Say Less, Get More Screen Time

I’ve spent some time with reality TV and documentary producers and I’ve seen how they cast and edit. They want archetypes and sound bites. They want the story to be simple…

  • “I’m skinny, but I want to be strong”
  • “My culture is very important to me”
  • “I’m a chauvinist”
  • “I’m dumb”
  • “I’m a nerd”

… and they want people to reiterate their story over and over in small chunks of monolog or dialog…

  • “I’m sore and cramping from too many protein shakes”
  • “I don’t dress like this to impress your parents. I am devout!”
  • “I intimidate girls with my car.”
  • “I ate a sandwich … backwards”
  • “It’s like star wars, but with Vulcans”

Some people naturally see themselves as archetypes and talk this way, but the skill can be learned. I am often a different person to different situations, so I can’t just come up with catch phrases to always use. I try to think through what I want to say, what the producers/ editors will want, then figure out how to put it in a small chunk of words.

It’s kinda weird

It feels uncomfortable. It isn’t the normal way to talk to people. It doesn’t feel conversational. It feels maybe confrontational. It’s talking in little chunks.

Written By Scot for entertainment pros

Scot Nery has helped some of the biggest companies in the world achieve entertainment success.

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