Ready4Air: (Brands and Bloggers)|Carnival’s Fathom: Sun, Fun And Travel With A Purpose

Fathom Adonia
Photo Courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

May 26, 2016 | Posted in Brands and Bloggers Connect, Social TV, Travel | By

On Fathom Adonia at Amber Cove, Puerto Plata Dominican Republic Photo Courtesy/Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

On Fathom Adonia at Amber Cove, Puerto Plata Dominican Republic
Photo Courtesy/Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Land, ho! The Fathom Adonia pulled into Amber Cover, Puerto Plata after departing the Port of Miami two days before. It was the third sail for Fathom, the newest cruise ship in the Carnival line, that offers passengers the opportunity to not only relax and have fun on vacation but to also “travel with a purpose” by providing community service in the Dominican Republic. Traveling with a purpose was a first for me. Since I made a promise to myself to be more socially impactful in 2016, this trip was a perfect a perfect fit.

Fathom Travel, Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic Impact Activity Chariot Photo Courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Travel, Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic Impact Activity Chariot
Photo Courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Travel has partnered with two established nonprofits, IDDI and Entrena, in the Dominican Republic, to assist rural and urban community projects. During two days of sailing and training sessions, Fathom Impact guides talked us through the impact activities and enlightened us on the best ways to work alongside people in the community. Read more about the impact activities and our sail  here. Now, that we’ve arrived, it’s time to get to work!

Fathom Travel, Puerto Plata, DR Reforestation and Nursery Group Photo Courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Travel, Puerto Plata, DR Reforestation and Nursery Group
Photo Courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

However, the question remained; how much of a difference could I make in three days, spending only a few hours working?  After docking, we boarded our activity bus and met our on the ground guides. I signed up for the Reforestation & Nursery, Cacao and Women’s Chocolate Cooperative and Student English and Conversation & Learning activities. Our first stop was getting dirty planting trees in the Reforestation & Nursery impact activity, our chance to make a difference in the rainforest, one tree at a time!

Reforestation & Nursery

Fathom Travel Puerto Plata Reforestation & Nursery Social Impact Activity Photo courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Travel Puerto Plata Reforestation & Nursery Social Impact Activity
Photo courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

On Tuesday afternoon, after docking in Puerto Plata, our group met up with our IDDI guide Ezequiel and headed to Mount Isabel de Torres, a national monument. The mountain known for its enormous statue of Christ rises 2,600 above sea level. At the base of the mountain, a representative from the Department of Environmental Ministry greeted and gave us a brief history of how erosion is claiming the Dominican Republic’s environment and rainforest. When it comes to reforestation, our help was greatly needed. This city girl does not have a much of a green thumb, but I was ready to give it a try. We broke up into three groups of twelve, and each team was tasked with either digging up seedlings, putting soil in small plastic bags and transporting them to the nursery.  The team in the nursery took the plastic bags of soil to plant, oak, mahogany and cedar seedlings and seeds. We rotated each assignment during three hours. Before long, we had a quick moving assembly line working in the garden.

Ready4Air: (Brands and Bloggers) |Fathom Travel: Cruising With A Social Conscience

Fathom Adonia, Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic Photo Courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Adonia, Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic
Photo Courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Another group of Fathom Travelers will plant the seeds in a forest region. Three hours later, our guide told us we had planted 1005 seedlings and seeds.  He told us that three weeks into the program, 6,000 seeds had already been planted. With Fathom sailing to the island twice a month, that is quite a social impact. In forty years, a tree that I helped plant will stand in the Dominican Republic’s rainforest. Cool! I was impressed!

Cacao and Women’s Chocolate Cooperative

Fathom Travel Puerto Plata Cacao and Women’s ChocolateCooperative Social Impact Activity Photo courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Travel Puerto Plata Cacao and Cacao and Women’s Chocolate Cooperative
Photo courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

After a day to rest and explore, where fellow blogger Lora Wiley-Lennartz and I visited Brugal rum factory, we were off to the another social impact activity at Chocal, a  Cacao and Women’s Chocolate Cooperative.  The cooperative in, Altamira, was started in 2007  by 30 women in search of a way to earn a living while making time for their families. Before the cooperative, work if any, meant traveling long distances, leaving little time for family life.  When our group arrived, several of the original founders of the cooperative were on hand to welcome us. The room smelled of delicious chocolate and the ladies presented us with a cup of creamy, sweet hot chocolate to get our day started. I believe it’s the best hot chocolate I have ever tasted!

Fathom Travel, Cacao and Women’s Chocolate Cooperative Photo courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Travel, Cacao and Women’s Chocolate Cooperative
Photo courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

A tour of the cooperative included an explanation of the chocolate production process from cacao tree bark to chocolate bar.  The cacao is grown on trees, dried in the sun and sorted before being grounded. While the ladies use machines for grounding the cacao, much of the work is still done by hand, and that’s where we were helpful. In 20-30 minute intervals, we separated good beans from bad ones and sifted through the chocolate nibs to make sure they were free of shells. It took a while for our novice eyes to get the hang of spotting the good from the bad ones, but our guide was a pro and helped us out.  Once the chocolate was ready, we learned the proper way to pour into a mold. After a few minutes of refrigeration, the chocolate was ready for packing and sale.

Fathom Travel, Cacao and Women’s Chocolate Cooperative Photo courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Travel, Cacao and Women’s Chocolate Cooperative
Photo courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Later we learned that we impacted the cooperative’s productivity by doing the menial work, freeing up the skilled workers to do other things. The group was delighted to have us around and thanked us with a home cooked Dominican lunch of rice and pork, seasoned eggplant, stirred fried vegetables and black beans. Yum! This was a wonderful way to spend my morning  in the Dominican Republic. Thanks, ladies!

Ready4Air (Culinary Cues) | Punta Cana, Dominican Republic: So Nice I Visited Twice

Student English and Conversation & Learning

Fathom Travel Puerto Plata Community English Conversation and Learning Photo courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Travel Puerto Plata Student English and Conversation and Learning
Photo courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

On Friday morning, hours before we sailed, bloggers  Lora, Vicki, Michele and I joined the social impact activity group for Student English and Conversation & Learning  where we met with 5th grade students to assist them in learning and practicing their English. The class of  10 year old boys and girls greeted us with a lively song and high fives as we entered the classroom. Once we introduced ourselves, we broke up into small groups and began working with the kids on the English alphabet and numbers.  In our first group, Heidi and Leticia, were superstars. They quickly picked up from where they left off from past English lessons to pronounce and identify letters and numbers almost perfectly. For Spanish speakers, the English sounds that are hard to pronounce include the letter  V/B sound, G sound and the Th sound. The number five, thirteen, and thirty can be challenging. With each correct answer, Lora, Michelle and I were there to give both girls positive reinforcement with a smile or high five.

