Posts Tagged ‘TV’

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That Guy At The Nose Of The Airplane

April 16, 2011

I’ve been stuck on this pilot I’m writing for a long time now.

I remember a time 2 months ago when I felt I was a short toss away from scripting. Seriously. And now, I’ve been in meltdown (too soon) for way too long. I finally talked to someone about what was holding me back and it helped. Not tonnes, but some.

Today, that same friend sent me a (mostly unrelated) link to a blogpost about screen writing. It helped a bit more.

I’ve spent the past hour reading old posts from another screenwriting blog I used to frequent and – yep – feeling better.

Anyway, here’s an interesting excerpt from that last blog that really has nothing to do with my problem, but it’s a fascinating perspective on TV as a genre.

Simply put, I think when we talk originality on TV we’re using a different mixture, or recipe, than when people talk originality in art or in the novel or even the movie. Originality in TV to me is more akin to originality in popular music. [those itals are me]

When you hear an unbelievably catchy song on the radio (these days, if you’re talking a new song you haven’t heard before, I’m probably talking, on the satellite ratio) the thing that gets you is that most of the time it pulls off an impossible trick: it simultaneously feels and sounds fresh and familiar. Maybe there’s something about the bassline or the chord progression, or maybe it’s built upon a sample from an earlier song you liked…but to me the pleasure comes from feeling that it’s both new and familiar – both receptors in your brain go crazy, and that’s why some songs you hear for the first time and go, “that’s amazing!” and you love it right away.

I think that’s kind of like what we do in TV. TV is about constantly pulling off the impossible trick. When you drag people out to a theater (and I’m talking about viewers here who aren’t 18 year old boys with no sense of history) you have a bit of a higher burden on creativity — it needs to not be something you’ve ever seen before, or if it’s even the slightest bit pastiche, it better be great pastiche, like The Departed. Same is true of a good novel, I think.

Anyway, the whole post is a great read if this thing is… your thing.

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Powers gets a Pilot

February 27, 2011

I’ve posted in the past about Powers, a graphic novel about homocide detectives specializing in Superpowered related murders, and about how it’s been in development since forever.

Last night, the comics’ creator and writer tweeted the good news.

Powers pilot was just greenlit by FX! it’s official! your window of reading Powers while it was still cool is running out 🙂

Exciting!

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6 Acts

February 2, 2011

Remember when tv shows had 4 acts? No? How about 5 acts? Still no, eh?

I just read a pilot from last year with 6 acts. It works, but it’s… man. Crazy to think that 5 years ago I wrote a pilot with just 4 acts in it.

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ReStart Trek

May 6, 2010

Today I’ve watched more episodes of Star Trek (two and a half) than I have in the past 8 months combined.

A TOS episode about a planet of Capone-esque gangsters.

A TNG episode about Worf attempting to convince his son to begin his Klingon Warrior Training

A DS9 episode about a prophecy that’s going to destroy a planet or a wormhole or something.

Star Trek sure sounds dumb, sometimes.  Except for the fact that it’s FUCKING AWESOME

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Have You Met Me?

April 13, 2010

Growing up, I watched movies, tv, played video games, read books and comic books, and played sports.

However, time and again, I’ve run into situations where I’m a pop culture neanderthal.  Roommates throwing their arms – or chairs – in frustration about how I’ve somehow never seen anything.  (Are you really still surprised?)  People who look at me as the “comic guy” and are astounded to find out I haven’t read whatever.

I present to you… a solution!

I am now accepting submissions in my own education:

  • Want me to read a book about the end of the world? Tell me about it!
  • Want me to watch a movie where the bad guy wins? Send it my way!
  • Think I’m ugly? Keep that to yourself!

I will then tell you exactly what I think about everything!

  • Aliens? Boring if you watched in 20 years later for the first time!
  • Kitchen Confidential? Bourdain is a narcissistic douchebag!
  • Your diary? I would LOVE to read that!

Anyway, here goes!

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Television Monsters

April 12, 2010

The show is over.

I have pictures of a few more monsters for you all, but this post isn’t for them. These final two weeks have been particularly trying for me, with hours that are seemingly never ending. There’s no such thing as a short day in my department. In fact, it’s an oft discussed fact that the on set lifestyle is overwhelming, and that Television Production is itself a monster that feeds on relationships.

One colleague of mine has wanted to be a camera operator for as long as I’ve known him (4 years?) but he has a dire fear of becoming the stereotype. In te past few years I’ve worked with 20+ ops and I can only name two who are marred to their first wife. And that’s just the camera department. The symptoms are the same in sound, lighting, grip and whatever other departments exist on shows.

It’s ridiculous. That’s the only way to describe it, because anything else would be an essay in self-deprivation and -destruction.

I just remembered a third Op who is (I’m pretty sure) still with his first wife. Hooray, I guess?

The part that kills me is that I don’t even like cameras. They’re cool, and Im good enough at this tech shit that it pays my bills and buys me dinner, but do I really want to put up the people that matter to me as barter?

And then there’s the part that has nothing to do with work. I’ve been on this job for 6 weeks. People tell me I’ve been an asshole alot longer than that. Maybe there’s no such thing as the Television Monster. Just assholes like me who need something other than themself to blame.

Sigh.

There’s no short days, work or otherwise.

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Stuck in a Dumpster

March 9, 2010

Thank God for long-johns.

As I write this, I am sitting in an (empty) dumpster. Today, my job includes hiding out here in the cold, waiting for the right moment so that I can sneak to the hero van and change tapes.

That sentence can be found in Meriam-Webster’s Anecdotal Dictionary under ‘glamour.’

We’re shooting a bit about a death worm today in which you don’t ever actually *see* the death worm. More importantly we’re in Caledon in a quarry. What’s a quarry? I thought you’d never ask 🙂