Wednesday, May 23, 2007
"On the Lot"
I watched "On the Lot" the other night, the new reality show that's offering the winner the chance to be a movie director, or at least a "big break". In the first episode the contestants had a night to come up with a pitch, based on what was referred to as a "log line" and what I would call a premise. They were specifically told the story/movie idea should have a beginning, middle and end.
Some pitches were excruciating to watch, like the guy who went blank at the start. Been there, done that -- back in seventh grade. It is a horrible feeling.
Then there was the guy who decided to be high energy, but who only succeeded in earning baffled looks from the judges.
Unlike some reality shows, though, I felt this one actually had some lessons to impart. For anybody planning to pitch a book to an agent or editor: Take notes if you're going to be a complete nervous wreck. Better to have a cue card in your pocket you can use if you need it than just be excruciatingly silent.
For anybody planning a pitch or even going for a job interview: Don't try too hard to make a lasting impression; it could be the wrong one! Get some sleep. Don't make excuses or have a lot of rambling preamble.
I have no such illusions of usefulness for the upcoming Pirate Master. (Why not just Pirates? Why "Master?" Why not Captain? Why not Pirate Ship? I don't get it.) I'm thinking it's just going to be Survivor at Sea -- but that's enough for me, maties!