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Aaron Sorkin feels guilty about Studio 60, meets with HBO

by Bob Sassone, posted Aug 13th 2008 2:21PM
Aaron SorkinRemember Studio 60? It was a little show that not many people had opinions about, and no one here really talked about it that much. But creator/writer Aaron Sorkin is talking about it, to GQ.

Sorkin actually feels guilty about the entire thing, because he knows he screwed it up. He tells Mickey Rapkin that the ultimately the show didn't work because he made too many mistakes:

I was too angry when I wrote Studio 60. The show became like the cover of Abbey Road. Everybody was trying to figure out who this character was in real life or what that incident was trying to be.

It's interesting to hear Sorkin take the blame for the failure of the show and not try to defend its shortcomings to the death (for the record, I liked the show more than 97% of the public did). He also feels guilty about how it affected the cast:

I felt like I had let so many people down-from Warner Bros. and NBC to the cast and crew. You live and die with these things. It is a feeling that you can't look these people in the eye anymore. Someone like Matt Perry.

Sorkin also reveals that he recently met with HBO head Sue Naegle. Really, cable is the place Sorkin should be. Imagine what he could do when given even more freedom than he gets on the networks (and less time slot/exec pressure). He's not sure what type of show he'll do and even asks for some ideas.

But don't send him any ideas. Sorkin repeats his hatred of Internet (or at least certain aspects of the Internet) that we saw in episodes of The West Wing and Studio 60. He calls the web "a bronchial infection on the First Amendment," and says that "nothing has done more to make us dumber or meaner than the anonymity of the Internet."

So, though Sorkin might not read your comments below, what type of show should he do?

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Bob Dole

Sorkin needs more creative freedom? Give me a fucking break! He had near complete control of studio 60, and look at what a steaming pile of convoluted shit that turned out to be.

Sorkin is a a talented wordsmith, but he is terrible at everything else. All his characters sound and act the same, all his plots are preachy and overwrought, and the women in his writings are all neurotic messes that cant function without men to guide them.


After all the money sorkin cost NBC with Studio 60, any network that even considers working with him is insane.

October 31 2008 at 5:51 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Lawrence Phoenix

Whot's he saying 'the internet makes us dumber and meaner' ? The guy's a no talent asswipe that shoulda never been on CBS..

August 16 2008 at 5:18 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Oreo

We already knew everything he said. Of course he is too blame.

He should do a show about what happens behind the camera of a news show! :) He could have guest stars from Sports Night and Studio 60.

August 15 2008 at 11:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
yourstarla

Studio 60 made me feel something. I don't know why people didn't watch it or hated it. I thought it was brilliant.

August 14 2008 at 4:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Joel

I thought S60 actually had a fair amount of potential. The problem that sank it though was Sorkin's incredible superiority complex that came through in every script. Monday night, 10 pm, come hear the gospel according to Aaron Sorkin about (1) how incredibly stupid Christians are, (2) how incredibly stupid middle America is, (3) how incredibly stupid anyone outside of the Hollywood elite is, and (4) ultimately how incredibly stupid anyone other than Sorkin is. Eventually that formula tires its audience. Those who defend Sorkin to the death (a.k.a. the Sassones) do so because they have the same inflated sense of self importance and contempt for generic Everyman.

August 14 2008 at 2:12 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
C C

I have serious doubts Sorkin will ever have another successful series. I didn't think Studio 60 was a bad show at all. There were two handicaps which doomed it: it wasn't as good as Sorkin's previous series, and, more importantly, tv had changed a lot since West Wing hit the air. When West Wing debuted, the drama offerings on tv weren't as broad. It's only major competition those early years at the Emmys was The Sopranos, which was the breakthrough series for cable tv. Now you have innovative dramas on practically all the cable channels, and they're drawing the top tv writers to create series for them. There's also been an exodus of creative talent from the movies into tv. The movie business is tough, why not try writing for tv? Sorkin may have been the golden boy 8-9 years ago. That's not the case now-he has competition.

August 14 2008 at 11:35 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to C C's comment
David

C C ! How can you say that?!? You're in the biz! You understand just how brilliant Sorkin is compared to all the mediocre writers out there!

Sorkin is contemplating a move to HBO, according to the GQ interview. How could something he write for HBO *not* be successful? It will be marketed properly, positioned properly, scheduled properly, and he'll have near complete freedom to write it how he wants to write it, without the infamous "notes" from moronic network executives.

Sorkin is too good not to ever be successful again :)

August 14 2008 at 1:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Joe stalin

Lets face it the whiny beeotch had his arse handed to him by Liz Lemmon. Maybe without the crack he's just not all that "brilliant". Maybe without making a show about ludites for the ludities he can't generate a following. All I know is that everything he's been involved with has been adolescent liberal PMSing. Hopefully his career such as it is can RIP.

August 14 2008 at 10:45 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mike Davis

"Nothing has done more to make us dumber or meaner than the anonymity of the Internet."

Sorkin sounds like an old man on his porch, threatening the kids walking by.

Sorry, Aaron, people are just as dumb & mean as they were prior to the internet; you're just able to read what they have to say.

And they usually say that they didn't like S60.

August 14 2008 at 10:35 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Greg

My last name is Sorkin, so I get a kick out of when he's in headlines (as they leave off the first name, usually). Especially like the one a few years ago: SORKIN BUSTED AT AIRPORT WITH DRUGS (or something like that).

I still regret not cutting out that headline...

August 14 2008 at 3:28 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Brent McKee

I was and am a huge Studio 60 fan, and the more I see of what has been put on by NBC since the show left the air the angrier I get that it was cancelled. In fact, I'm half convinced that twenty years from now people will be asking why a show like that wasn't given a chance. I think that it was a shining moment for Matthew Perry and Steven Weber, and much of the criticism (for example that the bits of the comedy sketches we saw weren't funny) was biased to the point of absurdity.

August 14 2008 at 12:46 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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