Newsletter 28 – March 2014
Join us for another special edition, where we take you on a photo journey directly into the action in the Big Apple, where the shows your kids will be addicted to like candy next year were being pitched, promoted or sold during a snowy winter wonderland.
But first… an exciting opportunity for a FREE EVENT replay:
“5 WARNING SIGNS YOUR SHOW WILL NEVER SELL”
– Now available for replay
If you’re ready to do what it takes to sell your TV show — do not miss this FREE virtual workshop hosted by Jeanne Simon, co-founder of Sell Your TV Concept Now.
“I have the straight scoop from the mouths of network presidents about what they want and I’m telling all! This workshop is for you if you’re just starting out, or if you’ve pitched and been rejected.” – Jeanne
Here’s some of what you’ll discover on the replay:
- Three surprisingly easy strategies for quickly making a quantum leap with your fiction or non-fiction character development
- The four biggest mistakes which 99% of all TV show creators make which turn network execs off instantly
- Proven tips for convincing an exec your show can last season after season
- How one reality show producer caught the attention of Lifetime’s Senior VP of programming
- The simple idea that will turn development confusion into development delight
- How to eliminate massive money-burners and time-wasters from your development process
- Want to salvage the time and money you’ve already put into your show? You’ll discover what you need to do so you can re-pitch it to execs who have said “Not interested.”
- Find out two obvious signs that peg you as a clueless amateur
Click HERE to access a NO COST replay of the virtual workshop: http://InstantTeleseminar.com/?eventid=52491693
From the Frontlines at KIDSCREEN SUMMIT
The Kidscreen Summit television conference was held at the Hilton in New York City from February 9-12, and featured networks, execs and buyers focused on programming for kids. Mark and Jeanne were both on site with our Hit Maker Tour (HMT) members to help them finalize their pitches, schedule exclusive closed door meetings with execs, make vital introductions, and prod and prompt them through the event to have the most productive experience possible.
“I’m so proud of our clients for following our advice to take advantage of every opportunity to meet execs. And they did it! They were the ones in the Speed-Pitching lines, and they were the ones who made sure they talked directly to execs as soon as those execs finished their showcase presentations. That’s how you make an impression and push your show, and they rocked it!”
(Photo on the left: HMT member Kristin Fairfield, left, with Rovio Entertainment VP of Video, Rachel Webber.)
Welcome to the Big Apple! Does it get any bigger or better than this? The first night before the conference, our Tour members ventured forth in the 15 degree weather to take in the spectacle and energy of Times Square. Nothing better to get you pumped up to pitch!
The first night trek included a special closed door session dinner at Buca de Beppo in Times Square, where Emmy-award winning producer and studio owner Francis Fitzpatrick (with Mark) listened and gave advice on everyone’s pitches.
Client Bruce Blitz (right) formally pitches his show the next day to Cosgrove, Hall, Fitzpatrick studio execs (including Fitzpatrick, far left), introduced to him by Mark.
We met execs who were also old friends. Here’s Mark and Jeanne with Jenna Boyd, Senior VP of Development for Nickelodeon, who they knew from working with her when the network was in Orlando. She also met with HMT members.
Ken Faier (standing), El Presidente of Nerd Corps, joined our group for a special breakfast arranged the first morning of the conference, and he took pitches from everyone. He has previously purchased the show L.O.S.E. (League of Super Evil) from one of our clients. Lightning could strike again!
Ted Biaselli is the VP of Programming for The Hub (owned by Discovery and Hasbro), which is looking for non-Hasbro projects, live or animated, that will fill ‘girl space’ (ages 6-12). This is the number one network for co-viewing of parents with kids. Ted, who Mark also knew from when he worked at Disney, gave our Tour member Laura Small some great tips on her project Thunderbolt Boomerang, which fits their desired
Kay Wilson Stalling (right) is the VP of Preschool Production and Development for Nickelodeon. “There is never a bad time to pitch a good idea,” she told those attending her “30 Minute With” session. She also said Nickelodeon is currently looking for comedy shows ‘without curriculum or activity’ – that is; shows that don’t teach, but that kids will want to watch.
