The House Bunny, the new movie where an entire sorority house full of "ugly" girls take off their glasses, shake out their hair and are transformed into happy, happy bimbos, should always be referred to in interrogative form. As in: "What The House Bunny?" "In God's name, why The House Bunny?" and "Ugh, how The House Bunny?"
Well, today I came across an answer for that last one, courtesy of this article about the crazy, wacky, at least 10-zanies-per-second writing process of Karen Lutz and Kirsten Smith, the two women responsible for bringing the line, "What if he doesn't mind a smart girl!?" to the big screen.
Who says you have to suffer for your art? The unofficial Karen Lutz/Kirsten Smith manual states that nothing makes writing fun faster than a partner, a pool and a couple "bottles of Woo!"
…So on a recent weekday afternoon — at the 2 p.m. start of the day's five-hour shift — Lutz efficiently popped a bottle of Leclerc Briant on the poolside deck of her expansive home. Immediately from around the corner came Smith's hearty "Woo!" as Lutz filled opaque red flutes. Before long, Smith's legal pad was in hand as she paced, jotted notes and acted out potential dialogue, while Lutz laid serenely still on a raft midpool as she worked out the movie in her head.
"Our male writer friends, they need that office to go to, where they're putting in their 9-to-5 and it's this manly grind," says Smith (known as "Kiwi"). "And with us, it's more like, 'We're having a little fiesta together!' "
OMG! Fiesta writing! Love it. No, LUV it. It's so true, too. I work in an office with a bunch of male comedy writers, and they're always all, "Where's my spreadsheet?" "I'm going to my office." "Back to the manly grind, eh boys? Blah, blah, blah." Meanwhile, I'm downing a bottle of Prosecco while soaking in the kiddie pool I set up on the roof with my laptop, and getting drunk enough to pretend it's 1930s Key West and I'm Hemingway (who was probably a woman in disguise because he was a big proponent of drunk fiesta writing.)
Anyway, at least The House Bunny makes more sense now, considering its origin. What else would one write while floating in a pool and shouting "Woo!" at regular intervals except a sorority/makeover comedy with Playboy overtones?
You'll be happy to know that Lutz/Smith's writing process is so amazing and different, it's being made into a TV show for ABC. No, really. You think phrases like, "bottles of Woo!" come along every day? (Incidentally, ABC, that would be a great title.)
Then there's this:
A trip to Lutz's Puerto Vallarta time share early in their partnership in the mid-'90s seasoned the habit. "We outlined '10 Things [I Hate About You]' with a bucket of Corona between our legs on the beach," says Lutz. "So we decided . . . to go with that."
While 10 Things I Hate About You wasn't a perfect movie, it was an enjoyable, sharp high school adaptation of Taming Of The Shrew that, in stark contrast to The House Bunny, featured a female protagonist who wasn't a caricature or an idiot. So, Lutz/Smith should probably go back to the bucket-of-corona-on-a-beach writing method. The champagne is clearly going to their heads.