“Right now what the internet is capable of providing is growing, what TV is capable of holding on to is shrinking, but they haven’t met in the middle in any significant way. At some point I think they’ll have to. “
Joss Whedon (Buffy the Vampire Slayer creator)
Earlier this year I promised to write more posts that were TV/digital centered. Now that we’re in the second six months of the year I’ll try to do better than I did the first six months.
One of the problems is there is such a well-documented film history which to pull from in movies; all the film books, magazines, documentaries, commentaries, interviews, and scholarly writing just make it easier to write about.
But there is a doc on Netflix right now called Showrunner: The Art of Running a TV Show, written and directed by Des Doyle, that is a great exploration into the modern world of television, and the changes that it’s going through. So for at least the next few posts I’ll be able to pull some quotes from it and hope that it sets the tone for the rest of the year to include more from the non-feature film world.
“The profusion of platforms, of channels of distribution, it’s all kind of exploding. It used to be that you could understand the television universe as a solar system. The sun was broadcast television, the three or four networks, and everything else was a satellite that traveled around the sun. and that clearly is no longer the model. The sun has exploded. And there are a lot of little solar systems being set up. And the idea that we’ll ever have a coherent whole like that again.—I’m not sure we will.”
Emmy-winning producer Jeff Melvin (Northern Exposure)
Founder, WGA Showrunner Training Program
“I feel like what I do is secure in that I’m a writer first and foremost. I’m going to want to write something for somebody and someone is going to want to make it. You know if I’m writing for something that’s just on the internet, that we’re just performing on something.com if I’m happy doing it and I can feed my family I’m happy doing that, too.”
Emmy-winning producer Ronald D. Moore
Developer/Showerrunner Battlestar Galactica
P.S. Man, Northern Exposure is one of my all time favorite TV shows. If you work in TV or just love the medium and know of some good resources online I welcome your suggestions.