“I was writing even while I was on Y&R, whenever I had downtime in my dressing room,” he explains. “My writing partner, Jonathon [E.] Stewart, and I were just honing our craft and trying to get good at writing scripts.”
While searching for their next movie concept, inspiration came from the Ethernet. “We had gotten an email blast from Dartmouth that one of the professors had written a biography about Theodor Geisel, who is known to the world as Dr. Seuss,” Podell recalls. “Jonathon and I thought it was really interesting that no one had ever made a movie about his life. Everyone knows about his books but he also had a very interesting life. So we dove in headfirst, and it launched our writing career. In 2012, a screenplay we co-wrote together, which was a biography of Dr. Seuss, landed on Hollywood’s ‘blacklist’, which is sort of an internal list of the most liked, unproduced scripts of the year. Development producers and directors all vote and we were number two on the list out of hundreds of screenplays.”
The recognition attracted the right kind of attention. “That became a sort of calling card for us and we started taking meetings all over town, so we had to get agents and managers,” Podell relays. “A lot of doors opened and we got our first job writing for Paramount, which was an adaptation of a novel called Juliet, about a woman who finds out that she’s a descendant of the original Capulets.”
Much like the tragic fate of Shakespeare’s starcrossed lover, this Juliet also died (“It went nowhere except on the pile of screenplays that don’t get made”), but Podell’s critically-acclaimed script was about to breathe new life into his budding vocation. “The head of development at Pixar grew up on the same street as Theodor Geisel in La Jolla, California,” he shares. “She read our script and called us in for a general meeting, and even though she didn’t have any projects at the time, she said she wanted to stay in touch.”
There wasn’t a long waiting period. “Six months later, in 2013, we got a call that they had an opportunity for us if we were interested,” Podell recounts. “They flew us up to San Francisco and we met with them on the Pixar campus. We talked about Cars 3, got hired on the spot and we spent a year and a half commuting back and forth, working up there and getting a PhD in Pixar storytelling.”
Continue reading your story on the app
Continue reading your story in the magazine
B&B SHOCKER: DEACON'S BACK — AND TEAMS UP WITH SHEILA!
After spending four years in prison for taking shots at Quinn, Deacon is released and heads home to see his daughter, Hope.
GOING PLACES? Nikolas hopes news of Sonny’s return will convince Ava not to leave; she shoots him down. As part of Trina, Cameron, and Josslyn’s plan to unmask Spencer and Esme, Cam fibs to Spencer that Ava and Nikolas are taking a trip together to celebrate calling off their divorce. Joss tails Esme and sees her with Sonny. Esme catches Joss trying to eavesdrop and they trade veiled threats.
It's All Coming Back To Me Now, GENERAL HOSPITAL
Aside from portrayer Maurice Benard’s 1997-98 break from playing Sonny, daytime’s most beloved mobster has been a fixture in Port Charles since his debut in 1993 — that is, until he was presumed dead last December, and spent the lion’s share of 2021 carving out a simpler life as amnesiac “Mike” in folksy Nixon Falls.
Be Our Guest
As she celebrates the 30th anniversary of her soap debut, Laura Wright (Carly) reflected on the path that led her to GH as a guest on Digest’s podcast, Dishing With Digest.
DAYS: THE DEVIL WANTS BEN AND CIARA'S BABY
Ben is still on the fence about having a child, so he turns to Marlena for guidance. “He’s got mixed feelings about it because of his genetics and his family,” explains Robert Scott Wilson (Ben).
Catching Up With…Darcy Rose Byrnes (ex-Abby Newman, Y&R, 2003-08)
If you’ve ever caught the YouTube video of a very young Darcy Rose Byrnes singing “The Wizard And I” from her all-time favorite musical, Wicked, she respectfully requests that you disregard that it’s Elphaba’s song.
What's on your mind?
Y&R: ASHLAND HAS DOUBTS ABOUT THE WEDDING
At the Newman palazzo, Victoria finalizes wedding details with Ashland, who is having trouble keeping his mind on the preparations. He finally asks his bride if she truly wants to go through with the wedding after learning the truth about his past.
Y&R'S MICHAEL MEALOR AND HUNTER KING ON “SKYLE” RETURN
Michael Mealor and Hunter King have similar sentiments about reprising their roles as Y&R’s popular Kyle and Summer.
bold & beautiful
Sheila Carter and Deacon Sharpe
Up Where the People Are
A coming-of-age tale that takes the phrase “fish out of water” literally.
PIXAR'S ‘SOUL' JOINS MID-LIFE CRISIS, JAZZ FANTASIA
Pete Docter’s “Soul” features stairway-to-heaven visions of the afterlife, a pre-birth “before” realm where souls are glowing turquoise orbs and an in-between spiritual realm trafficked by some kind of psychedelic pirate. And yet, kind of magically, it’s about “just regular old living.”
DISNEY UNVEILS PLANS TO STREAM A GALAXY OF NEW SERIES, FILMS
The Walt Disney Co.’s streaming plans shifted into hyper speed, as the studio unveiled a galaxy’s worth of new streaming offerings including plans for 10 “Star Wars” series spinoffs and 10 Marvel series that will debut on Disney+.
COMPUTER-GRAPHICS PIONEERS WIN TECH'S TURING PRIZE
The technology that animated movies like “Toy Story” and enabled a variety of special effects is the focus of this year’s Turing Award, the technology industry’s version of the Nobel Prize.
Disney+: Already, Nearly A Must-Have
Aside from its classic in-house films, Disney probably owns a few other entertainment properties you care about, among them Pixar and Marvel. Disney+, the company’s new video streaming service, delivers the vast majority of the content it owns in attractive interfaces with competitive features such as 4K streaming, offline downloads, and personalized recommendations.
Betty – Una pastorcita de armas tomar
La historia de Betty, la pastora de porcelana, había quedado inconclusa.
Amigos hasta el fin – El legado de una caja de juguetes
Armados con las herramientas tecnológicas más modernas y con el respaldo de un archivo de 25 años que pudimos explorar, Pixar mira hacia el futuro de la mano de sus personajes más emblemáticos: los juguetes de Toy Story.
Story is families' top film
TOY Story has been voted the best-loved family movie of all time.
Toy Story is named best family film
TOY Story has come top of a survey of Britain's most loved family films - with 41 per cent of the vote.
BE THE CHANGE
How lessons from the world’s top leaders can inspire our everyday lives