on a casting on a film. Can your boss come to the phone?

PUBLICIST ASSISTANT: Who?

REPORTER: The person who employs you, (says name). Is she available?

PUBLICIST ASSISTANT: Oh, well, she’s not technically my boss.

REPORTER: Can you please tell her that I’m on the phone? Thanks.

PUBLICIST ASSISTANT: I can ask, but she’s not my boss.

REPORTER: Okay, understood. Can you please tell her I’m on the phone and have a question for her?

PUBLICIST ASSISTANT: Why do you need to talk to her?

REPORTER: It’s about a casting. Can you please tell her I’m on the phone?

PUBLICIST ASSISTANT: I need to know exactly what you are calling about.

REPORTER: Just please tell (publicist’s name) I’m on the line. I’ve known her for years. It’s okay.

PUBLICIST ASSISTANT: Maybe you should just email her and then copy me on the email.

REPORTER: You know what? That’s a great idea. I’ll email her about what you are doing when people ask to speak to her.

PUBLICIST ASSISTANT: Hold on, let me tell her you’re on the phone.

PUBLICIST: We heard you called (producer)?

REPORTER: Hold on one second. I’m on the highway driving on my way to lunch. Yes, hi. I heard (director) dropped out of (film name).

PUBLICIST: Can you send us an email about that?

REPORTER: I’m on the highway. Can’t you just ask the question?

PUBLICIST: It would be better in an email.

REPORTER: I’m on the highway driving to a lunch. It’s one question. One sentence. Can’t you just write it down?

PUBLICIST: (Heavy sigh) OK.

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REPORTER: We got this release that (a network anchor) is out. Can you tell us what your sources are on this?

PUBLICIST FROM MEDIA WATCHDOG GROUP: We are taking a risk and anticipating the news so we can be first with a release.

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REPORTER: I have two confirmations on this but looking for a third. Is (actress) in the film?

PUBLICIST: I don’t know I have to check and will call you back.

PUBLICIST (calling back five minutes later): I haven’t talked to anyone but the deal is not done. So can you say in negotiations?

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PUBLICIST: Can you get rid of that old photo and use the new, AP photo for (name actress)?

REPORTER: Sure.

(Story publishes with AP photo.)

PUBLICIST: Hi, it’s me again. Can you crop the photo differently? (My client) looks naked.

REPORTER: If I crop it differently, it looks like she has two black areolas, so I just swapped it out with the old photo.

PUBLICIST: Can you go back and use the other one (where she looks naked)?

PUBLICIST: I can tell you that there others involved including (names executives), but I cannot confirm it.

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PUBLICIST: Off the record, I can’t comment. Can you just say I didn’t return calls?

REPORTER: But that wouldn’t be honest. You just returned my call.

PUBLICIST: But other journalists do that for us.

REPORTER: You returned my call, not once but like three times!

PUBLICIST: I don’t think (executive) has the offer.

REPORTER: Yes, (the executive) does.

PUBLICIST:

Well, can you change (something in the story).

REPORTER:

No.

PUBLICIST:

OK, I guess I will have to clarify in the announcement.

REPORTER: You mean the announcement for the job you say (the executive) has no offer on?

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PRODUCER: How do I get into your story?

REPORTER: Are you sure you want to do that? Your movie is failing at the box office.

PRODUCER: Yeah, and here’s what I want to say (he provides quote about U.S. politics that has nothing to do with the movie).

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PRODUCER (complaining about a marketing person): “She’s not a funny person. She cuts the jokes wrong.”

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REPORTER TO PUBLICIST: I need to know how old the company is, where they are based and who their clients are.

PUBLICIST: Can you just write that down and send me an email?

REPORTER: Why don’t you just write it down and you can send yourself an email.

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PRESS RELEASE ANNOUNCING HOSTS OF THE DAYTIME EMMYS: “… to take place on Sunday, April 30th, 2017 at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Burbank, California.”

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