The Story Of O, by Michael Davis
U and denys r no talent racist lying frauds. What kind of monster abuses positive accomplished young black men? Michael Davis PhD Player Hating Dickhead.
The denys he is writing about is my best friend Denys Cowan. He also left a voice mail on Denys’ business phone where he called Denys a “Faggot,” among other things.
Who is this person? Let’s call him O. If I really wanted to “playa hate” I would give up who he was, thus ending any chance of this guy ever working with any major entertainment companies. I don’t out him because there is still a small chance that he will try and clean up his act.
Why is he so upset? More than a year ago he submitted a project to me which I thought showed promise. The project has not moved fast enough for him and O wanted to know why. I told him what I tell everyone about selling in the entertainment business…
I was first told this by a big time producer friend of mine when I voiced the same concern about a project we had sold to Showtime some years ago. He told me:
Now, I did not call up Showtime and call them racist, nor did I call up the executive in charge of programming and call him a derogatory name for a homosexual. I certainly did not leave a text message calling the guy a “Dick Head” nor did I leave a message on his voice mail. No, what I did was think to myself over and over again:
Have I ever wanted to take someone to task because they made me wait?
Did I ever want to write an angry letter telling someone “I told you so” and that I thought they were idiots because they passed on Static Shock or Mr. Smith The Family Man after both those projects got picked up somewhere else?
Have I ever taken a look at what was on TV or in a comic book and want to tell a network executive or publisher what fools they were for not doing my projects?
Most everyone believes they have built the better mousetrap; sometimes we are even right; most times we are not. That’s when the waiting is the worst. I know what waiting is like. I’ve had a project at Dark Horse Entertainment that was green lit over five years ago. That project won’t be out until next year…maybe.
Why didn’t I do like O did? Why didn’t I leave a text message and/or voicemail that would clearly show my frustration?
I didn’t because first I’m a professional. A professional knows that part of the entertainment business is waiting. It’s not fun nor is it necessary all the time, but it is a big part of the entertainment business. A very big part.
Another reason I did not go off on DreamWorks, Disney, Dark Horse or any company for passing on a project or making me wait is because I would like to go back there some day. I doubt if I called and left the following voicemail message for Steven Spielberg I would be welcomed back.
Ring, ring, rin…You have reached the office of Steven Spielberg please leave a message.
Me: Hey, Spielberg, you stupid idiot. I can;t believe you passed on my superhero movie Suicide Bomber Man! You idiot! You stupid person! I hate you and hope someone pees on your leg! By the way – those were black people in The Color Purple! Duh!
Yeah, that would surely get me back for a follow up meeting. I doubt if Denys will be open to a follow up meeting with O after being called a faggot. That word is just as offensive as the “N” word to some in the gay community. Denys is not gay but that does not matter: using that word to describe anyone is career suicide in Hollywood.
Another reason I do not react like O is I’m not. How do I say this nicely? I know, I don’t. A stupid childish NIGGER.
If this is the first time you are reading my column I apologize for springing the “N” word on you like that. Before you push that “reply” button to register your protest know this; I am a black man. A very PROUD black man.
I know there are some black people who hate the “N” word but just as many black people will tell you there are just some people who’s behavior is best described by the “N” word. You can be any color and still be considered the “N” word in my book.
That said – why am I calling O the “N” word? This is why: this young man came up through my mentor program. MY mentor program, which he attended for free. Some of the biggest talents in the comics industry came up through my mentor program. MY mentor program, where there was never any tuition charge for anyone at any time.
These students were given all I had to give because I wanted to help them be the best they could be. That was my loft they were in, those were my contacts I was calling on their behalf, those were my years of experience I was giving them every week for FREE. Those were my lawyers and my agents I was paying to look over their deals.
I have lectured all over the damn world and when I do someone writes me a BIG DAMN CHECK, because what I have to say is valuable. I never expected any of my students to give me a cent, nor has any student, ever done. There are few things I hate more than someone wasting my time, and O wasted much of my time.
My cousin taught me a saying, an saying he said was especially important to young black people, that saying is:
Hell I have taught hundreds and never wanted anything except for those I taught to go out and teach others.
My program was full of all races, but the black kids had a special place for me because in many inner city black households the thought of your son or daughter going into the arts is very scary. I often had to invite parents over to my home so they could see how I was living to give them a real sense of what the arts could do for their kids. Those very same black kids that think it’s easier to get into the NBA than to draw a comic book.
