I'm in Hollywood - Chapter 30

[Updated at: 2021-01-11 10:13:28]
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CHAPTER 30 – MICHAEL EISNER’S INVITE



“Huh ?!” Lester didn’t expect Eric to suddenly talk about Amy: “Ms. Pascal…… resigned.”


Eric was puzzled, he asked: “She resigned ? Why ?”


Lester furiously thought for a while, and after a few seconds, he said: “She had some dissatisfaction with the project, so she resigned. I’m not sure, it might have to do with the fact that she didn’t get to be a part of Home Alone.”


Eric had seen Lester’s eyes flash for a second, and he knew he was lying. He didn’t expose him but instead put on a disappointed face: “This is really regrettable, then in that case, I’ll take my leave.”


Once Eric got into the elevator, Lester knocked on the door of Cohen’s office.


Blount Cohen had lost the smiling appearance he had when confronting Eric, he was now frowning as he held a document, but his eyes were clearly not focused.


“Mr. Cohen, this is what you asked for.” Putting a folder in front of Blount Cohen, Lester hesitated, before ultimately saying: “I just met Eric Williams on my way in, he asked about Amy Pascal.”


Blount Cohen suddenly raised his head and sharply eyed Lester: “What did you tell him ?”


When Lester saw his boss’ eyes he subconsciously wanted to take a step back, before eventually steadying himself: “I told him that Amy resigned because the company didn’t let her handle the Home Alone project.”


Blount Cohen silently stared at him, and Lester added: “I think, Eric Williams and Amy Pascal are not familiar with each other, otherwise he wouldn’t have asked me where her office was. So I think he won’t go to her and confirm what I said.”


“You think ?” Blount Cohen’s expression did not let up.


Lester’s scalp went numb, he silently cursed at how bad his luck was. He said: “Mr. Cohen, even if my lie was exposed, it would only serve to increase Eric’s dissatisfaction with us, which is a good thing for us since he’ll be more inclined to accept Disney’s offer that way.”


Blount Cohen thought so too. Relieved, he waved his hand and said: “Well, you can go now.”


……


Driving down Hollywood Boulevard, Eric thought back to his visit at Columbia today, too many things didn’t add up. He knew for sure that there was no way Columbia was okay with how things were as his gambling agreement had definitely made them suffer a loss. He also knew that they had already started planning something; one of the clues was the compensation agreement he had in hands, the second was Amy Pascal.


He stopped his car in a parking lot a little further away from his home, traced back, then slipped through his back door. Taking a look from the second floor, there were still a lot of reporters in front of the house.


One of them noticed Eric suddenly appearing at a window, he directly raised his camera to take a shot. It seemed that he needed to move as quickly as possible, while he thought this, Eric smiled self-deprecatingly, even the Runkle’s had moved to Beverly Hills, but he realized that he, right now, only had a few hundred dollars in hands. He was as poor as could be.


While he was still in a daze, the phone behind him suddenly rang.


Eric picked it up: “Williams’ residence, who am I speaking to ?”


“Mr. Eric Williams ? I’m Mr. Michael Eisner’s assistant. Mr. Eisner would like to invite you to lunch, I wonder if Mr. Williams is available ?”


Disney’s CEO Michael Eisner, Eric wasn’t surprised that the other party knew his contact details, but he was curious about his invite.


“May I know what this is about ?”


The assistant replied: “It is about your movie, Mr. Williams. Disney is interested in Home Alone’s overseas copyrights.”


Since Columbia’s offer was disappointing, Eric wouldn’t mind cooperating with other companies: “Well, where do we meet ?”


“We will send someone to pick you up soon.”


Eric hung up. Looking down in thought for a moment, he once again pick up the phone and called Jeffrey Hanson: “Jeffrey, it’s Eric.”


Jeffrey Hanson’s tone was full of excitement: “Hey, Eric, Home Alone’s first week at the box office was so amazing, I tried to call you to congratulate you but there was no answer.”


“Ah, sorry, I was quite busy.”


“It’s okay Eric, so what do you need me for ?”


