Tag Archives: hollywood

Hey Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?

Have you ever wished you had gotten involved with something big while it was still small?

If so – this is your chance…

First – some background;

My novel Unfinished Business (released in June, 2013) has long been praised as the perfect story line for a TV series, and while I didn’t write it with that in mind – I’ve always known it.

Unfortunately, I’ve never had the time, resources or know-how to get it to that next level.

Until now.

I was recently asked by a friend, who works in the movie business, why none of my books have been made into movies yet.

The answer, I told her, is simple…in order for somebody to make a movie from a book – they first have to know the book exists. I went on to tell her about Unfinished Business and its potential as a great TV series. I explained that if I could only make a nice ten minute teaser trailer and send it to the networks it might do the trick.

It might be a long shot – but it’s a shot nonetheless.

About a week later she messaged me saying she had two film makers interested in the project – and would I want to meet them to discuss it?

Do I want to meet them? Is a bear catholic?

So I met with Stephanie (my friend), Graham and Kelly.

Considering I was the only one at the table with a vested interest in this idea – the enthusiasm blew me away.

I was expecting to have to convince them to want to help me…instead, we leapt from “Nice to meet you.” to “Here’s what we’ve got in mind.”

We spent two hours throwing ideas around, talking about filming locations, where to find actors, and a bunch of other stuff that was all Greek to me.

It was awesome!

Meeting #2 was even better. A director had been added to the mix and we had a solid lead on the actress for the role of Meg – the main character in the book.

Now comes the fun part – and the purpose for this post.

It’s time to talk about money.

In order to make this trailer good enough to impress the suits at the networks it’s got to be made by a competent crew using bona-fide actors.

And those people don’t work for free.

So I’m asking for help.

I’ve started a Go Fund Me campaign to raise the do-re-mi needed to take Unfinished Business to the next level.

You can see the campaign here

There are three ways you can help…

First (obviously) is to make a donation. No amount is too small and every dollar helps (pardon the clichés).

Second  share this story far and wide. Post it on your social media sites and spread the word.

Third – if you know Matthew McConaughey and/or Sandra Bullock tell them I’ve got some roles for them.

I’m offering some pretty cool incentives on the campaign so please take a minute to check them out and see how you can be part of something small that may get pretty big!

 

As always – thank you for reading

 

6 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

It’s a Mystery to Me – or – Dying for the Same Old Thing

50s tv adEven though television appeared on the scene in the 50s,  it didn’t become a household word until the mid-60s. By 1970 it was a major factor in the daily lives of Americans, and once cable TV became the norm in the mid-80s, the average American household was no longer content with just one boob-tube…most had at least two (I personally know a couple who have a television in every room of their home…including both bathrooms).

Before I get to my point I’d like to lay a few statistics on you courtesy of the A.C. Nielsen Company…

  • The average American watches more than 4 hours of TV per day
  • 66% of American homes have 3 or more TVs
  • By the time a child reaches 18 years of age they will have witnessed 40,000 murders on TV
  • 53.8% of TV programing is devoted to crime, disaster and war
  • 59% of Americans can name The 3 Stooges, but only 17% can name at least 3 Supreme Court Justices

So, I think we can agree that TV is a dominant force in America – not that you needed me to tell you that.

3 Stooges

Believe it or not, to a writer, television can be very educational. There is a lot of good writing on the tube…and lots of bad (really bad) writing as well.

If you analyze programs or movies from a writing perspective you’ll quickly see how formulaic almost all of them are. For example…next time you’re watching a sitcom with a laugh-track pay attention to when the audience laughs. It’s usually after every third spoken line.

Anyway…let me get to my point.

A few months ago somebody suggested that I watch a new program called Forever.

Forever

My strategy with such recommendations is to set my DVR to record the show and then watch the first episode when I have nothing better to do (in case it’s a dud).

This past weekend I finally got around to watching the pilot episode and I enjoyed it.

It’s a detective show with a twist – the medical examiner assisting the lead detective is immortal. That’s right…immortal, as in he can never die.

It’s a pretty unusual take on the detective-solving-a-murder show – and that’s what I’d like to talk about today.

I’ve been watching TV since the mid-60s.

I don’t consider myself a TV-a-holic, but I do admit to having a strong attachment to the idiot-box, which means I’ve seen more than my share of programs.

So, as I watched another episode of Forever last night I realized that the murder-mystery is probably the most common genre on TV.

Hollywood’s scribes have thrown countless variations-on-the-theme at us, but in the end it still comes down to a who-dun-it.

It used to be that murders were solved by cops, a la Friday & Gannon, Starsky & Hutch or Cagney & Lacey.

Hawaii Five-0It wasn’t long before somebody realized the tired old plot line needed some freshness…something different. That must have been when the crime scenes were moved to exotic locations with shows like Hawaii Five-O, The Glades and Miami Vice.

The next trick was to start varying the personalities of the cops. They gave us detectives with attitude (Kojak), detectives with laundry issues (Columbo) even ex-detectives with O.C.D. (Monk)..

