Ranting lemonade label from embittered screenwriter

Aaron sez, "My girlfriend knows that I like strange stuff, so she picked up two bottles of lemonade from this guy who sells them at a farm in Malibu. Here is what you could find on the labels:"


My name is Matthew and I am one of the best screenwriters in Hollywood. Unfortunately, the television networks and movie studios don't know that yet. As it stands, the decision of which films get produced are left in the hands of emotionally-immature, substance-abusing ex-lawyers who live in dread paranoia that everyone in the universe is out to get them. They spend the bulk of their time spying on their fellow executives, composing nasty counter-intelligence rumors and spreading them through their network of FA-BU-LOUS, yet cunning assistants.

Much of the actual work, like "reading" is left to a gaggle of twenty-something interns who are all the product of George W. Bush's "No Child Left Behind" policy. To these bimbos, nothing in the world existed before 1995, and the most reading they've done has been through text messages. They believe that good writing is something that fits into 160 characters, all performed with the thumbs. :)LOL!

Needless to say, I'm making my own damn movie and you just helped! All of the profits from this amazingly refreshing drink are going into my independent film. Why? Because I believe in the spirit of America - CONSUME AND DESTROY! POOR=BAD/RICH=GOOD! WAR IS PEACE! YOU-ESS-AY! YOU-ESS-AY! YEE-HAW!

Any-hoo, if you work in "THE INDUSTRY" as a common below-the-line slob and would like to work on my film for less than you're worth for no other reason but to satisfy my giant ego, send your resume to: malibu.monkey@verizon.net.

If you're a producer with a distribution deal, somewhat sober, and capable of actually reading a screenplay by yourself, shoot an email to me as well. I'll be happy to send a script to you along with your stupid submission release agreement boilerplate wank-rag.

If you are an actor, congratulations on making it this far. It's a lot of words. Who's a good boy? You! And you are very special. Plus, you serve specials at the restaurant. Special food served by special people to special people. Okay, I admit it. I'm just jealous because you are better looking than me and get all the hotties. Girls who go for me are all smart 'n' junk. Plus, they sag. And you're in SAG. Isn't that special?!

Agents, entertainment lawyers, managers and all other Pimps of The Antichrist can do us all a favor by simply killing yourselves. If you can, try to attempt a single moment of original, creative thought by finding an entertaining way to do it. Like performing seppuku with a champagne flute during the lunch rush at The Ivy. Or hang yourself from one of "O's" in the Hollywood sign with a noose made from your Kabbalah strings and rubber cancer-awareness bracelets. Either way, die bloodsucker! Die!


This guy is the embittered Dr Bronner of the west coast soft-drink trade. ALL ONE ALL ONE ALL ONE! We should introduce him to Mr Time-Cube.



  1. Pure awesome. At least he does have a talent for writing! But how the hell did this sermon fit on a bottle label? ;)

  2. Being an actor myself, I think this a perfectly sane and reasonable view of the business; it’s just that most people aren’t brave enough to say it out loud…

  3. Why doesn’t he have an IMDb page link? IMDB is like the phone book if you live in Southern California.

  4. Excellent! Sounds like an excerpt from an episode of Zero Punctuation. I wonder if he ships to New Zealand…?

  5. When life hands you lemons, make lemonade. Then throw the bottles at the heads of your enemies.

  6. Blimey! and I thought that delightful tart taste was a product of the citric not cynic acid,quick gimee another bottle.D’you think this would go well with a lager[like as in lager and lime]

  7. Nothing beats delicious sounding lemonade, a working business model and a good rant against the established movie industry in one package.

  8. Sounds like the kinds of emails/forum posts I write after drinking a few beers. Although I find it hard to respect anyone who uses the neologism “Any-hoo”, I have to admire his gumption.

  9. Absolutely fabulous! Now that’s how to rant.

    Not sure I’d want to drink the bottled version of that much piss and vinegar though.

    Well, it’s only lemonade, right? It’s not a “Like Water for Chocolate” kind of thing, where the soul of the cook is mirrored in the creation …

  10. @ #2:

    My thoughts exactly. Since when does criticizing the power-hungry, coke addled executives make you embittered? I’m surprised he didn’t mention their addiction to teenage prostitutes, as well.

    Anti-Hollywood screenwriter starts up soda company to fund his movie and seek revenge. I think there’s a script in there somewhere. Like Barton Fink on mescaline. Anyway, I hope he succeeds and does something brilliant like blow up the Hollywood sign.

    Or the Oscars! Dream big.

