Dark: Seasons 1+2+3 Recap+Ending Explained+Interviews

Monday, 29 June, 2020

Just watched (almost non-stop Friday-Sunday) the whole Netflix Dark TV series seasons 1+2+3 in the last few days and quite enjoyed it! Here are a few spoiler-filled Recap+Ending Explained+Interviews that I had a lot of fun watching, enjoy (I tried to put the ones I enjoy more first)! BTW, did you watch Dark in its original German audio track or English dub? I think I may rewatch the series finale once more, this time in German, just to see how it goes.

DARK Season 3 Ending Explained! (K’s note: one of the better (or the best?) ending explained of Dark S3 so far)

DARK SEASON 3 Ending Explained Breakdown + Full Series Spoiler Talk Review | NETFLIX

Dark Season 3 Ending Explained | Netflix (Note: I feel like this reviewer, in fact, I skipped episodes 5, 6, 4(?) and jumped right to e7 and e8) Read the rest of this entry »


Inside Black Mirror from co-creators Charlie Brooker and Annabel Jones

Friday, 2 November, 2018

Black Mirror is one of the best anthology science fiction television TV series on air (on Netflix) right now. I just LOVE it. Now thanks to UK Guardian, we get to look deep inside Black Mirror with insights from co-creators, awesome master class with Charlie Brooker and Annabel Jones!

Charlie Brooker and Annabel Jones: Inside Black Mirror – (87 minutes)

Nov 5th, 2018 Correction: While I wish Charlie and Annabel are co-creators, I should correct and state that they are co-show runners while is Charlie the creator of Black Mirror according to the book info of Inside Black Mirror (available Nov 20 2018) they are plugging.

//[via Amazon] About the Author
Charlie Brooker (Author)
Charlie Brooker is an award-winning writer, producer and broadcaster whose career has spanned television, radio, print, and online media.

Brooker is the creator and writer of Black Mirror, whose fourth season launched on Netflix at the end of 2017 and won a BAFTA Craft Award and has recently picked up three BAFTA TV Awards nominations. The critically acclaimed, mind-bending anthology series originally launched on Channel 4 in 2011 and over its four seasons has collected awards including Primetime Emmys® for Outstanding TV Movie and Outstanding Writing for a TV Movie, Producers Guild of America, Rose D’or, BAFTA, International Emmy® and Peabody.

Annabel Jones (Author)
Annabel Jones is a long-term collaborator of Charlie Brooker’s. She serves as co-show runner and executive producer on Black Mirror. Previously Jones executive produced a number of shows presented by Charlie Brooker including three series of the BAFTA-nominated BBC Two satirical review Weekly Wipe; all seven editions of the annual shindig Charlie Brooker’s End of Year Wipe, which won a BAFTA for its 2016 edition; How Video Games Changed the World; Newswipe, which won the 2009 Royal Television Society Award for Best Entertainment Programme; Gameswipe; and the How TV Ruined Your Life series for BBC Two.

Jason Arnopp (Co-author)
Read the rest of this entry »


Amy & Rory introduce 13th Doctor – Jodie Whittaker!

Monday, 17 July, 2017

Wonderful Doctor Who news! I created a video of Amy & Rory introduce 13th Doctor – Jodie Whittaker! Enjoy!

Amy & Rory introduce 13th Doctor – Jodie Whittaker!

 


The Good Doctor from the creator of House with a Korean connection

Tuesday, 6 June, 2017

The Good Doctor - U.S. remake and South Korean original

I’m looking forward to watch The Good Doctor, an upcoming American medicaldrama television series, developed by David Shore (creator of House and U of Toronto law grad) and Daniel Dae Kim, starring Freddie Highmore, based on the 2013 South Korean series of the same name. See below for trailers of both series.

I’ve watched the first few episodes of the South Korean series and found it fascinating but also recognize there needs to be lots of changes in this remake to turn it something more to the taste of North American audiences. There are a lot of screen time spent on hospital politics in the South Korean series that it endanger patients so much that will be rather unbelievable. Shore created a great in House and I expect and hope he and his team would be able to create something interesting to watch with his own creativity and sensibility.

