NYTVF: Awards ceremony and Standoff screening
After a rainy Friday night spent holed up in my apartment recapping the NYTVF events on Thursday, and a Saturday of rest, I was back at the Directors Guild Theater on Sunday for the festival's final two events: the awards ceremony and a screening of the FOX show Standoff.
I have to say, after all the craziness of the last week, the NYTVF folks did a good job of getting people in and out quickly. The award ceremony was only about a half-hour, and they decided to forego the red carpet for Standoff, thus keeping the rabid ranks of media and fans under control. It was probably just too exhausting to deal with for them, and I think they had the right idea. More info -- and pictures -- after the jump.
While I was outside the theatre waiting to get into the awards ceremony, an elderly lady who had politely asked me what the big group outside was waiting for started to hammer me with questions about the event. "Is this one of those things where people thank everyone on the planet?" she asked me, kind of disgustedly. She thought this was some sort of Emmy-like awards show. I told her that these awards are going to the people who entered pilots into the festival, so yeah, they may thank some people. She kind of quieted down after that, realizing that these awards were going to people that don't usually get them.
Here are some of the pilot makers anxiously waiting for the ceremony to begin. Let's dispense with the speeches and whatnot and just get straight to the awards:
Winners of the Reality competition: On the Block. Executive producers Jonathan Wareham, Gwen O'Donnell, Matthew Haddad, George Collias. George is the the gentleman to Gwen's right. He talked my ear off before the Standoff screening about how he found the house auctioned in the pilot. I think I have a recording of it, but he talked so fast, I don't feel like straining my brain getting a transcript of it.
Winners of the Drama competition: Viagra Falls. Pictured are EPs Christopher Debiec and Atil Singh.
Winners of the Educational competition: Martti and Kim's Story of... [Abridged]. Pictured are Marc Collins, Kim Roberts, Martti Nelson, Cameron Roberts.
Winner of the Animation competition: Squid Dragon Legend. The show also won MSN's Artistic Acheivement award, which got him $10,000 (I put a picture of the big check at the top of this post). After he was announced as the winner for the MSN award, executive producer Nick Cogan (pictured) could only say "Holy crap!" over and over.
Finally, the winner of the Comedy competition: Split The Difference. The show also won the Audience Favorite Award. Pictured in the foreground is Bruce Hurwit, Mary Egan Callahan andJoe Narciso.
After the ceremony, we were booted out and brought back in for the Standoff screening (I'd call it a premiere, but two episodes have aired on FOX already. We saw the pilot). Instead of doing a red carpet, the PR folks invited press and photographers to the reception area downstairs to photograph show stars Ron Livingston and Rosemarie DeWitt.
Pictured to Ron and Rosemarie's right is Spike Feresten. In a bit of cross-promotion, Spike, a former Seinfeld writer who hosts a new FOX Saturday talk show called (appropriately enough) Talkshow with Spike Feresten, conducted the post-screening Q&A with the actors and show creator Craig Silverstein. I got to spend a few minutes with all three of them (Spike in one session, Ron and Rosemarie in the other); I'll post those interviews over the next couple of days. Spike's a good guy; at the post-screening party we chatted for a while about what TV shows we were planning on watching (let's just say Spike loves TV).
As you can see, they invited a lot of photographers to take pictures of the stars. The screening was interesting; I hadn't seen the pilot, so I was surprised to see the great chemistry between Livingston and DeWitt (it doesn't hurt that Rosemarie is very easy on the eyes). I agree with my colleague Bob; if anything is going to sustain the show, it's going to be the dynamic between these two actors. The most interesting part of the Q&A was when Ron mentioned that the FBI has created hostage negotiation strategies based on plots devised by the show (the show has FBI's blessings, one of the few that do). Don't know if I believe him or not, but at least it made for an interesting tidbit.
Anyway, I want to thank the folks at the festival and their PR staff for helping me get into these events and treating me so kindly. We hope to be back next year; we appreciate independent TV as much as the festival organizers, and we want to be there when things take off. Now, I just have to figure out where I can find those flask-shaped water bottles; it's so easy to carry that and a beer bottle in one hand.