124 avsnitt

*Named "New and Noteworthy" across all podcasts, as well as TV & Film, Arts, and Education. Subscribe now.



Ready to create, pitch, and sell reality TV shows or documentary series and specials? From creating pitch tapes to meeting with TV networks, developing your ideas to discovering reality TV stars, this podcast features tips on working in unscripted film and television that you won't find anywhere else. Get top-industry secrets and even pitch your shows to Award-Winning Documentary Filmmakers and Unscripted Television Producers Joke Fincioen and Biagio Messina.



Recently, the duo have helped new producers bring projects to television on MTV, BIOGRAPHY CHANNEL, A&E, and CNN/HLN. Your show could be next. Subscribe now.



ABOUT JOKE AND BIAGIO: With over a decade of experience in unscripted film and television, this married couple has made TV shows, specials, and pilots for A&E, The CW, Biography Channel, NBC, CBS, Discovery, CNN, HLN, E!, IFC, Logo, Oxygen, Style Network, VH1 and MTV.



Their feature length documentary DYING TO DO LETTERMAN played in theaters across America, was invited by the International Documentary Association to qualify for Academy Award® consideration, and named “New and Noteworthy” on iTunes alongside The Dark Knight Rises, Brave, and Beasts of the Southern Wild.



Subscribers to this podcast will learn the secrets of the Unscripted TV and Film worlds, and how to apply them toward career success. Subscribe today.

Producing Unscripted: Make Reality TV Shows and Documentary Series with Joke and Biagio Joke and Biagio | Reality TV Producers, Award Winning Filmmakers, Documentarians

    • TV och film

*Named "New and Noteworthy" across all podcasts, as well as TV & Film, Arts, and Education. Subscribe now.



Ready to create, pitch, and sell reality TV shows or documentary series and specials? From creating pitch tapes to meeting with TV networks, developing your ideas to discovering reality TV stars, this podcast features tips on working in unscripted film and television that you won't find anywhere else. Get top-industry secrets and even pitch your shows to Award-Winning Documentary Filmmakers and Unscripted Television Producers Joke Fincioen and Biagio Messina.



Recently, the duo have helped new producers bring projects to television on MTV, BIOGRAPHY CHANNEL, A&E, and CNN/HLN. Your show could be next. Subscribe now.



ABOUT JOKE AND BIAGIO: With over a decade of experience in unscripted film and television, this married couple has made TV shows, specials, and pilots for A&E, The CW, Biography Channel, NBC, CBS, Discovery, CNN, HLN, E!, IFC, Logo, Oxygen, Style Network, VH1 and MTV.



Their feature length documentary DYING TO DO LETTERMAN played in theaters across America, was invited by the International Documentary Association to qualify for Academy Award® consideration, and named “New and Noteworthy” on iTunes alongside The Dark Knight Rises, Brave, and Beasts of the Southern Wild.



Subscribers to this podcast will learn the secrets of the Unscripted TV and Film worlds, and how to apply them toward career success. Subscribe today.

    Producing Personal Projects with Emmy Winner Steve Mazan

    Producing Personal Projects with Emmy Winner Steve Mazan

    The world’s a little crazy at the moment – so we thought this would be a good time to bring you a truly inspirational tale. Emmy winner Steve Mazan, subject of our theatrically released feature documentary Dying to do Letterman, is here today to make you laugh, appreciate life, and believe in the impossible. See, doctors told Steve he might only have five years to live. A stand-up comedian, Steve decided to dedicate whatever was left of his life to living his dream: performing on David Letterman’s show. (Spoiler alert: it’s now fifteen years since his diagnosis, he’s surviving the heck out of cancer, and doctors feel he’s beat it completely.)

    We documented Steve’s incredible journey over many years. What was it like for Steve to open up to cameras at his most vulnerable? Why did he want to? And how did we, as friends, handle the pressure of making the film? What are the real costs and rewards of producing personal projects in Hollywood? After a theatrical release and being named New and Noteworthy on iTunes, how much money did we all make? What should you think about if you’re going to make your own personal project? Today we discuss all that and more. Buckle in and get ready to laugh a lot, cry a little, and celebrate the human spirit.









