Deconstructing Woody

His upcoming off-Broadway show (and theatrical directing debut) may be called Writer’s Block, but Woody Allen didn’t have that affliction when Craig Cutler showed up at Allen’s Manhattan apartment to photograph his manual typewriter for the show’s print advertising.

During the four-hour shoot, the famously anxious writer/director paced in and out of the room, eager for Cutler, who was working for Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners West, to leave so he could get back to work. He was also protective of the typewriter itself. “He was very particular about it,” says KB&P executive creative director Noel Cottrell. “He wouldn’t let us take it off to the studio.” In fact, Cutler was only allowed to put the same yellow-tinged bond paper that Allen types on into the machine (a moot point, it turns out, since the paper was eventually cropped out).

But the notoriously reticent filmmaker was pleased with the finished ad, which shows the typewriter with the keys blacked out. “A lot of the ads I see for theatrical productions and releases are very gimmicky, but I really enjoyed the sophistication of the agency’s creative idea,” Allen said in a statement.

The San Francisco agency considers the Allen gig quite a coup, and hopes it will open up more opportunities in the entertainment category, says managing partner Nigel Carr. It didn’t hurt, of course, that agency founder Richard Kirshenbaum sits on the board of directors for Atlantic Theater Company, where previews for Writer’s Block begin April 23.