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One of the vital parts of making TV is having a certain amount of clarity in storytelling. From the writing of individual episodes to the relationships with cast to the environment on set, building trust among a group of creatives and the audience is essential.
At IndieWire’s inaugural Consider This FYC brunch, the creative engines behind four different TV shows gathered for an Above the Line panel. Moderated by IndieWire TV Critic Ben Travers, one of the themes that emerged from the conversation became how to establish this trust in the process of creating a TV show.
Act - Showrunners - Michelle - Dean - Nick
“The Act” showrunners Michelle Dean and Nick Antosca talked about the process of bringing a real-life experience to the screen while avoiding some of the pitfalls of other crime-based shows. Working together with their different backgrounds, the show became a melding of different approaches to the same story. Dean’s journalism background offered her a unique set of skills to help tell the story of Gypsy and Dee Dee Blanchard, one that she first documented in a longform piece for BuzzFeed News.
“Screenwriters lead with structure, which is great,” Dean said. “Journalists tend to lead with details. That’s what you do. You go around and you gather details and you build the story out of that. Here, you try to put them intelligible story structure that the audience could really understand.”
Addition - Diligence - Tale - Individuals - Antosca
In addition to the storytelling diligence that comes with telling a tale based on real-life individuals, Antosca talked about the desire to practice full disclosure with the show’s viewers. Keeping the guesswork out of an existing story lets the people watching focus on different aspects that would normally go unexplored.
“We wanted to make a promise to the audience that we were going to be up front with them. That tells you at the beginning that this story...
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