WWIII #covid19 – Thanks Sir Dyson for your CoVent

Sunday, 29 March, 2020

20200328 Dyson CoVent - pix 01

Thanks Sir Dyson for your inventive and entrepreneurial spirit in our WWIII against covid19! May your CoVent ventilators save thousands and thousands of lives in UK and around the world soon!

Reports from 20200325 Guardian: “Dyson and Airbus expect green light to start making ventilators – The companies will start making up to 30,000 ventilators from next week to help the NHS fight Covid-19

“Dyson has been working on a completely new model of ventilator with The Technology Partnership, a Cambridge-based group of science and innovation companies with expertise in medical equipment.

Work is going on at Dyson’s Hullavington laboratory in Wiltshire, where it was designing an electric car until the plan was abandoned last year. Dyson believes it can meet the government’s requirements by deploying knowledge in areas where there is some crossover between its products and ventilators. These include digital motors, battery packs, expertise in airflow, and HEPA filters, which block fine particles but not air.

Sources familiar with the two schemes said they were in a position to start work but have been waiting on the government to give its blessing to one or both of the projects. The government is expected to provide further details on Thursday.”

From Fast Company with a reprint of Dyson’s internal email to employees: “Dyson plans to build 15,000 ventilators to fight COVID-19 The company will donate thousands of ventilators abroad.

“As the world faces ventilator shortages in the growing COVID-19 pandemic, Dyson—the U.K. company known best for making vacuums, air purifiers, and hair dryers—is collaborating on a ventilator in coordination with The Technology Partnership (TTP). Dubbed CoVent, it’s a bed-mounted, portable ventilator that can run from battery power in field-hospital conditions.

Working under a grant from the U.K. government, with oversight from the U.K. National Health Service and the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), Dyson has agreed to produce 10,000 ventilators for the country. On top of that, it will produce another 5,000 ventilators for donation. One thousand of those will go to the U.K. The remaining 4,000 will go to other countries. CoVent will need to receive regulatory approval before receiving funding and going into production.”

Disclosure: Years ago I sold ads in a blog post featuring you, your biography and vacuum! I’ve yet to own any Dyson products myself. May be I should find something Dyson to buy to celebrate IF (a big if) and when our WWIII against covid19 is won. It is way too early to tell…

20200328 Dyson CoVent - book - pix 02


Something about “Talking to Strangers”, Malcolm Gladwell’s new book

Monday, 9 September, 2019

I’ve reserved a copy of “Talking to Strangers”, Malcolm Gladwell‘s new book, from the Calgary Public Library and looking very much forward to reading it. Here are some video interviews Malcolm has done on his book tour to promote his book and some links to book reviews. Enjoy!

20190910, CBC Radio The Current (23 minutes), Can a stranger’s demeanour tell you what they’re thinking? Maybe not, says Malcolm Gladwell

20190904 Channel 4, “Malcolm Gladwell on truth, Trump’s tweets and talking to strangers

20190907 Economist, “Why we should talk to strangers, according to Malcolm Gladwell | The Economist PodcastRead the rest of this entry »


THR Podcasts (Sacha Baron Cohen, Gal Gadot, Ricky Gervais, Jessica Chastain, …)

Thursday, 18 July, 2019

 

THR Podcasts (Sacha Baron Cohen, Gal Gadot, Ricky Gervais, Jessica Chastain, ...)

THR Podcasts (Sacha Baron Cohen, Gal Gadot, Ricky Gervais, Jessica Chastain, …)

Here are a bunch of interesting podcasts from Hollywood Reporter (THR) starting with Sacha Baron Cohen, one of my most favourite and insightful comedians, and the one that started me on this interesting journey. Have a listen of any one or more of these podcasts as I copied and pasted from THR. Enjoy!

* ‘Awards Chatter’ Podcast — Sacha Baron Cohen (‘Who Is America?’)

