Gallic, Hold the Charm

11 Mar

The producer Thierry Dubled came early to African, when Michael and I had already written a couple of drafts and were looking for someone to essentially find financing and shepherd the script through the search for a lead actor and director. Thierry is a Frenchman trying to make it in L.A., with his own production company and a resume that includes producing features in Europe. Michael and I always figured it would be a European co-production, so a French producer seems like a good move.

What to say of Thierry? Elegant, trim, with close-cropped grey hair – he looks the part.

Funny thing – he is the part. He’s doing the job. The most damning opinion I’ve heard about Thierry is that he has the “soul of a line producer.” This is because he’s so goddamned CHEAP!

For example, Michael and I are sitting at an L.A.sidewalk restaurant with a young director who wants to helm African. We’re waiting for Thierry, who finally pulls up to an empty parking space only a dozen feet from our table. Any normal person would be happy they found a space. Thierry isn’t satisfied – he doesn’t put a quarter in the meter. An hour into lunch a cop rolls up and writes him a ticket.

Thierry starts complaining to me, “Why didn’t you say something? Didn’t you see the cop?”

Of course I would have said something if I’d seen the cop, but I tell Thierry, “Fuck you, I didn’t come to this meeting to watch your car.”

Another time, Thierry is in a restaurant with Michael. Thierry orders clams on the half shell. When his lunch arrives he takes aim with his fork and accidentally sends a clam shooting off his plate, skittering across the floor.

Long pause.

Thierry calls a waiter over and says, “I want another clam.”

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