    If You Haven’t Seen Dying to do Letterman…

    We give away a lot in today’s episode, but not so much that all the surprises of Dying to do Letterman are revealed. That said, if you’d like to see the film first (or after listening) it’s available on Amazon as well as iTunes. Here’s the trailer:





    Steve Mazan: Incredible Person, Unbelievable Journey

    As we discuss today, we first met Steve Mazan when we were just starting out – still working out of a one-bedroom apartment in Hollywood, and cutting actors’ demo reels for a living. Steve was a stand-up comic who needed a new reel, and he hired us to do it. After that, we became friends.

    A few years later, he received the astounding news: doctors told Steve he had twelve inoperable tumors around his liver, and that he might only have five years to live, or best case scenario, ten years.

    That was fifteen years ago.

    A Ticking Clock?

    At the time, Steve had no idea he would be a “miracle” case. He felt precious moments were ticking away. There was one dream he’d chased his whole life: performing stand-up comedy on The Late Show with David Letterman. So the amazing Steve dedicated whatever was left of his life to chasing his dream.

    And he asked us to make a documentary about it.



    Producing Personal Projects: Costs and Rewards

    We’re not gonna lie: taking on this project scared the heck out of us. How could we make a documentary about our sick friend and still keep it real and honest, without our feelings affecting the film? Was it even possible? And was it necessary? Plus, we were good friends with Steve. If there’s one thing many of us have learned the hard way, it can be a very bad idea to team up with friends on any kind of business endeavor. Especially one as intense and taxing as making a documentary.

    Defining Success When Producing Personal Projects

    When you take on personal project, you simply can’t do it for the money. As you’ll hear in today’s episode, Dying to Do Letterman did well:



    * Had a very successful Kickstarter campaign cover...

    • 1 tim.
    Hiring in Hollywood: The Flipside

    Hiring in Hollywood: The Flipside

    Want to work in Hollywood? Want to make something in Hollywood? Then one way or the other, you’ll be dealing with the process of hiring in Hollywood. Today we share our hiring philosophy, helpful anecdotes, and straight talk on the challenges of interviewing and hiring. We even share what we ourselves need to do better. Applying for jobs in the entertainment industry? Interviewing potential candidates for your next TV or film project? Here’s everything you need to know about hiring, firing, recruiting, interviewing, and more. Listen now and find your perfect job match – no matter which side of the table you’re on!





    Finding the Right Fit

    Finding the right person for the job. This is the goal, the most important thing…and the hardest part of hiring in Hollywood. There are a lot of talented  people who, for whatever reason, might not be the best fit for your production. How do you get to a place where you can make smart decisions?

    Hiring in Hollywood? Be Clear

    First of all, it begins with communication. What, exactly, does the job entail? It sounds simple, but it’s not. Credits almost never translate perfectly from one gig to the next. 

    For instance, at some companies Story Producers run interviews, while at others they spend their time stringing out stories in an edit bay. Some do both. What does your project need? Be clear in the job posting, be clear in the interview, and be clear when you actually want to hire someone. Do they truly understand the job they’re about to take on?

    Applying for the Gig?

    If you’re the one applying for a gig, make sure your resume details your exact responsibilities. We often receive resumes that read more like credit lists. As you now know,  seeing someone’s title alone isn’t helpful when hiring in Hollywood.

    How Big Is Your Production? 

    What was the size of the company the person previously worked at, and how does that match up with your workplace? For instance, there are large production companies with hundreds of employees. They have multiple levels of bureaucracy. It can provide a level of “cover” and anonymity that doesn’t exist on smaller productions. 

    Don’t get us wrong…there are plenty of good people working at big production companies. However, there are also some who are used to letting others carry a lot of the weight, and prefer “blending” in to the background. On a smaller production or at a smaller company there is no place to hide. These people can become overwhelmed fast.