Fathom Travel- Community English Conversation and Learning Photos courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Travel- Student English Conversation & Learning
Photos courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

After 45 minutes, it was time to switch it up. This time Lora, Michele and I each had a student. I partnered up with Jeremy (left in the photo) who has quite a personality; smart, inquisitive and full of energy. It turns out he wanted to be a teacher as well as a student. Midway through our session Jeremy told me in Spanish, via the Entrena guide, he wanted to learn English but also teach me Spanish words. So, that’s exactly what we did. He practiced his numbers and coached me through a few Spanish words. By the end, I had a new buddy, and Jeremy had learned to take a selfie.

Fathom Travel- Community Vicki Winters in English Conversation and Learning Activity Photos courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Travel- Vicki Winters in Student English Conversation & Learning Activity
Photos courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

The time went by quickly, and I wanted more time to teach. At the close of both sessions, we were asked to write progress notes in kid’s school binders. This way, the next Fathom Traveler can pick up where we left off. Although our time together was brief, I hope I made an impact. I know for sure, they made an impact on me. By the way, I have been home for two weeks, and I still smile when I think about the kids.
Disclosure: I was invited to cruise for a purpose. Thanks, Fathom Travel for providing this impact + travel opportunity. As always, opinions are my own. If you would like to travel with Fathom, click here and use the insider code 1530 to save on your next booking.

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air: (Brands and Bloggers) |Fathom Travel: Cruising With A Social Conscience

IMG_6117

May 22, 2016 | Posted in Brands and Bloggers Connect, Lifestyle Lineup (Food,Fashion,Travel,Books) | By

Fathom Adonia Photo Courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Adonia
Photo Courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

I was invited to cruise for a purpose. Thanks, Fathom Travel for providing this impact + travel opportunity. As always, opinions are my own.

Fathom Adonia, Port of Miami - #TravelDeep (i) Lora Wiley-Lennartz, Vicki Winters and Deborah Mitchell Photo Courtesy: Deborah Mitchell/Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Adonia, Port of Miami – #TravelDeep
(l) Lora Wiley-Lennartz, Vicki Winters and Deborah Mitchell
Photo Courtesy: Deborah Mitchell/Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

It turns out the second time was the charm when it came to a few blogger friends and I sailing on Fathom, Carnival Corporation’s newest ship. Yes, we were disappointed when our first scheduled cruise was suddenly canceled a month earlier but we rebooked as soon as the next sail became available. On May 8, Lora Wiley-Lennartz of Diary of a Mad HausFrau, Vicki Winters of The Vicki Winters Show , her husband Dan and I joined a group of almost 300 passengers to depart the Port of Miami on Fathom’s Adonia, heading to Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic. WHOOT!

Fathom Adonia, Port of Miami - #TravelDeep Photo Courtesy: Deborah Mitchell/Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Adonia, Port of Miami – #TravelDeep
Photo Courtesy: Deborah Mitchell/Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Our cruise was the third sailing for Fathom. Just a week earlier, May 1, the intimate 700 passenger liner made global historical news as the first ship to sail from the United States to Cuba in 50 years. Fathom Travel, the brainchild of social entrepreneur Tara Vargas Russell, is a cruise vacation that offers more than just traditional cruising sun and fun. Instead, interested travelers have a chance to make a social impact at their destination. Fathom Travelers, sail to Cuba or the Dominican Republic and engage in a cultural exchange or some cases give back.

Related Post: Ready4Air (Brands And Bloggers) | A Hotel Bumps It Up A Notch: From Grand To Luxurious (VIDEO)

Fathom Adonia to Dominican Republic, - #TravelDeep Photo Courtesy: Deborah Mitchell/Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Adonia to Dominican Republic, – Impact + Travel Training sessions #TravelDeep
Photo Courtesy: Deborah Mitchell/Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

In the Dominican Republic, the goal is to give back and make a difference in the community’s economy or assist in their education. Once passengers book a cruise they can review the Fathom Travel Impact + Travel  activities which include:

Reforestation & Nursery

Recycled Paper & Crafts Entrepreneurship

Cacao and Women’s Chocolate Cooperative

Community English Conversation and Learning

Student English and Conversation & Learning

Water Filter Production

Concrete Floors in Community Homes

I wanted leave my social impact footprint but also wanted time to relax. Since I didn’t know what to expect I registered for three activities, Cacao and Women’s Chocolate Cooperative, Student English and Conversation & Learning  and Reforestation & Nursery. Now, I was ready to become a Fathom Traveler.

Vicki Winters on Fathom Adonia Photo courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Vicki Winters on Fathom Adonia
Photo courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

So, what’s being a Fathom Traveler?  Well, for Vicki, it meant being sick to her stomach and confined to bed for the first day of the trip. The ship’s medical staff, on the lookout for possible cases of Norovirus, did not want to take any chances when Vicki told them she was nauseous had diarrhea and couldn’t get out of bed. Ms. Big Fat Mouth was tested and quarantined to her room for two days until the results were in. Only Vicki! (lol!) Read about her crappy sick days here.

Fathom-Impact-Travel-Training-with Impact Leader Gil-Lang Photo Courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom-Impact-Travel-Training-with Impact Leader Gil-Lang
Photo Courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

For the rest of us, our days on the high seas were spent learning how to be good Fathom Travelers. We were divided into cohort groups, a Fathom family of sorts,  to attend a variety of Impact + Travel Training sessions. The 45-60 minute sessions take place throughout the day and are a chance for passengers to meet fellow travelers, learn about the destination and impact activities. We learned how to work alongside and interact with the locals in sessions like “Spanish Phrases,” “Empowering English Tutoring,” and “Social Innovation In Action.” The leader of our group was the cute and knowledgeable Impact Guide Leader Gil Lang, a seasoned traveler with a history of  social impact work.  Speaking of work, even while on vacation,TV producers are always digging for information which meant Gil had his hands full answering Lora and my long list of questions.