The husband and wife team was popular for a while…McMillan & Wife, Heart to Heart.

We even had cops posing as teenagers in high school on (the original) 21 Jump Street, for all you Johnny Depp fans. Monk

Once they discovered the Private Investigator it was like a whole new world opened up.

Spenser for Hire, Remington Steele and Moonlighting all offered their own eccentricities, setting them apart from the run-of-the-mill.

We’ve seen people from all walks of life investigating homicides.

  • Priests
  • Insurance Agents
  • Actors
  • Fake Psychics and Ex-Models
  • Reformed Criminals
  • Former Cops, Soldiers and Spies
  • Doctors, Medical Examiners and Crime Scene Techs

and my favorite, of course

  • Writers

Do you suppose Hollywood wants us to think that cops are incapable of solving crime on their own?

The real question I have is: Are we, the TV watching public, so obsessed with the murder-mystery that we’ll watch it in any incarnation?

The television gods have thrown so many cop shows at us we all know our Miranda Rights by heart and many of us know how to avoid leaving evidence at a crime scene.

I’m not complaining, I’m just curious about our fascination with this particular type of programming.

It’s a chicken/egg thing.

Do we watch them because they make them—or—do they make them because we watch them?

It also brings to mind the age-old question; does life imitate art or vice-versa?

Oscar Wilde

I guess you could say…it’s a mystery.

As always – thank you for reading

9 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

It Was Much More Than an Interview – It Could Save a Life

On Friday August 1, 2014 I had the pleasure of interviewing Mickey Jones on my radio show (as I warned you about here).

If you don’t know who Mickey Jones is – look here. If you don’t know about my radio program on 97.3  The Surf – look here.

Anyway – about the interview…

Just prior to calling him, I played the song Secret Agent Man by Johnny Rivers to get the listening audience primed – since Mickey was the drummer on that track.

secret agent manI called Mickey and we exchanged pleasantries off-air while the song played. Mind you – Mickey couldn’t hear the song so he had no idea what the audience was hearing.

When the song finished I brought our mics up and welcomed Mickey to the show, telling him that we had just played Secret Agent Man.

“That’s a good song,” he said. “Let me tell you a story about that song…”

He launched into a story about the making of Secret Agent Man, which led to another story about Johnny Rivers, which led to a story about touring England with the Rolling Stones as their opening act, which led to a story about John Lennon telling Mickey he hoped the Ed Sullivan show would be seen in California, which led to…

Well – you get it.

We talked about his book That Would Be Me (a must read for music lovers) and his work-in-progress I’m That Guy which will chronicle his acting career. Mickey is a born story-teller so neither of these books will disappoint.

That Would Be MeNinety minutes after we began I had to interrupt him in the middle of a story about Arnold Schwarzenegger.

He sounded disappointed that he had to stop. I really think he felt as though he was just getting started!

Judging by the response from the listeners I should have let him keep going.

Talking with Mickey is like having a conversation with your best friend – the one you haven’t seen in a while, but as soon as you get together it’s like you just spoke yesterday.

Shortly before we wrapped things up I let a cat out of the bag. I revealed a bit of a secret on the air that Mickey doesn’t talk about.

As far as he knew it was just another interview about rock-and-roll, and he was fine with that, but there was a more important message I wanted to get out.

Quite simply – Mickey needs a kidney.

When I first met him in 2011 he had found a donor and things were looking good. Unfortunately, complications arose and the donor was told, for her own health reasons, that she could not donate. In the meantime, Mickey had been removed from the waiting list for reasons I am not sure of.

The would-be donor (we’ll call her Lark) asked me if we could interview Mickey and get the word out about Mickey’s need for a kidney. Like Mickey, Lark is also an incredibly self-less person and even though she can’t donate her kidney she has taken it upon herself to help find another donor.

I announced it on-air without giving Mickey any advance warning and he was immediately choked up with gratitude (although he tried to blame it on his allergies!).

Tim on the air

On the air talking to Mickey Jones on WQFB 97.3 The Surf – flaglerbeachradio.com

Here’s the thing that struck me the most; Mickey spends a great deal of his time and energy traveling the country, and sometimes the world, to participate and lend his support to charities – especially charities aimed at helping children. (click here to see one of the charities Mickey supports – where he and I first met)

Putting his own health issues aside, he selflessly devotes himself to causes that will help others…but when I reached out to my listening audience for help, he was so overwhelmed that he was left speechless for a few seconds – something that doesn’t happen too often!

The bottom line is this…Mickey’s chances of finding a kidney increase greatly every time somebody hears about his situation – so spreading the word is the first, and biggest step.

You can help greatly simply by sharing or reblogging this post.

share this

Finally – Anybody interested in learning about donating a kidney can contact:

Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

If your last name begins with A-K, call Jessica at 310-423-8463

If your last name begins with L-Z, call Enrique at 310-423-8463

It is very important to tell them you wish to be tested to donate to Mickey Jones

If you missed the interview don’t worry, I will be posting a link to an encore presentation very soon.

 

As always – thank you for reading

13 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized