Showrunners and TV writers have never been more talked about than this past year.
The writers’ strike showed the world how vital writers are to the entertainment industry, especially TV.
In TV, writers have control.
In a world were creator-owned content will soon become the norm, having control over one’s creation from beginning to end is important.
Showrunners have become an intricate part of the entertainment industry, multi-tasking in every direction.
Writers have now become prominent A-list figures.
Television is where everything happens.
Nothing is more symbolic of that than the other face of TV: actors.
How many big names have made the jump to TV?
How many no-names became A-listers by doing TV?
Is Jon Hamm on his way to become the next Clooney?
Sure, there isn’t that much money to be made on TV (unless your name is J.J. Abrams or Dick Wolf); especially now that everything is converging into the Internet.
But chances are you’re in this not for the money but for the passion.
You want to make groundbreaking stories.
You want to impact people.
You want to write your vision.
TV has never been as much on the forefront of our society as it is now.
Although total medium convergence is inevitable, for now original Internet content is either taken from TV or at least inspired by TV. And Strike.TV is no different.
The Internet is on its way to produce major content and, yes, 5-10 years from now most people will work in some form on the Internet. But for now, it just doesn’t have the professional clout that TV has.
The content is not yet creator-financed and creator-owned in TV, but it is a medium that uses all the new technology and expands on it: interactive convergence.
Write for the future, not for the past.
But don’t be like Tim Kring who described faithful Heroes TV viewers as “saps” and “dipshits”.
Embrace technology. Humbly.
TV is also the leading writer-based industry.
Don’t take my word for it.
Ask the guy who wrote Story.
Robert McKee himself declared the other day in Paris that Hollywood films are “the death rattle of a dying industry.”
The film industry is probably not going to die tomorrow of course, but still.
Academy Award-winner Alan Ball went to TV after American Beauty because of all the projects that were rejected by movie studios.
He then made Six Feet Under.
Creativeness is nurtured in TV.
New channels are growing every second, producing more and more shows, taking chances on something that only yesterday was thought to be crazy by many networks.
Opportunities are created every second in TV.
Who would have thought 2 years ago that a small basic-cable movie channel was going to make not only one but two innovative shows, let alone one that wins Best Drama?
Television is continuing its momentum thanks to exceptional writing talents.
And this is why Television is where you must be.
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I love television, but I also love film. There are a lot (I mean A LOT) of crappy films, but there are a few gems among all the pebbles.