Fathom Adonia pulling into Amber Cove, Puerto Plata Dominican Republic Photo courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Adonia pulling into Amber Cove, Puerto Plata Dominican Republic
Photo courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

By the time, the ship pulled into Amber Cove two and a half days later; we were ready to get to work. In the past, I have always enjoyed the Dominican Republic from the beach of an all-inclusive luxury resort. But this time, I saw another view of the isle. Puerto Plata, named by Christopher Columbus, means silver port. Mountainous and on the northern side of the island it was beautiful; reminded me of  Jamaica. Turns out the Dominican Republic is the second largest island in the Caribbean (Cuba is one and Jamaica is three). Amber Cove, the 30-acre waterfront property docking station, built for Carnival was going to be our home for the next few days.

Related Post: Ready4Air (TV) | (VIDEO) Actress Taraji P. Henson Turns 45, Talks About #Fashion Week In The Caribbean, And Cookie Lyon’s Style

Fathom Travel, Puerto Plata, DR Reforestation and Nursery Group Photo Courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Fathom Travel, Puerto Plata, DR
Reforestation and Nursery Impact Activity
Photo Courtesy Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

When we arrived and boarded our activity bus, the question remained for me; how much of a difference could we make in three days, spending only a few hours working? We would soon find out. Our first stop was the Reforestation & Nursery impact activity, our chance to make a difference in the rainforest-one tree at a time!

If you are interested in taking a Fathom cruise, they are offering a discount link. Click here  and use the insider code 1530 to save on your next booking.

Coming Up:  Fathom Travelers: Making An Impact One Activity At A Time

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (Brands and Bloggers) |Sweet Swag From #SweetSuite15, Toys And Games For The Holidays

kayla and raph

December 15, 2015 | Posted in Brands and Bloggers Connect, Social TV | By

mouse

By Alexis Trass Walker

From a toddler climbing inside a box and pretending that it is a spaceship to a teenager enamored with the latest video game, kids love toys. Understatement of the millennium, I know. But isn’t it true that every child (and many adults) love to get their hands on toys and games to entertain themselves?

Toy-buying can be tricky. As a case in point, I need to look no further than my four children. I’ve bought toys I thought they would love and they completely bombed. They’ve asked for toys that I felt sure they wouldn’t want because of their simplicity, and as it turned out, they loved them.

Blogger Bash/Sweet Suite  2015  at Pier Sixty at Chelsea Piers, New York City

Blogger Bash/Sweet Suite 2015 at Pier Sixty at Chelsea Piers, New York City

I was curious to see how my kids would react when a box of toys and games arrived from Debbie Mitchell. She received them from this year’s  #SweetSuite15, also known as the Biggest Night of Play which took place in New York City on July 16, 2015.  Each year attendees are shipped home a giant swag boxes full of toys from the event sponsors. This year Debbie graciously passed the toys along to my family.

My twin boys–Devin and Donovan, who are four years old–quickly lost interest in the box’s contents and went back to watching Paw Patrol. However, Devin did come back and claim the little mouse pictured above. Bit Bit is one of eight stackable, plush animals made by Bun Bun. They are the perfect size for his hand and they’re soft and pretty cute.

Sophia (8) and Makayla (6) are at the ages where toys are magical and games that require higher-order thinking skills are not as difficult anymore. Here are a few of their favorites:

iq logic

IQ Fit, a puzzle by SmartGames, was an immediate hit. The girls love it, I love it, and their dad loves it. IQ Fit is a 3D-puzzle. The puzzle pieces have to be fitted on the game board in such a way that it turns into a (flat) 2D-image. One of the protruding sides of each puzzle piece has one ball and the other side has two balls. Depending on how you turn a puzzle piece, you get more or less balls. When the puzzle is solved, all puzzle pieces will fit on the game board without any holes uncovered. IQ Fit has 120 challenges and five levels. Not only is it fun, but it also makes you turn things over in your head so you can do the puzzle correctly.

Related Post: Repost | Ready4Air (Brands and Bloggers) | Christmas In August With 2014 Sweet Suite Swag

color alive collage

This Crayola Color Alive coloring book is the coolest coloring book I’ve ever seen. You can bring your child’s coloring creations to life when you download the free app. You simply scan the page your child colored, and you’ll get a 4D-image of whatever was colored. Sophia claimed this Skylanders coloring book, and after she colored a few pages I downloaded the app to my iPhone. As you can see, her creation popped up right on top of the table!

Qixels collage

 

Qixels is a craft where you add little pixel bricks to a color-coded template. When the pixel bricks are sprayed with water, they fuse together and you remove the design from the template. The design we got was a sword. It started off fun for Sophia and Makayla, but they lost interest pretty quickly. The biggest complaint was that the pixels were too small. In fact, the template itself was rather small, measuring only three-by-three inches. Makayla has the smallest fingers, but even she had a hard time adding the pixel bricks. Maybe we had a sample size and the craft actually does come in bigger sizes.

eye found it

DreamWorks Eye Found It! is a fun game of cooperation and teamwork that is supposed to build observation skills and attention to detail. The objective is for all the players to get to the movie premiere before all the movie snacks are gone. The board is six feet long and features scenes from animated DreamWorks movies such as Kung Fu Panda, Shrek, and Madagascar. Players move forward by finding as many of pictured items as they can. I think this is a game that you might really like or really not like because either everybody wins or everybody loses. On one hand, Eye Found It! does promote teamwork. On the other hand, people who like to work on their own may not get as much pleasure out of the game. Overall, I say the game is a winner because if nothing else, it definitely makes kids pay attention to small details. That’s a great skill to have in life.

Related Post: Ready4Air (Film) | Lights-Camera-Jackson With Your Ultimate 2016 Animated Movie Guide

riddle cube

Like IQ Fit, Riddle Cube is a game of challenges. Up to four players get a shape-shifting piece and they have one minute to fold, twist, and stretch their cubes into shapes that match the challenge card pulled for the round. There are 200 challenges–some are easy and others are rather difficult. It is a game of logic and reasoning. My girls didn’t like it as much as I did, but I admit that I’m partial to these kinds of games because you have to make sense of something that seems impossible. Speaking as a former teacher, students who did well in school were the ones who made mistakes but had developed the ability to look at a problem in a new way and come up with a solution. Riddle Cube is fun and challenges those neurological muscles.

animal collage

And finally, meet Smoky and Ying in the top photo and Timber and Yang in the bottom photo. Wild Republic makes these plush animals, which are actually 2-in-1 toys. Smoky and Timber and Ying and Yang come one stuffed inside the other. If your child gets tired of playing with Smoky the bear, she can reverse the toy and play with Timber the wolf. These toys are soft and sure to bring a smile to the face of any stuffed animal lover.

