AntoBlueberry at 2010-11-18 08:40:42:
Well, given the (not so) brilliant career of the director maybe now he'd be more willing to hear the writer's ideas.
Liz at 2010-11-18 09:57:26:
There's also Fluke (dad comes back as dog) and Jack Frost (dad comes back as snowman). I love the cub idea. that guy's an idiot.
Zampana at 2010-11-18 13:22:46:
Hey Scott James here - I've mentioned it a couple times, but I have a slightly tangental story to Alaska.

Years ago, when scripts were written in Word, and run through a program called Scriptor (which became Screenwriter), I was a script assistant up here in Vancouver. I did the production formatting for Alaska. I'm assuming, by your story, that I was working on the new writers rewrite. But no mind.

A year ago I did a film called The Thaw, direct to video thing. And we shot (filmed) a big old polar bear who lives on the outskirts of town. She was the cub Mark Weiner trained from birth for Alaska.

She's a lovely bear and Mark has an amazing relationship with her. He'll climb in her pen and roll around with her for hours, snuggling and hugging.

If got in the pen, or even looked her in the eye, she'd ripped me limb from limb. But she's still pretty cute!

Anyway, thought that might be fun for you, even if the film didn't end up being the way you originally envisioned.

The Bitter Script Reader at 2010-11-18 14:58:45:
I'm rather struck by the parallels between this and the TV series EVERWOOD, particularly an early season-one episode entitled "Deer God."

The set-up for the series is that one of the the most gifted brain surgeons in the world loses his wife to a car accident. Left with a 16 year-old and a 9 year-old to raise, he packs up the family from their New York home and moves to a small Colorado town to become a general practicioner. There's a lot of conflict between him and the son, Ephram, as the father's been busy with work during most of the boy's life.

In "Deer God," a deer wanders down from the mountains and Ephram becomes determined to return it home. I can't remember exactly how the connection is made, but via the subtext we get that Ephram identifies this deer with the spirit of his dead mother. He doesn't precisely think she's some kind of reincarnation, but it's clear he's projected a lot of his feelings for her onto the deer.

Certainly the idea of symbolically tying the teen's mother's spirit to the deer is there, if not the idea of reincarnation. I honestly doubt the Everwood writers stole the idea, but it's interesting to see two minds arrive separately at similar stories.
Lazzard at 2010-11-19 04:35:44:
Disney's 'Brother Bear' is entirely about the subject of humans returning as animal spirits - so kids do get it. BUT the thing is, as a pro writer sometimes you got to swallow it. And learning to pick your fights is a big part of it. OK, so the director doesn't want to run with something you've fallen in love with. Once you realise it's no go area - back-off. But stay on the project. If you were smart enough to have one idea, you're smart enough to have another. Better that you get the job than someone else - who might come up with something really stinky that still has your name on it. Who knows - you might even get a better idea!How many times have you thought something is as good as it could be only to find that, with input, it can get even better. Your flexibility and willingness to work in partnership with others will get you kudos and probably more work. And maybe that one will be the Oscar winner... but stay in the game.