John Fusco

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  • Nationality: American
  • Profession: Writer









John Fusco is an American screenwriter, producer, and television series creator born in Prospect, Connecticut. His screenplays include Crossroads, Young Guns, Young Guns II, Thunderheart, Hidalgo, Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron and the upcoming Kevin Costner film The Highwaymen. He is also the creator of the Netflix series Marco Polo. Fusco is also a blues musician and a prose fiction author.

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As a writer of both novels and screenplays, I can say that screenwriting is a vastly rewarding creative life - if you fight hard enough to do it on your own terms. Whether I write books or not, my screenwriting life has been creatively rewarding and remains so. Life
At a young age, when I was fascinated with China, I read 'The Travels of Marco Polo' and learned about this exciting, dramatic world he captured and reported on. He's so little known, but yet this mythology has survived that's so misrepresentative of his story.
Being a student of Wuxia literature, I was aware 'Crouching Tiger' was book four in the 'Crane Iron Pentalogy.'
Being on the ground in Mongolia and traveling with the horse culture and sleeping in yurts, I was able to pick up a lot of detail. But I brought in advisors to work with our horse master to make sure the fighting strategies both on the Chinese and Mongolian sides were very accurate. Work, Workers & The Labor Force
He was an Italian kid traveling in China, and I'm of Italian decent with a fascination for China. So, I always felt this connection to him and lived vicariously through the travels of Marco Polo.
'Horse thunder' is what I call the sound of galloping hooves.
I feel that Marco Polo has really been misrepresented - has never really gotten his due.
I got the feeling: It's time to do a Marco Polo story. I felt like everything was lining up right because long-form television series were becoming to me like the new great American novel. Time
I grew up in the unlikely place of Connecticut. The Eastern Woodlands. It was semi-rural where I grew up. I was fascinated by the Piqua and the Mohegan Indians of that area.
I grew up with a fascination with Marco Polo. I had this unlikely interest in the East as a young man, and you can't really read about Chinese history and philosophy without encountering him at every turn. History
I have seen too many screenwriters of promise become formula addicts and slaves to stop watch structure. Spend that time watching movies, reading screenplays, reading plays, and most importantly - write from your gut. Time ;Arts, Culture, Entertainment & Lifestyle
I have spent time in Mongolia, in China. Time
I started looking into horse history books and came across the actual story of this half-breed endurance horseman and his painted mustang Hidalgo. I wasn't really sure if I was going to do the movie at that point. History
I was interviewing an elder, Chief Fool's Crow, who was the ceremonial chief. He was 103 years old. I was getting his information on the history of Lakota horses. He told me the story of Hidalgo and Frank Hopkins. History
I wrote 'Young Guns' on spec because I really believed that the young age of these guys historically, the whole legend of Billy dying at 21, would attract a young staple of stars, and that would be the game-changer.
If you understand the importance of developing a relationship with the director and making that director see that you're the best technical adviser and resource in the world on your subject, you'll be invited on set as a respected and integral part of the process.
In 2007, I did a horseback trip across part of central Mongolia with my 13-year-old son - we encountered Marco Polo at all these historical places where Mongolian nomads would reference his accounts and his relationship with Kublai Khan.
In many ways, it's easier to write a book. You have more latitude with structure, and you have the freedom to luxuriate within the internal lives and musings of your characters. But where a screenplay does not always demand great prose, a novel lives or dies by it. Freedom & Liberty
It all goes back to 'Wow, I never knew this about Marco Polo.' This is an incredible story and an incredible character, and such a rich world of Mongolian and Chinese culture.
It always circled back around to Marco Polo and Kublai Khan. That always fascinated me because so few people make the connection between the two.
Marco Polo has been kind of buried under this cloud of rather banal historical dust, when the true story is so much more exciting.
My son, Gio, wanted to do a horseback trip in Mongolia, but he didn't want to do an Abercrombie & Fitch-type tour, where they show you around while you sleep in B&Bs.
The journey of Marco Polo is the hero's journey, one that all cultures across the globe can relate to.
Twelve years ago, when I was on the Pine Ridge Reservation for 'Thunderheart,' I was dong research into Native American horses that had come into extinction. I was tracing certain Lakota bloodlines, and it became an obsession.
We drove for 10 hours on rocky trails out into the central part of Mongolia in a Russian utility vehicle with no shock absorbers. Then we arrived at a remote area where we stayed in a yurt and waited to meet a horse wrangler who was scheduled to bring our rides.
We searched around the globe and looked at well over a hundred 'Marco Polos,' came down to the wire, and went back and looked at our Italy tapes, and we realized that we had overlooked someone. That was Lorenzo Richelmy.
We're not just making 'Marco Polo,' we're living it. Because we traveled to Venice... Kazakhstan... into the jungles of Malaysia.
When I was growing up I spent a lot of time reading about ancient China and was really fascinated. Time
When people hear the name 'Marco Polo,' they tend to think of a map or explorer. Very few people know the true story of Marco Polo, and it's so much more compelling and exciting than the mythology.
With the Mongolian horse warfare, I did a lot of research into the Mongol art of war. War & Peace ;Arts, Culture, Entertainment & Lifestyle

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