News report: Deadline, May 11, 2017, “‘The Good Doctor’ Drama Starring Freddie Highmore Picked Up To Series By ABC

The Good Doctor centers on Shaun Murphy (Highmore), a young surgeon with autism and savant syndrome who relocates from a quiet country life to join a prestigious hospital’s surgical unit. Alone in the world and unable to personally connect with those around him, Shaun uses his extraordinary medical gifts to save lives and challenge the skepticism of his colleagues.

The series also stars Antonia Thomas as Dr. Claire Brown, Nicholas Gonzalez as Dr. Neal Melendez, Chuku Modu as Dr. Jared Kalu, Irene Keng as Dr. Sarah Chen, Beau Garrett as Jessica Preston, Hill Harper as Dr. Marcus Andrews and Richard Schiff as Dr. Aaron Glassman.

Deadline, Jan 23, 2017, “ABC Orders Drama Pilots ‘The Good Doctor’ & ‘Doomsday’ From David Shore, Daniel Dae Kim & Carol Mendesohn

Written by Shore based on a South Korean format, The Good Doctor centers on a young surgeon with Savant syndrome who is recruited into the pediatric surgical unit of a prestigious hospital. The question will arise: Can a person who doesn’t have the ability to relate to people actually save their lives?

Shore executive produces via his Sony TV-based Shore Z alongside Kim, Sebastian Lee & David Kim. Shore Z’s Erin Gunn co-executive produces, along with Lindsay Goffman of Daniel Dae Kim’s 3 AD.

The original series, written by Park Jae-bum, aired on Korean Broadcasting System’s KBS2 in 2013. The Shore-created House, starring Hugh Laurie as the brilliant but flawed Dr. Gregory House, was one of the biggest medical dramas of the past two decades. It ran on Fox for eight seasons.

Deadline, Oct 6, 2016, “ABC Lands ‘The Good Doctor’ Medical Drama From David Shore & Daniel Dae Kim

Here is a trailer of the South Korean series

Here is a trailer of the ABC series.


Handmaid’s Tale, a new Hulu TV Series

Monday, 1 May, 2017

Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood is now a Hulu TV Series. This is especially chilling in our horrific age of President Trump.

PBS, “In dystopian ‘Handmaid’s Tale,’ a warning for a new generation not to take rights for granted” (with transcript)

In dystopian ‘Handmaid’s Tale,’ a warning for a new generation not to take rights for granted

Margaret Atwood and Elisabeth Moss on ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’

In dystopian ‘Handmaid’s Tale,’ a warning for a new generation not to take rights for granted

Elisabeth Moss Describes A ‘Fictional’ Totalitarian, Right-Wing Regime

The cast of The Handmaid’s Tale

x


Crazy Rich Asians (Constance Wu, Gemma Chan)

Tuesday, 4 April, 2017

Love the Kevin Kwan (iG) novel “Crazy Rich Asians“. So I’m really looking forward to watch the movie (to be directed by Jon M. Chu (twitter)) starring Constance Wu (Rachel Chu, THR report), Gemma Chan (Astrid via Variety, LOVE Gemma in Humans). @henrygolding (imdb) is playing Nick Young (via Kevin).

#IAm Constance Wu Story

NYCC 2016: Humans stars Colin Morgan and Gemma Chan

Humans: Cast & Creators On Season 2, Character Dynamics & More At NYCC 2016 | Entertainment Weekly


Black Mirror – Best 2016 speculative fiction on Netflix

Monday, 31 October, 2016

Black Mirror season 3 created by Charlie Brooker is now on Netflix and it is a must see speculative fiction (or if you wish, Sci-Fi) show! Two of my favourite S3 episodes are “San Junipero” and “Hated in the Nation” (WARNING: those linked pages have spoilers).

Black Mirror | Official Trailer – Season 3 [HD] | Netflix

Charlie Brooker on Black Mirror, satire and politicians – BBC Newsnight

Charlie Brooker at the Black Mirror Q&A: “We wanted to not always fling you into a pit of despair”


Sarah Rafferty’s Donna in TV series Suits is as good as my mom!