Marge Dean (white sweater) is the Director of Production for Mattel, and formerly an exec at Warner Bros. animation whom Mark toured with in China. He set up a private session with her for our Hit Maker Tour members, where she also gave insider advice on how the industry works.
There was big excitment outside the hotel, as well, when Spiderman showed up for filming an action sequence for the big sequel (which will also co-star Jaime Fox). Either that or he has a one-sheet in his hands for a kids’ show he swung on by to pitch.
Here’s Jeanne with Rachel Webber, VP of Video for Rovio Entertainment, a major supplier of original animated series for broadcast TV and digital platforms throughout the world, including Angry Birds.
Nat Abraham, President of Breakthrough Entertainment (left), which has many many shows on, listens to a pitch from Hit Maker Tour member Kenny Taht.
Here’s Jeanne with Rachel Webber, VP of Video for Rovio Entertainment, a major supplier of original animated series for broadcast TV and digital Nine out of ten people in the Speed Pitching line were one of our Hit Maker Tour members. They took advantage of every opportunity and scored multiple interests in their shows.
“Most of our Tour members have been asked to submit more material and are now in the follow-up process.”
– Mark Simon (post-conference, checking in with Tour members)
Breakthrough Entertainment President Nat Abraham (sitting to Mark’s left) took one-on-one pitches from all of Tour members and also took their materials back with him for further review. “How cool is that?” Mark’s expression is saying.
Mark grabbed an opportunity to have lunch at the same table with Rick Clodfeller (far right) , Director, Content Acquistions & Co-Productions for the Cartoon Network. You can guess what Rick had for dessert. That’s right… several of Mark’s pitches.
Tour member Ian Johnson (far left), owner of Too Many Legs Animation, with Vivek Kalyan, President of Orange Tigerbells, who owns animation studios in India, Malaysia and Poland. Mark directed a pilot that Vivek produced and often runs into him at all the major conferences.
HMT MEMBER GALLERY KIDSCREEN SUMMIT 2014
Hit Maker Tour member Lisa Horn and her one-sheet for her show Play With Poppen, along with Jeanne.
HMT member Guy O’Neal with his one-sheet for his animated show Solow the Crime Mastermime.
HMT member Laura Small with the one-sheet for her animated series Thunderbolt Boomerang.
HMT member Kristin Fairfield with the one-sheet for her live-action show Enchanter.
HMT members Ryan and Jordan Augustine with the one-sheet for their animated show Adam and the Octopus Club, and also getting photo-bombed by Mark.
HMT member Tim Rowberry. Hmmm… aren’t you missing something, Tim. Where’s your one-sheet? Tsk tsk tsk.
HMT members meet with Joan Vogelesang (center), CEO of Toon Boom. Joan made promises at the meeting to help several of our clients with their projects.
HMT members gather at the end of the conference, energized by their experience and eager to make their follow-ups. Tim, in the back, is auditioning to play the villain in Spiderman 3.
It was a great time… to stay indoors. Temperatures ranged from 15 to 0 degrees and there was plenty of snow. A couple Tour members were stranded three extra days because of flight cancellations. It was definitely cold as hell, but it was also…
“…MMmmmppppffftt!” (unmuffled translation): “Best Kidscreen yet!”
– Mark Simon
“…Mmmmpppfffft!” (unmuffled translation): “Definitely!”
– Jeanne Simon
“MMmmmmpppfffttttx2!” (unmuffled translation): “Same time, next year!”
– Mark and Jeanne Simon
Kidscreen opening party
The next big TV conferences are just around the corner! Register now to get early bird rates for these early summer opportunities.
BANFF WORLD MEDIA FESTIVAL
Pitch all types of shows to all media in the gorgeous Rockies.
June 8-11, 2014
Reality TV conference in Los Angeles.
June 4-5, 2014
Hit Maker Tours to both conferences will be available.
For more information, call 407-352-2544 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Want a sweet taste of the Big Apple and the conference? Here’s a brief video edited by Mark that captures some of what it was like at Kidscreen Summit in New York this year, including comments from our HMT members and some of the execs they met.