Law Religion Culture Review

Exploring the intersections of law, religion and culture. Copyright by Richard J. Radcliffe. All rights reserved.

Saturday, February 26, 2005

Feigning Sincerity, Part II.

A former Hollywood insider wrote yesterday an expose of sorts regarding his former industry. There were some gems:

"The operating principle, I learned, was never to say no to someone's face. And because both sides of the transaction assumed that rank insincerity was baseline behavior, everyone also understood that 'yes' could just as easily mean 'pass.' No wonder Eisner told Larry King he'd rehire Ovitz in a heartbeat, even as he tried to offload him to Sony.

"Everything in Hollywood is always fabulous. ('Fantastic' is Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's favorite word.) If you say a casual 'How are you?' to someone in the industry, the minimally acceptable reply is, 'Excellent.' I have also heard, 'Perfect.' And from an agent's assistant, on the phone, I once heard this: 'I can't imagine how I could be any better.'" (M. Kaplan, "Love Ya. Loved the Pitch. We'll Do Lunch. I'll Call.", L.A. Times, February 25, 2005; emphases added.)

Amusing stuff. However, I'm not so sure these traits are unique to Hollywood moguls. Next to "fantastic" or "fabulous", I cannot count the number of times I have heard, "I'm so excited about....", "It's incredibly exciting", or "We're very excited...." Try "enthused" or something else if you are not truly excited, please.