Friday, 15 February, 2013

Sarah Rafferty (Donna) talks Suits

To me, Sarah Rafferty‘s Donna in the TV series Suits personify the best of the best Executive Assistant!

  • The passable Executive Assistant does what you want after asking for your clarifications and help.
  • The OK Executive Assistant does what you ask competently without bugging you too much.
  • The best of the best Executive Assistant knows what needs to be done before you ask and do it so well that you realize he/she has saved you so much time so you can focus on other important matters!

FOX 11 Google+ Hangout: Sarah Rafferty Talks Suits (timecode 5m25s) <== This links jump right to my question for Sarah, who plays the super executive assistant to the lead lawyer Harvey in  #suits !

To me, my mom is one of the most #awesome executive assistant I know of! You ask how good? Well, after the first few years of a manager running the office with her help, the HQ decided to eliminate the manager position and have her run the office without a manager for the following decades! I’ve learned so much from my mom! LOVE you mom!

Thanks +Maria Quiban +Tony McEwing +Tshaka Armstrong at +FOX 11 Los Angeles for the awesome experience!

Ref: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sarah_Rafferty
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suits_(TV_series)


Connecticut Elementary School Students Interviews & Vietnam Napalm Girl Photo

Saturday, 15 December, 2012

In the wake of Friday tragic Connecticut Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings, the broadcast media (CNN, NBC, etc) were put under the spotlight, challenged, and asked: Should traumatized children have been interviewed on air live (or pre-recorded) in tragedy like this at all?  I’ve read the following four articles and I recommend you take a look too,

1) “Kids at Tragedies: Turn Off the Cameras“, TIME Magazine

2) “Reporters covering school massacre slammed for interviewing children“, Daily Brew

3) “Interviewing the children, cont.“, Politico

4) “Conn. school shooting: When children are witnesses, how should media proceed?“, Washington Post

After reading the above articles carefully, part of me felt inadequate to comment. Who am I to comment as I am neither a professor of journalism ethics nor a psychologist.  But in an age where anyone with a Twitter, Google+, Facebook account can comment freely and sometimes forcefully with expletives, I hope my ramblings/observations may shine some light.

1) Referencing this WaPo report, I agree with NPR’s approach in “advising their journalists to get a parent’s permission in writing or on tape before interviewing a child.” To me, parent’s permission and parent’s ability to stop an interview at any time is a most basic requirement. If an interview is stopped by a parent, then that clip (live or pre-recorded) should not be used again, ever. That interview, by agreement between media outlets should be treated as never happened.

2) I would trust reporters on the ground more and not go as far as ABC News. “ABC News also said Friday that it doesn’t air interviews with children live, but records and reviews them before broadcast.” I want to think media outlets send good reporters to report violent tragedies to begin with. They should believe in their reporters enough that they will do their job ethically. The final editorial decision may not help much if the source materials have been gathered unethically anyway.

3) I cannot and will not tell reporters to simply “Turn Off the Cameras“. As long as the tools and methods used by the media outlets are legal, I see it a danger to “freedom of press” if we (the public) start dictating to the media what is acceptable or unacceptable tool to use or report to air. Ideas of no interview “zone” or no interview “age group” (too young even with parental permission), etc are dangerous precedence to set.

4) Some good points were made in WaPo that I cannot fully agree.

Interviewing children in such circumstances, in essence asking them to relive the experience, can increase later emotional and psychological damage, Rebecca Greenfield said. She cited child psychologist Donna Gaffney, who said children need to be with people who love and support them in the first 24 hours of witness something like the Sandy Hook shooting or Columbine in 1999, the previous worst mass school shooting in the U.S.

I see the point made by the child psychologist. At the same time, I feel I must balance the potential emotional impact of the child with the public good of having an interview done right there when all eyes are on the scene of the tragedy. A professional lit at home/school interview with the affected children with their parents sitting besides them a few days later will not have the same impact.

To me, seeing the children speaking in their own unfiltered voices at the scene right after the tragedy is of critical importance. It is not just the “facts” that I am after. I want to know how the children feel. Seeing the children there was painful and very emotional to me but the reporters on scene are not the ones to blame. The reporters didn’t cause the tragedy. They were there to be our eyes and ears, to find out relevant information to allow us, if we choose to, be informed citizens (world citizens).

