For my Playwriting class, I was supposed to use a New York Times article to make three ideas for plays. I found this article about Mars Needs Moms incredibly inspiring for this assignment.
Mars Needs Ideas – A Tragedy
Bob, Jack, and Steve, three filmmakers, sit together around a table on stage. While brainstorming and smoking cigars, they come up with a brilliant idea for a 3-D film about Martians kidnapping the mothers of ungrateful earthling children. The three filmmakers take turns fantasizing about all the money they will make and how they will spend it. They invest $175 million into making and marketing the film only for it to flop. Later, they sit around the same table wondering where they went wrong as the contents of their studio are carried away.
Three producers – Bob, Jack, and Steve – are kidnapped by a space ship full of Martians, transported to their home planet, and dropped into some sort of inescapable chromium zoo. They find that the creative team of The Adventures of Pluto Nash is already there. A little green Martian explains to Bob, in fumbling English, that Mars has a severe shortage of intergalactic family films. The three producers then smoke cigars around a chrome table and brainstorm the idea of Mars Needs Moms, inspired by the adventure that brought them to this strange and mysterious red planet in the first place. They spend $175 million Mars dollars making and marketing the film only for it to flop because of its socially insensitive depiction of Martians.
Mars Needs Film Producers – In 3-D!
A play that will be performed in… 3-D! The story will be the same one mentioned in the previous paragraph, but the audience will pay 30% more for the tickets.
Mars Needs Pixar Animators
The characters of Toy Story quietly watch a bootleg copy of Mars Needs Moms on Andy’s giant television. They feel sort of embarrassed and turn it off.
Mars Needs Action Romance
Bob and his two film-making friends are kidnapped and taken to Mars. They are dropped into some sort of chromium zoo where several slovenly Neanderthals with outdated filming equipment seem to have been stranded for years. Bob and his friends watch in horror as the hideous, green Martian faces gaze down from the space-glass above. Zafronia enters through steel doors and explains, in fumbling English, that the Martians want them to make an intergalactic family film. She has stylish hair and breasts which indicate that she is an attractive female Martian. Bob, Jack, and Steve desperately work together make a film, but it flops in the intergalactic markets. Conveniently, Zafronia has a warship and helps the filmmakers escape during the disastrous premier. She reveals to their surprise that she was just an Earth-Mom that was kidnapped and turned into a Martian. After blowing up Mars, they return to Earth and make the film Mars Needs Moms.
The Zemeckis Technique
Actors will perform Mars Needs Moms on a bare set wearing uniforms outfitted with sensors that record their movements. An avant-garde production for the whole family!
(Image credit: www.joeacevedo.com, home of the perfect Martian woman.)