Okay, here they are. Today's Friday Questions.
ScottUSF leads off:
What does it mean in Deadline|Hollywood when they mention a pilot/show has been sold "with Penalty"...penalty to who?
Penalty to the network. Usually in the form of a bonus payment to the writer/producer or studio. But generally the network rolls that over for a future commitment instead. Studios tend not to really press networks to the wall to pay up their penalties because they want to do business with them in the future. And networks will never pick up a show they don't want just because there are penalties involved.
Christopher Finke asks:
Who's the best actor you've seen debut in a quickly cancelled sitcom? For example, I don't think Guys With Kids is going to make it, but Zach Cregger has his moments.
David Hyde Pierce in a show called POWERS THAT BE. (Pictured above) Whatever happened to him I wonder?
Of all the jokes you have written, which are your favorites? Not necessarily the funniest, but the ones that stand out in your memory because of the circumstances in which they were written or conceived, or their originality, or even for sentimental reasons.
What have you got against Nancy Meyers? You're making me question my taste. I like her movies, and I love the prod/set design on them.
I find all of her her films to be by-the-numbers studio formula, shallow, and not funny. But that’s me. If you love them, great.
I've concluded that it takes about 4 weeks or so for a sitcom to go from taping in front of an audience to being aired on television. First, am I right about that figure, or what is it (on average)? Second, what goes on during that time that makes it take that much time? Third, if needed, how quick of a turnaround could there be?
The turnaround time is dictated by when the show is shot and when it’s scheduled to air. At the beginning of the season you could film a show in August and it doesn’t run until October. At the end of the season you could film a show and it airs the night before you film it. (I'm only half joking.)
Usually, the turnaround is two or three weeks depending on how many other shows the post production people are working on concurrently, and how much work is needed with the particular episode.
During that time the show is edited. Sometimes they cut together quickly and in one or two passes it’s ready. Other times things don’t work and you’re forever tinkering.
Time must be added for sending the network a rough cut and getting their notes.
Are there effects or complicated sounds that have to be worked in as well? Then there’s the usual color-correcting, sound, and scoring that has to addressed.
All that said, if you really need to turnaround a show quick, you hire two editors, work around the clock, and you can get a show ready to air in two or three days. But it’s costly and you never like to work with that little wiggle room.
And finally, Anonymous has a question:
Are there certain rules for getting questions answered? I'm not sure if my questions were just stupid, or insulting, or boring, or if you just don't answer Anonymous questions.
I rarely answer Anonymous questions. How hard is it to leave a name? I answer questions I think the readers might be interested in, questions that I know the answers to, questions that lead to fun anecdotes, are informative, offer a variety, and then just blogger’s choice. Sometimes if I don’t know the answer but can ask someone who does, that’s fun to have a guest expert, so I’ll pursue those. But basically, I try to consider what would make a good blog post.
One thing I don’t do is favor anybody. I never give certain readers any priority because they’ve said they liked VOLUNTEERS or attended my book signing. I’m just looking for good entertaining questions.
What’s yours? Try your luck. Please leave it in the comments section. Thanks. And did I mention "Happy Birthday, Matt?"