A wise blog friend once wrote, “Human beings are powered by emotion, not by reason.” He quoted the neurologist Donald Calne, “The essential difference between emotion and reason is that emotion leads to action while reason leads to conclusions.

5) Vietnam Napalm Girl Photo

Now let me talk about Vietnam Napalm Girl Photo, the second half of my title. Ms Phan Thi Kim Phuc is “a Vietnamese-Canadian best known as the child depicted in the Pulitzer Prize-winning photograph taken during the Vietnam War on June 8, 1972.” To me, the Vietnam Napalm Girl Photo was one of the contributing factor to the end of the Vietnam war.

In June 2012, Kim Phuc told friends and relatives at an event marking the 40th anniversary of the photograph that made her famous, “I never thought that the child who was a famous symbol of war would one day be invited to become a symbol of peace”.

At heart, I am an optimist and see the world is capable of becoming a better place over time (hopefully with a small contributions by me). My hope is the painfully emotional interviews with children right at the scene of the Elementary School shootings may lead to meaningful actions by the American public. What if those interviews with children play a role in turning the American gun culture around? Witness White House Press Secretary Jay Carney on Friday repeating the standard & pointless “today is not the day for a debate on gun control.” To the 180 degree change by President Obama a few hours later, “We’re going to have to come together and take meaningful action to prevent more tragedies like this, regardless of the politics“.

I don’t normally say this but let me say, “God Bless America” and may you make the changes needed to avoid future tragedies.

Concluding thoughts

Because of the controversy resulted from the tragic New York subway death a few days ago, I came across a quote in The Bang-Bang Club: Snapshots from a Hidden War that I feel may be illuminating here. The Bang-Bang Club is an autobiographical book about a group of four photographers active in South Africa during the Apartheid period and here is the quote I want to share with you,

Tragedy and violence certainly make powerful images. It is what we get paid for. But there is a price extracted with every such frame: some of the emotion, the vulnerability, the empathy that makes us human, is lost every time the shutter is released.

As an independent reporter who has no formal j-school or ethical training, I have to remind myself if I were ever at the scene of tragedy and violence, I will have to be mindful of what am I doing and why. The price I pay for releasing the shutter or pressing the video record button is a piece of my humanity. While I am being paid to do my job, the “public good” must also justify the lost piece of my humanity.

P.S. Based on all the interviews with children I’ve seen, which by no means is exhaustive, none of them have crossed the “ethical line” to me. In case of tragedy, I find comforting to not set fixed rules but lean on the “I know it when I see it” standard.

This article is cross posted to examiner by me.

Dec 16th update: For the record (via THR),

@andersoncooper In answer to your tweets, no, Of course i will not be interviewing children from the school. I do not think that is appropriate at this time

@katiecouric Traveled to CT today, speaking with #SandyHook students http://instagr.am/p/TPXS_vSZMo/

Dec 17 update: I want to add and mention South Carolina TV Anchor Amy Wood did an insightful audio interview with Kelly McCurry, who was in the first grade when a gunman came into her school in Greenwood, SC and killed two classmates and shot some of her favorite teachers. Here is a very relevant set of questions and answers. (emphasis added)

Amy’s Questions (starting at ~5:22): “What do you think of the media interviewing the children? We have lot of comments on Facebook that are just furious children are being interviewed. Yet those faces are what make this reality to us all. These are the people that have been impacted. And in some circumstances it appears that it was willing. No one was chasing people down the street. But what do you think? You were in this position. What do you think about the media interviewing children in this scenario?”

Kelly’s answers -6:24: “I kinda heard that parents gave permission. But I disagree with that. I don’t believe children should be exploited for the media’s profit and to sensationalize it. Everybody understands the magnitude of what happening there. There is no reason to bring kids into that. And make them relive it. Thats something they should do with a counsellor if need be. With their parents. I really disagree with bringing the kids in.”

I agree with with Kelly that children should not be “exploited for the media’s profit and to sensationalize it” but like I try to argue in the article, as long as the interviews are ethically conducted, important public good can be served by these interviews.


