Monday, January 30, 2006

BOSTON LEGAL appearance

What a difference a week makes! Last Friday afternoon I was excited about the upcoming Christopher Titus pilot I'll be appearing in and technical advising and the next thing you know I get a call from my manager of saying that I've been booked on a BOSTON LEGAL. Hooyah!

The three people in the picture besides myself, are William Shatner, Currie Graham, (Desperate Housewives, NYPD Blue) and Julie Bowen who has appeared in several other series.

Despite what you might read in the tabloids, William Shatner is a very nice man. We chatted quite a bit throughout my day of shooting and he was more than happy to pose in this picture. Another example of schlock that gets published in those rags. Years ago was quoted in National Enquirer and I never said the words they said I did. My publicist told me that as long as it wasn't harmful or slanderous then I should just let it go. When you get to his level I'm sure you need to develop a very thick skin to keep from being hurt by the things that they say.

I play a prospective juror and appeared toward the end of the episode which will air on Tuesday March 7th on ABC at 10:00 p.m.

If you are of a mind to write to them, please do, there's a good possibility that if they get letters regarding my performance the show might bring me back in a larger role. They told me on the set that they do that all the time.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

What Defines My Success?

What is success for me? Above everything, when I feel I'm a success I will have a sufficient amount of F U money. What is F U money? For the last twenty years or more I have had to jump through hoop after hoop to keep myself in home health care providers and medical insurance so that I could survive and pursue a career. In details I will go into on this blog eventually I will explain the depths of despair I've been in at various times in my life when I was about to end up in a nursing home. To me, living in a nursing home would be a death sentence. Which brings me back to the F U money. I will feel successful when I have a sufficient amount of money that when I'm told to jump through certain hoops that I no longer want to jump through I can tell them F U.

In addition to the F U money, I will have a van that not only runs well, looks nice. The only other van I ever had I bought when I was in high school and drove up until about five years ago. My goal includes not only getting to a certain financial level, I also want to be pursuing my love of acting and writing.

If it sounds like I'm only out for money, it is because of the 24-hour nursing coverage I require. It's not like I'm going to drop dead any moment if someone isn't constantly at my side but as you probably know, I have a very limited amount of mobility. I can't eat, drink, get out of bed, go to bed, or " take care of nature " without somebody's help. As a lot of you who are in my boat know very well, nursing care is extremely expensive. I not only have to make enough to live in the outrageously expensive city of Los Angeles where I pursue my craft, I also have to pay for nursing care, and medical coverage.

By the way, I just got some more good news a few days ago. Christopher Titus contacted me and offered me the role of a prospective detective in his series pilot "Special Unit". It will be my first acting job in nearly twelve years. Hooyah!

Again I really appreciate the responses that I'm getting from readers of this blog. I hope people get more from this than the ravings of a self absorbed actor/writer. I actually have other goals that go along with achieving success for me, but they are more altruistic goals and if I talk about them I'll sound like a braggart. (yes, even more than I already do. )

There is some other cool stuff in the works that I will talk about in the near future. Thanks for reading ...

Monday, January 02, 2006

Happy New Year!

The new year has been a happy one for me so far. Warning Films, the production company that hired me to write Harlem and the African American Jesus movie now called Color Of The Cross, called me early morning on New Year's Day. They asked me to write the book version of Color Of The Cross. Hoorah! It will be a novel based on the screen play I wrote a few months back. It will be controversial both because of the fact that Jesus will be dark skinned, and because of some interesting choices that I made in the screen play concerning Mary Magdalene, Judas, and Mary. I'm envisioning that it will take two or three months to write and there will be an early announcement about it here on my blog as well as where it can be obtained. It will be my first novel and I am very much looking forward to writing it.

I've completed my pilot for a TV series, The Outsiders, and turned it into ABC. My mentor, Adam Myman, a vice president of current programming at ABC was happy with what I had done with it and now it is with Carmen J. Smith, the head of new talent development to decide what will happen with it now. I'll find out more when she comes back from vacation at the end of the week.

In the meantime, they asked me to come up with three pitches for the NBC comedy, My name is Earl. I developed three that I'm pretty happy with and I'll pitch them to Carmen and Adam. Whichever one they choose I'll write into a comedy spec.

As a writer in search of a staff writing job on a television series, one needs a portfolio of several types of scripts. I have a police drama (Without A Trace) referred to as a procedural, a TV pilot (The Outsiders), and with My Name Is Earl, I'll have a comedy. The three scripts span the three networks ABC, NBC, and CBS.

I'm putting all this information here both for my own reference in the future and for people to see what writers have to go through to get a job on television. (I know what your thinking ... if TV writers have to go through all this, why is there such crap on television?) My answer is, there really isn't a lot of crap on television anymore. There used to be. But now, there are shows that can be enjoyed by almost any demographic group. The networks are too smart put crap on television, they can't make money that when. If you think a particular show is stupid or below your level of intelligence it probably is. But it's perfect for somebody else.

For example, I particularly like cutting edge shows like South Park, and Drawn Together that push the envelope on good taste and occasionally go beyond. A lot of people hate those kind of shows and prefer crime solving kind of shows like CSI. So to those people who say there isn't anything but crap on television, I say take another look, there's a lot more channels than there used to be and I can almost guarantee you will find something that you'll tune and time after time to watch.