Wednesday, October 05, 2022

EP295: Brian Wilson and the Price of Genius

Brian Wilson, the creative musical genius of the Beach Boys has led a rollercoaster of a life. One of his closest friends, David Leaf, offers a fascinating and candid portrait of this brilliant but troubled musician.

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Wednesday, September 28, 2022

EP294: Hanging with King Charles and other royal notables

Since the royal family has been front page news these days, Ken discusses his various brushes with royalty and other distinguished world leaders. If there’s a theme it might be irreverence.

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Wednesday, September 21, 2022

EP293: Casting Director, John Levey Part 2

More advice for actors on just what it takes to get that job, and the process of casting several iconic television series. Learn what the business is really like in this fun and informative episode.  

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Wednesday, September 14, 2022

EP292: Meet Casting Director John Levey

John Levey is an award-winning casting director of such iconic shows as THE WEST WING and ER. With great insight and candor he discusses the state of casting today — what producers are looking for, what actors can do to maximize their chances. If you’re an actor this is the episode you can not miss.

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Wednesday, September 07, 2022

EP291: Documentary Filmmaker, John Scheinfeld Part 2

More on the making of documentary films. Getting music clearances, enlisting celebrities, and other assorted stories and tips from award winning filmmaker, John Scheinfeld.

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Tuesday, September 06, 2022

Last Post

I have decided to finally end the blog.  This will be my last post.  After doing this almost daily for close to 16 years it is not a decision I made lightly.  To be honest, I had been contemplating it for about a year.  

There have been 6,850 posts, 188, 330 comments, more than 3,000 Friday Questions answered, and over 42,000,000 visitors over that stretch (of course it could just be 42 people who came back a million times).  

Why am I stepping away?  Well, first of all, I’ve outlived blogs. Mine may be the last one on the internet.  When I started and blogs were the thing, I figured this would be fun to do for a couple of years.  Other bloggers advised I post something new every day as a way to build an audience.  That was a little more work than I had planned but okay.  Eventually the blog took on a life of its own and I found myself posting daily for well over ten years.  I can’t believe I didn’t run out of things to write by 2010.  

But what was once fun has become a chore.  I think I have run out of things to write about, or at least they’re getting much harder to come up with.  I began reducing my schedule hoping that would help, but it hasn’t.  I just feel it’s time.

I’m also involved in a number of other creative pursuits and really want to focus more on those.  The podcast will continue.  I’ve been doing that for six years and nearing 300 weekly episodes.  I thought initially a lot of my blog readers would subscribe to the podcast, but that hasn’t been the case.  I seem to have a largely separate audience for the podcast.  But it’s still out there if you wish to follow me.   I’m also on Twitter (@KenLevine), Instagram (Hollywood and Levine), and from time to time my cartoons will pop up in The New Yorker.  So I’m not David Letterman growing a ZZ Top beard and disappearing into the Ozarks somewhere.  

What I will miss most is you.  I’ve made a number of good friends and have really enjoyed the little community that has formed via the comments section.  Often times I found the comments more interesting than my posts.  So I will miss the daily interaction and your contribution.  

Beyond that, I sincerely hope you got some value out of this sixteen-year labor of love.  You were entertained, maybe learned a writing tip, enjoyed the assorted adventures of my various careers, and looked forward to the occasional photo of Natalie Wood.  

It’s certainly been a fun and rewarding ride; a much longer ride than expected.  

The blog will remain up.  I’ll still post weekly links to new podcast episodes.  And you’re welcome to dive into the archives.  Among the 6,850 posts there are at least 20 that are really good.  

Some people to thank: Howard Hoffman, Lee Goldberg, Cynthia Furey, Mark Evanier, Dan O’Day, Doug McEwan, Larry Gelbart, and all my guest bloggers (that ranged from Aaron Sorkin to Babe Ruth).  

Thank you for your support.  Thank you for allowing some old guy TV writer to be a part of your life.  I wish you all much success, good health, happiness, and projects that bring you as much joy and satisfaction as this blog has provided me.

As hard as it’s been to write this, ending it is even harder.  So I’ve decided to just leave a teddy bear on the bunk and move on, hoping we meet again.  

Thanks again.


Monday, September 05, 2022

Labor Day reflections...

I’ve always hated Labor Day.

It meant the end of summer.  School was starting.  Somehow you never get over that low-grade dread.  (Now a lot of schools begin in August.  That’s nuts!)

But the toughest Labor Days I had were the three years I announced minor league baseball.  Minor league seasons end around Labor Day.  Major League rosters expand and some players are called up to the big leagues.  

I was always depressed because even after 144 games with maybe 2 days off in five months I was sorry to see it end.  That’s when I knew I was a real baseball lover or needed serious help.  

Trying to will myself a positive attitude while looking ahead, at least for twenty years or so we had the Jerry Lewis telethon.  This schmaltz-fest was always good for a few laughs.  Ooooh, the dripping sincerity.  But now that’s gone.

September also once meant the beginning of the new fall TV season.  That’s sort of a joke now since no one watches the networks anymore and shows on various platforms premiere every week.  

Oh well, at least this year I have more January 6 hearings to look forward to.  And the World Series, although now that’s almost a winter event.  

But in any event, Labor Day signals changes.  More on that tomorrow.