Video chat with Walking Dead’s Danai Gurira (Michonne) at Fox LA

Tuesday, 16 October, 2012

Michonne is a fictional character from the comic book/TV series The Walking Dead (season 3 premiered last night) and is played by Danai Gurira. It was wonderful to have a video chat with Gurira this morning at Fox LA Google+  Hangout.

According to DeAno Jackson, a long time fan of The Walking Dead (both the comic book & TV series), Michonne is a character with a huge fan base and her appearance has been highly anticipated by fans since the show was announced. Gurira said she learned more about Michonne, pronounced “Me-shone”, along the way as she was doing research for the auditioning process. And she realized people anticipating a lot from Michonne but she caught up really fast. And thought that it was really cool to step into the role of where she was really loved, “an entity to herself, so original and fascinating”. While Gurira didn’t have to train for the audition but the team asked about her athletic ability and trusted that they could train her for the role accordingly which they promptly started. Gurira had a very intense six weeks training before the shooting started.

I, from Calgary, got chances to ask Gurira two questions. I first asked (click to jump to that time code) if she ever expect to be in a hit show like Walking Dead, kicking-ass) given her formal training from New York University (an MFA)? And I also got to ask what was her experience like working with showrunner and writer Glen Mazzara and if she has to follow the script strictly or are there lots of give and take? Have a watch of the video to find out.

P.S. This reporter has the pleasure to attend a master class and Q&A with Glen Mazzara, click here for more.

Note: This article is cross posted by me at examiner.com


Digital debate Bell vs Rogers + insights from CBC & Shaw at 2012 Banff World Media Festival

Monday, 25 June, 2012

#Banff2012 Day 1 - pix 05

An interesting debate between Kevin Crull, President Bell Media vs Keith Pelley, President Rogers Media plus — Kirstine Stewart, CBC and Paul Robertson, Shaw Media at 2012 Banff World Media Festival. Have a watch of the debate. This debate is particularly interesting in light of Gary Carter’s presentation at MPJC 2012.


Gary Carter, FremantleMedia, @MPJC2012

Monday, 25 June, 2012

Gary Carter, COO FremantleMedia COO FMX - pix 01

I often write Gary Carter, recently resigned as COO of FremantleMedia, is one of the most insightful TV industry people I know of. I lied. Gary Carter is **the** most insightful TV industry person I know of. And he is generous in sharing his insights. Have a watch of Gary’s speech at MPJC 2012Enjoy & learn what you can.

Gary Carter, COO FremantleMedia COO FMX - pix 02

2013 Aug 20th update: Gary Carter Appointed Chairman, Northern Europe and Shine 360° on 20th Mar 2013

Shine Group today announced the appointment of Gary Carter to the newly created role of Chairman of Northern Europe and Shine 360° as of 1 June 2013. Most recently, Carter was Chief Operating Officer of FremantleMedia Group.

In the new role Carter will oversee the creative and operational functions of Shine Germany, and the Nordic regions’ Metronome group of production companies in Finland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark. Carter will additionally operate as a strategic sounding board to Shine Group’s off-air ancillary division Shine 360°. Reporting to Shine Group CEO, Alex Mahon, he will travel between all offices from a base in Amsterdam.

One of the international production business’ most respected executives, and closely personally identified with the emergence of the Reality genre, Carter was most recently Chief Operating Officer at FremantleMedia Group. At Fremantle, he was responsible for Read the rest of this entry »


Conflicts in Reality TV and psychological profiling – The Chicken or The Egg – Most fascinating and controversial session at 2012 Banff World Media Festival

Saturday, 23 June, 2012

The Chicken or The Egg - Casting for Reality session at #banff2012 - pix 1

The conflicts in reality TV as we seen in the most recent “old days” were created by show creators’ or casting directors’ gut instinct. They put interesting people or people with opposing characteristics on a show and “hope” for the best.

The Chicken or The Egg – Casting for Reality session at 2012 Banff World Media Festival gave me a deep and insightful insider look of the current practice in casting for reality TV. Psychological personality tests like the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI-2) are used to precisely create (I debate using the word “manipulate”) the reality TV casts composition to manufacture the right mix for “fireworks” to happen on screen.

