No Clue poster

How to behave at a movie premiere: We have ‘No Clue’

by Barbara Haynes & Brent Piaskoski

He said: You don’t always know the moment you become a hero. I mean, few of us ever get the chance to throw our body over a live grenade, in front of a moving train or through a glass building. We usually have to make do with the smaller events in our lives… which is how it was for me.

We were off to a screening of Canadian filmmaker’s Brent Butt’s No Clue at the LA Comedy Festival.

She said: It stars lovable Canadian comedy legend Brent Butt, as well as the luminous Amy Smart and the hilarious David Koechner.

He said: It’s a fast and funny film noir romp, similar to Bob Hope’s My Favorite Brunette with Brent Butt as the hapless wannabe detective, and Ms Smart as the Dorothy Lamour femme fatale.

She said: The movie was charming, clever and had a real mystery. Afterward, the actors and director Carl Bessai – who just took home the Best Director prize at the LA Comedy Fest! – did a Q&A.

He said: Basic questions, smart and funny answers – really, nothing out of the norm until my wife decided to liven things up.

She said: It’s not like I planned it. It’s not like I even believed it was happening for several long seconds…

He said: Maybe not. All I know is you started gasping and pointing frantically at the man in front of you. I wondered if maybe he was rudely texting or yakking in the middle of one of Brent Butt’s pithy responses. Anyone who’s gone to a movie with you knows how much you hate chatty audience members.

She said: I do! One time, there was a woman giving useless running commentary till I shushed her so bad, she spilled her drink. Which was wine. In a real glass. When it crashed to the ground, it made almost as much noise as she’d been making for the last 45 minutes. Success!

He said: But it wasn’t audience rudeness in this case, so then I wondered if you disagreed with what Brent was saying about Canadian financing.

She said: That there is any? Nope, wrong again. The whole thing happened in slow motion. I noticed something on the jacket of the man in front of me. My thoughts were as follows:

“How unusual… is that a brooch? Hmm, it seems like it’s moving. Oh God, is that a cockroach? It can’t be a cockroach, we’re in a movie theater. It is a cockroach. IT’S A COCKROAAAACCHHH!!!! It is huge. What do I do, what do I doooo? I mustn’t cause a scene, Brent Butt is on stage and this theater is really small. But… it’s the biggest bug I’ve ever seen. Nope, can’t do it…”

… at which point, I jumped sideways out of my chair, stumbled to the nearest wall and clung to it, whimpering.

He said: You sounded like that croc-copulating turtle, except your feeble cries were of terror, not thwarted pleasure.

She said: By then, people had noticed. To be fair, it’s hard not to notice a tall woman sobbing against a wall in a theater the size of a luxurious living room. Still, I could only point and bleat, so folks were left to speculate. “Is it a spider? What is it? What’s happening? What is she doing?” they shouted. Now my fear and disgust over the hideous, brown beast were replaced with shame and guilt for interrupting a perfectly lovely Q&A.

He said: By this point, I’d seen it myself. And I’m not gonna lie, it was pretty gross. You know in movies where a police officer has to tell somebody there may be a bomb in the room and they have to slowly evacuate? It was my version of that.

She said: But then David Koechner’s wife Leigh said, “Oh God, I think I felt something crawling on me during the movie!” I stared at her in horror, shook my head, and ran out. “I’m so sorry! I’m sorry!” I said, half crying, half representing my apologetic Canadian heritage to the Angelenos in the audience.

He said: That’s when I knew it was my moment to shine. Before things could get any worse, in one fell swoop, I swatted the cockroach off the man’s back.

She said: And onto the lap of Brent Butt’s wife Nancy Robertson (who, by the way, has a hysterical, scene-stealing moment in No Clue).

He said: War always has its casualties, I’m so sorry. Once the creeper had been dispensed with-slash-thrown-in Nancy’s open handbag, I followed my distraught bride out of the theater. Brent Butt jokingly accused me of trying to steal focus, but come on, Brent, if I was trying to steal focus, I would’ve wrestled a cobra (and died, obviously).

She said: Afterward, the gentleman whose coat had provided a cockroach runway thanked me, and everyone shared their own bug horror stories. It was days before I didn’t feel that creature’s nasty presence near me, but for one night, I knew I was married to a man who’d fling a giant bug off a stranger’s jacket for me.

He said: If you do happen to see a theater playing No Clue, check it out! Or order it on Amazon! But just so you know, that tingling feeling you get down your spine may not be because of the captivating plot…

Barbara Haynes & Brent Piaskoski

About Barbara Haynes & Brent Piaskoski

Barbara Haynes and Brent Piaskoski are award-winning writers (and spouses) from Canada, where the land is big and the awards are small. They worked on Brent's multi-cam sitcom Spun Out which stars Dave Foley (The Kids in the Hall, News Radio, A Bug's Life) and debuts in Canada early this year. They also co-write a blog and Twitter account, I Do Already. They take breaks from writing and tweeting together to work on separate projects and to watch huge quantities of TV. Follow Barbara on Twitter @barbhaynes. Follow Brent on Twitter @BrentPiaskoski.

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