    Some people thrive on the responsibility that comes with a more hands-on position. Others are perfectly happy staying out of the spotlight. They prefer a job with multiple levels of management and less intense scrutiny. Make sure whoever you hire is ready for the work environment they’re entering into. Be honest about how much will be on their shoulders. Do they still want the job?

    References – Necessary, but Usually Useless

    Get references, but don’t rely on them. References are necessary, but they’re notoriously unreliable, when hiring in Hollywood. And one, solitary reference can be as useless as credit lists themselves. You have to do your level best to get more than one reference on anyone you consider hiring. The more the better.

    Why is this so important? A person might want to give a friend a good reference (even if they’re not really sure the person is right for the gig). Or, someone may have a personal issue with the applicant in question and provide an unfair review. So you have to get an aggregate of opinions and interpret them as best you can. 

    Don’t Discard Someone with One Poor Reference

    • 25 min
    2020 Perspective for Filmmakers, Producers, and Creatives

    2020 Perspective for Filmmakers, Producers, and Creatives

    Holy cow, it’s 2020! As we enter our seventh year (!) of the Producing Unscripted podcast, we’re so grateful to all of you who’ve supported us on this journey. With a New Year comes new podcast episodes, beginning with today’s. We’re discussing the big picture of working in the entertainment industry in 2020. Our goal is to help you get to a place where you can balance your life with your work…and figure out how to stay happy all the while. (No, not easy!) We also share our own struggles, explain why we’re taking a new look at what it means to work in this business, offer what we think is your most important key to happiness in this industry, and share the theme that will shape the podcasts we bring you this year. 















































    Happy Belated New Year!







    As long time listeners have probably realized, this is our first podcast ep since October 2019. We’ve missed you! We’re happy to tell you that our absence is due to our current TV production (can’t say what, but it will air later this year.) So making TV has pretty much swallowed us whole these past few months. Now that we can see the light at the end of the tunnel, we’ll be back to podcasting regularly.







    An Emotional Start to the Year







    In today’s episode we briefly mention the big “hits” we took to start the year out. We lost two peers within 30 days of each other, both our age, and both dying far too young. The loss affected us (it’s still affecting us). It’s a huge reminder no matter what your business is, nothing can replace your loved ones. Like we’ve said before, it’s just TV.







    Dealing with Other Producers and Filmmakers







    The back-half of today’s episode discusses the two types of producers/filmmakers you’re likely to run into. At some point, you’ll fall into one of these two categories. We have an opinion about which is better, and share which camp is right for us. It might be right for you, too.







    Chasing Dreams Should Make You Happy







    We want you to know we wish you success in all your endeavors. Even more so, we wish you happiness. Life is too short to let the rigors of the entertainment industry wreck you. Instead, let’s all work towards making our business a better place to be. Ready to enjoy the chase more than you do now? Hit that giant PLAY button at the top of the screen…and Happy New Year!







    Helpful and Related Links







    Showbiz and Your Mental Well-Being: It’s Just TV…







    The entertainment industry has a way of knocking you down time and time again. But you know what? We’re all just telling stories. It’s not brain surgery. Here are some thoughts on taking care of your mental health and remembering what’s truly important.







    Success & Happiness in the Entertainment Industry with Daniel Strange







    Dan Strange is a commercial director and unscripted TV producer and editor. He discusses finding true success and happiness in this industry. It’s a no-holds-barred discussion of day-to-day working life in the entertainment industry. It’s also chock-full of useful tips. Plus, the ep includes an AMAZING Richard Marx story you won’t want to miss…







    Production Hangovers: How To Survive, Recharge, & Move On







    Production can wreck you! At the end of a grueling calendar you will be fried.