  11. He ought to thank the US Armed Forces and the CIA in there somewhere, for preserving his freedoms of expression, his rights to rant. Without their efforts, he wouldn’t be able to rant! Maybe he ought to donate a portion of his profits if any…oh wait he pays taxes.

  12. @ #13:

    I think you can be justifiably embittered. No one’s suggesting he’s a sore loser or anything.

    They should get this guy to do a Hollywood segment on Charlie Brooker’s Screenwipe. Or set him up with his own “Inside Hollywood” show.

  13. “ex-lawyers who live in dread paranoia that everyone in the universe is out to get them”

    The best screenwriter in Hollywood might want to go easy on the tautologies…

  14. #15 13STRONG Right on! Sometimes nuance is confused with nuisance,depending on the particular axe an individual has to grind.What’s that old axiom about revenge/cold?Lemonade would be the perfect metaphor for his stand.Set him up with his own show-Hmmm-wouldn’t that entail some power-hungry,coke addled X-rated-ecutives?But I like the idea.May his lemonade never get warm.

  15. @ #15: Nobody’s suggesting that?

    Okay. Then I will.

    I suspect this diatribe against Hollywood might not originate with a unique and deep insight into the industry, but rather from a refusal to accept that, just *maybe* his script isn’t any good.

    It’d go a long way towards explaining why “one of Hollywood’s best screenwriters” is working on a farm, rather than, uh, in Hollywood?

  16. I think this fella’s road to Oscar Night begins here. I hope, along the way, he does not become the corpulent bloodsucking undead that he rants about…

  17. ALEX M:

    What’s your reasoning there? Only good scripts get made into films? All good scripts get made into films? Bad scripts never get made into films?

    I’m not saying the guy’s necessarily an awesome script writer, but you’d have to have a weirdly rosy view of Hollywood and the movie industry to think it’s as straight-forward as that.

  18. A wise man once said about the entertainment industry – “It’s a shit business.”

    It is or it isn’t, depending on whether you’re getting pay cheques or not.

  19. Behold the power of internet advertising. I now want to buy a large (judging by how much fits on the label) bottle of his extra-bitter lemonade. I also want to see his movie when it hits the theaters – or torrent sites. I hope it stars Jeanine Garofalo.

  20. From Cory’s “rant” lead in I was expecting crazy. What I got was funny and well written. Not crazy at all and definitely not deserving of comparison to time cube man.

    Hope he sells a lot of lemonade.

  21. Here here! Someone get this man a contract! I want to see this movie, or at least hear more about it.

  22. @ 13strong:

    No, I know. I just think it’s funny that anytime anyone points out the systemic failures of an industry, they’re “embittered.” This guy seems more righteously indignant than embittered to me. You say “tomato,” I say “tomato” with a different pronunciation.

    Alex_M’s suggestion that this guy’s script is inadequate is presumptuous at best. It’s possible, sure, but in my view he’s one Hell of a writer. Perhaps you’re the one who’s embittered, or at the very least jealous that this guy gets some of the attention that you’re not getting. As was previously pointed out, once Hollywood starts making good movies again, perhaps your argument will hold some water.

    Any 12 year old with a $60M budget could come up with something better than Knowing.

  23. good lad! can’t beat a bit of bile venting can you?

    re: #16 i’d like to state for the record that the employees of the BBC NEVER take drugs of any kind, not even pain killers. They’re hard, tough, honest men and women.
    Emdemol however (the producers of Screenwipe) are all addled with the bug, use children as crack pipes and don’t even call their mums on Mothers Day.

  24. Pics or it didn’t happen. (The label, that is.)

    Also Cory, I think a comparison to Maddox would fit a little better with this guy’s MO.

  25. As a rant, I’d give it a C+/B-: long on energy, short on style, not the greatest…. And it’s “better looking than I“…. Shouldn’t this rant be better written? Kind of like those “pitch your script in 30 seconds” mantras Hollywood screenwriters are always spouting on TV? I’ve heard better rants on Scrubs….

    And there are so many good Hollywood movies! Back to the lemon trees, prole!

  26. Yeah, definitely more coherent and self-aware than the Time Cube guy or Dr. Bronner. (Although mentioning those two in one sentence seems like a crime – Bronner seems like a sweet, lovable kook with nice ideas and Time Cube seems like a shouting, hurling feces kind of nut.) (IMHO)

    X999901’s comparison to Maddox seemed appropriate. But this writing has less hubris.

  27. If this is bitter lemonade, I’ll take 100 gallons. Where was this guy at? I need to go buy some.

  28. ALEX M @17: Perhaps you have not been to Hollywood. I only helped out at a film studio for a week, and I already saw most of what this guy is talking about. ESPECIALLY the part about the teen girl script readers, because there are many of them, and the ones I met seem to have no taste whatsoever.

