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Hollywood Fame and Fortune

Martin Davis, a gifted yet uncelebrated actor trapped in the mediocrity of his circumstances. However, fate takes an astonishing twist when he miraculously finds himself in the body of an impoverished youth in the year 2003. Determined to escape the clutches of poverty and relish in wealth and stardom, Martin sets his sights on Hollywood, a city that beckons with its extravagance and promises. With his cunning intellect and a disregard for traditional morality, he embarks on a relentless quest, willing to go to any lengths to achieve his goal. As Martin navigates the glitzy yet treacherous world of showbiz, he leaves a trail of fallen adversaries in his ascent to becoming a global sensation. His journey is marked by unexpected alliances, moral dilemmas, and sacrifices that challenge the very core of his being. The story of his transformation, ambition, and the relentless pursuit of dreams, even if it means rewriting the stars. The unapologetic drive of the Martin has, and the timeless quest for fame and fortune. #Hollywood #Showbiz #America #Celebrity #Star #Reallife #Antihero

Rqmk · Realistic
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821 Chs

Chapter 366: Nicholson's Criticism

In the press hall of the Warner Building, many reporters had gathered. The key creative team behind "The Dark Knight" was there to witness the official contract signing between the crew and the two leading actors, Martin and Christian Bale.

Martin once again looked like the charming, youthful actor. After the ceremonial contract signing, he and Bale posed for a photo with director Nolan.

The flashbulbs lit up, and the two of them smiled brightly, creating a harmonious atmosphere.

During the question session, a reporter suddenly inquired, "Martin, Chris, there are rumors in Hollywood about your sharp conflict."

Martin quickly responded, "How is that possible? Chris and I admire each other, and we became friends last year."

Bale noticed the producers of the crew looking at Martin with even more pride, saying, "Martin got this role on my recommendation."

Martin glanced at Bale, and his smile grew even more radiant.

Bale remained composed and extended his fist for a friendly bump with Martin.

In front of numerous cameras, the two actors fist-bumped, appearing like the best of friends.

Bale had recommended Heath Ledger to Nolan and expressed his displeasure with Martin. Nolan knew that the two men were not on the best terms.

However, he didn't mind because Batman and the Joker were meant to be archenemies.

From a work perspective, the hostility between them didn't extend from the film to their personal lives.

Nolan was a director who understood marketing. He and his wife, Emma Thomas, had been discussing how they could use the relationship between Martin and Bale to promote the film. They even had a blueprint. They could say that Martin and Bale were originally good friends, but the Joker role had affected their real-life relationship, causing a rift.

At the end of the press conference, Martin and Bale left hand in hand and entered the lounge at the back.

Bale smiled and said, "I never expected that we would have the chance to work so closely."

Martin chuckled, "The film was shot in Atlanta, my hometown. When we get there, I'll show you the beautiful sights of Georgia."

Bale suddenly remembered, "Oh, Martin Davis is from Atlanta."

He wasn't one to shy away from challenges, "I'll need you to show me around then."

A thought popped up in Martin's mind, something Bruce had mentioned.

After filming "Wanted," Jolie had traveled to the Middle East and Africa, following in Mary's footsteps. Bruce had suggested that if something happened to Jolie there, it would boost "Wanted's" commercial prospects.

Where was Batman in Atlanta?

As he watched Bale walk away, Martin shook his head, realizing that he'd been having more and more wild ideas lately.

Bruce approached him and asked, "Any ideas?"

Martin shook his head and sighed, "Blame it on you for these crazy ideas, not me!"

Bruce was puzzled, "What did I do?"

Fortunately, Martin could still hold back. He warned Bruce, "I had to save you; otherwise, you'd be in trouble." He greeted Nolan, Emma Thomas, and his wife, "Chris, Emma."

Nolan suggested, "Let's have a chat."

Martin nodded with a slight smile and left the crowded lounge for a nearby reception room.

Nolan closed the door suddenly, startling Martin. His eyes darted between Emma Thomas, and he wondered about Kate and Sam. Could it be?

Nolan got straight to the point, "I know there's some tension between you and Bale. Just don't let it affect your work."

Martin assured him, "You can count on me."

Emma Thomas asked, "I've heard you might have some ideas for publicity and marketing?"

Martin smiled, "I do have a few ideas."

Emma cut to the chase, "Chris has some ideas for publicity and marketing, and he'd like to discuss them with you."

Martin had no objections, but the specifics would need to be worked out with the crew and Thomas.

After a brief chat, they parted ways.

Martin cast one last glance at Nolan, recognizing his exceptional filmmaking skills and marketing savvy. He had even made headlines with the open ending of "Inception."

Nolan was like Tom Cruise to Nicole Kidman when it came to publicity – always ready with a showstopper.

In Martin's words from a previous life, Nolan was the director's fandom's pioneer.

After 2015, anyone criticizing Nolan's films would face an internet storm of backlash.

Martin exited, joining Thomas and Bruce, and they left through the Warner Building's back door.

A few days earlier, Thomas had negotiated a deal for portraits related to the Joker character, earning Martin 20% of the gross profit from related products.

