Friday, December 18, 2009

25 Hours From Now...

I'll be appearing on the 30 Hour Day livestreaming telethon between 1:00 AM and 3:00 AM Saturday to read some traditional holiday stories, including:
  • Clement Moore's "Twas the Night Before Christmas"
  • Hans Christian Andersen's "The Little Match Girl" (inspiration for GrooveLily's excellent Striking 12 stage show)
  • O. Henry's "The Gift of the Magi"
...and a little gem from 1922 that you've probably never heard of. Hint: I'll be doing a few different British accents.

Tune in any time between 4:00 PM Friday (today!) and 10:00 PM Saturday night to see a colorful parade of entertaining and interesting personalities from Portland, Oregon (complete schedule here). You don't even have to close your laptop. And it's all for charity!


Labels: , , , ,

Friday, November 06, 2009

Missing Music

The best thing about the short-lived 2000 Bruce Campbell TV series Jack of All Trades is the main title theme song. Really! It was nominated for an Emmy and only lost because it was up against The West Wing. (But composer Joe LoDuca landed on his feet. He's working on Leverage these days.)

Hear the genius for yourself:

D and I have been re-watching Pinky and the Brain recently, which also has a great theme song. This is one thing I miss about modern TV shows. I blame Frasier for starting the trend and shows like Lost for exacerbating it (though the latter did make for a nice comedy bit at this year's Emmys).

I mean, if ever there was a show crying out for a theme song, it's Glee. Come on, guys. SRSLY.

Writer Lee Goldberg does a TV Main Title of the Week feature on his blog, and it's worth subscribing to his feed just to see these. They're not all good--quite a few are real clunkers--but as my friend Brian says, the main titles should tell you what to expect from the show itself. A good theme song should tell you, in about a minute, whether or not you are the audience for that show, and if you are, should make you want to go watch it immedately.

Here's a perfect example:

I rest my case.


Labels: , ,

Friday, October 23, 2009

This Is It

I'm a guest on the Strange Love Live tech podcast tonight. Watch the streaming video starting at 10PM Pacific! (More details in my previous "Friday Night Live" post.)


Labels: , ,

Monday, September 28, 2009

UR Doin It Write

From House writer-producer Doris Egan's LiveJournal:

Most people in the world can draw a firm divide between working and not working. You could take a picture of them, and see whether they’re working or not working. But a writer hitting keys could be far less productive that day than they were while walking the dog last night. I suppose a filmed documentary of a writers’ room would translate to most people as “work” -- but anyone who isn’t a writer is not at those meetings. They generally aren’t standing in the doorway watching the typing, either.

They do see a script, eventually, but I swear, somewhere in the back of people’s minds they believe what I believed of books as a child – that they’re found objects that washed up on shore that way. If you only ever see a cut of beef wrapped in plastic in the supermarket, the idea that someone had to separate it from a cow is alien.

-- "writers, Emmys, and Hollywood logic"

Much of the rest of the post is about TV production nuts and bolts, but even if you don't care about that, skip to the end for a nice little Shakespeare riff.


Labels: , ,

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Casting Calls

I signed up with a local casting agency earlier this year, mostly so I could be an extra on Leverage (fun times, plus they paid me!), and I'm still on their mailing list, so I get the occasional "Talent Needed" e-mail alerts.

It's interesting to see how different each production's requirements can be. For example, last week I got this very brief message:
[###] Sporting Goods shoot THURSAY SEPTEMBER 17!
Ages 18+
Rate: $150
To submit email extras@[####].com ASAP with name, phone number and a JPEG!

I'm guessing that was some kind of big crowd scene, and they got more respondents than they could possibly need.

Today I received this notice:
We're casting a job for [#####] Dental that requires the following talent:

1 woman - 25-45 to play a veterinarian
1 woman - 18-35 to play a front desk assistant
1 man - 18-35 to play veterinarian's assistant
SHOOTS: 9/24/09 (next Thursday)
RATE: $140 for a half day; $280 for a full day

Talent should not be allergic to or frightened of animals. You MUST have good teeth to be considered.

Email extras@[####].com with a current picture of yourself smiling (with teeth!), your phone number and full name. [#####] must be your subject line.

That's not the most specific casting call I've ever seen, but I love the "MUST have good teeth" part. Sorry, British expats, you'll have to wait until someone wants scheming villains or foppish snobs in their show.

Labels: , ,