Posts Tagged ‘ Phil Johnston ’

How I Will Spend Oscar Night: Hubby’s Movie Nominated

Tuesday, February 19th, 2013

Okay folks. This Sunday is Oscar time. Do a good luck dance for Wreck-it Ralph. Preferably to Owl City’s When Can I See You Again. Unfortunately, Phil and I don’t get to go. Since it was nominated for Best Animated Picture, but not Best Screenplay, only the producer and director go.

For the Golden Globes it was the same thing. But we did get invited to the big CAA after party (where apparently the best sighting of the night was Bill Clinton). And guess what? We were L-A-M-E. As we sat on our couch feeding the kids–banana and macaroni smeared everywhere–both of us in our sweats (me greasy from my Thai massage I had earlier in the day in lieu of a manicure), watching the stars parade around, we slowly lost all motivation for going. Then when Brave won (WTF? We thought if it wasn’t Ralph, it would be Frankenweenie.) our night was sealed. We’d rather be in bed. Or with friends.

We had already booked a sitter, and our good friend Jenn Lee, who helped Phil write the movie, was going to the party with us. Earlier in the day we had discussed our dresses, what time we’d go, etc. We were set. I called her–even before Brave took the prize.

“Are you watching?” I asked.

“Yeah, I am,” she said with a bit of the same joie de vivre I had in my voice.

“How set are you on going to the party?”


“On a scale of 1-10, I’m at about a 2. In terms of not going.”

Me: (Sigh of relief.) I don’t have to shower after all. I can stay greasy.

We decided instead to meet at a local wine bar. One that reminded us former Brooklynites of our past stomping grounds. We three hadn’t gone out like that since we left the borough. We had a blast, drank too much, and celebrated not winning. It was like old times–before the Oscars were even on our radar.

We reminisced–

Phil and Jenn met on their first day of Columbia Film School. He brought her home for lunch. I was unpacking our apartment. Phil and I had just driven a U-Haul from Minneapolis with all our possessions, plus two cats. Draino (found in a sewer) was loose and got stuck under the brake pedal just as Phil was crossing the George Washington Bridge. I was under the steering wheel, sweating, trying to pull Draino out. Fur was flying. It was a record heat of 103-degrees so it stuck to me like a lint brush. It was high drama. And thrilling. It was a month before September 11th. We were young(er), naive(er), and never planned on having kids. I made us turkey sandwiches. Then they went back to school.

Fast forward to this night at Bar Covell. Jenn and her 8-year old daughter are thriving out here. I have two babies who have turned my world upside down with love.  We are all aware that we have “made it” in business terms. But we are equally aware of how blessed we are personally–and how sacred that is.

But back to the Oscars:

We decided for the Academy’s we had to rally. We would go to dinner while the awards were on. That way we’d already have momentum. Then we’d go straight to the party. I promised I wouldn’t get a massage since that just deflates all my energy.

So now Oscar night is fast approaching. The sitter is booked. The dress is picked out. And guess what? We aren’t invited to any official after party. HAAAA HAAA. The joke is truly on us, huh?

Oh well. Maybe we’ll sit in our sweats, pop some corn, and enjoy it from our couch. Win or lose, we’ll toast to the fact that we are even here, in this place and time… That we have two slumbering bits of perfection upstairs sleeping while we watch to see if a movie their Dad wrote–partially for them–gets an Academy Award.

My prediction–based on the winnings at the Producer Awards and the Animation Awards–is that Ralph will take the big prize. Even if it doesn’t we already hit the jackpot. Big time.

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Wreck-It-Ralph! My Husband’s Movie! A Must See!

Friday, November 2nd, 2012


Okay, I’m biased, but the movie Phil has worked on for over 3 years is officially out this weekend. Wreck-It Ralph hits theaters Friday afternoon. Phil’s credits include Story By and Screenplay By.

When I saw the movie a few weeks ago, I was truly blown away by the complexity of the story and the worlds that he created. There are Wreck-It-Ralph posters all over this city. Every time we pass one, Fia yells, “Look Mama! It’s Wreck-it-Ralph! Daddy’s movie!” I love that she will always have this as something her Dad did, starting when she was in my belly.

