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THE MUSE

The Concept Is Born

The Muse is the new film from one of America's premiere humorists, Albert Brooks. Writer/director Brooks brings his incisive wit and social satire to the telling of a timeless tale, set in present-day Los Angeles.

Early on in the story, Hollywood screenwriter Steven Phillips (Albert Brooks) is...well..."I think no matter what business you're in, being fired is being fired," says Brooks. Your employer is not happy with you. You've hit the wall. You don't know where to turn next. It happens in all lines of work.

In the 1970s, Brooks performed a bit on NBC's The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson about a comedian running out of material. He explains, "It's always been in the back of my mind: 'Where's the wall? How close am I to it? Is there anything on the other side?' I think anyone who has ever had a creative thought has had those feelings."

Brooks has faced those demons in various forms, including the one he uses as his jumping-off point in The Muse: "The writing is the hardest, yet also the most satisfying, aspect of what I do, because the writing is everything. If I finished a script and then got hit by a car, somebody could still make the movie. But if it's not on paper, it's never going to be anywhere."

Producer Herb Nanas, who has worked with Brooks for nearly 30 years, concurs, "Albert is a creative person, and all creative people live in a constant fear of sitting for days with blank pages. The Muse, like so many of his movies, is a cathartic experience - filmed in a very funny way."

Having completed several films and screenplays, Brooks has indeed seen the light at the end of the creative tunnel, and wanted to depict part of that process as well: "I've always been intrigued by the idea of someone who inspires and influences others."

Who better than one of the original creative inspirations?

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