Justice Scalia has some advice for aspiring screenwriters

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Justice Scalia has some advice for aspiring screenwriters

Tue Feb 23, 2010 @ 10:49AM PST

By Eriq Gardner

Antonin_scalia1 Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia has opened a screenwriting workshop.

The cantankerous conservative justice took time out of his busy schedule to write a letter to an aspiring screenwriter who asked 10 Supreme Court justices (including O'Connor) to weigh in on a 12-page treatment for a comedy film about Maine seceding from the United States to join Canada. The scribe, Daniel Turkewitz, wanted to know how the succession issue would play out at the Supreme Court. 

Only Scalia replied:

"I cannot imagine that such a question could ever reach the Supreme Court. To begin with, the answer is clear. If there was any constitutional issue resolved by the Civil War, it is that there is no right to secede."

Some people are weighing the accuracy of Scalia's legal counsel, but we're more amused that the 73-year-old justice actually bothered to respond.

Maybe the judge behind some of the court's most articulate and biting opinions wants to ditch Washington for a second career in Hollywood.

Recall that back in October, Scalia mused about what it would be like if television showed sheep hunting. And Scalia loves to cite Season 2 of "24" to make a point on torture. "Jack Bauer saved Los Angeles ... he saved hundreds of thousands of lives," he was once quoted as saying. "Are you going to convict Jack Bauer?"

Turkewitz says he's looking for an agent, by the way. Would Scalia consider exchanging his dour black robes for fitted Armani suits? 

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The Hollywood Reporter, Esq. blog focuses on how the entertainment and media industries are impacted and influenced by the law. It is edited by Matthew Belloni with contributions from veteran legal reporter Eriq Gardner and others. Before joining The Hollywood Reporter, Belloni was a lawyer at an entertainment litigation firm in Los Angeles. He writes a column for THR devoted to entertainment law. Gardner is a New York-based writer and legal journalist. Send tips or comments to Matthew.Belloni@thr.com

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