Columbia Pictures’ “Stripes”

Cheech and Chong join the army! That was the original idea for the film Stripes by director Ivan Reitman, that came to him while getting ready for the premiere of the classic Bill Murray-starrer Meatballs in 1979. The 1960s and ’70s were filled with unrest over civil rights issues, political scandals like Watergate, and the United States heading into the worst recession since WWII. Reitman’s idea was the perfect fish-out-of-water story, combining two forces that were seemingly at odds at the time: the military and the counter-culture. But the film would have larger ramifications than the filmmakers intended.

When making…


Women like Donna Reed and Lucille Ball had a voice in front of and behind the TV cameras that was lost over time, but “WandaVision” puts the roles of wife and mom back in focus.

Elizabeth Olsen as Wanda Maximoff in “WandaVision”, Disney+ and Marvel Studios

WandaVision has been hailed for its throwback to women in sitcoms of yesteryear. The Dick Van Dyke Show, Bewitched, The Brady Bunch, Family Ties, Modern Family, and many more series are clear references in the Marvel Studios series that has been the talk of the internet since it debuted earlier this year on Disney+.

A great deal of praise has been, rightfully, centered on how the show evolved from an homage to these classic sitcoms to the larger story of grief for Elizabeth Olsen’s Wanda Maximoff, whose trauma was merely used as plot points in the Marvel Cinematic Universe previously…


“Rick & Morty” co-creator, Dan Harmon, combines structure and emotion to create eye-catching screenplays

By Carley Gallay / Getty Images

If you enjoy writing screenplays, novels, or any other fiction format, or if you are a fan of franchises such as Star Wars and Lord of the Rings, you’ve likely heard of The Hero’s Journey. The concept, defined by Joseph Campbell after extensive study of the history of myths, religion, and storytelling in society, breaks down the structure of a “universal story”.

The Hero’s Journey was explained in Campbell’s The Hero with a Thousand Faces as:

A hero ventures forth from the world of common day into a region of supernatural wonder: fabulous forces are there encountered and a decisive…


Let’s all try to set aside the divisive nature of the fandom for a “mere” four hours and try to embrace this film with an open mind because it deserves that shot.

Credit: Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.

The DC Universe is one of the most contentious franchises currently in films. It has been like this since its beginnings with director Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel in 2013, which netted over $600 million at the box office but was met with a slew of mixed reactions from critics. Its follow-up, Batman v. Superman, didn’t fare much better critically. …


In a year that obliterated the idea of “hustle culture”, these books both inspire and teach readers new skills to move forward without burning out.

Photo by Mikel Parera on Unsplash

Every year, I set a goal of how many books I’m going to read over the course of the following 12 months.

And every year, I fail.

It’s not something I beat myself up about, but reading is always touted as a regular daily ritual of successful people. …


Last week, MasterClass announced a new teacher: Roxane Gay on Writing for Social Change. This powerful class is focused on cultural commentary, but the lessons truly work for every kind of writer at every level.

Roxane Gay, MasterClass

Last week, while writing another entertainment criticism piece, I had a crisis-of-confidence.

Regardless of working in the entertainment industry, both in development and as a writer for many years, the thought crossed my mind “who am I to speak on this?” My resume should have been enough to remind me, yet lots of people have similar feelings, and even more have opinions on film and television that they share in real-time on social media.

In the middle of my internal debate, the “Universe” seemed to hear my cry and at the top of my inbox was an alert from MasterClass…


Harrison Ford’s performance as Han Solo has been held up as a prototype for the suave, apathetic, player… and yet, his on-screen persona is quite the opposite.

Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford in “Empire Strikes Back” | Alamy Stock Photo

There a million reasons that people fight about Star Wars on the internet and I’m here to give you one more.

Han Solo is not a “cool guy who gets all the girls”.

What do I mean by this? Well, it seems that the archetype of Han Solo has inspired many “player” type characters in film and television including Mal from Firefly, Chris Pine in Star Trek, and Chris Pratt in Guardians of the Galaxy, as well as many others listed here.

Now, Han Solo does share some characteristics with these leading men (even if, technically, Solo wasn’t the leading…


Medium has been around a while, and recently, a few competitors have popped up, including Vocal+, a platform that wants to find the next great fiction writers.

Andrew Neel | Unsplash

Over the course of the past year, I’ve gone from a full-time 9–5 job in an office, to re-establishing my writing career from home. And so are many other people!

If you’re relatively new to Medium, then you know it can be tough to establish yourself and find the audience without the help of a publication. It sometimes feels like in order to succeed on any platform, you have to be involved with it early on. This isn’t necessarily true, but it doesn’t get harder and harder to establish yourself and your brand as a platform grows.

When I first…


The far, far away galaxy has had great female characters over the years, but losing this character (not necessarily the actor), Cara Dune, stings.

Lucasfilm

Last week, Disney/Lucasfilm confirmed that they were no longer working with Gina Carano. The announcement came following a social media post comparing today’s conservative voters with Jews being murdered before and during the Holocaust.

The announcement made it clear that the decision was made before that particular post by Carano, who has been using social media to post a plethora of misinformation about masks and the election results.

For a full breakdown of what happened, I highly recommend this article by The Hollywood Reporter. The TLDR is that there were conversations about a bigger role for Cara Dune, and therefore…


For all the rave reviews and accolades, there’s a lot of controversy happening around the central relationship in “Bridgerton”, but the problem may actually be in the eye of the beholder.

“Bridgerton” | 2020 Netflix, Inc.

It has never been easy for a show or film to be all things to all people. They’re not meant to be. Films and television series are stories with a unique purpose driving them, and right now, the public conversation around what is politically correct, consensual, inclusive, etc. is bumping up against the stories creators are trying to tell.

This is actually a great thing! It forces storytellers to really consider if they’re telling a narrative to their best capability. …

Emily J.

Writer and Artist with almost ten years of experience in entertainment writing and development. I nerd out over screenwriting at www.emilyjwrites.com. she/her

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