The first time I saw The Wizard of Oz, I was struck by the scene where The Great Oz directs Dorothy to “pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.” As in, “Never mind what’s actually happening, just pay attention to the way things seem… we have an image to protect here.” File that under the same category as:
• “Politicians always say they’re going to change things, but I really mean it.” [point dramatically at self]
• “Oh yes, models really do look like magazine covers in real life, all the time.”
• “Making TV and film is a super magical process that can only happen in big TV or film studios by specially anointed people.”
To all of the above I say, with all the sincerity I can muster:
Especially that last one on the list. Because chances are if you’re reading this, you know as well as I do that it just ain’t true. (Excuse me while I wipe off my computer screen… okay, we’re good.)
I was a junior in high school, attending a week-long TV Talk Show Production class at the annual Donna Reed Festival for the Performing Arts under the guidance of Emmy-winning producer – and since long-time friend – Dan Weaver. Sitting around the table with Dan and my fellow classmates, we started shooting ideas back and forth. It was during that humble little production meeting that I realized a fundamental thing: a good idea is a good idea, no matter who comes up with it. And you DON’T have to be in Hollywood to have a good idea. We were in Denison, Iowa, surrounded by cornfields and hog farms – about as far away from the soundstages of LA as you could get. And we still put together an hour-long, live-to-tape talk show with local talent, live musicians, covered by a multi-camera production truck from Drake University.
I was astounded that we could do something so ridiculously COOL with just the elements available to us. And I knew that the only difference between what we were doing right there and what it would have been like in New York or LA was bigger lights, fancier cameras, and a bigger budget. Other than that… IT’S THE SAME THING.
Like I said, it pretty much blew my mind.
The world has changed drastically in recent years. More and more the gatekeepers of TV and film are realizing that they’re just as likely to get their next big talent from YouTube as the graduates of the Cinema School at USC. Storytellers are realizing that maybe they don’t even need the approval of said gatekeepers. Now, more than ever, the proverbial curtain is being pulled back, showing that in today’s world, the people who are the most successful in TV and film are those people who have great ideas and tell great stories.
And, by the way, you don’t have to be Spielberg to be a great storyteller, and you certainly don’t have to be in Los Angeles to do it.
So, to repeat myself, because it’s just that important:
A good idea is a good idea. A good story is a good story. No matter who you are, no matter where you are. Period.
Now watch this 3 minute video. Right now. It’s one of the ways Editmentor is pulling back the curtain for YOU.