One of the most memorable moments among the upcoming crop of popcorn pics will be achingly familiar to Angelenos.
That would be the nightmarish citywide traffic jam that’s engineered in front of Grauman’s Chinese Theater in “The Italian Job” as part of the plot to steal a truckful of gold. The shoot required closing down Hollywood Boulevard for the better part of a week last fall.
In one comic sequence, a character is stuck in traffic next to a billboard counting the number of deaths from smoking.
“The driving in the film is really integral, so it seemed to us that it would work a lot better here,” says Wayne Powers, who together with wife Donna scripted the remake and re-envisioned the pic from its planned San Francisco setting. “Besides, being in a car in Los Angeles is what we know — and that’s what you should write.”
But don’t count on seeing the Powers’ own most memorable freeway adventure — going into the emergency lane of the 405 when then-pregnant Donna started having contractions; it’s not in the film. “We made it in plenty of time to Cedars,” she adds.
The couple also has taken the idea of writing what they know and turned it into “Out of Order,” a Showtime miniseries drama about a married couple who are also screenwriters. The show is set in Pacific Palisades; among the cast is helmer Peter Bogdanovich.