    • 15 min
    Our Top 3 Scariest Moments on Set

    Our Top 3 Scariest Moments on Set

    It’s Halloween, so pull out your sage, salt, and white candles! Today we’re talking about something truly spooky…our top 3 scariest moments on set! If you’ve been around production of any kind, you know things pretty much never go as planned. And sometimes, those “fun developments” can scare the pants off of you. Here are three very different kinds of “scary” that struck our sets like a witch’s evil spell. How did we survive? Listen now…if you dare!







































    Production Can Be a Nightmare







    There are very few endeavors that have as many moving parts as producing a TV or film project. Working with a crew of 20 or 200? Either way, you’re trying to manage very different personalities, share a creative vision, keep on schedule, and above all, avoid disaster.







    But sometimes, no matter what you do, you end up in a living nightmare. One day you’ll laugh about it (maybe.) As we’ve learned over the years running Joke Productions together, there’s no telling what evil may lurk just around the corner!







    Just some of the “spooky” we’re sharing today:







    * Demon dogs in the workplace* Using your crew as a blockade in the middle of downtown L.A.* Trying to stay calm while hanging up on network executives* Freaking out when lawyers tell you to ignore your basic human instincts* How to create a homemade sauna that probably won’t kill you* And…what to do if a practicing witch claims you’ve been paralyzed by a ghost (happened to Biagio!)







    So perform a little spell of protection, toss that salt over your shoulder, and listen now! Happy Halloween!







    Helpful and Related Links







    One spooky fact? Breaking into Hollywood takes some of this…







    What could be scarier than… actively developing and pitching paranormal shows?







    Thinking about working in this business? Here’s 5 scary things about producing TV shows.







    Want to survive the living nightmare when it strikes your set? Here’s 7 weird tips to survive production and save your sanity.







    Our very scary time making the pilot Sister Witches with Joey and Natalie.







    Follow us on Twitter – @JokeAndBiagio – we try to respond to all tweets, though it can take a few days (or weeks!) if we’re in production.







    Let’s Make Some TV Together!







    Are you ready to take on the horror flick that is working in unscripted TV and film? Brave enough to face off with intimidating network execs? Not too scared to team up with us? Here’s what you need to do next:

    • 19 min
    Getting Engaged to Netflix

    Getting Engaged to Netflix

    Get out the Tim Tams and the Vegemite…cause we’re going down under! Well, actually, the “down under” came to visit us, so we could give you an episode all about working with Netflix. We’re talking with PJ Madam and Tim Noonan (who speak with amazing Australian accents!) They deep dive into the making of their current Netflix series Extreme Engagement, which they created, produce, and star in. How did they sell it? What was it like working with Netflix? What advice do they have for both new and experienced producers? What’s it like to put your relationship up for the world to see…while living in remote villages with indigenous tribes? (Whaaaat????!!!) Plus, we swap some stories about being a couple working together in the industry. Get ready for a jam-packed episode filled with fun, advice, Netflix insights… and an unusual amount of active yeast!























    The Netflix Dream?







    Let’s call it like it is: a lot of people would trip over themselves to produce and star in their own Netflix show. That is a dream that came true for Tim Noonan and PJ Madam. They’re making Extreme Engagement for the behemoth streamer.







    In the series, they put their relationship through extreme love rituals…in remote villages…with indigenous tribes! Netflix airs the unscripted experiment around the globe, and Tim and PJ are now known world-wide.







    Tim and PJ unpack a lot, from the struggles of developing new projects to the pressures of suddenly being in the eye of every Netflix subscriber on earth. Some of what we discuss today:







    * The development process at Netflix, and what it’s like getting notes from the streaming giant* The surprising length of the pitch tape that sold the Netflix series* Creating content with no commercials on streaming platforms vs multiple act breaks on network and cable television* Filming in remote villages where cameras rarely visit…if ever* Being vulnerable on camera, even when you feel like it makes you look bad* Receiving world-wide praise…and criticism* The problems with “fake it till you make it”* Working closely with someone you know well – whether in romance or friendship* Tim’s take on the difference between shows that make it and shows that don’t* Pressures of doing “free work” when developing a new series* Huge financial risks when running a production company* Why we switched from theater to television* The hardest three months of Joke’s life (by far!)* The strangest thing we’ve ever tasted* And…why do we keep hitting ourselves in the head with a hammer?







