Blank Check with Griffin & David

Blank Check Productions

Not just another bad movie podcast, Blank Check reviews directors' complete filmographies episode to episode. Specifically, the auteurs whose early successes afforded them the rare ‘blank check’ from Hollywood to produce passion projects. Each new miniseries, hosts Griffin Newman and David Sims delve into the works of film’s most outsized personalities in painstakingly hilarious detail. Produced by Ben Hosley.

  • 2 hours 12 minutes
    Tokyo Godfathers with Reece Feldman
    They call them the Godfathers of Tokyo…and we call him the KING of TIKTOK (in an old man newscaster voice) - Reece Feldman joins us to chat about Satoshi Kon’s beautiful Christmas fable about a trio of unforgettable characters on the fringes of society. We talk about how animation is truly a medium and NOT a genre, as evidenced by this film. We talk about Ice Age (another animated movie where outsiders care for a baby). We talk about whether or not David might get roped into watching Ice Age a million times if his daughter finds out about it. And we talk about David’s pitch for a Cheaper by the Dozen spoof called “Cheaper by the Cousin”…?

    Follow Reece on his socials: TikTok - Instagram
    This episode is sponsored by:
    AuraFrames.com (CODE: CHECK)
    Burrow (Burrow.com/check)

    Join our Patreon at patreon.com/blankcheck Follow us @blankcheckpod on Twitter and Instagram! 
    19 May 2024, 4:00 am
  • 2 hours 24 minutes
    Millennium Actress with Hoai-Tran Bui
    Our Satoshi Kon series continues with his 2003 film Millennium Actress, a moving exploration of memory, history, and the magic of da moviesh. Writer Hoai-Tran Bui returns to the pod as we discuss the strange history of Dreamworks’ arthouse animation arm (Go Fish pictures), the luminous screen presence of Setsuko Hara, and the added poignancy this film takes on in light of Kon’s untimely passing. Plus, Griffin publicly addresses the Penny Marshall debacle, and the gang contemplates a version of “Millennium Actor” with Clint Eastwood.  

    Read Hoai-Tran’s work
    This episode is sponsored by:
    Indochino.com (CODE: CHECK)
    ExpressVPN (ExpressVPN.com/check)
    RocketRx (CODE: CHECK)

    Join our Patreon at patreon.com/blankcheck Follow us @blankcheckpod on Twitter and Instagram! 
    12 May 2024, 4:00 am
  • 2 hours 1 minute
    Perfect Blue with Bowen Yang
    Welcome to the filmography of Satoshi Kon - a thrilling series of funhouse mirrors and puzzlebox narratives that proved what is possible in the animation form. The icon, the legend, the culturista himself Bowen Yang joins us to talk about Kon’s feature debut, the shocking and influential pop-idol thriller PERFECT BLUE. We’re talking about famous “bad girl” transitions in pop history. We’re talking about Digimon villains. We’re talking about obsessive fandoms. And, most crucially, we learn a new piece of Ben lore that involves a famous reality tv star.

    Listen to Las Culturistas with Matt Rogers and Bowen Yang
    This episode is sponsored by:
    MUBI (mubi.com/blankcheck)
    AuraFrames.com (CODE: CHECK)

    Join our Patreon at patreon.com/blankcheck Follow us @blankcheckpod on Twitter and Instagram
    5 May 2024, 4:00 am
  • 2 hours 38 minutes
    Basic with BenDavid Grabinski
    Our McTiernan series concludes with 2003’s BASIC - a film that Griffin thinks should instead be titled “COMPLICATED” - get it? Because there are so many plot twists?? The great BenDavid Grabinski joins us to chat about John Travolta’s run of big, skeezy characters post-FACE/OFF, McTiernan’s ultimate Achilles heel (getting too confident in his ability to fix impossible movies), the screenwriting career of studio wunderkind James Vanderbilt, and the truly terrible acting of Giovanni Ribisi. Plus, the return of Journalist Eddie Brock, our pitches for different versions of CHANGING LANES (which they should remake every five years), and our final McT filmography rankings.
    This episode is sponsored by:
    AuraFrames.com (CODE: CHECK)
    Burrow (Burrow.com/check)

    Join our Patreon at patreon.com/blankcheck Follow us @blankcheckpod on Twitter and Instagram! 
    28 April 2024, 4:00 am
  • 2 hours 31 minutes
    Rollerball with Zach Cherry
    Finally, we arrive at the film that helped put John McTiernan in both “director jail” and “jail jail” - the incoherent nu-metal fart that is 2002’s ROLLERBALL. Zach Cherry continues his trend of appearing on episodes covering movies that led to actual court cases, and we do our best to try to explain what happened (both on-screen and off). Why is this film set in Borat’s Kazakhstan? What was up with the extended nightvision scene? Is Griffin insane for being a Chris Kline apologist? Plus - Ben learns about the World Nomad Games of Central Asia!

    This episode is sponsored by:
    Zocdoc (zocdoc.com/check
    FieldOfGreens.com (CODE: CHECK)
    MUBI (mubi.com/blankcheck)

    Join our Patreon at patreon.com/blankcheck Follow us @blankcheckpod on Twitter and Instagram! 
    21 April 2024, 4:00 am
  • 2 hours 26 minutes
    The 13th Warrior with David Lowery
    What if there was a 13th Warrior? What if there was a version of Beowulf so grounded in reality that the climactic battle with Grendel just kind of felt like a shrug? What if Antonio Banderas was the lead in Gladiator instead of Russell Crowe? We’re just asking questions! Filmmaker David Lowery makes his long-awaited return to the podcast to talk about John McTiernan’s Michael Crichton adaptation, a movie that should have kept the title of the original book - Eaters of the Dead. Such a sick title! Anyway, prepare yourself for plenty of Banderas talk, a loving deep-dive into the famous “Banderas learns the Viking language” scene, and a reveal of some Blank Check-related easter eggs in Lowery’s filmography (!).