Ricky GervaisJessica ChastainGal GadotStephen ColbertAaron Sorkin, Kate Winslet, Emilia ClarkeLin-Manuel Miranda,

Helen MirrenJulia Louis-Dreyfus, Meryl StreepRobert De NiroJennifer LawrenceMargot RobbieRyan Reynolds, Emma Stone,

Lady GagaJJ AbramsJulia RobertsTrevor NoahJerry Seinfeld,

Michael MooreJane FondaMatthew McConaugheyNatalie Portman,


No creativity without structure and boundaries – New Quote I Love

Thursday, 20 June, 2019

Saturday Night Live producer Lorne Michaels has just received Cannes Lions‘ first Entertainment Person of the Year award. Here is a particular section of Michaels‘ speech that I quite like and adding it as a new entry to my long list of Quotes I Love. The quote starts at the 12s mark of this video,

“In my experience at SNL, there really could be no creativity without structure and boundaries. Every week we go from a blank page to on the air in six days, never knowing for sure what the final show will look like. I say every week, we don’t go on because it’s ready. We go on because it’s 11:30.” – Lorne Michaels (1944- ) (Quote starts at the 12s mark)


Stephen King: Creative Writing

Saturday, 25 February, 2017

Stephen King: Fear, Fame, and Fortune – A&E Biography (2002)

Stephen King’s Top 10 Rules For Success (@StephenKing)

Creative writing lessons: Creative Writing tips, more advice and lessons from Stephen King


Christian Louboutin – Great minds of our time

Monday, 1 August, 2016

I was introduced to the luxury footwear designer Christian Louboutin (1964 – ) thanks to my late French friend Laurent as he happened to know Christian as a family friend. Here are a few videos I am watching today. And I’m thrilled to include Louboutin to my Great Minds of Our Time series.

An Audience with Christian Louboutin: Full-length video | NET-A-PORTER.COM (published Nov 25, 2011)

Christian Louboutin Addresses FIT Graduates (published May 23, 2014)

Christian Louboutin Interview | NET-A-PORTER.COM (published Nov 13, 2009)

====

I wrote and shared this entry in memory of Laurent Jean Philippe Ravalec, my late and awesomely unique French friend, where one of our last video chats (which I documented here) happened in November 2015 just a day after the horrible Paris attack.

Talking to my French friend Laurent about Food (published April 7, 2012) is another video of us chatting about our common love: food!

Laurent, I miss you my friend!


Post-concert thoughts

Saturday, 1 March, 2014

Post-concert thoughts (part 1 of 2)

Rereading “The Art of Producing 監製的藝術” (written 8 days before the concert) gives me a moment to think and reflect.

Post-concert thoughts (part 2 of 2)

For the record, these are my brief comments on the morning of March 2nd, 2 days after successfully staged Kashy Keegan‘s Hong Kong Dreams Come True Concert. I finally have a few moments to relax and reflect. If I can find time, I will try to write a longer article later.

– “Kashy, All those lights were for you!”

I told Kashy after the concert that the lights from the cellphone screens in October 2013 were mostly to support HKTV. Whereas, the cellphone lights when Kashy performed “This Is My Dream” at the end of the concert, the lights were for him! People came from all over Hong Kong to listen to Kashy’s music and support him! As I told Kashy moments after the concert, “All those lights were for you!”

Kashy, All those lights were for you!

Kashy, All those lights were for you!

– “3” for 生生不息 “99” for 長長久久, from 140 to 399

EastWeek 東周刊 interviewed me yesterday to ask about the concert. I told the reporter Kashy and I thought the concert was a success. Some supporters came all the way to Chai Wan to buy Kashy’s CDs and posters. And many came to buy tickets not long before the show starts. It was a bit disappointing (“令人有點失望”) to see only 140 tickets sold on 26 Feb, just two days before the concert. So we were happy to know that when the news of ticket sales situation was reported, Hong Kongers came out in support. And the theatre told us we sold 399 tickets! In Chinese, “3” for 生生不息 “99” for 長長久久, a nice way to symbolize the being of Kashy’s professional music career in Hong Kong.