Fingers and toes are crossed for a stellar box office weekend. I’m thinking for all those going stir-crazy in your homes back east, this is a perfect break from it all! So if you have nothing else to do…grab your kids, your friends, your spouse, and go! It’s a four-quadrant movie, which means it appeals to all audiences. And in case you’re wondering, the reviews are stellar. A.O. Scott of the NY Times gave it 5 out of 5. Magnificent!

And just in case you needed a garbage can on the beach in Santa Monica…we have one for you!

Or, if you need entertained on the NYC Subway (pre-flood/Hurricane)…

My cousins at Disney World last week… yes, there are Wreck it Ralph bags! And all sorts of other crap things. Come on! It’s Disney! What did you expect?

Should you ever want to pixelate your face….


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Wreck-It Ralph Premiere! In Pictures! Part 1.

Thursday, November 1st, 2012

Whew. What a week. The Wreck-It Ralph movie premiere. A Hurricane. Halloween. The official release of the movie on Friday. So here it all is in pictures, starting with Part 1. The Premiere on Monday night:

Phil on the red carpet

Phil and I with Ralph and Vanellope von Schweetz (voiced by John C. Reilly and Sarah Silverman, respectively)


Good friends Elliott, Emerson and Agatha pose with Ralph and Vanellope von Schweetz.

Me and my bestie, Pamela Thomas. Her girls are Elliott and Emerson (pictured above this one). They flew out for the premiere from Brooklyn. They lost their dad to pancreatic cancer two years ago. Phil is their “Movie Dad.”

Good friend Agatha (left) helps light up an already hot red carpet.

Phil being interviewed on the carpet.

Fia rocking it out to Owl City’s “When Can I See You Again” music video from the movie.

Phil and Fia right before we head off to Premiere.

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Spirit Awards–and Breast Milk

Sunday, February 26th, 2012

On the Red Carpet

As predicted, Phil didn’t win his Spirit Award category. But we had a blast. How can you not with Jameson Whiskey as the sponsor? I only dumped one glass of water (by accident) on a studio exec. Oops. I managed to leave the awards twice to pump in my car.  Since I had a sundress on–all one piece–I basically had to get naked as kids and parents frolicked in front of me. I hid behind the steering wheel as best I could. I looked like a lurker. Then I dumped the boob milk in a nearby bush. It needed to bloom so I gave it the proper nutrients to do so.

The red carpet was insanity. Complete mayhem. Was wild. I had no idea I’d be walking it with him (thus my first drink was slammed moments before the feeding frenzy). Of course no one knew who we were, but they snapped us as if we were mega stars. And we stood there cracking up at how ridiculous this all was.

Today my proverbial slipper has fallen off and I’m back to changing diapers, getting peed on and asking Fia if she has to poop in the potty. Naptime can’t come soon enough. For all of us!

Phil Being Interviewed

I'm not the wife, but rather "Table Guest"

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Big Weekend Ahead–The Spirit Awards

Friday, February 24th, 2012

First Best Screenplay

On Saturday Phil and I will be at the Spirit Awards. It’s the independent film version of the Oscars. He was nominated for Best First Screenplay for writing Cedar Rapids. Here are the others he is up against. I suspect 50/50 will win (hard to compete with cancer), but I’m just proud of him for getting the nomination.

What is a bummer is we haven’t even been able to get excited about it. Between his other work projects that have been incredibly stressful and the new baby, plus juggling Fia and getting used to a family of four, I feel like we are just ships passing in the night. I feel like I literally run from one thing to another with no time to breathe. I’m hoping that this weekend will at least give us the chance to revel and reflect on our good fortune. It’s a shame when you have these amazing things happen to you, yet you’re too busy/stressed to celebrate.  I need to do the same thing with Emmett. Bask in him gracing our family. I do at times, but so much of my attention is split between him and Fia and life in general (cooking, grocery shopping, paying bills) that I know I’m missing some moments.

I didn’t have time to go buy a new dress. I’m wearing shoes from Target. And I’m going to be really sexy lugging my breast pump with me.  But hey, at least we’re getting out for the day. It’s on the beach in Santa Monica in a big tent. Drinks start at 11:30, then brunch, then the awards. I’ll post pictures!


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