Newsletter 02 – September 2011
Got Reality? Have we got a conference for you.
REALSCREEN SUMMIT, the mega summit for reality programming, pitching and networking, runs January 29-February 1, 2012 in Washington, D.C., but it’s never too early to start preparing.
RealScreen Summit website: http://summit.realscreen.com/index.php
Speed pitching at Realscreen Summit.
Jeanne will be at the summit and providing on-site guidance, mentoring, and consultation to a select group of clients who book a spot with her for our popular Hit Maker Tour. This is a very limited opportunity, and it’s also the premier event to road test your reality show ideas.
Those who sign up will have lots of invaluable training beforehand, included in the tour package.
We will be scheduling interactive training webinars for those attending on November 17th, December 8th, and a follow up on January 16th, so you can be fully prepared to take advantage of the contacts you make at the summit, as well as know precisely how to follow up with them after the event.
SAVE $$$: Full cost of the tour is $2,297, but take advantage of this exclusive early bird sign-up period before October get an $800 discount, bringing the price down to ONLY $1,497! You can purchase a single ticket or tickets for you and your partner at
Hit Maker Tour.
Look to our website under Live Events for more information and additional price packages (such as companion prices) or /hit-maker-tour-pitch-network-execs-face-to-face/.
Or call now at 407-351-0893 or email Team@SellYourTVConceptNow.com to get a guaranteed spot on the ultimate reality tour.
Bass Gabrielle is an international fitness star and mixed martial arts champion from Australia who sold 1.2 million copies of his Superman Workout DVD. He’s now in Los Angeles trying to parlay that success into building a brand and an empire, using the tools and marketing exposure that success in Hollywood can provide.
SellYourTVConceptNow created a reality TV show treatment and 1-sheet for Bass around the challenges he faces, as well as the ruthless, unredeemable, conniving, backstabbing or generally everyday antagonists he must overcome in La La Land to succeed – as an action movie star, investor, jewelry designer and mixed martial arts gym owner.
Bass Gabrielle in character for his hybrid scripted/reality show
BASS KICKS ASS!
The show is called “Bass Kicks Ass!,” and that’s just what he does in every episode, as viewers relish everyday villains getting their just desserts. We have great expectations for the prospects of the show, and for Bass’s goal to conquer Hollywood using its own tricks.
IN PRODUCTION with MARK & JEANNE
The kids are back to school, but there was no summer vacation for the team at SellYourTVConceptNow, which leaps into Fall at a still-furious pace.
Mark finished the first 90-second prototype storyboard animatic for Alcon Entertainment and Warner Brothers big screen adaptation of “Hong Kong Phooey,” starring the voice of Eddie Murphy as the classic Hanna Barbera character. He’ll start work on the full storyboard animatics for the feature soon.
Mark also just finished supervising storyboards for a dance sequence in the Weinstein movie about Marilyn Monroe, My Week with Marilyn. It stars Michelle Williams (as Marilyn), Emma Watson (of Harry Potter), Kenneth Branaugh, Judi Dench and others, and comes out Nov 4th.
Mark also cast voices for the pilot he’s directing based on the comic “Cyber Optics,” created by Kathy Messick.
Jeanne finished supervising the creation of a spectacular 1-sheet with visual designer Curtis Sponsler for the reality show Bass Kicks Ass! (see Client Spotlight).
Jeanne and Wayne also just finished preparing a summary of another reality show called America’s Hometown Heroes for client Mike McCarthy, who is submitting the pitch to Mark Burnett’s company.
And Mark recently gave a lecture at Rollins College on international entertainment business, and highlighted some of the marketing and design for the new website.
MIND YOUR BUSINESS
Here’s an excerpt from Mark’s latest article on the Animation World Network website.
11 STEPS TO GETTING FREE PUBLICITY
Free advertising. Sound good? Great. That’s what publicity is.
Every time you are mentioned in a paper, book or magazine or appear on the radio or on TV, that promotion equals advertising for you and what you do.
Think about the value of buying a full-page ad in a newspaper. Depending on the circulation of a paper, the median cost for an interior, full-page, B&W ad may be worth anywhere from around $5,000 to $23,000. If you pitch a great story, which allows you to promote what you do, you may get a full-page article. That article acts like an ad promoting whatever you spoke about and it didn’t cost you anything but the time and effort it took to land the promotion.
The trick to getting publicity is to find a story, or a hook, about what your subject and pitch that story without it sounding like you are just promoting yourself. I’ve done this a lot over the years. I’ve been on covers of national papers, on major networks, dozens or radio shows and more. The publicity has led to clients, deals and even a contract for one of my TV shows.
