- Rene Balcer (LAW & ORDER: CRIMINAL INTENT) will be showrunner of the new CBS drama, THE ORDAINED, working with Lisa Cullen, the show’s creator. (So if you’re an old writer bud, now’s the time to start bugging your pal for a new gig!)
- Andy Briggs (TARZAN ) is writing THE DRAKE EQUATION, a drama pilot about a Space Intelligence Agency. (And the showrunner will be Tim Kring. But don’t worry about getting on staff just yet. The notion is still homeless for now. )
- Aaron Guzikowski (PRISONERS) has gotten the Sundance Channel to greenlight his drama series THE DESCENDANTS straight to series. Of course, he had to make them the owners of the show, but, hey, we do what we gotta do. (And now what you’ve got to do is find out who you know who’s BFF with Aaron and use that to make your writing staff dreams come true. We know you’ve already got the talent, right?
- Curtis Gwinn (NTSF:SD:SVU, DEATH VALLEY), Channing Powell (WHITE COLLAR), and Matt Negrete (also WHITE COLLAR) have joined the writing staff of THE WALKING DEAD, with Curtis as Supervising Producer. (So call ’em! Now!)
- Kyle Killen (AWAKE) has written INFLUENCE, a drama pilot for ABC that will star Christian Slater as a slick ex-con who solves people’s problems by, um, manipulating the folks who’re giving them trouble. (We love these truelife adventures!)
And now a few words from TVWriter™ hero – and former Advanced Workshop student – Curtis J. Gwinn:
From Curtis’ FB Page
i’m very excited to announce that i began working as a writer/producer on AMC’s, the walking dead this week.
zombies have been a major horror-obsession of mine for 30 years, starting with romero, (i first saw dawn of the dead when i was 7!) and fulci, up through modern fare like 28 days later and sean of the dead (a comedy, yes, but also a TOP notch zombie flick!). not to mention the entire resident evil video game series, which i’m unashamed to love!
appropriately enough, the very first TV project i sold (with former comedy partner and good friend, John Gemberling ) was an odd couple meets living dead sitcom called, “doc & chains,” about a scientist and a biker gang leader who get trapped in a farmhouse during a zombie apocalypse and are forced to (hilariously!) survive together. it was never shot, but i still thank then comedy central execs Lou Wallach, Jessi Klein and Dan Powell for buying the concept! this was pre-sean of the dead, so i like to think we were all zom-com visionaries!
although i love comedy dearly, i have, for the past couple of years been trying to break into drama writing…with very little success. When your last network credit is, “the monkey show” on NBC, it’s hard to get drama showrunners to take you seriously. writing and producing for the amazing Pual Sneers on NTSF:SD:SUV:: certainly brought me a great deal of indie comedy credibility (not to mention being the best creative experience of my life!), but it isn’t exactly the pedigree one would expect for someone aspiring to drama. thankfully, Brian Bockrath at AMC and new walking dead showrunner scott gimple were able to look past the credits, read my original drama script, and give me a shot.
and even though everyone assures me that my writing is what got me the job, i can’t help but think i really got away with one here. the walking dead is a comic and show that i love, in a genre i’ve been obsessed with since i was knee high to a biter. to get the opportunity to work on the series is more than i could have hoped for as a TV writer, and i’ll be eternally thankful for it.
i’m not exactly sure what i’m trying to say in this rambling post…maybe it’s just a thank you note. or just a journal entry for future me to look back and take stock on. but also, maybe a bit of writerly advice: keep the things you loved as a kid alive in your creative heart. jobs come and go, but when you synchronize the energy and passion of decades of love with craft, there is no greater, more fulfilling work you can get.
oh…except volunteering to help people in need…that’s probably more fulfilling. and animals. save animals, y’all. and environmental protect…AHH, you get it!
As i walked in to the writing offices on monday, walking dead creator robert kirkman (a hero of mine!) welcomed me aboard and said, “now…don’t fuck it up, man.”
gonna try not to!
I loved reading this yesterday…because I know how much this gig means to Curtis. Not that he needs it. Check this out, courtesy of our beloved IMDB:
Nice going, dood. Don’t fuck it up.
Oh, and for all you People’s Pilot and Spec Scriptacular Entrants, or those who are thinking of entering, Curtis has done that too, using it as an early step toward learning about dramatic writing. He didn’t win. My point: The creative life is as much about attitude as it is about talent and intelligence. The way to get ahead is to go for it.
And laugh at the outcome, whatever it is.
EDITED BY MUNCHMAN TO ADD: Our Oh-So-Modest LB wouldn’t include this personal note Curtis asked him to append to the post above, so we’re doing it instead.
From Curtis James Gwinn to Our Feckless Leader:
special thanks to pal and mentor, my own personal Lester bangs, Larry Brody!
Cuz that’s really the kinda guy LB is.
…bringing joy to those of us who consider ourselves not only friends of Curtis Gwinn (one of the Executive Producers of the series & a former member of the TVWriter™ Advanced Online Workshop) but fans as well.
Now that, kids, is a fucking acronym to hold onto!
Welcome back, Curtis!
In addition to his web series, FINDING SUSAN GLENN, which we wrote about a few days ago, Max Greenfield is also scheduled to appear on one of our favorite Adult Swim shows, NTSF:SD:SUV::.
According to a report on TVGuide.Com, Greenfield is playing “…a Robert Pattinson type. I’m a teen heartthrob who might have an accent…or two…or three. The accent isn’t really from anywhere. Shooting it was really fun. I play a sexy Frankenstein.” And when he does it he looks like this:
Looks like NTSF:SD:SUV:: is planning on doing several film parodies this year including BEVERLY HILLS COP, MISSION IMPOSSIBLE 4, and CHARLIE’S ANGELS. Looks like all that’s missing from the series is former Executive Producer Curtis J. Gwinn, who’s now a producer on NBC’s ANIMAL PRACTICE. We love Curtis and have only two words for him at this time:
EDITED BY LB TO ADD: Just heard from Curtis Gwinn, who wants all of us to know that he’s still an Executive Producer of NTSF:SD:SUV:: and will be for all of this season and the next. In addition to his ANIMAL PRACTICE duties. Thanks for the update, dood, and just between us – even though you’re rich now, you might want to save some of those $$$ for when your Beamer breaks down.
…Which is a big deal to us because one of its creator/writer/showrunner/stars, a certain Curtis J. Gwinn, is a buddy of the boss’s. So, hey, how about we all watch?
Premiere party, anybody? We’re definitely up for it.
Speaking of that, when’s the ANIMAL PRACTICE party? ‘Cuz Curtis is on that show too, and that’s one hot, little monkey. (Not Curtis. This:)