Three Things About: Ebbe Roe Smith
Posted by cynthia fuhrman | 14 July 2010
You may have delighted in his irascible, cantankerous, thoroughly lovable Scrooge during last year's A Christmas Carol, and you may even know that he is the screenwriter behind Michael Douglas' searing performance in the 1993 movie Falling Down.
Ebbe wrote the screenplay. It was his first successful script sale, and, astonishingly for film, the finished movie was very close to his original script.
But did you know...
1. That Ebbe was also the Drammy-Award winning playwright of Third Rail's Rep's Number Three ( a play which got its start at the 2005 JAW Festival)?
2.That the New York Times once described Ebbe as "just the sort of unremarkable man of whom the neighbors say afterwards, 'I can't believe he killed all those people; he was so quiet?'"
3. And last but not least, did you know that Ebbe's newest play, Night Terrors, which will be read at this weekend's JAW:Made In Oregon reading on Saturday at 8:00 pm takes its inspiration from this famous painting?This is John Henry Fuseli's painting The Nightmare. It shows a woman being ravished by an incubus (a male demon) while a horse peeks out from behind the curtain. It is said that Fuseli painted it soon after breaking up with a lover. The question is, is it the Nightmare of the woman? The lover? Or the Horse? You decide. Ebbe substitutes a business man for the ravished lady, and adds in some true to life reference to a real sleep disorder called Pavor Nocturnus. But otherwise the characters are straight from the painting- Incubus, business man, horse.
And, since its coming from the weird, wild imagination of Mr. Smith, he's taken these ingredients and fashioned a laugh out loud comedy. Now, the real question is...did two months playing a cranky old business man with nightmares of ghosts and spirits perhaps also help inspire this little tale? You'll have to see the reading this weekend to find out.