They’re similar except I haven’t wanted to fling my computer through a window while using MOVIE MAGIC. Both have their quirks but FINAL DRAFT was obviously conceived by some crazed disgruntled programmer who once wrote a spec PUNKY BREWSTER that I rejected 30 years ago. He’s been trying to destroy me ever since. Or, maybe it’s not him. Maybe it’s somebody else…
For years I used SCRIPTWARE, which I just assumed was designed and run by a major company. Turns out it was some lady in the San Fernando Valley. Did I once date her? Is that why the importing feature never worked?
And now I think back to all the loony secretaries my partner and I have had over the years. One was a spinster who drove a stolen Porsche. Another showed us nude photos of herself (her we liked). One asked for an extra hour at lunch because she was going to get an abortion. When we said she could take the rest of the day off she said, “That’s all right, I’ve done this before. No biggie.” We had a secretary taking script dictation who would put her head down and nap every time there was so much as one minute of silence in the writers room. She was saving her energy because she and a few others in the typing pool had a bet to see who could sleep with the highest ranking movie executive at that studio. (For the record, ours came in second, and fourth, and fifth, and ninth) Could any of these fruitcakes now be designing script programs? (The nude modeler quit. Even our offer to make her co-executive producer wasn’t enough to change her mind.)
One assistant we had would routinely stand on her head in the reception area. She got hit in the head by a tree branch in the commissary patio but I don’t think we were named in the lawsuit. Only the studio and “Hawkeye Pierce” for some reason. Another of our charming former assistants was stalking a burned out former rock icon of the 60’s who she insisted was in love with her. This is the same assistant whose cat once went up a tree so instead of calling the Fire Department she called the Special Effects department to send a stuntman out to her apartment. You fire these people for cause but you always wonder…could any one of them be using their technical computer skills to boil my rabbit? I think back to the disgruntled FRIENDS writers assistant who sued the writers for sexual harassment. Did those writers get off easy? At least their script program will let them make page breaks.
Yes, I may be paranoid. Yes, I may be over-reacting. But when I want an action line and FINAL DRAFT just keeps sending me to the dialogue tab over and over and over and over, well come on, I’m not an idiot. I KNOW IT’S PERSONAL.