I mentioned before that a slew of big name talents have come out of my mentor program, but I am not responsible for their success. They are. All I provided is another place where their dream was welcome and not ridiculed. A place where their work was applauded and not put down, where they could be among others who shared their vision.
Hey – it’s hard to be an artist, but harder still if your community and family see your dream as a waste of time.
The artists, writers and editors who came out of my program did the work. I just listened when they talked and shared what I had and what and whom I knew. Often they were the teachers and I was the student.
They are responsible for their success, I was just happy to be there on their journey.
For a former student I have helped to say to me that I am a monster that abuses positive accomplished young black men when I have done what I have done to help him on many levels is to me the text book definition of nigger.
There is a real feeling among some black people that other black people who have “made” it owe them something. You know what? I agree with that somewhat but to collect you must come correct, in other words be good at your craft and be professional!
Professional like Tatiana, who had to create another image for this column overnight. Did she bitch? No, she simply did the job. That’s a professional.
O and his partner sent Denys Cowan the most unprofessional proposal Denys had ever seen. It was so bad that Deny’s assistant did not even want Denys to look at it. The proposal was dirty and hand written with dozens of spelling errors… and that’s what was good about it. Denys looked at it because I called him and vouched for O. I had no idea what O was sending until Denys told me… loudly.
I did not vouch for O’s partner. In fact I did not even know O had a partner until I called him to talk to him about his unprofessional proposal. I make it a point NEVER to vouch for someone I don’t know… never.Denys even talked to O on the phone a number of times. Denys runs a major division at a powerful network. His day is full but he made time to talk to O.
Presidents of companies have to wait to get a call back from Denys but he made TIME to talk to O.
The same O who called Denys a faggot and a no talent racist lying fraud.
In his speech the other day Senator Obama said about the black community and his church; “Trinity embodies the black community in its entirety – the doctor and the welfare mom, the model student and the former gang-banger.”
O and his partner are like some (they are the exception, not the rule) young black artists who think they are owed something. They think no matter how unprofessional they are they should still get a break. O got a break, a BIG break because I made the mistake thinking he was a professional. That break got him a direct line to three major executives at two major entertainment companies. Now, because of his actions the next person who seeks help from me will have to deal with my hesitation when perhaps they should not have to.
Things did not move fast enough for O at one company so he leaves his mentor a horrible text message. At another company he presented a horrible presentation causing the network to pass on his project andI’m the Dick Head.
Does he wait? Does he send another version of the proposal? No, he calls me a Dick Head and my best friend a faggot. He treats two people who tried to help him this way.
As a black man I have to be very careful about what I do. That’s the reality of living in America. An Ivy League education meant nothing during a gang sweep on New Years Eve some years ago when I was arrested for being in the right place at the wrong time. I’m sure I looked just like a Blood or Crip in my Armani suit. A school building named after me meant nothing during a traffic stop in New Jersey where the police took my brand new sports cars because they did not believe me when I told them I was not the Michael Davis who had his New Jersey license suspended. I have never had a New Jersey license and the Michael Davis they were looking for had his license suspended when I was 10 and it clearly showed that on their car computer. Proclamations from the cities of New York and Los Angeles and the state of New Jersey and the F.B.I. meant nothing when asked to participate in a police line up because I “fit the description.”
As a black man in this country (a country I love by the way because what some assholes do does nor reflect the rest of the people here) I have to make sure my actions reflect what I stand for. Yes, I can be an idiot sometime and have been but I take responsibility for my actions when I am.
If he treats two people who tried to help him like this, it boggles my mind how he acts towards people whom he has a legitimate issue with.
I’m embarrassed because some people will think this is how all black young artist will react when things don’t go their way.
Then I think of men like Senator Obama and my best friends Denys Cowan and Mike Stradford and what they and I have accomplished. When I think of the vast majority of black artists in the comic book business I’m filled with pride.
And to O I say this: you have made it impossible for me to help you. I hope you can grow up and deal with whatever demons you have dogging you.
You know what’s really sad? Your project was not dead at my company. It is now. It’s dead because you called your biggest supporter a Dick Head, and his best friend a faggot.
You killed any chance of your project being done because you could not wait like everyone else. Who’s the Dick Head now?
If you really want to call me something try this. Dr. Davis. That’s what the PhD stands for.
One last thing, forget about my career and education and remember this; I have not forgotten where I have come from, the Edgemere projects in Far Rockaway Queens – a place where punks stay inside for good reason.
Michael Davis is disappointed.