It's sorta how I feel right now.
First, I kinda feel like I've shot my wad with the blog. Yeah it's been fun posting, and commenting...participating in the small but entertaining circle of like minds. All good. And I feel like I can take some credit for inspiring Henshaw to join the fray. I even was happy to provide the Bones fans with fodder to chew me out on numerous live journals and fanzites? and forums over at televisionwithoutpity and rottontomatoes and tv.com and stumbleupon.com --- e.g. 'Hart Hanson Interviewer Bitches About Having An Audience' (I guess wondering aloud about how the fast the fans found the interview and the pictures and questioning non-crediting of the source of the material (though most of that was corrected eventually) was out of line. Or perhaps using the words 'vultures' was a bit harsh...I stand down.), but after the Hart interview...where to go from here?
I have no encore.
Then you compound it with the mess that is the Canadian tv industry these days. I have been seriously thinking about moving back to Toronto of late, but with the eviction notice served to the Cinescape studios, ACTRA strike and the producers rebuttal, craftspeople losing their houses, Jim Shaw withholding CTF funds, followed by analysis of Shaw's threat by Toronto Star's Zerbisias, ...it all can make one seriously think about heading south instead. Except...
That would be a bad idea right now.
You think it's looking dire up here? Well, it is. But the U.S. entertainment industry is also heading into a labour negotiation year with the WGA. Variety thinks the odds of a writers strike is high, and so do the studios and networks. Stockpiling is underway. Reality or non-scripted programming is a high priority once again. And with SAG's contract expiring in 2008, everyone's getting very nervous in L.A.. Some telltale signs...
--Networks will be ordering fewer drama and comedy pilots and more reality.Deja vu.
--There won't be the usual late-spring hiatus in production.
--Continuing shows will get renewed earlier, with more backup scripts ordered so production can continue past Halloween if the writers walk out.
--Shows on the bubble between renewal and cancellation will become more likely candidates for renewal because they represent a smaller gamble than betting on a new show.
--Talkshows, news and gameshows will be more likely to migrate to primetime.
--Producers will take a long, hard look at shooting non-union and outside the U.S.
I've been here before....'cept I wasn't paying as much attention back then.
See, I packed up and moved down in late 2000...just as Hollywood was heading into a labour negotiation year with the Writers Guild and Directors Guild and Screen Actors Guild. When it looked grim, stockpiling took place and reality tv took off. And it was all accomplished with those already firmly established within the Hollywood family. Newbie's were more or less shut out. Did I mention I'd just made the move down there?
So I struggled along, working mostly on reality shows or flying back to Canada to direct episodic. And then the strikes were averted. Yay! But things remained quiet because the networks and studios had already spent most of their money for the year. Stockpiling remember. Then, as the summer wound down, development money started to trickle out. Yay! I got into development with a couple of tween/family shows. And then... 9/11.
Everything shut down again...for months and months...as everyone tried to figure out what happened and how the industry should move forward.
Presuming talent, timing and luck play such a huge role in surviving this game. So was it bad luck or bad timing? I've concluded it was a bit of both. You've got to have a lot going your way in order to make it, and as little as possible working against you. This was a 'working against you' perfect storm of sorts.
It's was brutal for a newbie. Even an experienced newbie.
So as for 2007, I'm not forecasting another 9/11. Or assuming there will be any strike. But I'm thinking it's not a good time to be considering that jump from Canada to Hollywood.
Not if you want to try to break into film and television at any rate.
Your mileage may vary.