The Good and The Bad

I agree that tests like MMPI-2 will help screened out extreme contestants that should NOT to be allowed on TV in order to protect themselves from potential harm (sometimes self-inflicted). In some sense, even the contestants have probably signed their lives away and give up any rights to launch any legal actions if anything go wrong (an analogy is the forms you have to sign before your parachute jump),  the reality TV shows makers should be more aware and ready to provide help to the contestants when troubles arises. The speakers of the session are aware the duty of care they are responsible of, even though they may not be legally bound to. Have a watch of the follow video clip and share your thoughts.

The Chicken or The Egg - Casting for Reality session at #banff2012 - pix 2

The Chicken or The Egg - Casting for Reality session at #banff2012 - pix 3

Since we are talking about reality TV, Ricky Gervais, winner of the Sir Peter Ustinov Award for Comedy at the 2010 Banff World TV Festival, had an interesting take in the finale of Extras (highly recommended funny comedy). I was lucky to ask Ricky specifically about the finale. Here is a clip. (broken clip link fixed in 20200421)

Official The Chicken or The Egg session description from 2012 Banff.

The Chicken or The Egg – Casting For Reality
Uncovering the characters in reality television can be a challenge as producers search for engaging and genuine subjects. In this behind-the-scenes look at the nuances of discovering incredible individuals to participate in this ever growing genre, you will hear first-hand from a producer and personality expert from some of the hottest reality shows. They will discuss the fine line between creating television that is entertaining, yet not exploitative, that presents the nitty-gritty of real-life drama.
What is the creative process in finding the characters that drive our favourite reality shows?
What are some of the challenges in putting together the perfect ensemble cast of characters?
What is the network involvement in casting for reality series?”

Official 2012 Banff bio for Jonathan Glazier.

“Jonathan Glazier – Creative Director – Entertainment Master Class and Pepper Rafferty Read the rest of this entry »


ZDF wins Best Interactive Award at 2012 Banff World Media Festival

Thursday, 21 June, 2012

Congrats to ZDF for winning Best Interactive Award for Wer Rettet Dina Foxx?” (German) at 2012 Banff World Media Festival. Here is a video of ZDF’s Ralf-Peter Piechowiak accepting the award at 2012 Banff.


Master class and Q&A with Glen Mazzara @glenmazzara Showrunner & Writer of The Walking Dead at #banff2012

Wednesday, 20 June, 2012

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

Fans of AMC hit series The Walking Dead: I hope you will enjoy and learn as much from this master class with Glen Mazzara @glenmazzara, Showrunner & Writer of The Walking Dead, as I did at 2012 Banff World Media Festival.

update: Just realized that Glen was co-executive producer and writer of some of the episodes of “Life“, a show I LOVE.

Here is a Q&A with Glen Mazzara

Here is Glen’s official festival bio,

Glen Mazzara
Executive Producer
AMC – The Walking Dead
Glen Mazzara is currently showrunner and Executive Producer for AMC’s “The Walking Dead.” He was most recently showrunner/Executive Producer of TNT’s medical drama, “Hawthorne.” Mazzara was previously a member of the core writing staff of Golden Globe®-winning “The Shield,” FX’s groundbreaking cable police drama, and has also written for “Life” and “Nash Bridges.” In 2008, he served as creator, executive producer, and showrunner of “Crash,” the first scripted drama on the pay-cable network STARZ”


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.”


Masterclass with Boardwalk Empire creator Terence Winter at #banff2012

Saturday, 16 June, 2012

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

It was my great pleasure to attend the masterclass with Boardwalk Empire creator Terence Winter @ Banff 2012. Have a watch of the insightful masterclass with Terence. Also don’t forget to watch my one-on-one video interview with Terence.

From 2012 Banff’s 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?”


One word answers from Ira Kurgan, Fox’s Chief of Network Business Operations at #banff2012

Friday, 15 June, 2012

Conrad Riggs & Ira Kurgan

Here are some one word answers from Ira Kurgan, Chief of Network Business Operations, Fox Broadcasting Company, at #banff2012 talking about wide range of topics from Simon Cowell, Ryan Seacrest, Britney Spears, to Fox, CBS, etc. More video clips to come.


