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October 6, 2015

executive producers

How I Met Your Mother co-creator: "There's going to be a wedding."

by Joel Keller, posted Jan 30th 2007 6:18PM
Craig Thomas and Carter BaysThanks to the efforts of former TVS writer Ryan Budke, this lovely little blog you're reading is high on the browsing list of the staff of How I Met Your Mother. In fact, they seem to like us quite a bit; at the CBS press tour party, co-creator Craig Thomas said he reads my reviews of the show every week, and executive producer Greg Malins came up to me while I was talking to Craig to tell me how much he loved the Squad (it sounded something like, "You guys are awesome!" But it was too loud in there for me to hear well. All I know is that it wasn't along the lines of "What a fine weblog you have, my dear fellow. Cheerio and pip pip.").

Anyway, because of this comfort level, I didn't have any problem asking the other co-creator, Carter Bays, a few questions about where the season is going, as well as some questions about not being picked to be in the post-Super Bowl slot. I also asked him about the origins of the two best episodes of the season, "Slap Bet" and "Swarley."

By the way, in the picture above, Craig is on the left and Carter is on the right. They look so young, don't they?

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What do you think a TV director does?

by Joel Keller, posted Jan 20th 2006 5:44PM
Chris Rock directing Everybody Hates ChrisI just saw this press release that announces that Chris Rock and Will Smith will direct an episode of Everybody Hates Chris and All of Us, respectively. Obviously, both actors have an in with each series, since they are the executive producers of their respective shows. Of the two, only Rock has directorial experience, having directed his 2003 movie flop, Head of State.

It's amazing to me how many actors get a chance to direct episodes of the shows they star in or produce. Now, I know how involved film directors are with their projects, shaping the actors' performances, setting the mood with lighting, effects, and filming techniques, and setting the pace through editing. But what does a TV director, especially of an established, long running show, do? "Uh, Jenny, baby, can you act a little more Rachel-like?" "Mary, can you cry a little more when you say 'Oh, Mr. Grant!"?" What do they do that can put a unique stamp on a show? The only time I've ever seen a director make a difference on a show was when Quentin Tarrantino directed episodes of ER and CSI.

It's almost as if the show runners think that directing a TV series is so easy, anyone can do it, which must be a slap in the face to experienced, esteemed directors such as James Burrows and David Steinberg.

If you know what a new director, especially a cast member or star producer, can bring to an existing TV show, let me know in the comments.

[via The Futon Critic]

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