Another entry for the Pencil Paparazzi file

OK, it looks as though another movie is filming in Ann Arbor. I just received the following Pencil Paparazzi contribution from a reader named Alicia, who happened to be crossing the University of Michigan campus this afternoon when she saw a film crew. She asked a man blocking foot traffic what was going on and he said they were shooting an independent feature called “Trivial Pursuits.” He then pointed down the sidewalk at a man, and said, “That’s the star.” Alicia had no idea who it was, but, being a good member of the community, she dutifully took out her pencil and paper, and began to sketch. Here’s what she saw… Oh, she also said that the fellow looked like a young Josh Harnett. Hopefully that will mean something to some of you, but the reference is completely lost on me.


Here’s Alicia’s accompanying note:

One is the wide angle shot of the filming process (umbrellas because it apparently was supposed to be raining on this gorgeous, sunny, July day); the other is a close-up of Mr. Star. He was wearing a mist-bottle-dampened gray hoodie. Both were rendered on the back of business cards that happened to be in my purse with a pencil lead that broke loose from the pencil when I pressed too hard in my enthusiasm to catch the nuances of Mr. Star.

Well, I did some searching around, and “Mr. Star” seems to be a fellow named Christopher Gorham. According to the blog kept by the producers of the film, he has the distinction of being one of People Magazine’s 50 Most Beautiful People.

Oh, and the movie is apparently about people who play “pub trivia.” You know, that bar game that the beautiful people play.

Here’s how the plot is capsulized on the site.

Paul Tarson stared at his adversary, his muscles tensed, fists clenched, eyes gleaming. His entire body aching for battle. Finally, he pounced.

“What perfume ingredient comes from the intestine of the sperm whale?”

James Koogly took a long, slow sip of his beer and grinned.

“Please,” he said. “Ambergris.”

“Damnit!” Paul said, throwing down the game card. “That was for a pie slice!”


Paul Tarson likes to play trivia. A lot.

Paul is not a nerd—he’s a graduate student. He lives in Ann Arbor, the same town he was born in. He studies at the University of Michigan, the only college he’s ever known. And he works for his father, Professor Elliot Tarson, who’s protected him his entire life. Paul’s existence is very safe and very pleasant. There’s just one problem: Paul is finally going to graduate. And he has absolutely no idea what to do.

So Paul does what any normal, average person does when faced with a huge, life-changing decision—he plays his favorite game.

And in a whole new way:

The biggest, the best, the geekiest. The first-annual Ann Arbor Pub Trivia Tournament.

I know some of you out there will be thrilled hear that a beautiful, bottle-dampened man is here, shooting a film about the exciting world of pub trivia, but, personally, I liked it better when Robert DeNiro was living across the street in a trailer and Milla Jovovich was having sex in the alley behind the Tap Room.

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  1. dragon
    Posted August 3, 2009 at 11:42 pm | Permalink

    Come all ye weary, sick and sore,
    Who want to suffer pain no more,
    And take a drink of Cornwell’s bore,
    Beside the Huron River

    Let Smith and Sampson keep their drugs,
    Fetch on your glasses and your mugs,
    Your barrels, bowls and your jugs,
    And get the healing water.

    If you are sick, gust try our cure,
    Drink Ypsilanti’s water pure,
    That health and life may long endure,
    And all your friends rejoice.

    Moorman’s put down another bore
    For water, gas and something more
    They say its better than before
    To drive woe and pain away.

    If you are sad, with sickness worn,
    And have the headache every more,
    Just come and drink a healing horn,
    of Ypsilanti’s water.

    Theres forty new baths agoing,
    And all the healing waters flowing,
    Better days and health bestowing,
    On many a weary one.

    If you are growing weak and lean,
    Just come and try our healing stream,
    And splash till you are pure and clean,
    And your troubles washed away.

    They will bathe you either cold or warm,
    It will do you good and never harm,
    And it may come o’er you like a charm,
    And double all your joy.

    You need not travel far and long,
    To drink Saratoga’s water strong,
    We have the real thing at home
    Down on the books of Moorman

    It’s true, it has a woeful smell,
    But if your stomache don’t rebel
    It’s just the thing to make you well
    And praise up Ypsilanti.

  2. Me
    Posted August 4, 2009 at 1:41 am | Permalink

    I thought ambergris was found in the cranium of the spermacetti. That was where Queequeg got stuck and sank until the black fellow saved him. Or maybe that is backwards. I’ll have to check that one out.

  3. Me
    Posted August 4, 2009 at 1:43 am | Permalink

    And Mr. Star’s sketch looks a lot like Tatsuya Nakadai. I could get excited about a visit from him.

  4. Me
    Posted August 4, 2009 at 1:47 am | Permalink

    And Josh Hartnett is young. Alicia, are you by any chance in middle school?

  5. Carol Summers
    Posted August 4, 2009 at 8:01 am | Permalink

    Looks like they’re about to throw a net over him.

  6. Alicia
    Posted August 4, 2009 at 8:36 am | Permalink

    It’s all relative. This guy looked younger than Josh Harnett. How’s that? (Have I ever seen Josh Harnett? With a misted hoodie, no less? No. But isn’t he early 30s?). For the record I was in middle school 1980-1983, which probably disqualifies me to discuss anyone younger than Tom Cruise.

  7. Alicia
    Posted August 4, 2009 at 8:38 am | Permalink

    p.s. Thankfully for the movie makers, he doesn’t look a thing like Mark’s freaky table.

  8. Cat
    Posted August 4, 2009 at 8:43 am | Permalink

    No offense – this is lovely stuff – but I want real stars for my tax dollars.

    And how sucky does this movie sound?

    I guess it could be good – like Breaking Away, only with older people, and with a game of pub trivia instead of a big bike race – but I think it’s a long shot.

    Which bar or bars are they shooting in?

  9. M
    Posted August 4, 2009 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

    Henry from Ugly Betty, quite young, and quite cute, too.

  10. Me
    Posted August 7, 2009 at 1:00 am | Permalink

    Alicia wrote, “which probably disqualifies me to discuss anyone younger than Tom Cruise.”

    Oh, don’t get me started on him.

  11. Me
    Posted August 7, 2009 at 1:35 am | Permalink

    I was wrong about the white whale too. Tashtego was in the whale’s ass or whatever when the whale broke loose and started to sink. Queequeg jumped into the whale and dragged out Tashtego. What a great macho, bad ass scene.
    Could you imagine being stuck in a sinking whale’s ass?

  12. Posted August 10, 2009 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

    I saw the crew for this film on friday – they had most of the street near the State blocked off and were building a dolly track. And yea, it’s kinda’ impossible to compete with Milla Jovovich having sex in the alley :P

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