– Perfect? No. We will get better.

Did we have a perfect concert? No, of course not! No self-respecting artists will say they are “perfect”. In the pursuit of perfection is the ideal. Do it. Learn it. Get better. Do it some more. Learn some more. […] 做。學習。做得更好。做多一些。學多一些。[…]

Big thanks for your support,
Kempton
Kashy’s Hong Kong Dreams Come True Concert producer


interview Horatio Tsoi, former HKTV documentary producer/director

Sunday, 27 October, 2013

This is my Cantonese interview with Horatio Tsoi, former HKTV documentary producer/director on 2013/10/27 訪問蔡錦源港視前高級編導.


Cantonese interviews with HK Legislative Council members Claudia Mo & Alan Leong Kah-kit

Sunday, 27 October, 2013

The following are two Cantonese interviews with HK Legislative Council members Claudia Mo & Alan Leong Kah-kit.

立法會 毛孟靜 議員政總十月二十一曰訪問

立法會 梁家傑 議員政總十月二十一曰訪問


ScrewYouApple – Indiegogo Funding Campaign

Saturday, 16 March, 2013

ScrewYouApple - official Project Pix

Please support my  Indiegogo Funding Campaign for my second documentary “ScrewYouApple”!

ScrewYouApple – Indiegogo fund raising promo

Documentary ScrewYouApple – Director’s Summary

ScrewYouApple is a tiny Pentalobe screw-inspired film of action that plans to formally ask Apple to stop screwing customers & Think Different again! ScrewYouApple will explore Apple’s multi-billion dollar cash-generating machine (possibly including the powerful App store) and also document my journey to formally ask Apple to stop screwing customers and get Apple to return to the inspiring ideals set out in Apple’s iconic Think Different “The Crazy Ones” Ad campaign. In a creative manner for a documentary, I intend to use a Shareholder Proposal as defined by the US Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (specifically Rule 14a-8) to formally ask Apple to Think Different again!

Please support the making of ScrewYouApple by choosing a perk on the right of the screen to join us on this epic journey, to try to change the world for the better.

(NOTE: If you are in China & unable to access YouTube video link, please try Youku.com.)

ScrewYouApple – Director’s Statement

If the 1989 documentary “Roger & Me” could be simplistically summed up as a film about director Michael Moore pursuing General Motor CEO Roger Smith to confront him about GM’s harm to Flint, Michigan, then may be ScrewYouApple could also be simplistically summed up as a feature-length documentary about crowd funders & supporters of ScrewYouApple combining our voices to try toformally ask Apple senior executives and shareholders to stop screwing customers and to Think Different again.

The creative spark for ScrewYouApple came from the tiny Pentalobe screws inside a MacBook Pro (see picture). I wondered what design/engineering purposes would the five-pointed Pentalobe screws have in serving Apple or its customers? After doing some research (CNet & iFixit), I learned the tamper-resistant Pentalobe screws (now used in wide range of Apple devices including iPhones) are there to stop customers from performing simple upgrades/repairs like replacing a battery, etc (in a sense to “screw” the customers) so that Apple can make more money. These tiny screws can be viewed as tips of Apple icebergs floating on top a sea change.

