A show only movie-makers could love

With On the Lot wrapping up, (and I grudgingly admit I watched that damn show almost every week) I think I’ll sum up what did and did not work for me on that show.

What bothered me most was lack of info on what sort of resources the competitors had at their disposal when making the movies. What kind of budget did they have? How do they pick their actors? Did they work with a script-writer? Did they get extra money when they threw blatant product placement into their movie? The very thin behind-the-scenes clips only showed them during shooting. After the first two episodes, the show never showed preproduction or post-production.

My ideal show would be geared more like Junkyard Wars or Iron Chef. You’d have two directors or teams of film-makers (Admit it, you’d be more comfortable bringing along your buddies than work with all new people) competing. At the start, the host (Lloyd Kaufman) would clearly define the terms. (“You have $2000 and one week to make a horror movie. “) The judges (Robert Rodriguez, Mike Figgis and one guest judge based on the week’s theme) would watch footage of the production and comment about what looks like a good idea or a bad idea, compare it to their own experiences, etc. At the end of the episode, the two movies are shown, the judges declare a winner. Over the course of a season, a winner is determined by elimination.

You hear me, television executives! Make it happen!

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3 Responses to A show only movie-makers could love

  1. Shawn says:

    Instead of themes, I would have a continuing series. It would encourage the week to week viewing that reality TV shows cater to. A problem with the theme idea is that you would have 8 zombie movies in a row on one episode, and that would be tiresome for the viewers.

  2. Ryan says:

    Maybe the problem is that I’m not a fan of reality TV in general, so I don’t care about what it caters to.

    Having everyone make an ongoing series is something I could get behind, though. It could be more like Channel 101, which I like.

    The themes would be for a show where each episode has only two contestants, allowing much more time to be devoted to “behind the scenes” stuff. So you’d only get two zombie movies in a row.

    Even the most popular Junkyard Wars contestants have only returned a few times. The lack of recurring characters limits the audience to people who enjoy seeing what the contestants are capable of. Similarly, I admit my show would only appeal to someone who wants to watch someone make a movie.

    Perhaps something like Iron Chef could be arranged. Have three Iron Directors that the challenger can choose from.

    I hear the show I’m supposed to watch is called “Film School.” It sounds promising.

  3. Ryan says:

    To be clear, the title “A show only movie-makers could love” means the show I proposed, not On The Lot as it really existed. The problems with that show came from trying to serve two masters.

    Because of my own preferences, I would heavily favour the educational master over the reality show master.