Eric said: “I went to Columbia today and discussed with Blount Cohen about Home Alone’s future release plans, and I found that a lot of things didn’t add up. I feel like Columbia is up to something. And when I talked to Lester, he said that Amy suddenly resigned. Why don’t you see if you can contact her and…..”


At the other side of the line, Jeffrey Hanson hesitated a moment before saying: “Eric, about that, I think there’s no use in contacting Amy. Even if she resigned, with her character, she still wouldn’t disclose Columbia’s trade secrets. Can you tell me about what you found unusual ? You know, I’ve mingled in Hollywood for 20 years, I might be able to help.”


Seeing that he wouldn’t have much luck with Amy Pascal, Eric carefully recounted what had happened earlier.


Jeffrey listened and pondered for a minute or two: “The lawyers will look at the share of the compensation agreement, I think it’s possible that the problem is here, and if not, I don’t see anything else. Eric, can you think of a few other details ?”


“Other details ?” Eric muttered to himself. He thought for a second and said: “Right, just before I called you, I suddenly received an invitation to lunch from Disney’s Michael Eisner, he’s apparently interested in Home Alone’s overseas copyrights.”


“Michael Eisner ……” Jeffrey said this name and suddenly his tone of voice changed: “Eric, Michael Eisner and Blount Cohen are friends, you need to be very careful, don’t promise him anything. Columbia giving you such a shabby offer and then Disney contacting you out of the blue, if there’s nothing going on, then I’m a woman.”


Listening to Jeffrey speak, Eric saw out of the corner of his eyes, a silver car parking in front of his home. He said: “Jeffrey, Michael Eisner sent someone to pick me up.”


“Then go, but remember Eric, no matter what he says to you, you don’t have to promise him anything.”


Eric nodded, hung up the phone and went downstairs. After they had confirmed his identity, the driver and another man made way for Eric as he boarded the car.


Half an hour later, Eric met with Michael Eisner at the Hilton Hotel.


The man was now 40 years old and at the prime of his life, as the head of one of the Big Six, he was naturally high-spirited. He hadn’t yet evolved into the future Disney tyrant, and his interpersonal skills were good.


“I really envy you, Eric. When I was 18 years old, I was complacent by just getting admitted to Denison University, but you have accomplished what a lot of people can only dream about in their entire lifetime.” At the Hilton Hotel’s restaurant, Eric and Michael Eisner didn’t immediately go down to business but took the time to chat.


“Actually, I was prepared to enroll in the University of California, Mr. Eisner, but due to some unforeseen circumstances, I had to embark on the road of self-reliance, and was fortunately lucky.”


Michael Eisner shook his head and said: “No, this has nothing to do with luck. Eric, although we’ve just met, I have learned a lot about you, and without talent, even with the help of the goddess of luck, you wouldn’t have so many achievements. You’re one of the most outstanding youths I’ve ever seen.”


“Thank you for the compliment, Mr. Eisner. You’re also one of the people I admire the most, few could’ve done what you did.”


Michael Eisner apparently enjoyed Eric’s compliment, he smiled: “Since I’m only one of them, who’s the one you admire the most ?”


Eric thought, and said: “Probably Howard Hughes.”


“Oh,” Michael Eisner nodded and said: “That really is a legendary figure, speaking of which, I feel that you share some similarities with him Eric, although you’re obviously better since part of the reason why he was able to achieve success was thanks to his father’s huge estate, while you only relied on yourself and to so quickly rise to fame.”


Hearing Michael Eisner’s praise, Eric smiled, but was feeling quite embarrassed. If he hadn’t been born again, he might still be in his old company’s shabby studio, shooting TV commercials about some health care products.


If you omitted Michael Eisner’s arbitrariness, he was indeed a man of great charisma. The two people ate lunch while they talked, the atmosphere was quite pleasant. If not for Jeffrey’s advance warning that made him wary of Eisner, then perhaps Eric would’ve viewed him as a friend.


Once the waiter that came to clean up the table left, Michael Eisner said: “Well, Eric, let’s get down to business.



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