On a whim, I wrote these Amnesty International commercials. I had never written spots before. I figured, what the hell. I still hadn't really started writing yet. I was kind of fooling around. I thought if I got these in the right hands the spots might "break" me since Amnesty was in bed with Hollywood.
As I said in my bio, my two greatest influences, inspiration were Paddy Chayefsky and Rod Serling. So I wrote sort of suspenseful spots with a twist.
I found a director, who later turns into an asshole, but he was serviceable for this venture. I sent the spots to Amnesty and the executive director loved them, pointed us to David Putnam, then chairman of Columbia Pictures, and we were off to the races! I was on the Burbank lot, now the Warners lot.
Putnam gave us a trailer and we got everyone to donate time, even the Teamsters Our star of one spot was Paul Rodriguez. Great guy. Funny as hell. That was my first produced credit. It was thrilling. Oh, I thought, if I could only do this for a living.
I got to screen this for Putnam. He loved it. Did it break me? Nawww. But it showed me my writing had the power to attract.