NYTVF Keynote: Carlton Cuse and Andy Borowitz

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So as to not be an asshole here is credit for this featured photo.

Here is the view from my seats: 50 feet from the empty chairs of two television icons, two people that changed the face of television as we knew it 10 years from one another.

Empty stage, 2 chairs at NYTVF (SVA room 1)

In them for an hour tonight were Andy Borowitz and Carlton Cuse.  They’ve known each other for 30 years and were both wearing these awesome black leather shoes.  I don’t think they’re the same shoes but they were both really nice.

Carlton Cuse is the namesake of “Carlton” from the Fresh Price of Bel-Air, as well as the dance.*

*I googled that this was even possible since I did not believe it for one single second.  Turns out Andy Borowitz created that series with his very talented wife Susan. (Alfonso Ribeiro got four 10’s the night he recreated that dance on Dancing with the Stars but as I google the spelling of his name [nailed it!] I find that he has retained a groin injury as well.  Unfortunate, especially since he’s a frontrunner but not the only one.)

Gems from Cuse:

Nash Bridges is about a guy who gets all “A”s as a cop but always fails in his personal life.

The show was also apparently created because Don Johnson had a contract with CBS that Les Moonves inherited when he took over.  Cuse took a meeting because someone said, “Come on it’s Don Johnson seriously.”

An inherent optimism helps, as does perseverance… and patience.

It took me ten years to learn that what a character wants is more important than what I want them to do.

90% of projects fail – until after you write LOST which is why I am so busy right now.

With a show you can have two measures of success, the ratings and the critics.  What Mad Men and The Walking Dead did was change the worth of AMC, whereas it used to recycle old properties and is now a highly valued company.  So that’s a different metric, and one that is working right now.

Tips:  Find mentors, Don’t be afraid, Learn the craft, and know there is very little gratitude in Hollywood.  Don’t overwrite, give just enough to trigger the imagination of the audience and then get out of the way.

His favorite two shows this year were Fargo and True Detective.


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