PITCHING A TV SHOW

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PITCHING A TV SHOW:

PITCHING A TV SHOW COMM 119: BROADCAST PRODUCTION

PITCHING YOUR TV SHOW IDEA:

PITCHING YOUR TV SHOW IDEA You have the opportunity to pitch a new live-action Television Program for Network Television and you may pick from one of the genres listed below: SCIENCE-FICTION (50 minutes) ROMANTIC COMEDY (25 minutes) WORKPLACE SITCOM (25 minutes) HORROR/THRILLER (50 minutes DRAMA (25 minutes) Like virtually all network television programs, this one is designed for renewal with several possible seasons with at least 22 episodes each. So while your job this week is to focus on the pilot/short-term there must still be room for the show to grow and evolve into several seasons.

Developing the Concept:

Developing the Concept Choose your genre. Genre is simply the type of show you're making, from sitcom to murder mystery. Genre affects your mood, tone, and writing style, and the audience's expectations for certain things . I’ve given you this wide range of GENRES to choose from for your TV Show Idea: SCIENCE-FICTION (50 minutes) ROMANTIC COMEDY (25 minutes) WORKPLACE SITCOM (25 minutes) HORROR/THRILLER (50 minutes DRAMA (25 minutes) Having a genre doesn't mean you are locked into one type of story. It simply makes it easier to market and sell your idea. So pick a genre and use it to let yourself be as creative and original as you can !

Developing the Concept:

Developing the Concept Now that you know your genre, come up with your "what if? " premise. This is the premise of every single TV show and idea to run through Hollywood. It can be as simple as "what if a documentary crew filmed a small paper company?" ( The Office ) to complex ideas like "what if a chemistry teacher started cooking meth?" ( Breaking Bad ). This is the basis of your show -- what sets it apart, and what will make it sell. You don't need, or want, to weigh this down with a lot of subplots or other ideas yet. Just get the essence of your show on paper. Seinfeld, after all, was famously pitched as “what if we did a show about nothing?”

Developing the Concept:

Developing the Concept Develop some characters. The essence of all good TV is the character. Characters are why people tune in week after week and what drives the plot of each episode. Try and come up with between 2-5 main characters, as any more becomes difficult to manage, with 7 main characters being the upper limit. You characters should be “ Round” – that means the characters have multiple facets, not just an "angry woman," or "strong hero." Round characters have strengths and weaknesses, and the chance to grow. Filled with desires and fears. Their ability or inability to get over their fear (of being poor, of being alone, of space aliens, of spiders, etc.) is what drives their conflicts each episode and shows you the goals in the series. Have agency. A good character makes choices which push forward the plot. They make mistakes, try and fix things, go to parties, etc. because it is something their character would do, not something the writer needs them to do. [3]

Developing the Concept:

Developing the Concept Characters should be f illed with desires and fears. Their ability or inability to get over their fear (of being poor, of being alone, of space aliens, of spiders, etc.) is what drives their conflicts each episode and shows you the goals in the series. Characters should have “agency” – which means the illusion of self-direction. A good character makes choices which push forward the plot. They make mistakes, try and fix things, go to parties, etc. because it is something the character would do, not something the writer needs them to do .

Developing the Concept:

Developing the Concept Come up with your title. The catchier the better. Most TV shows are based on some sort of play on words, and having a good turn of phrase can ensure that your show is immediately recognized. Mad Men, for example, is about Ad Agencies and the men that work there, most whose lives are spiraling out of control. Community is about a community college, but also a group of close-knit. The importance of a great title can not be underestimated.

Developing the Concept:

Developing the Concept Write a catchy logline. The logline is a one or two sentence description of your show designed to sell producers on the idea. It typically tells the main agenda of the show and/or main character. If your concept can’t easily translate to a logline it might not be very marketable, but this is rare. It should tell people what they're watching and what clever hook or premise there is in the show.

Developing the Concept:

Developing the Concept Research current televised programming to learn about current trends or opportunities. Use "the trades," such as the ubiquitous and essential Deadline.com or Variety to keep up to date about current Hollywood TV trends – the more you know about what’s currently hot and selling, the better chance you have to please and audience and network executives.

WEEK #2 DISCUSSION BOARD ASSIGNMENT:

WEEK #2 DISCUSSION BOARD ASSIGNMENT Now go to WEEK #2 and check out the PITCHING YOUR TV SHOW IDEA POST INSTRUCTIONS – please post your work in time for us all to check it out and have a judgment-free discussion – now’s your chance to be creative so go for it!

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