    Keep in mind that Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo not only got made, but had a sequel. Good scriptwriting does not guarantee a job in Hollywood.

  29. When I worked in publishing, I did time reading the slush pile. Half of the unsolicited novel manuscripts had cover letters exactly like this.I always wondered why they wanted to join a club whose members they despised. “dear publisher: all publishers are idiots who fail to recognize genius and are staffed by monkeys who only care about money. In conclusion, please publish my book. Thanks.”

    We kept the really good ones in the “file of shame”. It’s only a short hop from “I am the best writer OF ALL TIME though the grinding wheels of your industry fail to recognize it! I’ll prove them wrong someday!” to: “I have proof that the CIA and your publishing company are breaking into my home, stealing thoughts out of my brain and reselling them for high profit! I will sue you! No wait: I will print the TRUTH on a lemonade bottle! That’ll show YOU!”

  30. When you look through this guy’s site, the whole rant against Hollywood seems like a marketing ploy to sell his products. Especially since he takes the time to show you the celebrities who have bought his stuff.

    This isn’t a slam — a rant seems like a great marketing ploy. For everyone above that wanted to buy his lemonade, you can buy that, his basil-infused limeade (yuck) and balsamic vinegar through his website.

  31. Great writing? Really? Compared to the average online post perhaps — assuming the guy’s just out of high school.

    But the real point, and truth about both movies and publishing that we all forget (or don’t realize until we’re older) is that both of those industries are exactly that, industries. They accept works not on the basis of their intrisic worth but on how much money said companies can expect to make on it.

    This is not school we’re talking about. You don’t get grades for how well you write or the insights you are able to cogently deliver. It’s about ROI. End of story.

    And that’s why we get so much utter dreck in the movies and in print — because no one ever went broke underestimating the American public. Sadly, it takes some effort to underestimate it since its average taste is already so pathetically low (see NASCAR, professional wrestling, reality TV, Fox news and so, so much more…)

  32. This, and the related website, are laugh-out-loud funny. Thanks for pointing them out.

    I’m bothered by the conflation that happens between “a thing of merit” and “a thing a business sees the chance to make money out of”. It especially pains me when creative people buy into the commercial convenience of the mistake.

    As Hemingway wrote:

    And in the end
    the age was handed
    the kind of shit
    that it demanded.

  33. I think getting barely literate 20something airheads to evaluate a script has a certain merit though. That’s the audience.

  34. I love this guy! A blog on a lemonade bottle! Masterpiece. I’d buy lemonade from this guy any day.

    And he is so spot on right. So right.

  35. Agree with #29 and others — this is a rant, but it is not TimeCube or Dr Bronner crazy. Given the drug-addled and/or simply insane characters who infest most of the upper levels of Hollywood production machinery, this guy may just be on to something. Or pissing into the wind.

    Truly American in his “fuck you — now eat me” attitude, that’s for sure. Ok, “drink me” if you want to get all technical.

  36. Somebody should break the news to the screenwriting lemonade entrepreneur that Michael Moore has already made his movie, three or four times already.

  37. I’d rather buy lemonade from someone who really likes making lemonade.

    Nothing particularly new or fresh in this rant. Same old crap you hear all the time from people who either 1) can’t write a decent screenplay, or 2) don’t understand that Hollywood filmmaking is truly an industry, in the sense that it is made up of businesses trying to make a profit by selling product to the largest audience possible.


  38. Relating to #17’s comment, I don’t know if his script is any good or not, but I do notice that his marketing text includes the phrase “THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID” is what appears to be in an unironic context.

    Just pointing that out.

  39. Most of me believes it to be an attempt at Mojave desert dry humour.

    But a small part of me thinks “Holy shit, he actually is serious” in an Ed Anger – D.H. Lawrence sort of way.

    (D.H. famously suggested that the lower classes should gas themselves, as they really didn’t have any business being alive)

  40. Having tried to work in the industry, he’s totally right. However, I found that the people that go to these lengths are usually just as inept as the people that fuel their haterade.

    @#50: Yeah, it is an industry, but the financiers and gatekeepers of said industry are seriously skeevy people. It’s kind of hard not to sympathize when you realize that the film you are working on to get your hours in for Guild membership is a front for money laundering.

  41. Re: #54 posted by Mindpowered, April 22, 2009 12:01 PM

    That DH Lawrence reference is too good to be true. Can I trouble you for a citation on that?

  42. Reading this entire page and all of its responses makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside. Like I’m home. There’s a lot of epiphanies one can draw from that.

Comments are closed.