Friday, April 28, 2006

What happened with the Hollywood Pitch meeting...

OK, everybody is asking me for an update on what happened in Hollywood!

Here's what happened: 1. The Producer that met me in the Hall at the Sheraton, turned out to be Legit. She did infact call ACTOR Kym Whitley, twice... telling Kym she needed to meet me. When Kym finally got to speak to me, she told me the Producer I'd met...who called her... was actually a Producer on one of Kym's other Television shows...so hmmm, kind of wonderful to have just bumped into her, while I was in Hollywood, praying for a way to get to Kym Whitley, whom I wanted to star in the sitcom (along with Rachael Harris).

About two weeks ago, Kym's people http://www.kymwhitley.net/
called to set up a meeting while I was in LA. But, I was too busy, and couldn't do it. Then Kym wasn't available when I was. So, finally, YESTERDAY we finally all had the pitch meeting. It went very well. So well in fact, that I'm thrilled. What? You want details? OK, below are some details. Incidentally, before the pitch meeting, I did have a consultation with my Entertainment Attorney. So, that I wasn't allowed to talk business, just creative stuff. What? (if you are a new author) You are wondering...why I need an Entertainment Attorney when I have a literary Agent? Well, here is something I've learned in my few years in publishing books. Literary Agents do not or should not handle deals where a TV project or film is being adapted from a Book that is already copyrighted and published by (in this case) a division of Random House. It is best for a Hollywood Entertainment Attorney who is experienced in deals like this to handle this stuff. My Entertainment Attorney has handled deals with such well known authors as Nicholas Sparks. www.nicholassparks.com/ This is a good thing.


Now, if you're an experienced author, editor, agent... You are wondering ...how it was that I retained Film and TV rights to my books. Well, it's a small miracle, that I did. But, it had to do with the fact that when I signed the three book deal, with WaterBrook/Random House, in 2002, it was supposed to be for a certain type of book, that at the time did not seem to be adaptable to Movies, or Film, but after I signed the contract, the Publisher decided they wanted very different types of books, which turned out to be very adaptable, but they didn't remove the clause that had already been agreed to on the contract. So, I got to keep all TV and FILM rights.

It all sounds kind of unbelievable, but it all happened.

Now, earlier in the month, it was going to be Michael Morris www.michaelmorrisbooks.com and I writing the script together, but after spending one weekend with Michael in LA meeting with people, it occured to me that we worked better seperately. We are still close friends. He just called today. And he will actually be a writer for this sitcom if I have any say in it, but at the time, it's just me.

Now comes the problems with everything: I want to be the Executive Producer on this project, and everyone is telling me that NO ONE is going to make me executive producer. But, here's the thing, I want the sitcom to be FUNNY and FAMILY FRIENDLY. I don't want any sexual jokes in the sitcome. It's called AIR MARSHA (about an airhead Flight Attedant and her Flight attendant co-worker) It's LUCILLE BALL MEETS SWEET HOME ALABAMA, only in this case Lucille Ball is a larger -out-there black woman, and her Ethel is a smaller uptight white woman who goes to Church. (Both Characters are based on my stories in my books). They are both Flight attendants, and when I pitched 8 different scenes to Kym Whitley, and her people, they loved them. So, I might have to get the funding myself, and produce the Pilot myself, which is possible. I mean, "What is impossible with man, is possible with God." And I want this Pilot to be funny and family friendly so Christians, and other 200 million believers in God, in America alone, can watch it with their young children. Like, heeellloooo - the old I Love Lucy shows. I don't think you have to have sexual content to be funny! So, if I get the funding and backers myself, and shoot the Pilot, and it goes well, then we can sell it and I can stay on as Executive Producer.

Also, I desperately want Rachael Harris to star in the Sitcom with Kym Whitely.

But, Actor Kym Whitley, is very good friends with Commedian Caroline Rhea, www.carolinerhea.com
And even though I LOVE Caroline, and have another project she'd be great in....
I don't want her in this sitcom with Kym. Because she and Kym are too much alike...and the whole funny thing in any sitcom is CONFLICT. And Rachael Harris (google her, she played the assistant in Kirstie Alley's FAT ACTRESS) would be the perfect straight person to Kym Whitley. Rachael, is the best DRY HUMOR actor I've ever seen. In fact it was in watching an episode of CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM (The Car Pool Lane) where I saw how funny it was to see an out-there character played by KYM WHITLEY pitted against the uptight, neurotic white guy, Larry David...that I got the idea for this show. OK, that's not exactly true - the idea for the show came all the dumb things I've done that is all documented in my books. But, the casting of actors, came from watching Racheal Harris on FAT ACTRESS and CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM and on watching KYM and Larry David.

OK, so that's what happened. KYM is going to try and pitch this to ABC, (who, I can guarentee you... isn't going to let me be the Executive Producer). But, the good news is, KYM is under a development deal with ABC.

And in an amazing twist of fate, I just emailed an Entertainment Attorney I met 7 years ago, at the Maui Writers conference,
www.mauiwriters.com
and told him what's going on with this...and you're not going to believe this, but he represents Racheal Harris... my other dream actor for the sitcom.

So, as a Christian, I have to say, this whole experience might be God on the move in my life, trying to get the idea of a FAMILY FRIENDLY funny sitcom with a tiny bit of Christian values in it, on NETWORK TV.

But, we'll have to wait and see, I mean, hey, look at Moses, he went before Pharaoh 9 times pitching his script, and he got rejected each time, until finally God granted release from the Negative enviornment and fullfilled his dream, but not before having him walk a while on hot sand.

More later, as I try and set the people free to get to the promise land that is flowing with a Funny Family Friendly sitcom.

Love, Marsha

3 Comments:

At 10:48 AM, Blogger relevantgirl said...

Marsha,

I'm sure you don't remember me, but we met briefly when I lived in Edmonds before I was a professional writer. I asked you questions about the business. At that time I was attending Sunrise Christian Fellowship.

I found this blog through my friend Dena Dyer, and just wanted to say HI.

I live in France as a missionary now and have published three books with another two on the way.

Anyway, hello (bonjour) and thanks for the advice so many years ago.

Mary DeMuth

 
At 10:49 AM, Blogger relevantgirl said...

Oh, and congrats on the hollywood stuff!!!! WOW!

 
At 10:49 AM, Blogger Annette Burkett said...

Sounds like God is doing big things! Found your blog through Amazing Grace-land.

 

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