Pentalobe Screw Y✿u Apple

With your support, ScrewYouApple will explore the Apple’s multi-billion cash-generating machine (possibly including the powerful App store) and also document my journey toformally ask Apple to stop screwing us (one possible question: stop the use of Pentalobe screws) and get Apple to Think Different again (returning to the inspiring ideals set out in “The Crazy Ones“). (more about “formally ask” in Q&A #2)

Specifically, ScrewYouApple will include a look at the changes/evolution happening in Apple from the 1997 Think Different days to the 2013 Apple of today holding billions of cash. And to reach out to “screwed” Apple customers/former fans to hear and collect some of their stories. By makingScrewYouApple a crowd-supported feature-length documentary, the film aims to transform our singular voices into something loud and clear enough for Apple to notice. The making of ScrewYouApple can be viewed as an example of Marshall McLuhan’s famous quote, “The Medium is the Message.” (more details in Q&A #3)

Please support the making of ScrewYouApple by choosing a perk on the right to join us on this epic journey, to try to change the world for the better. The film’s current target completion date will depend on when I can “formally ask” Apple but you will receive many updates and video clips to watch from me along our epic journey if the fixed-funding campaign goal is met by the deadline!

Thanks for your support in making this film possible,

Kempton Lam (director & producer)

P.S. I don’t hate Apple. In fact, you may be surprised by Q&A #1.

Kempton’s filmography

Leung Kwok-hung (nickname “Long Hair”)

In 2004, Kempton single-handedly directed, produced, shot, and edited his documentary directorial debut “Long Hair Revolution“. The 71 minutes Long Hair Revolution is a film about the then newly elected Hong Kong legislator Leung Kwok-hung (nickname “Long Hair”), a Che Guevara t-shirt wearing rebel/activist. In 2005, Long Hair Revolution world premiered at the Calgary International Film Festival.

In 2009, Long Hair Revolution was acquired by the Canadian government’s “Library and Archives Canada” permanent collection where it “collects and preserves Canada’s documentary heritage, and makes it accessible to all Canadians.

“Long Hair Revolution” (長毛革命) selected to be part of Library and Archives Canada collection

Questions & Answers

Q1) Do you hate Apple? Have you ever bought any Apple products? Read the rest of this entry »


eps02 chat with “Father of Computing in Canada” Prof. Kelly Gotlieb

Wednesday, 20 February, 2013

 

eps02 with Prof. Kelly Gotlieb, Father of Computing in Canada

This is the second (eps 02) of a series of extensive chats with Professor Emeritus C.C. Kelly Gotlieb, (Wikipedia) “Father of Computing in Canada”, Department of Computer Science, University of Toronto. In this video episode (as oppose to audio recording only in episode #1), we further discussed Google Driverless Cars and Google Glasses in a bit more details, and a few other topics. (I will try to provide a time code key when I have time later or if someone can help me with providing a time code key to the interview.)

eps02 chat with “Father of Computing in Canada” Prof. Kelly Gotlieb

P.S. Incidentally, I am happy to claim credit for suggesting Kelly to setup a Google+ account and then also helped him to setup his computer this morning so that we were able to conduct a successful Live Broadcast using the Google+ Hangout On Air technologies using its YouTube engine! It puts a smile on my face in helping the man who helped bought the second electronic computer (a Ferranti machine for $300,000) in the world in 1951 to use Google’s cutting edge technologies to broadcast live from his and my home!

2018 April 19th update: I’m very sad to report the passing of Prof. Kelly Gotlieb on October 16th, 2016 at the age of 95. Have a read of these insightful obits:

  1.  “Kelly Gotlieb was the father of Canadian computing”. The Globe and Mail
  2. “In Memoriam: The “Father of Computing in Canada” Calvin C. Gotlieb”. University of Toronto Computer Science
  3. “In Memoriam: Calvin Carl “kelly” Gotlieb 1921-2016″. Communications of the ACM

This excerpt from the G&M obit really touched me and warmed my heart,

“Kelly and Phyllis Gotlieb had one of the great love affairs. In a 2015 interview, six years after his wife’s death, Dr. Gotlieb said of their relationship: “A scientist who loves poetry and a poet who loves science … It doesn’t get any better than that.” Dr. Gotlieb spent his professional life on the frontier of techno-scientific knowledge, while his wife Phyllis (née Bloom) was an award-winning writer of poetry and speculative fiction who pondered how discoveries such as those of her husband might affect the mind, soul and society of humankind. In their breadth, depth and passion of interests, they were a two-person university.

