Friday 31 October 2014

Second best?

Charles Haddon Spurgeon once said, "Any fool can go first. It takes an uncommonly wise man to go second."

This story illustrates his point.

When Colin Higgins was a student here (UCLA)— before Silver Streak, before Foul Play, before his great successes—he entered the Goldwyn competition hoping to win first prize. First prize in that era was $4,500. And in that day, you could actually live pretty comfortably in Los Angeles for a year on $4,500. That was his dream, to win $4,500 so he wouldn't have to have a day job. But alas he only won second prize, which was $2,500. And so that meant he had to supplement his income with a day job.
   He went to work for a swimming pool cleaning company. And the very first pool that he's cleaning is in the flats of Beverly Hills—great big, fancy house. As he's vacuuming the pool, sitting under a beach umbrella at the pool is a guy who clearly owns this house and he's reading a screenplay. They got to chatting, and Colin tells him about this script that won the Goldwyn prize. And this producer agrees to read it, and ends up producing it. It's Harold and Maude. So you just have to stay open to the surprises. You have to be in the stream of things.
                                             ~Richard Walters, Tales from the Script

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Great story. And I loved Foul Play. Although I think only Goldie Hawn could have pulled it off.