If you still have some Christmas shopping for kids to do, there’s still time to order the toys and games here. They make good gifts that will be appreciated and used. For more of the great toys and games that were part of this year’s SweetSuite15 Biggest Night of Play  check out bloggers unboxing their SWEETSUITE 15 SWAG BOX click on to the  ToyInsider.com YouTube Channel

Hope you have a Happy Holiday!

Alexis Trass Walker

Alexis Trass Walker

Alexis Trass Walker is a freelance writer and copy editor. Connect with her on Twitter @alexistrass.

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Coming up: 

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (Film) |Hollywood Struggles To Find A Comedy : Lights-Camera-Jackson Says “I’m Not Laughing”

Photo courtesy: 20th Century Fox

December 14, 2015 | Posted in Film, Social TV | By

 

Photo courtesy: 20th Century Fox

Photo courtesy: 20th Century Fox

By definition, a comedy is “intended to make an audience laugh”. “Bridesmaids” director Paul Feig goes by a very similar standard, tweeting, “A comedy’s a film whose #1 goal is to make people laugh. If that wasn’t the filmmakers’ top goal, it’s not a comedy.”

2015 didn’t supply many pure movie comedies. The video game adventure “Pixels” and Feig’s own “Spy”, starring the Queen of the Modern Comedy, Melissa McCarthy, are essentially Action Comedies. Amy Schumer’s “Trainwreck” also contained romantic, and even some dramatic, elements. “Pitch Perfect 2” and “Ricki and the Flash” benefited from music throughout to keep their light tones. “The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” had a positive, light-hearted energy for the first two-thirds but an emotional final act. Technically, it’s a “dramedy”.

The smartest “Comedy” of the year was “The Intern”, starring an excellent Robert De Niro and Anne Hathaway at her career best. Similar in story and execution to “The Devil Wears Prada” ten years ago, “The Intern” didn’t have a lot of laughs but the premise, situations, and likable leads kept me smiling nearly the entire time. It’s good-hearted and quite moving. But, if “The Best Comedy of the Year” Award needs to go to the film that provided the most laughs, it’s clearly “Ted 2”, which greatly exceeded my expectations. Runners-up include the updated remake of “Vacation” and Jack Black’s “Goosebumps”.

A film that certainly IS NOT a comedy is “The Martian”. But because star Matt Damon makes a handful of wisecracks to the camera while he’s stuck on Mars, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) has accepted Ridley Scott’s big-budget, blockbuster, all-star, sci-fi, space, action/adventure into the Best Comedy category for the Golden Globes. Traditionally it’s not unusual for a touch of humor to be infused into more serious films to ease the dramatic tension. A few recent examples of this include “The Descendants”, “Philomena” and “Saving Mr. Banks”. “American Hustle” and “Silver Linings Playbook” are two other examples, and you may recall, the Golden Globes qualified them as comedies as well. And they’re allowing “Joy,” director David O. Russell’s third collaboration with Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper, also to be considered a comedy, even though many who’ve already seen the late December release say it’s clearly a drama.

And J-Law’s a lock for a nomination. Lily Tomlin’s character in the 78-minute “Grandma” is a bit wacky though the movie mostly doesn’t try to make you laugh. Nonetheless, she and Lawrence will likely fill two of the five Lead Actress in a Comedy or Musical slots – taking positions away from the much more deserving Hathaway, McCarthy, Schumer and/or Streep.

One of the worst mistakes the Hollywood Foreign Press Association ever made was with 2011’s “My Week with Marilyn”. While I’m glad Michelle Williams was recognized with a statue for her performance, watching the Marilyn Monroe character physically and psychologically suffer was NOT FUNNY. That movie was NOT a comedy in any possible way.

Deciding which category films should be submitted into has become a major game for studios and PR agencies, as they try to push their films and stars into the categories where they think they have the best chance of winning, not where they truly belong. You also see a lot of category abuse between the Best Actor/Supporting Actor categories. No one is playing along with this charade more than the Globes though the Critics Choice Movie Awards fell into the trap last year. When they named “The Grand Budapest Hotel” the year’s Best Comedy, over real members of the genre – “Birdman” (a legit dark comedy) and the highly entertaining “22 Jump Street”.
One thing’s for sure: when I fill out my Critics Choice ballot next week, “The Martian” won’t be anywhere on it, whether it’s considered to be a Comedy, Drama, Action, Sci-Fi/Horror, Foreign-Language, Documentary or Animated film.

Thanks, Jackson!

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson
Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Jackson Murphy (a.k.a. Lights-Camera-Jackson) has been a film critic/entertainment reporter on TV and radio since the age of 7 1/2. He currently appears weekly on WFLY radio (Albany, NY) and his reviews appear in The Record (Troy, NY) newspaper.

You can find Jackson Murphy anywhere below:

Website: Lights-Camera-Jackson.com

Facebook: Lights Camera Jackson

Twitter: @LCJReviews

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (Film) | Lights-Camera-Jackson With Your Ultimate 2016 Animated Movie Guide

"The Angry Birds Movie" - Courtesy Sony/Columbia

November 22, 2015 | Posted in Film, Social TV | By

 

"The Angry Birds Movie" - Courtesy Sony/Columbia

“The Angry Birds Movie” – Courtesy Sony/Columbia

By Jackson Murphy

I seem to make this statement every year, but it does seem like we’re about to enter one of the biggest, and potentially best years in the history of Animated Movies. The crowded 2016 line-up already includes more than a dozen features with a variety of appealing storylines. Headlining the group are a trio of highly-anticipated sequels. DreamWorks Animation has chosen a rather interesting, January 29th release date for “Kung Fu Panda 3”. This threequel picks-up right where 2011’s “KFP 2″ left off, as Po reunites with his actual father and meets an entire colony of pandas who he must now train for battle. Disney/Pixar’s”Finding Dory” will be released a whopping 13 years after “Finding Nemo”, on June 17th. I’m staying cautiously optimistic. Pixar could certainly knock this one out of the park, but the script has to be superb, with a tremendous emotional punch, to match expectations.

And just a month later, on July 22nd, is “Ice Age: Collision Course”. Based on the teaser screened before “The Peanuts Movie”, this fifth installment is taking things to a new “frontier”, as Scrat has, somehow, ventured into the future. Disney Animation took a break in 2015 (following the Oscar-winning “Big Hero 6”) to focus on two ’16 projects. “Zootopia” (Mar. 4) is an “animals with human characteristics” comedy. And “Moana” (Nov. 23) is set in beautiful Hawaii and stars, Dwayne Johnson. Will Lilo & Stitch be making cameo appearances?