One of her books of verse was a compilation of love poems sent to her husband over more than 60 years of marriage. The publication of Phyllis Loves Kelly [downloadable via this U of T library page] marked their diamond wedding anniversary in June, 2009; six weeks later she died suddenly at the age of 83. His epitaph to her was: She Graced This World/And Imagined Others. Her tribute to him lies in her final volume of poetry, where she compares herself to the famous fictional cat created by American humourist Don Marquis:

        If like a tom and tab
we sometimes hiss and scratch and jab
I’m still from here to Heaven or Hell
your favourite
                 Mehitabel


Interview with “Father of Computing in Canada” re Google Car, Google Glasses, Alan Turing

Wednesday, 13 February, 2013

 

20130212 Father of Computing Kelly interview - pix

Interview with “Father of Computing in Canada” Prof Gotlieb re Google Car, Google Glasses, Alan Turing

This is an extensive interview with Professor Emeritus C.C. Kelly Gotlieb, (Wikipedia) “Father of Computing in Canada”, Department of Computer Science, University of Toronto, Feb 2013 interviewed by Independent reporter Kempton Lam
KL: Kempton Lam
KG: Professor Emeritus C.C. Kelly Gotlieb
Table of content (with time codes):
0:00 KL: Introducing Professor Emeritus C.C. (Kelly) Gotlieb, “Father of Computing in Canada”, University of Toronto
0:29 KL: My question about Google Driverless Cars. Three US states already has law permitting testing of Google Driverless Cars. Talking about California governor signed the bill, “SB-1298 Vehicles: autonomous vehicles: safety and performance requirements” into law.
2:07 KL: Bill SB-1298 allows Google to test the Google Driverless Car provided Google pays a $5 million insurance, and provided there is a driver in the car.
2:21 KG: “That’s what I expected.”
2:35 KL: My concerns were concerns raised by Kelly in an earlier speech of his.
2:47 KG: listing some of the concerns he has with concepts like Google Driverless Cars. “United States is a very litigious society.”
3:12 KG: Google Driverless Car gets into an accident, whose to blame? And who can you sue? The person who wrote the program? Google who authorize the car? Car manufacture? The person who is in the car? Or all of the above? […] Lots of questions to be asked when failure happen. Read the rest of this entry »


“Chairs Are Like Facebook” #fail Wieden & Kennedy Ad for FB to honor users

Thursday, 4 October, 2012

"Chairs Are Like Facebook" #fail Wieden & Kennedy Ad for FB to honor users

Wieden & Kennedy is a great Ad company that bought us the exceptionally cool “Old Spice Man campaign” in 2010 but its lastest “Chairs Are Like Facebook” Ad to celebrate it had reached its billion-user milestone has left this reporter and many people scratching our collective heads. To many people, Facebook is a Lovemark to them but this ad isn’t one fit for a Lovemark.

Rebecca Van Dyck (FB), former exec for Apple and Levi’s and hired by Facebook in Feb 2012 as its head of consumer marketing, told AdAge, (emphasis added)

What we’re trying to articulate is that we as humans exist to connect, and we at Facebook to facilitate and enable that process.” “We make the tools and services that allow people to feel human, get together, open up. Even if it’s a small gesture, or a grand notion — we wanted to express that huge range of connectivity and how we interact with each other.

Ms Van Dyck continued, (emphasis added)

We started thinking about this a year ago and approached Wieden & Kennedy to help us craft a message that articulated our values and who we are. It wasn’t until recently that we realized we were close to reaching 1 billion, and we thought what an amazing way to honor our users, to create this piece for them.

For an ad that aspires to articulate “our values and who we are“, the least it should is to touch us emotionally, be meaningful, and may be have it stand the test of time. I’ve watched the Ad quite a few times now to make sure my comments express my feelings fairly. And I’ve also transcribed the words from the voiceover of “Chairs Are Like Facebook” so I can read it in full and you can see for yourself.

