Producing 4.1

Producing I

This week with Roy is about roles of producers and professional practice.

According to Prospect website, responsibilities of a TV/film/video producers, I’ll need:

  1. read, research and assess ideas and finished scripts
  2. secure the finance for a new production
  3. commission writers or secure the rights to novels, plays or screenplays
  4. hire key staff, including a director and a crew to shoot programmes, films or videos
  5. pull together all the strands of creative and practical talent involved in the project to create a team
  6. liaise and discuss projects with financial backer(s) – projects can range from a small, corporate video costing £500, to a multimillion-pound-budget Hollywood feature film
  7. control the production’s budget and allocate resources
  8. organise shooting schedules – dependent on the type of producer role and availability of support staff
  9. hold regular meetings with the director to discuss characters and scenes
  10. act as a sounding board for the director
  11. troubleshoot problems that arise during production
  12. ensure compliance with relevant regulations, codes of practice and health and safety laws
  13. supervise the progress of the project from production through to post-production
  14. deliver the finished production on time and to budget.

Skills that I’ll need to have:

  1. confidence in my ability
  2. strong communication and people skills
  3. editorial judgement
  4. presentation and pitching skills
  5. negotiation skills
  6. strong time and resource management skills
  7. organisation and planning skills
  8. creative ability
  9. the ability to cope well under pressure
  10. commercial awareness and a good head for figures
  11. self-motivation and the ability to motivate others
  12. leadership skills.

Most importantly, I need to be aware of health and safety issues in the workplace and understand the industry regulations and codes of practice.

 

SCREENSKILLS works with the UK’s screen-based creative industries to develop skills and talent, from classroom to boardroom.

They are the UK-wide strategic skills body that works with employers, individuals, trade associations, unions, learning and training providers, Government and its public agencies and other key organisations to ensure that the UK’s Creative Industries have continued access now, and in the future, to the skills and talent the require.

They support skills and training for people and businesses to ensure the UK Creative Industries maintain their world class position. We do this by influencing and shaping policy, ensuring quality and by securing the vital investment for individuals to become the best in their field and for businesses to grow.

 

A producer I really admire is Charlie Brooker. He is the creator, writer and producer of Emmy Award Winner Black Mirror. Prior, he took the same role for Dead Set, it was nominated for the Best Drama Serial in 2009 BAFTA. Later, he received many awards for his comedy show Newswipe from 2009 to 2012. Another show of his, Wipe (2016) won a BAFTA in 2017. Last but not least, he won the Columnist of the Year award at the British Press Award in 2009. He was also a radio presenter at BBC Radio 4. One of the reasons why I appreciate this man is because he wasn’t always perfect as he states on the Guardian (2011) “I took media studies. And I failed to graduate, thanks entirely to my decision to write a 15,000-word dissertation on the subject of videogames, without bothering to check whether that was a valid topic, which it wasn’t. Forward planning isn’t my strong point.” this signifies his organisation skills was his weakness. However, he does have a potential of being a good producer as he later cites “the most valuable thing you get from education is a space in which you can make friends, gain experience, and figure a few things out.” these are the signs of a good producer as he has good creative and people skills at an early stage of his career. He also have that good confidence in his ability and great self-motivation, as he mentions “even so, success is always possible if you forget about “success” as a concept – it’s hopelessly amorphous anyway – and focus instead on doing what satisfies you, as well as you can.” He didn’t just motivated himself to become a better person, he also motivated me, and hopefully you! Nobody is perfect in this world but it’s good to try your best to be one because that’s what make you perfect.

 

References:

BROOKER, C. 2011. Poor A-levels? Don’t despair. Just lie on job application forms. The Guardian [viewed date: 05/11/2019]. Available from: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2011/aug/21/charlie-brooker-a-level-results

 

 

Production 3.1

Producing I

Last week I’ve been given a task of finding a story and turn it into a programme idea. Give it a read and tell me what you think.

This week is about content research and understanding the needs of your target commissioner, platform or channel. Our target commissioner is BBC THREE.

According to Kathryn Ballard, whom is our information librarian for Media and Culture. She advises us to use Solent Portal page > Library > LibGuide by subject > Media and Culture. We can get access to useful resources like:

  • C21 (subscribe only)
  • Statista
  • Mintel

I have partnered up with our student rep (as I have now step down from being one of them because we only need one not two) Andrew Menhennet. He interests in doing a documentary, whilst drama is my personal interest.

BBC Three commissioning:

  • Target audience 16-34 year-olds.
  • Tackling subject that matter to them.
  • They back original voices and unique ideas.
  • To provoke reaction and stimulate emotion.
  • ‘Make me laugh’ and ‘make me think.’
  • Recently, expanded they remit to factual entertainment and entertainment formats.

As I wanted to Drama:

Now we can take advantage of BBC Three digital platform, we can be flexible in terms of form, content and tone by commissioning shows with shorter episode lengths, or even episodes of varying lengths with a series (i.e. Overshadows).

The show should speak directly to younger audiences and representing what it means to be young person in Britain today (i.e. Normal People).

BBC Three will likely to publish the short-from on BBC Three, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, WhatsApp, Snapchat and other (where audiences are more likely to interact with). They will commission:

  • one-offs that compliment seasons or long-form programmes.
  • pilots with a view to a longer run.
  • strands exclusively for social media.
  • compelling series of multi-platform shorts that can be stripped or serialised across platforms with clever scheduling and activation strategies around them.
  • Also, they are open to discussing form and volume and looking for the most innovative ideas with fresh and distinctive execution.

