I'm in Hollywood - Chapter 41

[Updated at: 2021-01-11 10:13:31]
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After 6:00 pm, the Home Alone crew started arriving at Eric’s home.


It had turned dark once Eric came back to the living room from the kitchen after discussing with the chef Vanessa, and he was surprised to find out that, in addition to the Home Alone crew, there was more than a dozen pretty girls all dolled and dressed up.


“Jeffrey, where did these girls come from ?” Eric found Jeffrey Hanson and curiously inquired.


Jeffrey smiled and said: “After Home Alone was done, Nicole Frank was hired for a campus comedy, and when the girls from the set heard that he was going to a party organized by the Home Alone director, they followed him here. As for the reason why, you probably don’t need me to explain.”


Eric smiled, these girls were obviously here for him, but he didn’t mind. Home Alone’s crew consisted mostly of men, which would make the party really boring.


Coming at the center of the room, he clapped his hands in order to get the guests’ attention: “Everyone, please hear me out, I’d like to say a few words.”


The living room soon quieted down and everyone turned towards Eric.


“First of all, I hope you’re having a good night. Today’s party is to celebrate Home Alone’s success, which is something that happened not because of me, but thanks to all of you here today, without whom I would not have been able to complete the movie in such a short time, so once again, I’d like to thank everyone.”


He finished and slightly bowed to the crowd, who responded with a round of applause.


Eric slightly motioned them to quiet down with his hands, then said: “Of course, a simple verbal thank you wouldn’t be enough. Home Alone made such an amazing box office, and it’s all due to each one of your efforts, so I took the liberty to prepare bonuses for everyone, I hope we’ll have the opportunity to work together again in the future.”


Eric finished, and along with Hanson, started distributing the already prepared envelopes to the crowd. Eric had written the names on them in advance so there would be no fear of mixing them up.


The checks varied between 200,000 $ and 500,000 $ depending on one’s position or contributions. Although it seemed trivial when compared to Home Alone’s box office, this was the equivalent to several years of wages for the crew members who had only mingled in the lowest circle of the industry. Their annual incomes were at most in the tens of thousands dollars.


Of course, Eric hadn’t forgotten about the main actors, however their share would be more generous and it would have to wait until he received his dividend from Columbia.


Some people may think that the filming was done, and the others had already received what they were supposed to receive, so why did Eric have to give away those huge sums of money ? Well, although it wasn’t written out in a contract or anything, there were such things as rules in this business, and giving away generous dividends to the crew after the movie had hit it big was one of them.


In his past, because of over quite a bit on the Titanic, James Cameron’s dividend had initially dropped. However, once the movie unexpectedly hit it big leading to the Fox making quite the profits, he was rewarded generously as well.


After distributing the checks, Eric announced the official start of the party, and took Jeffrey Hanson away.


“Jeffrey, this is for you, it should be enough to redeem Firefly.” Once the two men reached the second floor balcony, Eric took out an envelope and handed it over to Jeffrey. The check amounted to 3 million $. It was what the middle-aged man deserved, as without him, the shooting of Home Alone would not have gone so smoothly.


Jeffrey Hanson took the envelope and stroked it a few times before unhesitatingly giving it back to Eric.


“Huh ?” Eric was puzzled by that move.


“Eric, I’ve thought about it these days, and even if I were to get Firefly back, it would still be impossible for me to grow it the way Solina would’ve wanted, so…. So I have a request.”


Eric laughed: “Jeffrey, what are you still hesitating for ? Please just say it.”


“You said that you were going to start a film company, let me join you, I might not be a good director, but I can be of use as a producer.”


Eric raised his eyebrows in surprise, he had actually thought about this too, he also wanted to completely take over the crew that Jeffrey’s wife had left behind.


However, he felt that the man would probably not let go of his late wife’s company, and with Home Alone’s success, Eric wouldn’t have any problem finding out other people, so he had put away his initial thoughts.


But now Jeffrey had actually brought up the matter up on his own initiative.


“Jeffrey, to be honest, I wanted to ask you to join my studio and help me, but I thought you wouldn’t want to part with the Firefly studios, so I didn’t follow up on it.”


Jeffrey listened to Eric’s as his face tensed and his said with some apprehension: “Eric, actually, this wasn’t my main request, what I hope is that…… that your new film company will also be named Firefly. I know that it’s probably a bit too much, but…… I’ll help you as a producer…… I won’t take any share of it, just a salary would be enough, I wish you’d think about it….”


Eric realized that the man still hadn’t let go of his attachment towards his beloved’s studio, he was just trying to move on somehow.


This moved him slightly, and Eric quickly made a decision; it was just the studio’s name anyway, nothing to fret about. Originally, he was thinking of doing things along the lines of Disney, Warner, and Fox, and name the company Williams’, but oh well.


At least this one had a story behind it.


“That’s not a problem Jeffrey, I’ll just name the company Firefly then. I also quite like this appellation to be honest.”


Jeffrey raised his right hand slightly, he was still thinking about how to convince Eric when he heard he latter’s words. He asked, dumbfounded: “Eric, what did you…… just say ?”


“I agreed, of course.”


“That…… Thank you very much, Eric, I will work hard for you, I…..” Jeffrey didn’t know how to express his gratitude, he opened his arms and held the youth in a bear hug.


Once they separated, Eric gave him the envelope back: “It’s just a name, Jeffrey, I wouldn’t have refused you no matter what. Now take this, this is your due.”


Jeffrey kept declining so in the end Eric directly put the money into the middle-aged man’s breast pocket: “Jeffrey, although there’s a relatively large age gap between us, we are still friends. And like I said, isn’t it just a company’s name ? Take the check, this is the fruit of your labor, so stop saying so many silly things in the future, I’m still gonna need your help to create more miracles.”


After a round of persuasion, Jeffrey eventually accepted the envelope. The two of them discussed a few things about the studio, then returned to the party downstairs. Eric announced the establishment of the new movie company Firefly, and when the people heard it, many of them were overjoyed.


They had already glanced at Eric’s generous bonus and thought highly of him, but the crew that was left behind by Jeffrey’s wife was aware of her husband’s desire to redeem Firefly, so most of them had decided to keep following the man, while some others felt more compelled by Eric.


Now however, the two concerned parties had made the best decision they could have hoped for, so the party’s atmosphere warmed up as all of them felt relieved.


……


While he was laughing with the cameraman Nicole Frank, Eric turned around holding a goblet, when he noticed a girl wearing a red dress approaching him who appeared to be about to trip, and judging by the direction, she would hit him head first.


“Stop -” Eric quickly shouted with wry smile, lifting his left hand in front of his body, putting a stop to the girl’s behavior.


The pretty girl subconsciously halted her steps, and stood a little awkwardly one meter in front of Eric. Some wine had inadvertently spilled from her glass as her movements had been abruptly stopped, and her face held the embarrassment of being seen through.


“This young lady, if you want to strike up a conversation, you can just directly say hello. Please don’t spill wine on me, this is actually my last suit, if you ruin it, I’ll have no choice but to strip in front of everyone, which would surely be embarrassing.”


The girl who initially felt ill-at-ease, started laughing after Eric’s words: “Mr. Williams, you’re really fun to talk to.”


“Of course, I specifically practiced in order to attract the attention of pretty girls.” Eric joked: “So, you are…..”


“You can call me Lucie, Mr. Williams.”


“Lucie, that’s a nice name, let’s go over there to talk.” Eric pointed to an open space not far away. In order to get rid of the other passionate and motive-harboring girls’ harassment, Eric wisely chose a temporary companion.


He couldn’t help but sigh, if Annie, this stubborn girl, had been here, he wouldn’t have these problems. He wondered what she as doing, according to the east and west coast time difference, it should be morning in New York right now.



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