Posts tagged ‘television’

July 8, 2013

Video: Game of Thrones, Mad Men Showrunners on Creating Emmy-Winning TV

Charlie Schmidlin of IndieWire has shared a great video of a roundtable discussion, put together by The Hollywood Reporter, with some of the top showrunners working in television today (Scripts for many of the shows mentioned are linked to below):

With the surplus of quality series currently on cable television, there are also the notable names and personalities behind them — “Mad Men” and Matthew Weiner, D.B. Weiss and “Game of Thrones,” Aaron Sorkin and “The Newsroom.” All are articulate, enjoyable, and insightful, and thanks to the coming Emmy season, a roundtable with them and others has hit the web.

The latest in a long line of THR’s Roundtable series, the 55-minute Emmy discussion includes Weiner, Sorkin, Weiss, and also Alex Gansa (“Homeland”), Kevin Williamson (“The Following”), and Beau Willimon (“House of Cards”).Together, the group discusses their writing processes, violence in TV, and the personality types that enter the business. The diverse slate of shows that each showrunner represents means a varied back-and-forth over their approaches, content, and with guys like Sorkin and Weiner in the room, some choice quotes as well (“I’ve never seen an episode of ‘The West Wing‘ beyond season four,” says Sorkin.)

Watch the video at IndieWire.


June 7, 2011

Writing for Television — Lessons Learned at GAPF

Another thought-provoking session from last weekend’s Great American Pitchfest was entitled “Your Career in TV – The View from Both Sides.” The session was essentially a conversation between former Disney executive Kathie Fong Yoneda and Emmy-nominated writer Ellen Sandler.

The session was full of wise advice from both sides of the fence. Here are some highlights:

  • Succeeding in Hollywood, whether in film or television, is part magic, but it’s mostly hard work. Something lucky has to happen to you at some point, but when it does, you need to be ready for it, or that lucky break won’t get you anywhere. Take the time to network, perfect your scripts, learn your craft, and eventually, you’ll get there.
  • People are looking for you. But they can only find you if you put yourself out there. Join a writing group, go to conferences, go to screenwriting events,  volunteer at festivals, submit to contests, and always have your pitch ready to go. The industry can’t find you if you don’t help them out a bit.
  • Your odds of finding success in television (and film) go up dramatically the more you write. Being a prolific writer is key.
  • You need to be willing to network and to play the game. A good sense of politics is key. For the most part, this simply means being nice to everyone and not asking for favors before you’ve earned the right.
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