I wasn’t sure whether or not to share this amusing anecdote from Gemini night, then I figured, why the hell not.
After the awards, as people were lining up for drinks, I’m milling about and I run into one of the executives in charge of Newsroom… The same executive that I pitched the television show to seven months ago. I said hi, s/he said hi. I went and stood in line next to Ken to get a beer.
I look over, and the executive is chatting with the producer of The Newsroom. I see him/her pointing at me, asking, “Who’s that?”. Then I overhear my producer answer, “That’s Matt Watts, he helped with the writing this year, and he was ON the Newsroom.”
I was totally baffled. Here I am, standing NEXT to Ken… I don’t get recognized very often, but if I’m standing next to Ken, it’s pretty obvious that he’s Ken Finkleman from the Newsroom, and I’m the guy who stands next to him… on The Newsroom. Assuming you’ve watched the show.
S/he had no idea who I was… Despite having been in his/her office seven months earlier pitching a show, when s/he said, “I think you’re great on Newsroom and I love this idea”.
Did I mention that in their office, when I pitched the show, I was sitting under a poster of the Newsroom, in which I was standing next to Ken?
Well I was. Sitting right under the poster.
Look, I don’t expect people to know I was on the show. I expect people not to know. But when one of the executives IN CHARGE of the show has no idea who I am… It’s a little demeaning.
Hey, I’m not bitter, in fact, I think it’s hilarious.
It made me realize that the reason my show was ultimately passed on had nothing to do with me, or the idea. This executive probably had no idea what the show even was.
Hell I don’t think this person even knows where s/he is half the time.
So, when you’re wondering why certain shows end up on rival networks after they’ve been pitched to the CBC, just remember this story.
And to any future executives, a word of advice: Lay off the booze… Apparently it can cause memory loss.