Blank Check with Griffin and David Wiki

Chosen - The Hire is episode 184 focusing on the short film Chosen which was part of an sponsored anthology called The Hire, as part of the Podback Mountcast miniseries covering the works of Ang Lee. Posted 27 September 2018.


Not exactly a commercial, not exactly a music video, not exactly a serial... but it's cool, Ang Lee made it, and here it is. This is part of a series that car-maker BMW commissioned, asking several up-and-coming filmmakers to make a short. They'd all tie together thematically and/or materially - for example. they'd each have a different BMW automobile in it, and they'd each star Clive Owen. Huh. They even made two "seasons" of these shorts. Double huh.

So... what is this, anyway? Does this portend the future of movie financing structures? Why did BMW do this, and how did the DVD collection of these shorts become such a highly sought-after item at the time? Why didn't Clive Owen ever really take off into the stratosphere the way people thought he would - was it just that he didn't end up becoming a James Bond the way all of Britain thought he would? (Sidebar: isn't it kinda nuts that they go so far as to lay odds on Bond actors in the newspapers and stuff, like it's a national reality show competition?) Did Ang Lee make at the one exact moment where someone could plausibly say, "Ang Lee is a huge action-movie director"?

As for the actual plot of Chosen... well, just go watch one of The Transporter movies, because that was essentially Luc Besson's feature-length expansion on the general idea. Except here it's a normal BMW 540i, not a custom-built Audi whatever. And Ang Lee's son is the "chosen" cargo to be transported.

Watch the whole thing, because there's a wink-wink bit with a Hulk bandaid at the end. That's it, the end, go buy BMW I guess?

Milestones and Ephemera[]

  • Possible reason for Griffin's obsession with car-based films: fear of driving cars
  • David's Bond appraisals: Connery is crazy. Moore is soft and lovely. Dalton is steely. Brosnan is mostly quippy. Craig is a psychopath.
  • Excitement level for 2019's Gemini Man: increasing (Griffin has a secret about it, too)
  • Griffin in college: good at it for a semester but ended up hiding under the covers watching "The Bob Newhart Show" drinking Mike's Hard Lemonade
  • in the audience at Talking Maul: Benedict Wong
  • Ang Lee rankings: check the Podback Mountcast page
  • New 'Talking The Walk 2018' design available, designed by Ben's Dad! More new stuff to come for the holidays! Support the people that toil for Blank Check - visit
  • Burger Report! including a self-referential one from TIFF 2018!


  • Storm of Spoilers podcast - started off as a Game of Thrones show, but they've evolved and they do deep dives into complete filmographies, on-mic. Some podcasts take weeks and months to do that - they can do it in one episode! And they cover all kinds of pop culture, too. Friend-of-the-show Joanna Robinson, Neil Miller, and Da7e Gonzales are always unflinchingly honest - sometimes they cheer, and sometimes they denounce, babyyy! Available on iTunes, Stitcher, and all the places you normally get your podcasts. @StormofSpoilers
  • (Note: according to Ben, this was the 50th Blank Check ad read!)

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