Saturday, June 12, 2010
Pitching a TV show to Oprah
I'm in Dallas this weekend, for the in-person pitch to the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN). As always, there were important lessons to be learned.
Things like this are always a long shot, but my friend Kai Dupe and I met many wonderful people, and enjoyed the experience quite a bit. Props to Mary for clueing us in to the whole event!
Today was one of the four American Idol-type "cattle call" events. You can also submit online. I did both.
The online video pitch, which you can find below, allows you to vote easily, with no registration, and as often as you like. I suggest 500-600 times per day, please. :-) I'm shooting for 10,000 votes. Most importantly, though, I'd love to hear your comments and feedback, as I may pitch this to other networks or self-produce, so I'm anxious to hear what you guys think. By the way, much love to Marissa, Roze, James, and L.A. Houston for their great comments. If you're not a member of Texas Film Scene yet, try joining up, and connecting with others like you, who are doing it for themselves.
One lesson in this experience has been that you don't get the call if you don't show up. One guy in Kai's group got a call back, so it DOES happen, and we were close. Another lesson is the importance of being "good in a room," that is, knowing HOW to pitch; in other words, sales. So, 20 years later, that communications degree doesn't look like such a bad call, after all! Finally, you have to remember: you're not actually pitching Oprah. Sorry. You are actually pitching a young (like, 25 year old) junior casting associate. So if your pitch falls flat, take heart. Oprah might love your pitch, when she eventually gets to hear it. But to do that, you may have to make your OWN way for a while, until O comes knocking on your door, saying, "Hey, I'm a big fan of your show!"
Please VOTE if you like the video, and let me know your feedback. Thanks! Here's the URL.