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.


In conjunction with the launch of NYTVF 2016, the Fest hosted a series of community panels and networking events in New York and Los Angeles. These events – dubbed TV Town Halls and hosted in partnership with Seeso – focused on providing tangible advice for creators looking to break into the industry, advance their careers, and take their projects to the next level. If you weren't able to join us in-person, here's a collection of some of the best advice from our panelists:


On developing your series:


“Don't sit on your ideas. Don't just tell people about your idea. Do the thing. Jump into it”
Phil Matarese, Co-Creator, HBO’s Animals; NYTVF Alum


“There's a difference between a great pitch and a great project. It has to start with a great idea and a lot of passion.”
Jacob Perlin, Anonymous Content


"If you have a script, get people together and read it out loud. Get it on its feet […] Always start by thinking the person giving you notes is smart."
Erin Cardillo, Co-Creator, The CW’s Significant Mother; NYTVF Alum


On being motivated enough to finish a project:


“If you have passion, and you want to make something, you can't be stopped. People will jump in.”
Jillian Armenante, Writer/Creator, Kittens in a Cage; NYTVF Alum


“Deadlines are the most important thing. They force you to get something done.”
Mike Luciano, Co-Creator, HBO’s Animals, NYTVF Alum


On what networks are looking for:


“Irreverent, strong points of view, talent-driven content. We're looking at grounded worlds and characters […] Honestly, when you come in to pitch, we want you to succeed – we're rooting for you!”
Tara Schuster, Comedy Central


"Know the channel you’re pitching to. Know the shows on the channel – watch the programming. Watch in real time; look at promos. Look at how we’re programming and how we’re talking about programming."
Maura Madden - VP, Original Programming, IFC


On pitching your ideas:


“There are three types of meetings: general, pitch, or staffing. And every meeting is a business meeting, so be prepared!”
Meredith Willis, Denver & Delilah


“When you’re bringing an idea to the table, we respond to passion and fresh voices. That's because audiences respond to those things, too!”
Ben McLean, Seeso


"Come in with a strong point of view. Tell us what the show is, don't ask us what it should be […] Know what you want to say and be passionate and honest in how you say it. Even if your passion project isn’t right for our network, tell us – ‘look, I know this isn’t right for you, but here’s why I love it.’"
Angel Annussek - VP of Original Programming and Development, truTV


On taking network notes:


“Know how to take criticism. Talk about your stuff with your friends, and be prepared for the good and the bad […] We want you to make compromises sometimes, but we also want to hear you fight! We're counting on your comedic voice.”
Joel Kuwahara, Bento Box Entertainment


“Not all notes on your project need to be followed to the letter, but they're helpful to see what isn't working.”
Austen Earl, Writer, CBS’s The Millers; Writer/Co-Executive Producer, Sebastian (NBC - 2016 Pilot); NYTVF Alum


Final words of advice:


“Fail, and fail quick. Get back up and get back out there.”
Andrew W. Chan, Co-Creator/Director, Midnight Anthology; NYTVF Alum


“Take pressure off yourself. Be passionate, but keep going if the idea you have isn’t working. Keep creating, something will stick.”
Ari Pearce - Director, Original Programming and Development, Comedy Central


“Name your pitches correctly. Don’t name your pitch “Pitch for X Network” and send it to someone else.Pay attention to detail. Clear eyes, full hearts, can’t lose”
Daniel Kerstetter - Co-Head of Programming, Seeso



Check out previous downloads here:

2016 Bento Box Interview | 2016 truTV - Marissa Ronca | NYTVF Best Comedy Animals Heads to HBO | Q&A with the Jamz | Alumni Q&A (Richard Keith and Erin Cardillo) - 5/29/15 | Alumni Q&A (Damian Lanigan) - 5/29/15 | Chicago Comedy Panel - 5/18/15 | Big Laughs at Just For Laughs - 5/5/15 | Alumni Q&A (Whatever Linda) - 3/27/15 | Insights from the intern bullpen - 8/27/14 | 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


The NYTVF is a pioneer of the independent television movement, connecting its community of artists with leading networks, studios, agencies, production companies, and brands.

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