Thursday, November 27, 2008

Burn It Down

Finished a last pass of screenplay called 'Final Girl' and sent off to my writing partner to clean up. Then off it goes to Corus...if there's any money left in the last draw-down. Contractually there is. For the next few months I'm done with it. I'm creatively tapped out. In other words...I got nothin'...for now. Do I think it's perfect? Nope. But it's a hell of a lot better than scripts falling across my desktop and cloggin the email that are going into production and frantically trying to 'fix it' as they prep. Anyway, other projects call my name, one of which has received some dough. I'll write about them later.

Meanwhile, Canadian Broadcasters are culling the deadwood and trying to build a new business model in an economic crisis. Or hold onto the old's hard to tell. While I'm sure some folks I know will be hurt by the moves, my empathy is there, but I have little sympathy. See my old post 'Blood Clots in the Revenue Stream' from October. All of us, consumers and content creators have been barking for changes, so here they come. Will they all turn out like you hoped? Probably not, but maybe...just can become leaner and meaner and start rewarding success instead of failure. But it took a crisis and a CRTCruling to burn down the barn and get the old horses running off. Jim Henshaw makes some good points on hisblog. 

So, are we driving down a disappearing lane with a dead end? Broadcasters will inevitably stink up the place with howls of 'Now we can't even afford Canadian content'. Maybe, but that's an old song that's been sung for years. They have barely provided Canadian content anyway. Maybe it's an excuse to pull a few licenses on channels that claim they are providing new content. Every time I turn on the friggin TV I have so many channels that have the same four shows showing over and over that my head swims with resentment. The three Canuckbroadcasters that double and triple dip the consumer and then reported billions in profit. They are the skunk under the house who just keeps coming back with the same smell.

I know what your thinking. Trevor, you should be concerned because now all of these broadcasters have no money to help put your scripts in front of the camera. Really? They never did in the first place. Speciality Cable companies, Americans and Europeans put dough in my work. Not the Big-3 Canadian broadcasters. And that just doesn't include me, it is friends, family and fellow workers in the industry. Yep. Times will be lean, but when aren't they.

The real keys are timing, good work, and the learned ability to know a hot wire when you see one. People who count on luck don't last long in this business of defusing bombs and Canadian broadcasters have been churning out bombs, depending on luck and free money. They connected the wrong wires this time. But, like all human beings and nature's predators, they followed the path of least resistance.

Maybe that makes me an anarchist who wants to watch it all burn so that something else takes it place. Maybe. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see that I have a dark sense of humour. Which reminds me, it does my heart good when I see Heath Ledger already being pushed as a 'Supporting Actor' candidate in the up coming Oscar votes.

So, that's about it for my half-assed wisdom for tonight. Right now I am focused on going out in my back yard and shooting a metaphorical bear who weighs five hundred pounds and is in a feeding frenzy. He wants my time, my money and sympathy. I don't have any. Not tonight. Just a shotgun and a 'redneck' attitude. I don't want to kill the bear. Just sting it in the ass and make it move along and stop digging in the garbage. I'm a territorialman. I don't mind sharing with him, but the bear is rude and he makes a mess when he eats. I'm sure you can guess what the bear is.

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