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Aug. 6th, 2008

striketvblogger

From The Office and House Poor's Lester Lewis

When I first heard about Strike TV, I was excited. I've had a great career as a writer on "The Office" and many other comedies, but I've also been hungry to get my own voice out there. The normal development route for television is tough. I've actually sold and written three pilot scripts (two for NBC, one for CBS) but for various reasons they weren't shot. Strike TV, it seemed, could give me a forum to experiment. I was fortunate to link up with the super-talented Mindy Kaling, another Office writer who also plays the role of KELLY, and we hatched an idea for a funny web series. Collaborating was a blast and we used a lot of our Office crew friends for the shoot. It was a really fun experience and we're hoping to do more.

In the meantime, as a member of the Strike TV team, I want to give other Hollywood writers a chance to break out in creative new ways, ways that might not fit into the normal Network or Studio models. I also want the fans to have a chance to interact with them. With a little luck, we're creating not just a video site, but a community. Make sure you check us out when we launch soon!

Jul. 21st, 2008

striketvblogger

HOW I LEARNED TO STOP WORRYING AND LOVE THE WEB by Mary Feuer, Creator of "With the Angels"

Years ago I saw a play called "The Church of God's Glorious Light" by a guy named Werner Trieschmann. Its characters were a naive girl from the country named Taffy who had moved to the big city because she wanted desperately to be an artist, and a jaded, alcoholic punk rocker whose name was a mystery and who didn't want anything from life anymore. I didn't quite fit either description, and I had never met Werner, yet somehow it felt like this guy from Arkansas had written a play about two characters who were both me.

Not long after that, Werner (who had become a friend) and I wrote a screenplay called "God's Ashtray" featuring these characters. One executive at a now-defunct but formerly bigtime indie studio pronounced that it would never get made because "The characters are more interesting than what happens to them." When I realized that I didn't necessarily see that as a flaw, I decided I should write for TV, where characters could survive without exploding buildings. I filed "God's Ashtray" away in my head under failed experiments, and that was that, until Strike TV came along.

When the opportunity to do a show for Strike TV came up, I immediately thought of Taffy. She had been kicking around in my head refusing to shut up for years, and her combination of geeky shyness and rambling talkativeness seemed absolutely perfect for the first-person narrative style that works so well on the web. I had learned an incredible amount about writing for the tiny screen from my bosses during a three- month stint as head writer on Lonelygirl15, and I was really eager to do some more exploring. While LG15 relied, by the time I got there, on a fair amount of plot and action as its teen characters battled the all-seeing Order, I really wanted to write something where the story came from characters interacting with each other rather than reacting to an external threat. So Taffy moved to Los Angeles from Arkansas and "With the Angels" was born.

I look at Strike TV as UGC* with a certain pedigree: we're no more sophisticated, no smarter or more adept than a thousand bloggers and creators out there who've been posting their work on YouTube for years. In fact, some of them know a hell of a lot more about this very different medium than any of us do. But the waters have gotten really, really muddy because of the sheer volume of content out there, and it's getting hard to find your way to the pieces that speak to you. I think the web is moving toward a model of "curated" sites, networks like ours, that are easier to navigate. Otherwise, a lot of great content is going to get strangled by things with racy titles and tit-filled screen grabs. Not that there's anything wrong with tits; I have a pair myself, and I'm sure when the Tit Network gets up and running (if it isn't already) it will be quite popular. But I'm looking forward to a time when people don't have to click through a thousand and one things to find their way to shows they can be passionate about, shows created by people with equal passion. That's where Strike TV comes in.

The shows on this network have one thing in common: they are made by people who make their living creating visual/verbal entertainment.

Other than that, it's an incredibly diverse line-up of stuff. For the most part, Strike TV creators are writers, but we've got contributors from all different areas of the business. The idea isn't to close the door on all the incredible content creators out there who don't come from this world, but to give those of us who do an opportunity to present our work, free of interference from the people we usually have to take notes from, in an organized way. Which hopefully means you can find your way to it. Because what fun is it if nobody watches, right?

