Mardik: Baghdad to Hollywood (2008)
1h 16min · Documentary · 1 April 2008
Mardik Martin may be one of movie-making's most important screenwriters - and least well-known. Mardik: from Baghdad to Hollywood traces one of the most unlikely journeys in American film history - from growing up in Baghdad to being one of the hottest writers in Hollywood. Mardik began his love affair with film in Baghdad at age sixteen where he worked in at the local MGM distributor. In 1958, he came to the United States to study economics at NYU. In 1959, Mardik changed his focus to movies. At NYU, Mardik befriended Martin Scorsese and their relationship would lead to some of the greatest films in American Cinema (Mean Streets, The Last Waltz, New York, New York and Raging Bull). At the peak of his success, Mardik succumbed to the ills of fame, fortune and the destructive lifestyles of Hollywood. His fall from grace is a cautionary tale, yet his rise from despair becomes the heart of the film. In 1986, a new path as a teacher emerged, which he continues today as a senior lecturer at USC, instructing countless students about life and the art of screenwriting. Mardik is an intimate portrait of an often forgotten character in Hollywood Cinema - the screenwriter. Ultimately, it is a modern-day fable about reaching for your dreams and finding redemption in the end.
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