    It’s Netflix Plus!







    If, like most filmmakers and artists, the idea of having your own show on Netflix is appealing, this episode is for you. Get the inside scoop on the process Tim and PJ went through, and pick up tons of tips from their spot-on advice. They’re very open about everything, talk straight, and share some brutally honest stories. Hit that giant “PLAY” button at the top of the page to listen now – maybe your Netflix series will be next.







    Helpful and Related Links







    Make sure when you develop shows you don’t go broke! And be sure you develop wisely.







    The stresses of making a film or TV show can be a huge burden (as Tim and PJ point out!) Check out these weird tips about surviving production, and this episode about taking care of your mental health.

    • 1 tim. 2 min
    Making Truly Independent TV with Filmmaker Brian Speciale

    Making Truly Independent TV with Filmmaker Brian Speciale

    It sounds like a myth, or some kind of Hollywood urban legend, but some people actually put their own shows on television by buying airtime and selling ads themselves. They make truly independent TV. How does it work? How much do you have to pay for he airtime? Is it easy to get sponsors for your indie TV show? And of course, is it worth it? Producer Brian Speciale shares his insider information on the process…plus, some great tips for producers.







    Let’s Be Honest: The TV Business is Hard

    Whether you’re a brand new producer/filmmaker or an experienced pro, by now you know just hard it is to break into unscripted television.

    When you’re just starting out, you need more than ideas, you have to have put together attractive pitch packages with a real person, place, or thing attached. Then what? You either need to attend pitch fests, cold call TV networks (good luck), or (hopefully!) team up with a production company like our own Joke Productions.

    It’s not easy to get started.

    When you do get interest from a production company, you now become one of hundreds – may thousands – of potential shows networks are considering. Even if you get lucky and a network orders a pilot, the odds are still against you that you’ll make it to air.

    This means that being successful by taking the traditional “break into showbiz” route requires persistence, luck, and playing the Hollywood numbers game.

    Personally, it’s a journey we’ve loved, even though it’s been and continues to be challenging. But is there another way to get your show on TV?

    Going Totally Indie: Like Brian Speciale

    Last month we introduced you to Brian Speciale, and he shared his amazing Shark Tank story. (He won…and his company is on track to do 70 MILLION dollars in revenue this year, selling a product called the COMFY.)

    Brian is someone we first met through this podcast and submission portal. He’s done it all, from shooting, to editing, to producing and sound mixing. And he found another way to put his show on TV: Buying airtime from networks, and selling ads himself.



    Brian’s independent TV show, HOT SHOTS.

    On the up side, he didn’t have to worry about endless pitches to network execs who may or may not get the show, he had total creative freedom, and he was author of his series in every way.

    Sounds great, right? But…what are the downsides?

    Indie TV Means It’s All On You

    Everything is on your shoulders. First, you have to pay up front for the airtime (Brian says once it was $143,000 up front before he had a single sponsor.) Then you have to sell advertising yourself. If you don’t sell the ads, you don’t get your money back, and might even face financial disaster.

    Oh, and you still have to produce an engaging television show to broadcast standards along the way…and you have to pay for that, too. So you sell ads not just to pay for the airtime, but to pay for your actual production, which will likely be five to six figures an episode.

    But, as Brian says, it IS possible to make incredible money this way. So how’s it all work?

    From Brian you’ll learn about:



    * The plusses and minuses of making independent television

    • 19 min

Kundrecensioner

Ubbe99 ,

Very inspiring and useful

These guys are very inspiring, professional, consistent and generous about their knowledge. Definitely recommended! Greetings from Medellin, Colombia.

Mest populära podcaster inom TV och film

Andra som lyssnade prenumererar på