Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘money men’

There are certain things that don’t mix: oil and water, chalk and cheese, Professor Richard Dawkins and sellers of healing crystals … that kind of thing.  One that should be added to the list is writers and money men.  The business of writers is to corral words into entertainment.  This requires skill, hard work, some luck and a degree of belief in some small level of artistic purpose.  The business of money men is to dump on that belief in artistic purpose from a great height.  At yesterday’s meeting, it was the turn of our show to be dumped on.  Bearing in mind that the dumper – for reasons best known to himself and possibly a hitherto unknown and blind god of bad fashion – was wearing as part of his ensemble some zoot-suit-esque, ultra-high-waisted, brown corduroy trousers with red braces, the experience was not exactly pleasant.

But anyway, why don’t we picture the scene …

INT. DAY. MEETING ROOM

THE MEETING ROOM IS SITUATED IN A TRENDY, OPEN-PLAN, CONVERTED OFFICE BLOCK.  SO TRENDY IS THE BLOCK THAT THE MEETING ROOM CONSISTS OF A LARGE, ROUND-ENDED TABLE AND SOME CHAIRS AND IS SEPARATED FROM THE REST OF THE BUILDING BY HEAVY, TRANSPARENT, PLASTIC CURTAIN.  THE WHOLE AREA HAS THE AIR OF A DESERTED MEAT STORE.

AROUND THE TABLE SITS THE TALENT (ONE OF THE SHOW’S HOSTS – UNLIKE MOST “TALENT” HE IS GENUINELY TALENTED), THE PRODUCER, THE ASSISTANT PRODUCER, THE WRITER AND MR MONEY.  MR MONEY HAS NO IDEA HIS OUTFIT MAKES HIM LOOK LIKE A TRENDY-BUT-AGING WEST MIDLANDS CAR SALESMAN TRYING TO DO AN IMPRESSION OF CAB CALLOWAY.

PRODUCER:                    I’m delighted to see you all here, especially as it’s rather a surprise.  I do wonder if we could try to keep as close as possible to the matter at hand and not get side-tracked

MR MONEY:                   We have a problem with the opening of the show.

PRODUCER:                    Now … I realise that you may feel we have a problem but I am rather anxious to keep to the business of the promo as I have another meeting at …

MR MONEY:                   (IGNORING PRODUCER) It’s not punchy enough.  I’m not happy with the pictures for the jokes at the top of the show, they’re not good enough quality.  (HE LOOKS WARNINGLY AT THE WRITER … WHO HAS NOTHING AT ALL TO DO WITH THE QUALITY OF THE PICTURES).  We need a brand new approach to the opening …

PRODUCER:                    Yes, but … the promo …

MR MONEY:                   What do we think the approach should be?  I’ve looked at shows like The Daily Show and they use a lot of canned laughter …

TALENT:                          Well, that show has a live audience … that laughs.  It’s not actually canned laughter at all.

MR MONEY:                   Can’t we have canned laughter too?

PRODUCER:                    I’d be very against it.  The logic is all wrong

TALENT:                          I think what we’re saying is that we’re coming from a rather different comic place.  This is a British show and the tradition is British shows tend to avoid laugh tracks … it’s what makes stuff like Alan Partridge or The Office different.

MR MONEY:                   So, we’re all agreed, we’ll put in canned laughter.

***

(LATER)

MR MONEY:                   We’ve got to be bada-bing, bada-boom.  Zap!  Pow!  We’ve got to grab ‘em in the first 8 seconds.  It’s just like writing a pop song.

THE WRITER NODS ENTHUSIASTICALLY.

WRITER V/O:                  (THINKS) Of course it is … provided it’s a pop song that has to be topical but timeless, British but written solely for Americans, downmarket and upmarket AT THE SAME TIME and is different from but the same as every other show in the world … and put together on a budget that wouldn’t pay for Jonathon Ross to walk from his front door to the taxi cab.

MR MONEY:                   Can’t we have them come on and say something like “Wow, what a week it’s been for …

WRITER V/O:                  (THINKS) Now that’s really original … didn’t Adam do that on his opening night at the Garden of Eden dinner dance?

WRITER:                          Well we can certainly give it a try …

MR MONEY:                   Over all, I’d have to say I was disappointed with the opening pictures … and the pacing … [DESPITE NEITHER OF THESE BEING THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE WRITER, MR MONEY GIVES HIM ANOTHER STARE]

WRITER:                          Well …

TALENT:                          In fairness, as I look around this room, I do think it would be right to say that I don’t think any of us sat down and said, “I know what, let’s make the start of the show just a bit lacklustre”.

MR MONEY:                   Well … it’s got to be better.  Zap!  Pow!

PRODUCER:                    About the promo …

MR MONEY:                   And couldn’t we make it more like The Daily Show?

***

 Oh yes … and we need to get in a scene involving the Raymond Revue Bar and remember we’re Web 2.0.  Ho hum.

Read Full Post »