Illumination Entertainment’s “The Secret Life of Pets” (July 8) has had its humorous teaser trailer play in front of every family film since “Minions” in July. The studio has also just announced “Sing” for Dec. 21. The story centers around an animal music competition and features the voices of Matthew McConaughey, Reese Witherspoon, and Seth MacFarlane. The concept sounds fun, and Universal, the film’s distributor, is reporting that 85 songs will be used in the film. Yes, that’s not a typo. McConaughey also leads Focus Features and Laika’s latest, “Kubo and the Two Strings”, a stop-motion adventure out Aug. 19.

While Sony Pictures Animation hasn’t confirmed a 2016 film as of yet, Sony/Columbia is distributing two releases. “The Angry Birds Movie” (May 20) is based on the online game series that, I guess, is still popular. And Seth Rogen and his pals star in a raunchy animated comedy called “Sausage Party” (Aug. 12).

And finally, three others that could be hit or miss: “Norm of the North” from Lionsgate looks less than promising (and a Jan. 15 open doesn’t help). “Storks,” from Warner Bros., is currently scheduled for a prime Sept. 23 release. And “Trolls”, starring those iconic toys (and the voices of Justin Timberlake and Anna Kendrick) is DreamWorks’ second ’16 film, due out Nov. 4.

Thanks, Jackson!

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson
Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Jackson Murphy (a.k.a. Lights-Camera-Jackson) has been a film critic/entertainment reporter on TV and radio since the age of 7 1/2. He currently appears weekly on WFLY radio (Albany, NY) and his reviews appear in The Record (Troy, NY) newspaper.

You can find Jackson Murphy anywhere below:

Website: Lights-Camera-Jackson.com

Facebook: Lights Camera Jackson

Twitter: @LCJReviews

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (Film) | Lights-Camera-Jackson asks Double Trouble for Awards Contenders?

Cate Blanchett in "Truth" (l) and "Carol"(r)
Photo courtesy: Sony Pictures/The Weinstein Co.

November 15, 2015 | Posted in Film | By

 

Cate Blanchett in "Truth" (l) and "Carol"(r) Photo courtesy: Sony Pictures/The Weinstein Co.

Cate Blanchett in “Truth” (l) and “Carol”(r)
Photo courtesy: Sony Pictures/The Weinstein Co.

By Jackson Murphy

Could having two spotlight movies backfire for some actors and studios as we approach Awards Season?

Cate Blanchett is currently experiencing this problem, as the praise she’s receiving for her lead actress performance in “Carol” (Opening in Limited Release Nov. 20) is overshadowing her work in “Truth”. The CBS News biopic with Blanchett as producer Mary Mapes and Robert Redford as anchor Dan Rather has received mixed reviews from critics and is being largely ignored by audiences who simply aren’t interested in this story.

Seth Rogen does the best acting job of his career as Steve Wozniak in “Steve Jobs”. Rogen doesn’t have a lot of screen time, but he’s part of a couple of fiery debates with Michael Fassbender’s Jobs, and it’s impressive to watch his commanding presence in a rare, dramatic role. And it’s a much-needed comeback for Rogen, nearly a year after “The Interview” debacle. But Supporting Actor nomination buzz for Rogen could completely go away with the release of the raunchy holiday comedy “The Night Before” in two weeks. If the film is as bad as the trailer, the awful reviews will bury Rogen’s awards season chances. Meantime, Fassbender is receiving high praise for his “Steve Jobs” performance, but that likely means his other late-year Lead Actor role, in “Macbeth” (limited open on Dec. 4), will not be in the awards conversation. Folks at the always (extremely) competitive Weinstein Co., which is distributing “Macbeth”, won’t be pleased about that, and could campaign Fassbender against himself.

And then there’s Pixar. The studio didn’t release a film last year, but it has two 2015 efforts. “Inside Out” was a critical and box office darling when it opened in June, and it’s considered to be a lock in all the Animated Feature competitions. If “The Good Dinosaur” (opening Nov. 25) is as good as it appears, it should make it on everyone’s ballots as well.

However, two Pixar movies in the same category may simply be too much for some voters to handle. The competition for slots is strong, with “The Peanuts Movie” and “Shaun the Sheep Movie” both worthy and the R-rated, stop-motion drama “Anomalisa” also considered to be a lock. Indies such as “Kahil Gibran’s The Prophet” and Studio Ghibli’s final feature “When Marnie Was There” will also get strong consideration. And finally, “The LEGO Movie” was thought to be a guaranteed Oscar nominee (and winner) last year, and we all remember what happened. This category is completely unpredictable.

Thanks, Jackson!

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson
Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Jackson Murphy (a.k.a. Lights-Camera-Jackson) has been a film critic/entertainment reporter on TV and radio since the age of 7 1/2. He currently appears weekly on WFLY radio (Albany, NY) and his reviews appear in The Record (Troy, NY) newspaper.

You can find Jackson Murphy anywhere below:

Website: Lights-Camera-Jackson.com

Facebook: Lights Camera Jackson

Twitter: @LCJReviews

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (Brands and Bloggers) | 4 Ways to Stay Confident as a First-Time Entrepreneur

Photo Credit: Steve Wilson via Creative Commons

November 11, 2015 | Posted in Brands and Bloggers Connect, Entrepreneur | By

 

Photo Credit: Steve Wilson via Creative Commons

Photo Credit: Steve Wilson via Creative Commons

By Deborah Mitchell

First published in Entrepreneur.com on October 5, 2015

When you are the boss, there is usually no one to pat you on the back for doing a good job or guide you through the daily obstacles of running a business. For the first-time entrepreneur, having no support can be daunting. A slow patch in business, a difficult client or losing out to a competitor may have you questioning your decision to be in business at all.

One of the biggest challenges is staying motivated and confident as you build a new business. So for those days when you are overwhelmed and frustrated by the daily grind, here are a few ways to keep your confidence up when you’re just starting out.

1. Seek out successful people in your field.
If you know of established individuals who are in the same business as you, reach out to them. Your startup is not a threat. Pick their brains for advice. If the leader of the company is on the speaking circuit or writes and shares information through social media, there is a good chance he or she will be available to meet or get on a phone call.

Reach out with an introductory email asking for a specific amount of time and outlining the top three points you would like to discuss. It is important for you to have a flexible schedule and work around their available time since you are asking them for help.
2. Never let them see you sweat.
Each day will not be perfect. Just know that getting discouraged from time to time is part of the business-building process. The key is to avoid letting your customers or employees see you sweat!

