The Big Picture (1989) - Plot Summary Poster


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  • Nick Chapman graduates from film school, and his short film wins a special prize. This gives him a high enough profile that he can get Hollywood to back the film he has long dreamed of making. Studio exec Allen Habel is interested. But Nick soon is seduced by Hollywood and makes one concession after another until his original movie is lost altogether. Worse, Nick is lost, too, turning on girlfriend Susan and old buddy Emmet. Will he come to his sense before everything is lost?

  • Nick Chapman is a graduate film student. His best friend, Emmet Sumner, is an aspiring cinematographer, the two who hope to make films together. Nick is supported in his pursuits by his girlfriend, aspiring architect Susan Rawlings. Nick's prospects look good when he wins the student film award presented by the National Film Institute. He has a clear idea for his next film, and hopes to get it made with the assistance of those in the movie business who court him, including agent Neil Sussman, and movie studio exec Allen Habel. Sussman and Habel's visions for Nick's movie are vastly different than Nick's original concept. Habel's manoeuvrings include getting Nick to cast a vapid aspiring actress named Gretchen in one of the lead roles. Nick gets caught up more with the process of making the big Hollywood movie than with keeping true to his artistic vision. In the process, he also loses sight of the important personal aspects of his life, such as his friendship to Emmet and Susan. Nick also learns that the fast lane in Hollywood is laden with the potential for serious and irreparable crashes.

  • Film school grad Nick Chapman thought his career was made after his award winning short film, but discovered Hollywood wasn't as easy as it seems.


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