Egomaniac Director And Star Meet Subject Of Film; End Up In Hospital
Calgary (CP) Reporters were summoned to the Alberta city this week at the behest of an all too familiar self absorbed and self described “cinema auteur of absolute brilliance”. Michael Bay, the narcissistic director behind such explosion extravaganzas as Pearl Harbor, Armageddon, and the Transformers franchise, has been busy as of late preparing a flurry of films for eventual release. Usually these events are held at his offices at Digital Domain in California; instead, the director invited reporters from real media outlets and of course hordes of entertainment reporters to Alberta.
This reporter was among them. His cranky editor (editor: stop calling me cranky!), fresh from a stay at St. Mungo’s Asylum For The Perpetually Insane (editor: it was a four week break obliged on me by the newspaper publisher! Not an insane asylum! Blessed Tranquility is a place of healing therapy and yoga and scented candles and singing kumbayah!), had assigned him remotely to go along. I say remotely, because there is now a restraining order against the cranky editor forbidding him to be in the same room as this reporter after all those numerous death threats (editor: shut up!) over the last couple of years. And so this reporter was sent by a cranky sounding email dispatching him to the latest in a long line of tedious press conference by a demented egomaniac.
And so after an uneventful flight to Calgary, this reporter found himself among other real reporters and a horde of entertainment reporters in a large assembly hall at the airport terminal, where a Digital Domain aide informed us that four buses would take us out to the site of the press conference itself. This reporter, eager to be as far away from those vacant headed entertainment reporters, got on the bus containing all of the real reporters. Four entertainment reporters managed to get on board as well. The entire trip to our destination, we real reporters could hear them prattling on about nonsense, such as what Selena Gomez might be wearing on the weekend, which Kardashian was going to end up the subject of yet another sex tape release, and, to use direct quotes, “who’s this Elvis Presley guy anyway?”
The bus convoy arrived at its destination in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. A limo had joined the convoy, and had stopped as well. When this reporter got off and looked around, he recognized the spot, because he had been here before. It was the entrance driveway leading to a wooden structure among the trees. That was the building that housed the headquarters for one very particular detachment of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
It was the workplace of the legendary (and grouchy) Inspector Lars Ulrich.
At this point, with entertainment reporters getting out of their buses, gushing about what this was all about, the limo opened up, and two men got out. Both were instantly recognizable, both inspired cheers from the entertainment reporters, and both garnered eye rolls and sighs of dismay from the real reporters. The aforementioned Michael Bay, who never saw a reflection of himself he didn’t like (editor: stop making fun of him! He’s a magnificent director!) was the first. The other was his frequent film collaborator, actor Nicolas Cage, waving and carrying a bottle of Scotch.
Bay and Cage approached the group. Bay was smiling in that delirious, demented way of his, acting as if the world was his proverbial oyster, looking just as you’d expect- the stubble, the dishevelled hair, the casual wear topped by a blazer. Cage looked like he’d just crawled out of bed, and was stumbling a bit. This reporter wondered how much he’d been drinking.
“Hello, everyone!” Bay called, waving, smiling. “Thanks for coming all the way out here for a great announcement today. But of course it’s great. It’s a film directed by me, after all, and as we all know, any film I make is by definition outstanding.” Bay went on and on, praising himself. This reporter noticed movement up at the detachment, with a familiar figure emerging from the front door. It was the aforementioned grouchy Mountie. Even at a distance, he didn’t seem pleased to see so many potential irritants at his proverbial doorstep.
Bay was carrying on. “You know, I’m a great director. Everybody says that to me. I say it to myself when I look in the mirror seventy eight times a day. I don’t get why the Oscars seem to overlook me, but hey, if you can manage to finally award Leo with a Best Actor, that means surely I’m long overdue for Best Director and Best Picture and sweeping every single award, right?” The entertainment reporters were gushing and cheering. The real reporters were shaking their heads- most had already seen the Mountie making his way down the driveway and hoped he might pick up the pace.
“Which is why we’re here,” Bay said. “I want to tell the epic story of a brave, fierce, heavy metal drummer who seems to spend a lot of time in this sideline gig of being a lawman. Which is why I’m going to be directing this man, my buddy Nic, as the lead in the blockbuster movie about Lars Ulrich! Isn’t that a great idea?”
“You do realize Nicolas Cage is twenty years too old for the part?” this reporter asked. “And that he doesn’t look anything like the actual Lars Ulrich? What with having a lot less hair than the actual Lars Ulrich.”
Cage looked offended. “Hey! Don’t make fun of my hairline!” (editor: yeah! Stop making fun of his hairline!)
This reporter pressed on. “And you do realize, Mr. Bay, that the heavy metal drummer Lars Ulrich is not the same person as the RCMP Inspector?”
Bay looked confused. “You must be mistaken. They are clearly the same person.”
The real reporters sighed, shook their heads, and rolled their eyes. This reporter shook his head. “Mr. Bay, the drummer is a good twenty years older than the Mountie, and they look nothing alike. But why don’t you ask the man himself?”
At this point, the entertainment reporters noticed the approaching Ulrich. “Look!” one of them called out. “It’s Lars Ulrich! Metallica must all be here!” Bay and Cage turned as the inspector stopped before them.
Ulrich clenched his fists. “What are you doing here?” he asked Bay in a low, growling voice.
Bay grinned, clapping him on the shoulder, completely oblivious. “I’m making a movie about you! With Nicolas Cage here playing you! We’re talking bombs and explosions and hot babes waxing cars and more explosions and Aerosmith doing a theme song with Metallica and a villain who keeps getting mistaken for Justin Bieber just because they share the same name! Maybe I can get Bieber to play that part, wouldn’t that be fun? But the real crux of the matter, Lars baby, is that I want to find out what it is that makes a heavy metal drummer want to spend his off time hanging out in Canada and being a lawman.”
“I am not that Lars Ulrich,” the inspector muttered in a tone that made the real reporters back up.
“Are you sure?” Cage asked. “Because you look just like him.”
“Oh, this guy! What a kidder!” Bay laughed. “Of course you’re that Lars Ulrich!”
At that, Ulrich struck, throwing a punch that sent Bay flying into Cage, sending both tumbling over. Cage was momentarily more concerned about the Scotch emptying into the roadside gravel. “My Scotch! My beautiful Scotch!” He didn’t have more time to object, as the inspector started chasing both Bay and Cage off the road. Reports later had it that he’d beaten up both of them in Tombstone Canyon and left them whimpering, bleeding, and suffering from multiple contusions. They were airlifted out by helicopter to a hospital in Calgary, where both are in body casts, out of action for the time being with multiple broken bones.
Ulrich himself returned to the detachment, where real reporters were still gathered with the entertainment reporters. After throttling three dozen of the latter for asking where the rest of Metallica was and sending them to hospital, the Mountie faced the former, who assured him that they knew he was not a drummer with Metallica. He sighed with a tone of dismay. “You know that. I know that. What is it about idiots like that director who can’t tell the difference?”
This reporter suggested that perhaps their parents had been breeding too close to the gene pool, and that kicking the crap out of them was therefore justified. The inspector grunted in agreement and went back to his detachment. This reporter mused that breeding too close to the gene pool might provide a satisfactory explanation for his cranky editor (editor: hey! Shut up or I’m tossing you into that Tombstone Canyon!).
Dear readers, you read it yourself: the cranky editor threatened this reporter once again (editor: I hate you! Oh, I hate you! I want you dead! Dead! D-E-A-D! Dead!)
This reporter thinks his cranky editor needs a few years at St. Mungo’s Asylum For The Perpetually Insane.