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Liz Tells Frank What Happened In “Pretty Woman” (Originally)

Ever wanted to find out what it’s actually like when Liz Tells Frank something? Liz Tells Frank LIVE begins! First victim: The Jessica Alba-starring James┬áCameron sci-fi series “Dark Angel.”

Dear Frank,

pretty-woman-coverAs you and I are both vague-to-huge nerds about screenplays and story development, I wonder if you’ve ever checked out the original script for Pretty Woman? There’s a real reason for me asking this: $3,000, as the project was called then, lays claim to a bit of interesting history for the film industry.

Here’s the story: It was heralded as one of the better-written scripts of the year, intended as a dark take on prostitution, drugs and whatever else sucked about the time period. But writer Jonathan Lawton’s rather dark take on a Hollywood Blvd. prostitute getting picked up by a wealthy businessman was then rewritten by script doctors Robert Garland, Stephen Metcalfe and Barbara Benedek for director Garry Marshall.

Marshall and his team then transformed the gritty tale into a light-R Cinderella-esque fairy tale, and made like, ALL THE MONEY. Like, ALL OF IT.

But everyone who I heard discuss this made the rewrite sound like a bad thing. The triumph of commerce over art, you know? So I wanted to find out for myself, and thus, this week I not only rewatched Pretty Woman in its final incarnation, but managed to Google up a copy of the original $3,000 script.

And HOLY SHIT, FRANK. WHAT THE FUCK DID I JUST READ? Read the rest of this entry

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