[red wood chair suspending in mid-air in a forest]

Chairs. Chairs are made so that people can sit down and take a break.

Anyone can sit on a chair and if the chair is a large enough they can sit down together and tell jokes or make up stories or just listen.

Chairs are for people and that’s why chairs are like Facebook.

Doorbells. Airplanes. Bridges. These are things people used to get together. So they can open up and connect about ideas and music.

Another things people share: Dance Floors. Basketball. A Great Nation.

A Great Nation is something people build so they can have a place where they belong.

The Universe. It is vast and dark. And makes us wonder if we are alone. So may be the reason we make all of these things is to remind ourselves that we are not.

in white appears on a black screen.

Reading the about FaceBook Ad copy, it just seems, to me, totally disposable and ready to be thrown away next week/month and ready to be replaced by something flashy, different and new. In stark contrast, Apple’s timeless “Think Different” Ad campaign is so impressive a copy that I’ve personally heard it read out loud in wedding ceremony! Yes, people love it that much! As this reporter wrote in 2011 when the Steve Jobs biography was published, the voice (someone has to read the copy) of the voice over deserves tremendous attention! And I don’t know what happened in the Facebook voice over casting?! Anyway, here is what Steve Jobs went through in his struggle to decide whose voice to use.

Jobs couldn’t decide whether to use the version with his voice or to stick with Dreyfuss. […] When morning came, Jobs called and told them to use the Dreyfuss version. “If we use my voice, when people find out they will say it’s about me,” he told Clow. “It’s not. It’s about Apple.”

Have a listen and watch of the following two versions of “Here’s to the Crazy Ones” videos.

Steve Jobs narrates The Crazy Ones (video, not often heard)

Richard Dreyfuss narrates The Crazy Ones (video, this is the official one many people have seen)

(note: By the way, I totally agree with Steve’s decision and rationale here.)

To this reporter, the normally cool Wieden & Kennedy has a big #fail in “Chairs Are Like Facebook” Ad. What do you think?

Cross posted by me at examiner.com


Malcolm Gladwell in conversation with CBC’s Eleanor Wachtel at Toronto Public Library (May 2012) and more …

Sunday, 15 July, 2012

Malcolm Gladwell, bestselling author of Blink and Outliers celebrates 50 years of Jamaica’s independence. In conversation with CBC’s Eleanor Wachtel. Malcolm Gladwell’s books including his latest, Blink are available at Toronto Public Library.”

Pay special attention to Part 3 where Malcolm gives insightful (and some may argue harsh) assessment of Bill Gates and Steve Jobs.

Update: Bonus Malcolm clips. I found the following clips and I thought I might as well include them here.


McDonald’s Big Mac Commercial 1984 – Cantonese trumped English campaign

Thursday, 28 June, 2012

1984 McDonald's Big Mac Commercial - Cantonese Hong Kong

The following are videos of 1984 McDonald’s Big Mac commercials in US (I believe) and Hong Kong respectively. To me, the Cantonese campaign actually trumped the English one! The HK commercial actually came as a part of a really smart campaign. And in hindsight, it can also be said that it was part of a campaign to “brainwash” HK kids with the virtues of Big Mac! How so? Well, HK kids were asked to memorize and recite a promo about the virtues of Big Mac in less than six seconds (see following Cantonese ad), in exchange for a FREE Big Mac!

I and many HK kids recited the promo in less than six seconds with flying colours! I didn’t know then, but in hindsight if this campaign didn’t fall under “brainwashing” I don’t know what would. Yes, in case you ask, after all these years, I still can recite the Cantonese Hong Kong Big Mac promo in less than five seconds (not six)! In Canada (I am less sure about US), we now have advertising/marketing guidelines as to what we can do to advertise to young children, and I am happy to say there are forms of advertising we don’t allow any company to do to influence the mind of young ones.