    This episode is sponsored by:
    Storyblocks (storyblocks.com/check)
    Bombas (bombas.com/check CODE: CHECK)
    Indochino.com (CODE: CHECK)

    Join our Patreon at patreon.com/blankcheck Follow us @blankcheckpod on Twitter and Instagram! 
    14 April 2024, 4:00 am
  • 2 hours 22 minutes
    The Thomas Crown Affair (1999) with Amanda Dobbins
    A Fiji water bottle. “Sinnerman” by Nina Simone. That Magritte painting with the bowler hat. A SCINTILLATING, AGE-APPROPRIATE ROMANCE WITH TWO OF THE GREATEST HEIST SEQUENCES IN MOVIE HISTORY. We’re talking Tommy C (1999), baby! The delightful Amanda Dobbins joins us for her long-awaited Blank Check debut, and this episode is about as fun as you’d expect. Do we think this movie is better than the Norman Jewison original? Yes. Do we go long on the filmography of Rene Russo? Yes. Do we explain how Pierce Brosnan fit the Monet canvas into his briefcase? Sort of. Does Amanda know the plot of “Wicked”? Surprisingly, no!

    This episode is sponsored by:
    ExpressVPN (ExpressVPN.com/check)
    MUBI (mubi.com/blankcheck)

    Join our Patreon at patreon.com/blankcheck Follow us @blankcheckpod on Twitter and Instagram! 
    7 April 2024, 4:00 am
  • 2 hours 19 minutes
    Die Hard with a Vengeance with Shea Serrano
    John McTiernan back with the Die Hard franchise after the spectacular flop of Last Action Hero. Bruce Willis and Samuel L Jackson back together after Pulp Fiction. Die Hard with a Vengeance is definitely part of the “we are so back” canon. Shea Serrano (who owns every McTiernan movie on VHS) joins us to chat about this explosive action threequel that features a surprising amount of New York theater actors and a bunch of childhood games and riddles. Also, you don’t need us to tell you this but - Jeremy Irons hot. Also cool.

    Listen to Six Trophies with Jason Concepcion and Shea Serrano
    Check out Halfway Books

    This episode is sponsored by:
    FieldOfGreens.com (CODE: CHECK)

    Join our Patreon at patreon.com/blankcheck Follow us @blankcheckpod on Twitter and Instagram! Buy some real nerdy merch at shopblankcheckpod.myshopify.com
    31 March 2024, 4:00 am
  • 3 hours 43 minutes
    Last Action Hero with Paul Scheer & Jason Mantzoukas
    You either love this movie or you hate it, and guess what - we’re landing all over the LOST ACTION HERO spectrum this episode! Paul Scheer & Jason Mantzoukas join us once again for a clock-busting, rip-roaring time, and we’re unpacking all of this movie’s meta madness.  Is John McTiernan able to parody his own work? Should the kid have actually killed people in this movie (as in the original, edgier script)? Will David have an aneurysm if this episode recording doesn’t end at a reasonable time?

    Pre-order Paul’s Book

    And if anyone has what Jason is looking for, email [email protected] and well get it to him. 

    This episode is sponsored by:
    MUBI (mubi.com/blankcheck)
    FACTOR (Factormeals.com/check50)
    Zocdoc (zocdoc.com/check

    Join our Patreon at patreon.com/blankcheck Follow us @blankcheckpod on Twitter and Instagram!
    24 March 2024, 4:00 am
  • 2 hours 18 minutes
    Medicine Man with Jamie Lee
    Oh baby, this one’s a STINKER! Sean Connery finds the cure for cancer but then he loses it (??). Lorraine Bracco delivers all of her dialogue like someone making a comment and not asking a question at a Q&A. They’re both playing scientists - but where’s the CHEMISTRY?? Comedian and writer Jamie Lee returns to Blank Check to talk about John McTiernan’s attempt at a serious adult drama, 1992’s MEDICINE MAN. We spend most of the episode trying to recast this movie to make it somewhat palatable. But the musical score is great!

    This episode is sponsored by:
    Burrow (Burrow.com/check)
    Indochino.com (CODE: CHECK)
    MUBI (mubi.com/blankcheck)

    Join our Patreon at patreon.com/blankcheck Follow us @blankcheckpod on Twitter and Instagram! Buy some real nerdy merch at shopblankcheckpod.myshopify.com
    17 March 2024, 4:00 am
  • 2 hours 16 minutes
    The Hunt For Red October with Jamelle Bouie
    We love da submarinesh! Host of “Unclear and Present Danger” Jamelle Bouie joins us this week to talk about middle aged white guys, airport novels, and naval recruitment propaganda. That’s right - we’re talking about John McTiernan’s adaptation of Tom Clancy’s THE HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER! Come for our thesis on why Alec Baldwin played the best version of Jack Ryan, stay for Ben and Jamelle’s impassioned pleas for a Highlander patreon series. And of course, there will be Connery impressions.

    This episode is sponsored by:
    AuraFrames.com (CODE: CHECK)
    ExpressVPN (ExpressVPN.com/check)

    Join our Patreon at patreon.com/blankcheck Follow us @blankcheckpod on Twitter and Instagram! Buy some real nerdy merch at shopblankcheckpod.myshopify.com
    10 March 2024, 5:00 am
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