Paul Chard – The most interesting person at #banff2012 to me

Friday, 15 June, 2012

My good friend Gingi Baki asked me: who is the most interesting person you met at Banff 2012? Tough question! You see, I have met television creatives & luminaries like Chuck LorreGlen Mazzara,  Jeanne BekerMike FleissTerence Winter and I can easily put any one of them on my “most interesting person” list. But if I do that, I will be doing a diservice to you. What would you gain if I name any one of them? Nothing! Because you know them already. Instead I will share with you a name that, unless you are in the “business“, you may not heard of.

To me, the most interesting person I met in #banff2012 is Paul Chard, Global Head of Content of MediaCom.

#Banff2012 Day 1 - pix 02

Paul is the brain behind bringing the international format Got Talent into the almost impossible land of China (rebranded to be China’s Got Talent 中国达人秀) which was a 15 months effort and lots of negotiation (as Paul wrote, “co-operation and partnership with IPCN, Shanghai Media Group and format owners Freemantle and SYCO“). China’s Got Talent is one of the first TV formats that got into China. I actually saw widespread popularity first hand at the time as many of the amazing China’s Got Talent videos were shared by my friends on their social networks. (for more details, see Paul’s 2010 blog and ICPN page with video clip)

Paul Chard talked about brokering “Got Talent” format into China #Banff2012

My one-on-one interview with Paul at #banff2012

Paul’s on stage talk & interview at #banff2012

The idea of learning from interesting & insightful people

Kevin Roberts

I half-jokingly asked Paul to not hold it against me that I’ve been a big fan of Kevin Roberts (blog) (CEO Worldwide of Saatchi & Saatchi). You see, I’ve been reading Kevin‘s ideas/writings since the late 80s. You may not realize but the parent companies of Paul and Kevin are the globally competing WPP Group and Publicis Group respectively. (update: Paul showcased the #awesome T-Mobile Royal Wedding video in his presentation, and I just discovered via MBA (mediaCom beyond advertising) that the campaign is a team effort including mediaCom, Saatchi & Saatchi, and others).

Gary Carter

I stumbled upon a talk by Gary Carter at the 2007 nextMedia/Banff World TV Festival (yes, 5 years ago!) and his insights were amazingly deep. Since then, I’ve attended all of Gary’s talk I can and try to pay close attention to what Gary does and related news, including his recent resignation as FremantleMedia’s Chief Operating Officer. I am sure whatever Gary does next will be worth my attention to know and learn from. (note: Gary came back to Banff in 2009, here is a great list of Gary’s 2009 clips, see The Susan Boyle Phenomenon, and FremantleMedia Experimental)

Paul Chard

Which brings back to Paul. And I am going to share with you a secret trick I use. I use Google Alerts to track and try to learn from interesting & insightful people. I am adding Paul to my Google Alerts list along the likes of Kevin and Gary. In life, I believe an important way to better ourselves is to learn from the best.

Kevin wrote years ago, “Ideas are the currency of the future.” And the likes of Kevin, Gary, and Paul are “rich people” going by the quote. And William Gibson’s quote “The future is already here — it’s just not very evenly distributed.” enlightens me to realize that the best way to look into the future is to look and see what “rich people” like Kevin, Gary, and Paul think and do!

P.S. Who is your “most interesting #banff2012 person“? Please share with your reasons in the comment section.

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Here is the official Banff session description.

Paul Chard, Global Head of Content, MediaCom: How Content is Changing the Business
Paul Chard is a true industry veteran, getting his start over three decades ago, in 1980. Today, as the Global Head of Content at MediaCom, Chard is responsible for media sponsorship, sport, branded entertainment and advertiser funding, social media and emerging platforms. In 2010, Chard brokered the successful “Got Talent” format into China and saw it become the biggest foreign reality show ever screened in the country. Having seen this industry from every angle, Chard carries with him a wealth of knowledge and insight. Join Chard as he reflects on his career and looks forward to the future of the entertainment industry in this exclusive opening keynote.”


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