Monday, November 18, 2019

MARY TYLER MOORE SHOW Original Series Network Promo

MTMS was one of the rare TV series that improved as the seasons rolled along.   The last several seasons, focused mainly on the office 'family,' are some of the best sitcom episodes ever produced and hold up to this day.

An interesting artifact from the comedy vaults.   A promo sent out by CBS for THE MARY TYLER MOORE SHOW.   Along with alternate lyrics and arrangements for the theme, it features the classic "you've got spunk" Mary job interview with Lou Grant.

However, this execution is off.   Lou is a bit overly hostile and there's no hint of the playfulness he infuses the character as the series develops.   Mary's hitting the lines as the true pro she was, but they feel out of sych.   Finally, the scene is poorly shot and edited, especially for the 'spunk' big laugh line.

Notice the great improvements in the version that aired:

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

TINKER' Available! DVD and PPV

TINKER' (indie film I co-wrote) is available on DVD (Amazon) and PayPerView today!

Monday, June 18, 2018

First Drafts: Dos and Don'ts

DO... write it very fast. I start with an outline. Others start with just an idea. Write out a "vomit draft" (you vomit when you go back and read it later) to just get something down on paper.

DO... keep moving forward.

DO... set page goals. Five to ten pages a day is a nice pace, but do what you can.

DO... finish it. Mentally, it will help clear your mind for new ideas to arrive. Emotionally, you'll be happy you completed a script. Most people never accomplish even that. A finished first draft is what you need to start reworking it into something good.

DON'T... try to edit in the middle of doing that first draft. If you go backward, you won't finish. You'll keep finding flaws and will lose your passion for the project.

DON'T... get feedback. You've got nothing to show anyone until you are a couple drafts in and if you show it too early and the readers bash it, you will lose your passion for the project. Seeing a pattern?

If you are asked to give feedback on a first draft of someone's script, tread carefully. Stay positive. Highlight the opportunities and what's working. Don't bash it or kill it. You can't expect it to meet professional standards out of the gate. Discuss the rewrite process with the writer and encourage them.

Good luck and go get that FIRST DRAFT done. Because that's the fun part. After that, the work begins!

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

New Judd Apatow Comedy MasterClass

Judd Apatow has a new comedy MasterClass available now and it's a great opportunity to have a top pro let you inside his world, his comic mind, and what looks like his very cool office. A couple hours of content for $90 and you have access for a year.

Judd discusses his story -- from comedy geek fandom to writer to producer/director/Hollywood playboy. Discusses stand-up comedy, creating comic characters, and making comedy films.

My favorite lecture was one on screen testing comedies (which he usually does 4 or 5 times) to see what's getting laughs and what to cut. Some 'auteurs' may have had a problem with that, but coming from a background in standup Judd knows that if the audience ain't laughing, it's time to make changes.

Click below to check it out and (disclosure) if you happen to buy it, I make a few bucks and pay for this wonderful site.

Oh, the site's free, right.

Judd Apatow Teaches Comedy