P.S. Setting aside ethics and morality for a moment, the Hong Kong advertising/marketing team did one heck of a job in improving upon the original US ad concept. Translating the language and culture of an ad is almost impossible but improving upon was really pushing everything one level up! Great job even I had to set aside ethics and morality to praise the original 1984 HK McDonald’s Big Mac team.

English “1984 McDonald’s Big Mac Commercial”

Cantonese “香港電視廣告 – 麥當勞: 巨無霸急口令 (1984年)”

In Chinese/Cantonese: 隻層牛肉巨無霸, 醬汁洋蔥夾青瓜, 芝士生菜加芝麻, 人人食過笑哈哈

1984 McDonald's Big Mac Commercial - English


Everything is copy. Everything is material. – New Quote I Love

Wednesday, 27 June, 2012

A new addition to my collection of Quotes I Love,

Everything is copy. Everything is material. Some day this will be a funny story. Doesn’t seem funny now, but trust me, someday it will be funny.” – Nora Ephron via Conversations at KCTS 9 (YouTube video)


Masterclass with Mike Fleiss, creator of The Bachelor/The Bachelorette, #banff2012

Sunday, 17 June, 2012

Mike Fleiss, executive producer of The Bachelor franchise, (including The Bachelorette and Bachelor Pad)

My friends will tell you I am no fan of reality TV genre but I was totally fascinated by the interesting & insightful masterclass with Mike Fleiss, creator of The Bachelor/The Bachelorette, #banff2012. Enjoy.

Here is the 2012 Banff World Media Festival‘s session description

The Bachelor/The Bachelorette – Masterclass with Mike Fleiss
Mike Fleiss has created more than three dozen network television shows over the past two decades. The hallmark of his career? Controversy. Among his most controversial shows are: “Who Wants to Marry a Multi-Millionaire?,” “Breaking the Magician’s Code,” “Are You Hot?” and “The Bachelor.” Each of these programs were ratings monsters, fueled in large part by their controversial nature. Fleiss will illustrate the role of controversy on modern television and how it has become an essential part of his career.

* How to create and embrace controversy?
* What role has controversy played in reality television?>
* How to handle the publicity surrounding a TV controversy?
* How is controversy your best marketing tool?”

Note: I want to be clear that I am still no fan of the reality TV genre but I just find Mike insightful and fascinating.


In Conversation with Chuck Lorre (Creator of Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory) at #banff2012

Sunday, 17 June, 2012

Chuck Lorre, King of Comedy (Cybill, Dharma & Greg, Two and a Half Men, and The Big Bang Theory)

Here is a very insightful “in conversation” session with Chuck Lorre (Creator of Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory) at #banff2012.

Here is 2012 Banff’s session description:

“In Conversation With: Ustinov Award for Comedy Winner Chuck Lorre
Join us to celebrate this year’s Ustinov Award winner, Chuck Lorre — award-winning television creator, writer and producer known for such hit comedy series as “Two and a Half Men,” “The Big Bang Theory” and “Mike & Molly”. For the past 20 years, Lorre has delivered such hit shows as “Grace Under Fire,” “Dharma & Greg,” “Roseanne” and “Cybill.” He co-created the blockbuster comedy series “Two and a Half Men” and “The Big Bang Theory” – which both rank as the #1 and #2 comedies among total viewers on all of U.S. television. The Ustinov Award recognizes a creative talent that has made an outstanding comedic contribution to the media industry, and Lorre is a natural fit. Past recipients include: John Cleese, Martin Short, Kelsey Grammer, Rick Mercer, Ricky Gervais and James Burrows.”


Terence Winter, creator of Boardwalk Empire, one-on-one interview at #banff2012

Saturday, 16 June, 2012

Terence Winter, Creator, Writer, Exec producer of HBO hit series Boardwalk Empire

Here is my one-on-one interview with Terence Winter, creator, writer, executive producer of HBO hit series Boardwalk Empire. Also don’t forget to watch Terence’s masterclass (video) at Banff 2012.

