Television’s annual pitch season is currently in full swing and come December, hundreds of potential shows will have been purchased and put in development by networks and studios.But before any show makes it on the air, producers are responsible for pitching their ideas to head honchos who hold the keys to small screen.
The Hollywood Reporter asked some of TV’s most in-demand producers for tips on how to best sell a TV show idea.
Here’s some of their advice:
Shawn Ryan, ABC’s “Last Resort”
- “Pitch the series; don’t pitch the pilot. When we pitched Beverly Hills Cop [bought by CBS this season], I probably spent 10 seconds talking about the pilot and the rest on what the series would be on a weekly basis.”
Jon Steinberg, Starz’s “Black Sails”
- “Try to keep it to 12 to 14 minutes. I can’t imagine anyone has ever sold a show in the 16th minute.”
Noah Hawley, ABC’s “The Unusuals”
- “Someone once told me, “You want to look expensive,” so I’ll often wear a suit and try to be stylish. I’ve had studio execs tell me they really appreciate that I bothered to dress up because they’re going to entrust you, if you’re lucky, with $60 million to $80 million a year, and they want you to at least seem like a professional.”
Eddy Kitsis & Adam Horowitz, ABC’s “Once Upon A Time”
- “We like to pitch in the morning. The death slot is 3 p.m. You never want to be the first up after lunch because you know what’s happened? They’re in a food coma.”
Greg Berlanti, CW’s “Arrow”
- “You can’t be discouraged by a no … You only need one yes.”
To read more of the producers’ advice on The Hollywood Reporter, click here.
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