February 24, 2010 / 8:22 AM / 9 years ago

Justice Scalia advises aspiring screenwriter

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia (L) talks to singer Frankie Valli at the National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) 31st Anniversary Awards Gala in Washington October 21, 2006. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia has opened a screenwriting workshop.

The conservative justice took time out of his busy schedule to write a letter to an aspiring screenwriter who asked 10 Supreme Court justices (including retiree Sandra Day O’Connor) to weigh in on a 12-page treatment for a comedy film about Maine seceding from the United States to join Canada. The scribe, Daniel Turkewitz, wanted to know how the secession issue would play out at the Supreme Court.

Only Scalia replied: “I cannot imagine that such a question could ever reach the Supreme Court. To begin with, the answer is clear. If there was any constitutional issue resolved by the Civil War, it is that there is no right to secede.”

Some people may wish to debate Scalia, but it’s perhaps more notable that the 73-year-old justice bothered to respond. Maybe the judge behind some of the court’s most articulate and biting opinions wants to ditch Washington for a second career in Hollywood.

Recall that back in October, Scalia mused about what it would be like if television showed sheep hunting. And Scalia loves to cite Season 2 of “24” to make a point on torture. “Jack Bauer saved Los Angeles ... he saved hundreds of thousands of lives,” he was once quoted as saying. “Are you going to convict Jack Bauer?”

Turkewitz says he’s looking for an agent, by the way. Would Scalia consider exchanging his dour black robes for fitted Armani suits?

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