If a specific situation or client or employee relationship isn’t working, then take a day or so off to clear your head and regroup. Use the time to brainstorm with a trusted business associate, mentor or friend to figure out the best way to move forward. Once you come up with a plan, it’s time to get back to work.

3. Join a like minded group.
Support from friends, family or strangers can go a long way. Nowadays, social media contacts can quickly become very useful “friends.” Seek out and join Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Reddit and Google+ groups related to your industry to find virtual friends. Local meetups are also a good way to meet people in person. These are the places to ask questions and exchange information.

4. Focus on one business step at a time.
A good friend of mine loves to use the expression, “Don’t compare your business beginning to another’s middle.” As a new entrepreneur, it is easy to look at the competition and think that is where you need to be. But if your competition has been at it for several years longer than there is no way you should expect to be at the same place. Your competitor has spent years making their mistakes and growing. Run your own race and focus on taking one business step at a time.

When it comes to being a business owner we all need a cheerleader, especially when just getting started. Having periods of doubt is par for the course for any new entrepreneur. I am sure successful business owners still have moments of doubt.

If you don’t have a cheerleader on hand, go out and find one. While you are searching for that cheerleader, use this time to dig deep, trust your gut instincts and believe in your abilities to get the job done. Working for yourself is one of the hardest things you will ever do, but the rewards when you succeed make it so worth it.

How do you stay confident while building your business? Let us know in the comments section below.

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4ir (Film) |Lights-Camera-Jackson on The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) Hits A Milestone: (EXCLUSIVE)

Motion Picture Association of America MPAA2

November 7, 2015 | Posted in Film, Social TV | By

Motion Picture Association of America MPAA2

Motion Picture Association of America MPAA2

By Jackson Murphy

If you are like me (and, if so, we’re in the minority), you stay to the end of the credits of every movie you see. Not only does this practice mean you occasionally get rewarded with a bonus scene (aka “Easter Egg”) that the moviegoers who leave early miss, but there are also traditional features in the closing credits that all diehard film fans should want to check out. One of those is the seal from the Motion Picture Association of America, with a corresponding number that goes with it, signifying that this film has been submitted to the MPAA for an official rating. But, if you’re part of the millions of movie fans who don’t stick around and haven’t been paying attention, you’ve missed an exciting milestone: the MPAA’s 50,000th movie.

I first started going to movie theaters 12 and a half years ago. My first film was “The Lizzie McGuire Movie” in May 2003. After doing a little research, I’ve learned that it was MPAA #39,825. Since that day I’ve been watching that number steadily increase, heading toward the 50,000 mark. As 2015 began, we were in the early/mid-49,000 range. Over the last few months the final countdown began: “Bridge of Spies” (No. 49967), “Our Brand Is Crisis” (No. 49992) and “Steve Jobs” (No. 49998). [Note: those three films were not released theatrically in that order.]

Related Post: Ready4Air (Film) | Lights-Camera-Jackson On Great Performances That WON’T Be Nominated

And now it’s official! The MPAA has reviewed and handed-out seal #50,000, to the indie “Chloe & Theo”, starring Dakota Johnson (“Fifty Shades of Grey”- No. 49529, “Black Mass”- No. 49620) and Oscar-winner Mira Sorvino. The dramedy was just released on DVD.

The association hasn’t made a big deal about this publicly (in fact, the MPAA declined a request for an interview for this story). But after years of rating controversies (including a few recent ones from Weinstein Co. releases), this should be deemed one of their prouder achievements. The organization has served the movie industry and the public for 93 years as the official and (mostly) reliable source for film ratings, so (to me) this milestone is worth celebrating.

Do yourself a favor – the next time you go to a movie stay until the end of the credits and check-out the MPAA seal number. Sometimes, after a really bad film, it’s the most interesting part of the night.
Thanks, Jackson!

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson
Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Jackson Murphy (a.k.a. Lights-Camera-Jackson) has been a film critic/entertainment reporter on TV and radio since the age of 7 1/2. He currently appears weekly on WFLY radio (Albany, NY) and his reviews appear in The Record (Troy, NY) newspaper.

You can find Jackson Murphy anywhere below:

Website: Lights-Camera-Jackson.com

Facebook: Lights Camera Jackson

Twitter: @LCJReviews

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (Brands and Bloggers) |The Real Breast Cancer Awareness Message in The Month Of October

A mobile mammography event in Los Angeles, CA.  October 2015 
Photo Courtesy: Jackie Coco

November 4, 2015 | Posted in Brands and Bloggers Connect, Social TV | By

Rhonda M. Smith, Founder of Breast Cancer Partner Photo Credit: Melanie Acevedo

Rhonda M. Smith, Founder of Breast Cancer Partner
Photo Credit: Melanie Acevedo

By Rhonda M. Smith

As another Breast Cancer Awareness Month comes to an end, I reflect back on all the events, activities, and media coverage that have brought attention to the cause and what October represents. This year, in particular, I have heightened sensitivity and awareness of what has been covered and promoted in the media. That is because I currently work as the consultant/ Project Director for a statewide breast cancer disparities initiative in California. Over the past 15 months, I have been engrossed in breast cancer disparities work, specifically addressing this issue among African American women.

There have been all sorts of articles published in the media during October about black women and breast cancer, along with the latest news, research, opinions, etc. about breast cancer in general. It’s enough confusion and information to make my head explode!

For example, now the new American Cancer Society breast cancer guidelines recommend that we screen later than age 40, and instead start at 45 and do so less often instead of annually. Six years ago, the federal government’s Preventive Services Task Force caused an uproar and confusion when it recommended that women in their 40s didn’t need to get routine mammograms; rather they should start at age 50. Someone get them a reality check, please!! I see on daily basis women in their 20s, 30s, and early 40s diagnosed with breast cancer – Black, White, Latina, you name it. These women might be dead by now if they’d followed that guideline.

So, while it’s great to get updated information on the protocol for breast cancer screenings and guidelines and how to manage your breast health, a woman, as well as the general public, can become fraught with the confusion that can often create the wrong perception and belief about how to manage her breast health.

A mobile mammography event in Los Angeles, CA.  October 2015  Photo Courtesy: Jackie Coco

A mobile mammography event in Los Angeles, CA. October 2015
Photo Courtesy: Jackie Coco

The notion of breast cancer disparities is not new news among African American women. However, despite the fact this health issue has been studied for many years, the media will lead us to believe the situation is not getting any better for black women when they are diagnosed with breast cancer.