So we've made the shows; pretty soon we'll be presenting them to you.

Then it'll be time for you to do YOUR Job, which isn't going to be to just sit back and watch. We hope you'll get involved, tell us what you think, interact with us and our characters. But for now, what you can do is this: SPREAD THE WORD. Tell your friends. Because it's a big, wide web out there and we need all the friends we can get.

*(UGC= User Generated Content for you Luddites)

striketvblogger

Have you seen the preview for Tom Holland's 5 or Die???

Jul. 14th, 2008

striketvblogger

Ian Deitchman tells his story...

A couple of years ago, feeling a need to start exercising my directing muscles, I joined GROUP 101 FILMS. This was a filmmaking collective - sadly now on production hiatus since 2006 - where every month for six months you would make a film based on a theme and with a specific aesthetic parameter to achieve (i.e. a movie about food that uses only available light.) You were put into a group with about eight filmmakers. Each person was responsible for his or her own production - writing, financing, casting, finding crew, etc. - and then at the end of the month each group would reconvene and critique each other's films. Even though no one was required to help anyone else in their group with their film, we were all in the same boat and under the same time crunch, so favors and collaboration happened naturally. It was a great experience - like going back to film school. And I actually came out of it with a few films of which I was proud.

That's where the fun ended. When I tried to find a place to show them I discovered that getting a short film into a festival is an extremely difficult task these days, and with a very short term reward. The internet, on the other hand, had the opposite problem. There were certainly many user-generated sites where you could upload your movie, but my films almost instantly disappeared into the random morass of homemade videos. Nothing against those sites, but I wanted my movies to be surrounded by like-minded storytellers.

Strike.TV is different. It's an online home for professional storytellers. A platform that hopefully offers something for everyone who visits. An incubator where Hollywood creators can own their work and follow their muse wherever it takes them. Ultimately, the strength of Strike.TV comes from the collective talent of its creators. Each artist's individual abilities benefit those around him and together we will attract fans from every genre and form. I couldn't be prouder or more humbled to be a part of this. And hey, maybe down the road you'll get to see one of my little gems on here.


All the best,


Ian Deitchman

Co-Founder, Strike.TV

Jul. 11th, 2008

striketvblogger

Have you been checking out Strike.TV?

If you haven't, you've missed out on Strike.TV: Behind the Scenes!

Take a sneak peek at the making of Steven de Souza's Unknown Sender anthology, with Timothy Dalton and Steven de Souza!



Make sure to check in and see more Behind the Scenes footage and trailers at Strike.TV.

Jul. 4th, 2008

striketvblogger

The Debut of Strike.TV

July 4th, 2008
Today we celebrate Independence Day in an all new way. Wikipedia's definition of "independence" is the self-government of a nation, country, or state by its residents and population, or some portion thereof, generally exercising sovereignty.

From a simple, little idea to a full-blown community of talented visionaries, Strike.TV is in a way what you could call a self-governing nation. Hundreds of talented film and television artists came together to create Strike.TV and it's been overwhelmingly inspiring to witness and be a part of its birth.

Many friends and working partnerships have been forged over the months since we all started this journey. I've never before experienced so much comradery, generosity and unity in the Hollywood community and I look forward with optimism at seeing Strike.TV evolve.

If you are a professional film or television story-teller and are in the WGA, DGA or SAG, and have a COMPLETED web series, pilot or film that you're looking to monetize and distribute across the internet, we'd love to hear from you. Drop us a line and tell us about yourself and your creation at art@strike.tv.

Later this summer we'll be accepting proposals for new projects from WGA and DGA members, with the hope being to broaden our reach to SAG members and untapped talent in the near future.

I can't wait for you guys to see the shows we have for you! If you'd like updates, sign up and we'll send you the skinny.

Happy Independence Day!
Warmly,
Peter Hyoguchi
Co-Founder and CEO, Strike.TV

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