In pairs, we have to select a programming strand for analysis. We could either go to BBC THREE website or to its iPlayer. So we choose https://www.bbc.co.uk/bbcthree (23/10/2019), as it has clear link to social media than iPlayer.

Then we had to make a index for channel content in strand. So, we decided I will research the top part and Andrew do the bottom half of Editor’s pick.

We should be considering:

  1. Key features: content, structure and narrative.
  2. How is the show presented by the channel?
  3. How is social media used to enhance the digital offer?
  4. Who is the target audience for the programmes?
  5. What are the typical characteristics?
  6. What does BBC 3 brand look like?
  7. What does it feel like?
  8. Market characteristics?
  9. Audience demographics?
  10. Viewing figures?

We should summarise BBC 3 programme style in a few sentences.

In conclusion section we need to focus on BBC 3’s gap in the market. What new ideas could we come up with?

Hopefully, I can answer all these questions in week 7.

Thank you.

Producing 2.1

Producing I

Finally, my timetable is fixed! However, as I don’t want my attendance to look bad I went to the one I meant to go to. Whereas, if I just keep intruding lectures like in the past two weeks and wait for the week to end, I believe my knowledge and understanding would be better. Nevertheless, this is something for me to look into and be more careful of my decision-making later in life. Luckily enough, I was born in a good generation, as I can get access to my lecture online and catch up on the things I’ve missed.

Today’s lecture is about ‘intro to story.’ As I remember we meant to be giving a pitch. Then we meant to be receiving a feedback. This is Trouble. See more. Do more! Sadly, I wasn’t able to attend this class.

What is a story anyway?

A great journalist once said “IF HISTORY WERE TAUGHT IN THE FORM OF STORIES, IT WOULD NEVER BE FORGETTEN.” – Rudyard Kipling.

On the dictionary, it says…story meaning.png

What is the difference between story and plot?

[Check out this video]

PLOT = what happened?

  • e.g. getting Marline closer to Nemo and Nemo closer to escaping Darla.

STORY = how it happened?  why should I care?

  • e.g. helping them both get past their own flaws and better understanding on each other.

[Check this: plot vs story] for a better understanding.

What drive a good stories?

elementsofagoodstory

 

Producing 1.1

Producing I

In this unit, we’re being assessed on:

AE1: Research Presentation, due at 4pm on 8th Nov 2019.

  • Research Presentation
  • 5-6 minutes
  • Grade individually but it’s a group presentation
  • Worth 30% of the unit

Assessment task:

I need to imagine working for a UK production company as a junior member of a team. I have been given a task by an Executive Producer to research BBC Three as a potential target for future commercial opportunities.

I have been tasked to find out as much as I can about the channel and to report back with evidence to support a content development strategy for your employers’ company. What is the channel looking for, what works and what are the gaps in the BBC Three’s content strategy, what are the opportunity?

 

AE2: Pitching Package (report), due at 4pm on 13th Dec 2019.

  • Pitching Package
  • 1500 words
  • Grade individually
  • Worth 70% of the unit

I will present an individual written, pitching package, a commercially recognisable document that follows a format and structure that will be familiar to industry professionals.

My programme idea should be targeted at BBC Three and should respond to a clearly identified gap in channel’s commissioning strategy.

It should be a well designed industry facing document that is ready to take to market.

CUP413: Producing I: telling stories

In this unit, we’re going to:

  • Differentiate a range of story structures, narrative approaches and applied techniques.
  • Evaluate the appropriateness of differing ideation tools and techniques to the media production context.
  • Communicate creative ideas through common professionally recognised formats.
  • Work individually and as part of a collaborative team to develop skills in communication, negotiation and presentation.

We will be:

  • Coming up with ideas
  • Pitching them to your peers
  • Writing
  • Re-writing
  • Researching
  • Discussing
  • Analysing

Beginning…

Title:

  • Identify the work/concept.
  • Convey a minimal summary of its contents.
  • To provoke the reader’s curiosity.

Log line:

  • Is used to pitch your story in one sentence.
  • It reduces the story to a “hook.”
  • It indicate the full narrative arc (the story’s beginning, middle, and the end).
  • It reveals character, goal, conflict, and theme.
  • It has an obvious “hook” and make us want to see the media content.

Synopsis:

  • Is an overview of the entire story from beginning to end.
  • It’s useful in finding the essence of the story because it must state very briefly and simply WHO,WHAT and HOW.
  • Within the space of one paragraph of a few sentences the synopsis should set out whose story it is (the protagonist), what their problem is, what they do about it and the outcome.
  • The synopsis also establishes the other major characters and their lines of conflict, what is at stake for these characters, the setting in time and spaces and the major turning points of the story.

Outline:

  • An outline is a breakdown of the story or narrative from beginning to end.
  • It includes details of what needs to happen and why.
  • It gives information about background and tells the reader what to expect.
  • It describes what the viewer will see and hear.
  • It can be two to three paragraphs or longer but should never be more than a page.

AND HERE IS OUR GROUP CONTRIBUTION of 2+1 (with Elizabeth and Simone):

Trouble [click on this]

Why brainstorming doesn’t work?

  • Production blocking = we can’t all talk at once.
  • Eco threat = people hold back because they are anxious they may appear to be foolish so hold back on their best ideas.
  • Conformity = one or two ideas raised are popular so everybody jumps on the bandwagon as opposed to suggesting other radical, different ways of thinking.
  • Dominators = tries to assert authority or superiority in manipulating the group or certain members of the group.

Solution…

  1. Heads down, silent 3 minute brainstorm using post-its.
  2. Take turns sharing your ideas.
  3. Categorising and discuss.
  4. Identify most interesting ideas.
  5. Document the Brainstorm.