There continue to be articles published in October about the plight of African-American women diagnosed with breast cancer. In the October issue of O Magazine, there was an article entitled “Why Are So Many Black Women Dying of Breast Cancer? Another popular article with a similar title written by the infamous Dr. Harold P. Freeman, “Why Black Women Die of Cancer” appeared in the NY Times in March 2014. It is a great article that provides insight as to why this is happening. There were two additional articles, entitled “A Grim Breast Cancer Milestone for Black Women”, and “Black Women More Likely to Get Wrong Breast Cancer Care, Study Confirms”. I’m sure there may be even more articles on this topic published during October, but I’ve seen and read enough already.

After reading all of these articles, I started to get a little pissed off because it made it appear as though all black women experience this dilemma when they are diagnosis with breast cancer. Here again, another stereotype to contend with and to paint us in a not so positive light when it comes to our health and behavior. Now, I’m not saying that there are no merits to the contents of these articles, but what I am saying is that it paints a very grim picture and perception of African-American women diagnosed with breast cancer. The message breeds more fear among African American women that they have associated with knowing the outcome of mammograms. It also fuels the fatalistic attitude that exists within the community that “when you get cancer you die”. The messages in the media only make the individual mindset, myths, beliefs, and barriers that exist in the community much harder to dismantle. I deal with this every day in trying to educate, motivate and empower Black women to be more proactive about their breast health. It’s hard enough already without an extra “noise” around this issue.

While the statistics do hold true, and I believe that there are too many of our women dying unnecessarily of breast cancer, we have the power to change that and reverse this trend. To do so we have to start talking about African American women surviving breast cancer and shed the spotlight on how many of our women are “thriving” after breast cancer diagnosis and treatment. Myself being one of them.

Let’s start talking and writing about what we can do to survive this disease and be more proactive about our breast health so that we can rewrite the story of African American women and breast cancer. If we are diagnosed with breast cancer or any other chronic disease or health issue, we all need to become more proactive healthcare consumers and learn how to advocate better for ourselves and our loved ones.

Let us help ourselves and prevent the women in our lives who we love and honor from becoming a statistic. So, be vigilant and get your mammograms annually. Talk to your doctor about what’s right for you given your family history and situation. And remember, early detection saves lives!!

Rhonda M. Smith, Founder of Breast Cancer Partner Photo Credit: Melanie Acevedo

Rhonda M. Smith, Founder of Breast Cancer Partner
Photo Credit: Melanie Acevedo

Rhonda M. Smith is the Founder of Breast Cancer Partner, a for-profit organization that works to empower women diagnosed with breast cancer to become their own health and wellness advocate so that they don’t just survive the disease but “thrive” during treatment, in recovery, and in their life beyond breast cancer. Breast Cancer Partner provides the tools, resources, knowledge, and information to help breast cancer survivors recover from treatment, restore their lives back to “normal”, and re-energize after treatment ends. Breast Cancer Partner also creates and delivers health and wellness education experiences to help survivors optimize their quality of life and well-being during and after treatment, improve outcomes, and enhance their long-term survivorship.

You can find Rhonda anywhere below at  www.breastcancerpartner.com, Twitter:  @BrstCancerPrtnr, Facebook: Breast Cancer Partner or Recover Restore Reenergize Your Life and LinkedIn: Rhonda Smith  

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell Graphic – Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (Film) |Lights-Camera-Jackson on A24 Leading the Independent Pack

InsideOut54f771108303d-691x1024

October 31, 2015 | Posted in Film, Social TV | By

 

InsideOut54f771108303d-691x1024

By Jackson Murphy

When movie studios are evaluated at the end of 2015, Universal (“Jurassic World”, “Furious 7”, “Minions”) and Disney (“Avengers”, “Inside Out”, “Star Wars”) will clearly receive top honors for having the biggest box office success. But, when it comes to Quality Films over the course of the year, the award will likely go small, independent A24.

You may not have heard of the name, and you may not have seen many of their films, but this studio has broken through in 2015 and is about to break through in a major way this Awards Season and into 2016. Prior to this year, A24 was best known as the distributor of “Spring Breakers” (starring James Franco and Vanessa Hudgens), the Shailene Woodley high school drama “The Spectacular Now”, the outstanding Tom Hardy indie “Locke” and the solid crime drama “A Most Violent Year”, which earned Jessica Chastain a Golden Globe nomination in 2014.

The studio’s 2015 roster is very impressive: “While We’re Young”, a mid-life crisis comedy with Ben Stiller and Naomi Watts, was not widely seen this spring, but it received mostly positive reviews. “Ex Machina”, from writer/director Alex Garland (“28 Days Later”), is a bold sci-fi thriller starring Oscar Isaac, Domnhall Gleeson and one of this year’s “it-girls”, Alicia Vikander. Critical praise and theater expansion helped it become the studio’s highest-grossing release to date in the US ($25.4 million). “Amy” is a frontrunner for Best Documentary Feature honors. This powerful look at late singer Amy Winehouse is genuinely sad and consistently fascinating. “Mississippi Grind”, a low-budget gambling drama that debuted on DirecTV Cinema before heading to theaters, features two top-notch performances from stars Ben Mendohlson and Ryan Reynolds.

A24logo

And A24 is also behind two of the absolute best films of the year: “The End of the Tour” is a pitch-perfect, two-man drama with Jesse Eisenberg and Jason Segel at their finest. Segel’s Supporting Actor buzz is well-deserved. And then there’s “Room”, the heart-pounding and heartbreaking story of a woman held captive in a backyard shed for seven years, the last five with her young son. Brie Larson is a lock for multiple Best Actress nominations, and nine-year-old Jacob Tremblay deserves to be included in Supporting Actor discussions as well.

Included on the A24’s early 2016 lineup is the horror film “The Witch”, that’s already generating buzz. Hollywood is filled with a lot of independent studios – some make it, while most struggle to survive. In just four years, A24 has proven, that not only do they belong, but that they’re an important player in the industry.

Related Posts: Lights-Camera-Jackson on Why “Star Wars” will Ruin The Holidays

Thanks Jackson!

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson
Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Jackson Murphy (a.k.a. Lights-Camera-Jackson) has been a film critic/entertainment reporter on TV and radio since the age of 7 1/2. He currently appears weekly on WFLY radio (Albany, NY) and his reviews appear in The Record (Troy, NY) newspaper.