Behind the building was the studio area, where Lily awaited.

She was in high spirits, exclaiming, "Next year, I won't have to worry about Elena's tuition."

Martin replied, "Elena can finally breathe easy."

Lily added, "Yes, she can relax, and I won't have to dodge her fists all the time..."

Martin laughed, "Do you really think you can escape your sister's iron-fisted care just by not paying Elena's tuition?"

Lily's previously relaxed face fell, leaving a puzzled expression.

Of course, not.

After Martin wrapped up his conversation, he inquired, "Have you finalized the deal with the crew?"

Lily's spirits lifted a bit, and she shared, "The crew invested $200,000 to secure the rights to my artwork, including several substantial sets of engravings I created. They plan to offer these as high-end custom collectibles. I've also been brought on board to work with the crew and continue crafting sculptures of Joker and Batman figures. On top of my base salary, I also have a 3% profit share." Martin finally encouraged her, "Do your best."

She was taken aback, "This movie has done so well; you'll make enough to cover your tuition and living expenses throughout your college years." Lily extended her hand, grabbed Martin's clothing, and shook it, expressing her gratitude, "Thank you."

Martin raised his fist and advised Lily. She gently shook her head, reminding her, "Don't let anyone push you around, but also, don't go looking for trouble."

Lily muttered, "Am I the type to start trouble?"

Martin reassured her, "You think I haven't heard the crew rumors? Last week, I heard that you took a carving knife and poked dozens of holes in a proportional dummy in front of a group of people."

Lily defended herself, "That was a preemptive measure, to deter potential bullies, for my sake and theirs." Seeking support, she turned to Bruce, asking, "Old Boo, am I right?"

Bruce felt that her actions were in line with their intentions and commended her, "Well done."

As they arrived at the Dark Knight Studio, Lily pointed towards the door, saying, "I'm heading back to work."

Martin nodded, watching her happily run off. He turned to Bruce and said, "Cadillac has sent her a car; give it to her later, along with the house keys."

Bruce inquired, "Why didn't you tell her yourself?"

Martin shared his feelings, "Maybe it's Elena's influence. I saw how happy Lily was, and I wanted to extend a caring gesture."

Bruce, who had preparations in order, made his way to the Dark Knight Studio.

Martin contacted Thomas, entering a nearby ice cream shop, and called out to the counter, "Mia, the usual."

Mia smiled and responded, "Sure, have a seat, and I'll get it for you."

Martin sat by the glass curtain wall, talking to Thomas, "I've shared everything I discussed with Nicholson yesterday. In the next phase, you can devise a comprehensive plan discreetly, leaving no traces. We're looking at clinics, hospitals, hotels, and more. We have the right caregivers and need to find reliable candidates as soon as possible."

Thomas inquired, "Are you genuinely committed to this?"

Martin explained, "First, I'll portray an incredibly unhinged character, and then I'll embody characters from the elderly to an infant. Being out of the ordinary is the new normal. Don't underestimate the public's sympathy and curiosity."

Thomas pointed towards the Dark Knight Studio, asking, "Won't you say hello to the crew?"

"No," Martin replied, "Nolan and Warner Bros. have a keen eye for opportunities in publicity and hype."

Thomas commented, "Being a star isn't easy."

Martin chuckled, almost maniacally, "In Atlanta, it's not. Is it tough for ordinary folks to work under the scorching sun?"

Thomas couldn't help but reflect on his own experiences. Although he was balding, the challenges he faced now were countless times better than enduring a bottom-tier position at the company.

At that moment, Mia returned with a cold drink.

"Thank you," Martin said, noticing the ring on her finger, and congratulated her.

Mia replied, "I accepted Sebastian's proposal, and we're now a couple."

Martin complimented her, "Sebastian is a lucky guy, catching the heart of Warner Studio's ice cream princess."

Mia smiled sweetly and left. Among the numerous part-time actresses at the studio, she could speak to Martin for two reasons. Firstly, Martin had frequented the store since his early days as a star. Secondly, she never asked him for any favors; their interactions were purely friendly.

Mia understood that the opportunity to seek Martin's assistance was a one-time affair, not to be repeated.

After chatting with Thomas over cold drinks, Martin called Nicholson, asking, "Jack, are you prepared on your end?"

Nicholson humorously responded, "Is it finally my turn to engage in some fun?"

Martin reassured him, "I haven't forgotten about the fun, and no one can forget about you."

On the other end, Nicholson hung up his mobile phone and dialed a reporter acquaintance's number, saying, "Rick, come see me. I'm about to stir up some trouble and make headlines!"

The next morning, "The Hollywood Reporter" published an interview where Nicholson humorously poked fun at Martin and The Dark Knight crew. "As the previous Joker actor, who was still quite successful, Warner Bros. didn't seek my opinion when selecting a new actor for the Joker! Yes, no one asked for my opinion, not even Martin!" He continued, "I believe this role may not be suitable for Martin. The Joker is a far cry from his usual image and acting style. This character is too dark and will cause issues. I know Martin all too well. He's quite young and challenging to control..."