In 2009, director, Brooklynite, and cardboard box artiste, Michel Gondry announced that you could buy a sketch from him—a hand-drawn, signed portrait of YOU based off a photo you submit—for just $19.95. Naturally the people flocked and the lone man and his pencil became overwhelmed, tired, but probably mostly just busy with other stuff. Did everyone get their sketches?
Last summer one paying customer, Dan Lee, updated us on his ongoing battle to get his sketch, delivering a tragic timeline that seemed like it would go on without end. Smart money was on this man never receiving his drawing.
It all started when Lee wanted to surprise his then-girlfriend with a Gondry original. He placed his order, time passed, inquiries were sent about the sketch, promises were made, Lee married his girlfriend, Gondry directed The Green Hornet. Life was moving along, and it seemed like some people would just have to decide if they would live out their years in hopeful anticipation, or with their faith in the basic principles of capitalism and commerce irrevocably shattered.
Then in April of 2012, Lee noticed that Gondry was posting new sketches on his website, but since Gondry's people promised he'd never get one, we could only assume the posted sketches were purely to taunt Lee. But it seems Gondry really was back at the drawing board—Lee just contacted us yesterday to let us know he received his sketches! New York, we can hear your sigh of relief!
He added, however, "They're not too great. (He made made my Filipino wife look like Gargamel.) At least i got them... four years later." Lee told us he doesn't think this is just Gondry's weird style, "more laziness dashed with some resentment." But if you want an unoriginal portrayal just go to Times Square?
Maybe this was Gondry's lesson to us that anticipation of happiness is often the only happiness we'll ever really know.