Years ago Kidscreen Magazine ran an article about my series “Timmy’s Lessons In Nature.” Joel Andryc, what was an executive at Fox Family at the time, saw the article and was intrigued by our character. He flew to Orlando and offered us a deal for the series. You can do it too. I’ve outlined the basic steps to help you get more publicity.
- What’s the story?
- Do you have a hook?
- Include great art
- Write a great press release
- Write an article
- Make personal calls/contact
- Enlist help
- Post on blogs
- Post to online press companies
- Be known as a local expert
- Follow up
Getting a lot of publicity does take work. You have to plan it properly, but the benefits are worth it. So don’t just sit there…get started! I look forward to seeing in the press.
Reece on set
Mark Simon’s 3D production featured on NBC News. Pictured are
Mark’s son Reece who starred in the production and director Jason Pichon.
For the full article and a more detailed description of each step go to:
“Frankenbiting” is the practice of creative editing, and juxtaposition in reality shows that often gives the viewers an entirely different context than the reality of what actually is happening or has happened. It involves patching together bits and pieces from different sound bites or images to create an entirely new reality.
For example, in a dating show such as Matchmaker Millionaire, a romantic prospect might have said the line, “Oh, sure I’d like to say I love him, but I don’t” and the producers edit the audio of the line to say, “Oh, sure … I love him.” The intent is totally changed, but the show is suddenly more charged with direct emotion, even though it’s a big lie.
We think the term ‘frankenbiting’ is entirely appropriate, because by moving around and changing the context of the story, audio or timeline to fit an artificially-desired storyline, you are indeed ‘creating a monster.’ It’s one thing to admit a show is partially scripted, or to have a disclaimer admitting that license was taken to alter timelines or intents – and we get that. But real people’s lives are involved, and artificially shaping false perceptions about someone, or the character they’ve been shaped into, can even have fatal consequences. This happened recently with the suicide of a husband on The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills over distress on how he might have been portrayed.
Frankenstein took his own creator down with him in flames. Frankenbiting is already coming back to bite reality show manipulators.
WHAT WE’RE WATCHING
Mark and Jeanne watch shows on Nickelodeon and the Cartoon Network to keep up with what the popular kids shows are and to spend time with their 6th grade sons, Luke and Reece. Nickelodeon’s iCarly, Spongebob Squarepants and Victorious are on tap, as well as Cartoon Network’s Mad, which features character designs by Mark’s friend, Tom Richmond. They’re also recording the U.S. Open coverage and watching it with their sons.
Mark’s enjoying reading “Where’s My F*cking Latte?” by Mark Yoshimoto Nemcoff, with outrageous stories from Hollywood assistants.
Wayne’s all over the final episodes of the fourth season of Breaking Bad on AMC. Bryan Cranston has already won three Emmys for his lead performance as Walter White, the mild-mannered high school chemistry teacher who goes into the meth-cooking business to provide for his family when he is diagnosed with cancer. Showrunner and lead writer Vince Gilligan originally pitched this series as the slow transformation of “Mr. Chips” into “Scarface.” And he wasn’t kidding. This show features some of the most gripping and ingeniously-designed suspense sequences to ever air on television. And it all comes to an end with the final 16 episodes next season. Catch up if you can and “say hello to” this little screen masterpiece.
DID YOU KNOW?
The BEST way to bulletproof your script and get a ‘RECOMMEND’ is to have an expert read your script beforehand and provide you SCRIPT COVERAGE that points out its strengths and weaknesses, and what works and what doesn’t, so you can address all those points BEFORE you officially submit it to a potential buyer, producer, or network.
We’ve got pro scriptwriter, Wayne Carter, who can do just that, including:
- Detailed notes on characters
- Dialogue analysis
- Story structure critique
- Scene-by-scene notes
Wayne Carter helped develop Ed McMahon’s “Next Big Star,”
a precursor to “American Idol.”
For more information, go to our Script Coverage webpage at SellYourTVConceptNow.com: http://www.sellyourtvconceptnow.com/script-coverage/
BLAST FROM THE PAST
Jeanne produced Carrot Top’s first TV series back in 1995. It was also the first live-action series on Cartoon Network. It was called Carrot Top’s AM Mayhem. It was a series of live-action segments that introduced old cartoons. The director was Jay Dubin, who also directed the popular kids show, Beakman’s World.
Jeanne spent a large part of a year commuting between Orlando and Atlanta while producing this series.
Her recollections about working with Carrot Top …
“He was actually a very cool guy, always nice to the crew, and always giving 100 percent. He was a bit insecure, as most comics are, always asking if something was funny after every take. And one element of the show didn’t work out and we had to drop it. We tried experimenting with short scenes of him surprising people as they came down an escalator or out an elevator at the local mall. And he scared them to death. They would freak out and run away. So we quickly dropped that bit.”