Monday, July 25, 2011


'Fishing With John' was a BRILLIANT idea. Take a hip yet somewhat obscure/cult-like figure (John Lurie) and send him all over the world to fish with one of his many cool celebrity friends (Willem Dafoe, Dennis Hopper, Matt Dillon, etc). What some people fail to realize is that not only is John Lurie a pioneer in modern jazz music, and a frequent collaborator of Jim Jarmusch, but he's also done the soundtracks for movies like 'Get Shorty' and 'Excess Baggage', was a cast member on HBO's 'OZ', and has acted in plenty of other films outside of Jarmusch's (most notably 'The Last Temptation Of Christ' and 'Paris, Texas'). So even though he may be kind of obscure, he's certainly worked with plenty of famous people. For years i always wondered what kind of guests he would've had on his show had it not gotten cancelled. Well I've got about 4 seasons worth of guests in my head so I thought I'd share them with you one imaginary season at a time. The rules to being on the show is that you have to have more than one connection with John Lurie, whether it be a personal friendship or some kind of an artistic collaboration. Also, we're going to keep within the time period that season 2 would have taken place (probably around 1992 or 1993). So here's my list of guests for season two...

EPISODE 201: Roberto Benigni 
Lurie & Beningi @ Cannes in '86
1. Lurie and Begnini acted together in 'Down By Law', 
2. Lurie did the soundtrack for a film Benigni's wife acted in ('Mystery Train')

This would be an interesting episode because Robert Benigni doesn't seem like the kind of guy you'd want to do anything semi-dangerous with because he's so hyper all the time and might cause an accident. They could reminisce about acting together in 'Down By Law' and possibly tell funny stories about Jim Jarmusch. I'm leaving open the possibility that Benigni might drown. I picture him capturing a fish and getting so excited that he jumps in the water, but he cant swim (like his character in 'Down By law') so he'd drown. Way to kick off season 2...

EPISODE 202: Wim Wenders 
John Lurie in Wenders' 'Paris, Texas'
1. Wender's "silently co-produced" a film John Lurie starred in ('Stranger Than Paradise')
2. Lurie acted in Wender's 'Paris, Texas'

For some reason Wim Wender's doesn't come off as an outdoorsman so it would be funny to throw him in to a situation like this. Wim Wenders isn't as popular as the other names on this list so i imagine this episode wouldn't get the highest rating. But episode 203 would definitely get things back on track...

EPISODE 203: David Lynch
John Lurie in Lynch's 'Wild At Heart'
1. John Lurie acted in Lynch's 'Wild At Heart'. 
2. Both Lynch and Lurie are moderately successful painters outside of their main professions.

Around 1993 'Twin Peaks' had already been cancelled but at this point David Lynch was pretty well known as the "weird" oddball director. This would be perfect. David Lynch is from Montana, which i believe is like a fishing mecca in America (well that's what the movie 'A River Runs Through It' led me to believe), so that's where this episode would take place. It would be like a homecoming for Lynch. As they fly fished, they could talk about their favorite painters, colors, textures, etc. Then David Lynch would take one of the fish he caught and use it in a painting (he's used everything from live ants to dead mice on his canvases).

EPISODE 204: Steve Buscemi 

1. Both came from the same NYC "No Wave" scene. If they aren't friends in real life, which I'm pretty sure they are, but if they aren't, I'm sure they use to bump in to each other pretty often at art galleries, concerts or movie screenings.
2. Lurie did the soundtrack for a film Buscemi acted in ('Mystery Train')

Around this time Steve Buschemi would have just blown up thanks to 'Resrvoir Dogs'. Him and John could talk about the old New York City days, and share stories about Jean Michel Basquiat and Vincent Gallo (who was considered for the part of "Mr. Pink" first)

EPISODE 205 & 206: Werner Herzog 

None that I'm aware of (im already breaking my own rules in the first entry)

I just think that a show where people travel all around the world just to fish is right up Werner Herzog's alley. I'm sure in this particular episode (which would be a two-parter like the Deniss Hopper episode from season one), Herzog would request to go to the most dangerous place on earth and he wouldn't use any kind of a fishing rod, as he would probably use his bare hands. The climax of the show would be Werner saving John Lurie from a shark attack by stabbing it to death with a handmade spear.


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