TV Insights, Observations and Obsessions from the NYTVF
Check out our Q&A series with Fest Founder Terence Gray (and others), designed to provide submitting artists and TV fans with insight to the current development landscape. If you're thinking about submitting to the NYTVF, this is for you.
Insights from the intern bullpen
As part of our expanded intern program, we are looking at the backgrounds and interests of the students and recent grads who help make the NYTVF run smoothly and keep the NYTVF staff on our toes. For the most recent of these interviews, we asked Laura Vedder, a student at Brookdale Community College, to tell us what interests her about television and what makes her want to revisit characters week after week.
What's your educational background? What interests you about television?
My background is pretty eclectic, like the current television programming landscape. I received my BS in Business from Villanova University. Entourage was at its height when I was an undergrad, and it inspired to pursue the agency side of the entertainment business right out of college. I worked for a booking agency, mainly dealing with musical groups and performing artists, and I also worked in the legal field before going back to school at Brookdale Community College. There, I have been expanding my background in media, television, and film. My studies have included studio television production, screenwriting, and journalism. Personally, I love comedy and writing, and have been creating everything from articles to sketches to screenplays (in addition to performing stand up and improv in my free time). This summer, I got to combine my passion for comedy, writing, and television production by producing and hosting my own “late night” style talk show, geared to air in the afternoon.
What makes a great TV show?
The most important aspect of a great show, for me, is well developed characters. Sound character psychologies ultimately drive a show from week to week and sustain a series. I have found that characters must have at least two of the three following characteristics to be really compelling and watchable: interesting, likable, and relatable.
Also, the effort to go beyond traditional archetypes can add so much depth to a series and create multiple opportunities for solid subplots. Some top-notch examples of fantastically written characters are the casts of Downton Abbey, Arrested Development, and Breaking Bad. Also, I love to see how personal attributes like occupation and culture get translated onscreen and compare it to real-life. I get to observe it first hand whenever my physicist father catches an episode of Big Bang Theory. It’s pretty entertaining to watch him react to the show.
What Laura's Reading:
Check out previous downloads here:
Insights from the intern bullpen - 8/19/14 | Insights from the intern bullpen - 8/6/14 | Insights from the intern bullpen - 7/30/14 | Insights from the intern bullpen - 7/24/14 | Rory Covey of My Damn Channel's Honchos - 4/10/14 | Drama advice from Siobhan Byrne O'Connor - 4/3/14 | NYTVF Alum Danny Abrahms - 3/21/14 | Drama Advice - 3/13/14 | Advice from Chicago - 3/10/14 | Unscripted LA Panel - 2/25/14 | Drama Development - 2/20/14 | MSN Development - 2/12/14 | Casting - 2/5/14 | The Network Development Process - 1/29/14 | History Development - 1/15/14 | Comedy Formats - 3/18/13 | A&E Pipeline - 4/3/13| Fox Script Contest - 4/10/13 | From Film to TV - 5/17/13 | Lifetime Unscripted - 9/4/13