“The Cutting Room Floor” was a cable access sketch comedy show that was produced in Bridgewater, Massachusetts. Four episodes were created and aired on BTV Local Cable Channel 8 between 1989 and 1993. The show was the brainchild of Bob Caron, who was an intern and later an employee at BTV-8. Bob and his childhood friend David Almeida had made super-8mm films when they were kids; doing a TV show seemed a natural progression. The episodes were produced with no real deadlines or set air-dates, it was mostly a spare-time project that they did during their college summer vacations and/or weekends. “The Cutting Room Floor” was not a low budget production; it was a NO budget production. Sets and costuming weren’t always available or emphasized… and sometimes it showed. But Bob and David still think they're a lot of fun, if you will please forgive the uneven conversion-dub, shoddy production values, and dated references. (Thanks to Bob for his GeorgeLucasesque Restoration Project on these!)
Episode 2, "Interruption,” was really exciting for Bob and David because they loved sketch comedy shows and had always wanted to do one of their own. They knew they would need more actors and writers to be able to pull it off, so they looked to their friends, including Leal Butler (a high school student they met through a computer BBS – that was the Internet in the 1980s), and David’s college friend Gina Vanaria and her friends Lindsey Berents and Doug Mathews. Gina appeared later in Episode 4; Bob and David would have liked Lindsey and Doug to appear in later episodes, but they couldn’t because of scheduling. Bob and David were very happy and proud of the “interruption” theme running throughout the show, which allowed them the ability to stop a sketch without necessarily writing an ending to it (a conceit created by Monty Python in 1969).
· “Cooking With Kats” was written by Gina (the dark-haired Kat). It was shot in Bob’s parents’ kitchen (and later, their pool).
· “News Break” was written by David, from an idea by Bob and David. To this day, they really aren’t sure what the deal is with that set. The clocks are marked Now, Soon, and Later, a reference to a song in Stephen Sondheim’s “A Little Night Music”, one of David’s favorite Broadway musicals.
· It was ridiculously hot at the outdoor shoot at Bridgewater Center. Not only was David dying of heat in his tie and trench coat, the videotape equipment kept malfunctioning due to condensation from the unusual humidity. The result was a strange frame ratio that almost looks like film; Bob and David liked it, but could never duplicate it on subsequent episodes.
· Aside from the “Kats” bits, and the outdoor news shoot, everything else was shot at the BTV-8 studios in Bridgewater.
· The giggling heard before the “Skirt” sketch is a sound byte of Tim Curry and Susan Sarandon from “The Rocky Horror Picture Show”.
· The “Skirt” Sketch was written by Leal (who played the husband).
· Bob’s Hitchcockian cameo in this episode was playing the Waiter in the “Skirt” sketch.
· The music was written by Chip Neault via remote. David wrote down specific music styles and time lengths (i.e. “muzak for a restaurant scene, 4 minutes”, “opening theme for an Oprah-like talk show, 10 seconds”) and Chip produced exactly what David imagined. In fact, David still thinks it’s a little creepy.
· “Sleeping Through The Movies” was added after the show had been considered complete, replacing a “McSorely Today” debate sketch. It was written by Leal from an idea by David where Alex and Gina were passionately arguing without realizing they were discussing two different topics (polygamy and abortion). It didn’t turn out as well as Bob and David hoped, it ended up more angry and political than they wanted. The “Movies” sketch had been taped for episode 3, but wasn’t included due to time. Bob references the cut sketch in the end credits.
· David considers the inclusion of the “Movies” sketch the lesser of two evils. Even though he thought Karl and Steven were hysterical in the sketch, it is clearly more improvised and has a different feel than the rest of the episode. It also eliminated Alex James’ appearance in the show, destroying his 4-for-4 streak of acting in all the episodes of “The Cutting Room Floor”.
· “Eye Opener” was written by David, and he and Bob consider it an artistic failure. When the show was completed and shown to people, it became clear that the progressive disappearance of the pitcher and glasses, the flowers, and the coffee table were too subtle for people to notice. Thus, it seemed like an out-of-left-field shock when David’s pants disappear. In hindsight, they wish they’d had David reach for the water and act momentarily confused.
· In the second “News Break” bit, David, Gina, and Doug (with Bob operating the camera) taped the whole supermarket bit on a Saturday afternoon while the store was open, functioning, and sometimes busy.
· During the outdoor news shoot, they were all delighted when a woman walked up to them, seeing the film crew and hearing David’s serious tone of voice, wondering if something serious had happened.
· This episode began Bob and David’s running gags of giving the actors a different troupe name for every episode, as well as some sort of disclaimer at the end of the show. Episode 1 was performed by “The Corn Plasters” and the disclaimer was simply, “We’re So Sorry.” Episode 2 was performed by “The Belgian Waffles” and the disclaimer was, “It’s All Leal’s Fault”. Episode 3 was performed by “Those Meddling Kids” (a Scooby Doo reference) and the disclaimer was “Warning: Deliberately Concentrating And Inhaling This Program Can Be Harmful Or Fatal. This Program Is Non-Hazardous When Used As Directed” (adapted from Liquid Paper). Episode 4 was performed by “Gasp!” and instead of a disclaimer, they just put “In Loving Memory of the Producers’ Sanity.”