INT. DAY – CONFERENCE ROOM, WRAPPORTS CENTRAL, 350 NORTH ORLEANS
Early afternoon sunlight plays off the Chicago River.
Publisher-Editor-in-Chief JIM KIRK’S fingers hold still on the table in front of him, not drumming. Fingerprints pushed against glassy surface. Still.
Publisher MICHAEL FERRO enters in a BLUSH of a FLUSH of a RUSH.
FERRO: “Hey hey so sorry to pull you away from the Skittles depot! All the Reader kids eating their cereal for free! God, they love it! Y’know from the start I’ve been saying, the photo department, so much money, Captain Kirk…”
KIRK: “There’s a reason they say a picture’s worth 1,000 words.”
FERRO: “But not $1,000! Hahaha. Ha. Come on, we already have enough photos of Jenny McCarthy! Ha. Why do we need more? She’ll never age!”
KIRK: “Photography is a different skill set from recording. That’s basic. It’ll just distract from reporting. Reporters have a narrative skillset—“
FERRO: “I’ll show you.”
Ferro points his iPhone. It makes a loud noise. Now the photo: a bit of the river, couple skyscrapers, Kirk’s shoulder.
KIRK: “I think you missed the point.”
FERRO: “I got the money! Look at the sun off those buildings! Oh! I gotta run. Jenny McCarthy’s here!”
In three fast steps Ferro walks right into the glass door. BOUNCES right off. “Be sure to fire them all!”
He holds his nose.
FERRO: “Call me Thursday! Happy Wednesday!”
Jim Kirk’s fingers on the conference table have not moved. He watches the sun roll, roll gently off the water through the wide frame of the window. He lifts his fingerprints off the reflective surface.
AUDIENCE CHOICE: “Just tell the writers we need 1,000 words extra copy on each article.”
Audience comments: “Dude, there’s this thing called Snapchat…”; “Well, no one really looks at the pictures anyway — this generation likes to read!”; “Ferro: with iPhone picture quality so incredible, the professional photographer is no longer necessary! Kirk: so who will take the iPhone pictures? Ferro: hell, me if I have to. Plus we can train your writers! Kirk: Great! Does that mean we’ll be giving writers iPhones? Ferro: we can’t afford iPhones!”
Best of Chicago 2013