Note: In the interview, Terence recommends Syd Field‘s classic “Screenplay: The Foundations of Screenwriting” (first published in 1979).

Here is the official Banff session description.

Boardwalk Empire – Masterclass with Terence Winter
A few short years after his tenure on The Sopranos ended, Terence Winter brought the gangster genre roaring back with Boardwalk Empire, a sweeping epic set in Prohibition-era Atlantic City. Along with Executive Producer Martin Scorsese, series Creator Winter deftly weaves fact and fiction to pull back the curtain on the worlds of both crime and politics. Join Winter as he discusses what it takes to create and produce an award-winning period drama.
What was the creative process of adapting an episodic series from a novel?
What are the challenges and limitations of integrating real-life figures with fictional characters?
What is it like collaborating with Martin Scorsese, one of the true masters of cinema?
What are the creative limitations and benefits to producing a period drama?”


Brief preview of articles and videos to come of my Banff World Media Festival coverage #banff2012

Thursday, 14 June, 2012

Four days of Banff World Media Festival 2012 flew by quickly. I braved my huger by skipping a few lunches so I could attend a few more sessions, master classes and meet more people so I can bring you a few reports. Stay tune today and the next few days for more reports and videos to come. I promise my video coverage will be sometimes insightful, sometimes funny, sometimes even a bit shocking, hopefully you will learn something from my four days of #awesome experiences.

Chuck Lorre, King of Comedy (Cybill, Dharma & Greg, Two and a Half Men, and The Big Bang Theory), Glen Mazzara, Showrunner, Writer of AMC hit series The Walking DeadJeanne Beker, Queen of Canadian Fashion TV, Mike Fleiss, creator of The Bachelor franchise, (including The Bachelorette and Bachelor Pad), and Terence Winter, Creator, Writer, Exec producer of HBO hit series Boardwalk Empire are some of the Television Creatives & Luminaries I got to meet, listen, and learn from at #banff2012. I’ve will be posting many videos of these insightful discussions/presentations, some very  extensive.

Chuck Lorre, King of Comedy (Cybill, Dharma & Greg, Two and a Half Men, and The Big Bang Theory)

Glen Mazzara, Showrunner, Writer of AMC hit series The Walking Dead

Jeanne Beker, Queen of Canadian Fashion TV

Mike Fleiss, executive producer of The Bachelor franchise, (including The Bachelorette and Bachelor Pad)

Terence Winter, Creator, Writer, Exec producer of HBO hit series Boardwalk Empire

My good friend the news producer/documentary filmmaker Gingi Baki asked me who is the most interesting person I met at Banff 2012? Tough question! All of the above luminaries could easily top any “interesting” list. After thinking hard for a few moments, I answered that the most interesting person I met in #banff2012 , to me, is Paul Chard, Global Head of Content, MediaCom. I will start my series of Banff 2012 report with an article with video sharing why I think Paul is, again, to me, the most interesting person I met in #banff2012.

#Banff2012 Day 1 - pix 02

P.S. On a personal note, it was my pleasure to report alongside Bill Graveland (Canadian Press), Eric Volmers (Calgary Herald), Etan Vlessing (THR), and George Winslow (Broadcasting & Cable).

I am deeply saddened to hear the passing of Norma Reveler (THR, Ottawa Citizen) via @gregobr I found her #banff2010 article still insightful now following #banff2012 I can now better see why the likes of Netherlands-based Endemol is so creative.

I reported alongside Norma during a few Banff World Media Festivals, in particular 2009 and 2010, and we even had a brief email exchange as I knew she was having chemo and I tried to be supportive. To me, reporters like Norma set the benchmark for bringing insights to news. Norma, I was looking for you during banff 2012, you are missed.


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