I love when I can stop trying to regiment my thoughts and switch to the right brain, completely. I believe this is what savants do naturally, all of the time. I am not a savant. I have read there are only 50 savants known to be alive in the world today. Most of these extraordinary 'genius' people, but not all, are severely autistic.
So, the technique of letting my film's characters 'speak to me' has done the trick. There is flow again in the screenplay story, but new questions like small mushrooms keep popping up ! A hundred new whys, and a hundred new what ifs. Often answers or 'messengers' come in strange guises. Sometimes via the Internet ! This is what happened today:
What is this ?
As I read about savant-ism, my heart gave a startled little jump, then a smile, then my attention was 100% grabbed. It was an unmistakable ah-ha moment.
There's old adage which states that we utilize only 10 percent of our brains, 'but Savants remind us with startling clarity, that our brains are capable of so much more.'
Savants: People with genius gifts, and huge life challenges.
Sasha. A Savant ?
Synopsis of screenplay's new twist:
A small fortune is paid by Jewish impresario Reuben, to criminal Kaleb, to kidnap baby Sasha , Reuben's illegitimate granddaughter (aged three weeks),and find her a substitute family, for life .
The 'why' will be explained later.
Sasha grows up in dire poverty in an immigrant ghetto in Paris. Abducted by petty criminal and small time
drug dealer 'Uncle Kaleb,' a Moroccan car mechanic, and 'raised' by his alcoholic wife Fatima, Sasha believes she is adopted, and that all her family died in a car crash. Mostly ignored by everybody in the neighborhood because of her extreme shyness, and strange repetitive behaviors, aged eight, Sasha is befriended by elderly kind aristocratic, now impoverished, eccentric once famous Russian singer Vladamir, the organist and choir master at a local Russian church. He discovers Sasha's singing genius. When fifteen, Vladamir who has been tutoring her for years, takes her to audition for a place at the Conservatoire de Paris and amongst hundreds of applicants, shy slum kid Sasha stuns the selection committee by singing every required piece flawlessly. Sasha has a rare musical gift called absolute pitch. After hearing any aria just once, she can sing it faultlessly. After endless tests, astonished, the professors declare her a musical genius. A savant. She begins a four year course in Classical Singing with a full scholarship, and much national publicity.
This is where I've got to with the screenplay today.
Would you want to see this film ?
Sasha had to have a special need to over come if the story was to be a hero's journey.
Is this special need too special?
I couldn't think what Sasha's challenge could be, but discovering the inspiring story of savant Daniel Tammet today, a new door has opened.
Daniel has special skills which allow him to present his ideas to the public. Based on his form of savant syndrome, musical genius Sasha would be capable of singing in public, and traveling to South America, with a little help from a friend. Who could that be? A tutor at the Sorbonne? Another student ? Somebody else?
Famous Creatives who have had special needs:
Leonardo da Vinci took twelve years to paint the Mona Lisa' lips, and could write with one hand while drawing with the other (Botham, 2006, p. 13). Perfectionist tendencies, with moderate cross over discrimination deficits, and savant skills
Goethe reportedly hated the sound of barking dogs (Botham, 2006, p. 60), which could indicate hyperactivity to sound or noises; and he "could only write if he had an apple rotting in the desk drawer," (Botham, 2006, p. 60).
Charles Dickinson dropped out of school and suffered from insomnia. He believed that if his bed was facing north, and he was in the center, he might be able to sleep (Botham, 2006, p. 61). Difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep, nightmares or night terrors, is common in people with Asperger's.
“Leaders are visionaries with a poorly developed sense of fear and no concept of the odds against them.”
Read more: http://www.disabled-world.com/artman/publish/article_2086.shtml#ixzz1Qmjd3nJ2