Industry Insiders - Development: Everything You Always Wanted to Know About "Development Hell"...But Were Afraid to Ask

  1. Jayson Boyd is a former child actor moving in to directing. He is our series host as he represents both the incumbent worker and the incoming craftsman.

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  2. Dan and Armen discuss what development IS.

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  3. Dan Watanabe, former FremantleMedia executive, is interviewed by incoming development exec Armen Fetulagian.

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  4. In this episode, Dan goes over the average day of a development exec, which includes many meetings with new talent, producers, and agents -- all of whom have projects they want to sell. He also goes over why a development executive might not be in a position to exclusively develop projects that are to their particular taste; as well as gives an insight on why a project is often changed for an actor or other specific talent.

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  5. Dan and Armen discuss the pros, cons and strategies of internships: what are some of the duties of interns? Why are they often not given large responsibilities? Sometimes, getting a "floater" position within a company may be as good if not preferable to an internship. That being said, internships are highly important for entry into the world of development. One of the key things that may be learned in an internship is how to write a good story report. That is detailed, including some tips and traps to making your story report clear, concise and coherent.

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Industry Insiders - Development: Everything You Always Wanted to Know About "Development Hell"...But Were Afraid to Ask

ICT & Digital Media LA Region PRO

The Development Department of a motion picture or television company is in charge of taking a concept -- whether it be an idea, book, newspaper article, or screenplay written on spec, and conforming it to the needs of a production company. Often, there…


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The Development Department of a motion picture or television company is in charge of taking a concept -- whether it be an idea, book, newspaper article, or screenplay written on spec, and conforming it to the needs of a production company. Often, there is a mistaken notion that "development" is purely about the aesthetic needs of a project; to make it the best it can be. This approach ignores the economic realities of a project needing to conform to the business model of the company that is producing it. Terms such as "development hell" (referring to a project that goes into the development process, then never reemerges) are rife -- but often without the understanding as to WHY a particular project did not go further.

In this series of interviews, development executive Dan Watanabe explores not only the process of finding and selecting the correct project, but how and why certain creative decisions are made; and gives helpful advice on the pitching process.

At the end of the group is a special interview with Sara Anne Fox, screenwriting consultant, shot during the Digital Media Educators' Conference in 2014. Sara Anne has different views from Dan, but they ultimately meet in the middle. Following that is an appearance Dan did for Hans Zimmerman's channel of interviews of Hollywood insiders.

"Digital Media Industry Insiders" is a series of instructional videos featuring entertainment industry newcomers interviewing pros on all aspects of how the industry works, strategies for entering a particular field, and what areas are primed for greatest job growth.

Sponsored by the California Community Colleges Chancellor's Office Department of Economic and Workforce Development Information Communication Technologies and Digital Media Sector Los Angeles Region.

Each of our video series is organized by career pathway, with industry pros representing each sector. Each pro is interviewed by recent industry incomers not only in their particular area but also in other crafts to show how the different aspects of production work together -- and where confusions can arise!

For more information about the entire ICT and DIgital Media sector, please check out ict-dm.net.

Individual channels targeting a specific area of production are:

Low Budget Producing with Ken Sanders: From BLOOD SALVAGE to Lifetime: Industry Insiders - From Blood Salvage to Lifetime: Independent Producing with Ken Sanders

Camera and Cinematography: Tricks of the Light: Industry Insiders - Camera and Cinematography: Tricks of Light

From Mad Men to Webisodes: An Insiders' View of Television's Changing Nature: Industry Insiders - TV Executive Syd Vinnedge: From "Mad Men" to Webisodes - An Insider's View of Television's Changing Nature

Post Production: Why "We Will Fix It In Post" Is Hollywood's Biggest Lie: Industry Insiders - Post Production: Why "We Will Fix It In Post" Is Hollywood's Biggest Lie

Sound: What You Don't Know About It Can Hurt You: Industry Insiders - Sound: What You Don't Know About It CAN Hurt You

Acting is a Serious Business: Industry Insiders - Acting: It's a Serious Business

Soft skills with Eva Bitar Arthur: Industry Insiders - Getting and Keeping a Job in Digital Media

Pilots (pilot episodes for series: Animation, Editing, First AD, Post): Industry Insiders - Series Pilots (Animation, Editing, First Assistant Directing, and Post)

and, for an overview of the Digital Media Educators Conference 2014, please see Digital Media Educators' Conference (June 12-13, 2014)

Coming Soon
First AD - Greg Zekowski

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