You can find Jackson Murphy anywhere below:

Website: Lights-Camera-Jackson.com

Facebook: Lights Camera Jackson

Twitter: @LCJReviews

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (Social) |#TBT How One Entrepreneur Grew a Global Business From Her Facebook Friends

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October 29, 2015 | Posted in Entrepreneur, Social TV | By

 

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First published in Entrepreneur.com

By Deborah Mitchell

When Evita Turquoise Robinson first shared her passion for travel on Facebook with 100 like-minded travelers four years ago, she couldn’t have imagined what it would become. The group, Nomadness Travel Tribe, now has over 10,000 members from all over the globe. What makes the group unique is that  while it is open to travelers of all ethnicities, it is primarily African American, age 25 to 40, with 80 percent women. Members live in cities around the world. The economic demographic runs the gamut from the underemployed to professionals who earn six figures. The global trips are so affordable that it allows the diverse groups to connect no matter your income bracket.

Robinson, an artist and filmmaker, was bit by the travel bug right out of college when she took her first trip to Paris. A stop in Tokyo to teach English and then a trip to Thailand as part of a travel web series rounded out her global travels by the age of 25. She founded Nomadness Travel Tribe in September 2011 to connect with urbanites who travel as part of their lifestyle, not just as vacation.

Robinson wanted an intimate group, so she invited people from her Facebook friends list with the prerequisite that the potential members had traveled at least once and had one passport stamp. Today, through word of mouth and social media, Nomadness Travel Tribe has grown to a little more than 10,000 members worldwide.

“There is no place that I can go in the world today where I don’t know someone there,” Robinson said.

Social media was the key to the group’s growth. “There are so many social media outlets: Twitter, Periscope, Instagram. Instagram and Periscope- — the live-streaming app — allow anyone to follow along on our trips,” she said. “If the Internet was a geographic location, Facebook would be the capital. It is where everyone is. If you can start someplace where everyone is and then push out from that point, you have the opportunity to do something special.”

Robinson was able to bring strangers and friends on her urban travel adventures, something new. “Nomadness Travel Tribe was the first group to spearhead targeting diverse millennial travel,” she said.

This year alone, Nomadness Travel Tribe has appeared in the New York Times, The Daily Beast and on several national television programs, all without the help of a public relations agent. The press has approached them. “We have not used outside media outreach to grow the membership,” Robins. “People within the group have shared their amazing stories because they want the group’s authentic story to be told.”

Robinson said Nomadness Travel Tribe became a business by accident, but it was born from a place of passion. “This group could not have existed without social media. Social media is this generation’s megaphone and our way to communicate. I don’t think we could have had the same impact in that time span without social media.”

Robinson always knew she was going to be an entrepreneur, but she did not know what it was going to look like. While she is an artist first, Evita Turquoise Robinson is still figuring out the world of being an entrepreneur and knows it is important to trust the process. If you have a passion and want to build it into a business, Robinson has a few tips.

Just do it.
Break out of analysis paralysis. Nothing starts in perfection–it does not matter who you are or how much money you have. At some point, you have to jump and build the parachute on the way down. Just do it.

Learn as much as you can.
Robins said when she launched the business she was “a little bit of a lone wolf where I tried to learn everything. I never want to create a business where if one person leaves, they can derail the entire system, so I try to learn as much as I can. You should know how to do as much as possible.”

Ask for help.
“You feel like you can be an island, but learn to open up and ask for help,” Robins said. “Once you see your idea has promise, put the proper people in place. I picked my team from my members, so I did not have to sell people on the idea, they were as passionate about it as I am. I know they will get the job done.”

On Saturday, September 26, the Nomadness Travel Tribe will have their first travel conference that caters to the urban traveler. The sold-out event in New York City will have about 150 attendees. Hopefully, I will see you there!

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Ready4Air (Film) | Lights-Camera-Jackson on Locking-In One Oscar Category Now

Jennifer Lopez
Photo courtesy: Sony

October 24, 2015 | Posted in Film, Social TV | By

Jennifer Lopez Photo courtesy: Sony

Jennifer Lopez
Photo courtesy: Sony

By Jackson Murphy

This year’s Oscar voters, particularly the nominating committee, will have a more difficult time than ever evaluating the many performances in the four acting categories and narrowing them down to just five. The same amount of frustration will surely go into Best Director, Best Animated Feature, Best Picture and several others. But I’ve got a slam-dunk idea that would take the pressure off of determining one category.

Over the past few years, the Oscars have been so gung-ho about star-power, especially with the musical performances, that live versions of these nominees for Best Original Song would certainly create interest and attract viewers. So here is my “Dream Playlist” for Oscar Night. (Members of the Broadcast Film Critics Association and Hollywood Foreign Press Association should also take note for their respective Original Song categories):

“Feel the Light” is an emotional tune from the DreamWorks Animation comedy alien space “Home”. Sung by superstar Jennifer Lopez, she (and all the visuals) would absolutely light-up the stage.

Similarly, there’s “Flashlight”, a hit finale from “Pitch Perfect 2”. It’s performed by 18-year-old Hailee Steinfeld, an Oscar nominee for 2010’s “True Grit”, so she’s already well-established with The Academy. Young people would tune-in for this.

Spotify has already unveiled the latest James Bond theme, for “Spectre”, titled “Writing’s on the Wall”. While it doesn’t have anywhere near the power-punch of Adele’s “Skyfall”, Sam Smith has millions of fans, and he’d deliver live on Oscar night.

“See You Again” is, surprisingly and yet not surprisingly, the early frontrunner for the trophy. This tribute number to “Furious 7” ‘s Paul Walker from Wiz Kahlifa and Charlie Puth has been on the radio (and stuck in our heads) for months. It’s moving and perfectly fits with the film’s final scenes.

And finally – the voting members simply have to answer this question: “Wouldn’t you love to see three-time Oscar winner Meryl Streep and music legend Rick Springfield rock-out on the Oscars stage?” If so then “Cold One”, from the music dramedy “Ricki and the Flash” (they perform the uptempo version during the closing credits), needs to get a nomination. It’s unlikely Streep will be up for Best Actress for “Ricki”, and her Supporting Actress chances for a small role in “Suffragette” are, at this point, pretty slim. A year without Meryl as part of the Academy Awards just wouldn’t feel right. Put her on live with a guitar in her hands? Now, that’s an Oscars-worthy moment.

Related Posts: Lights-Camera-Jackson on Why “Star Wars” will Ruin The Holidays

Thanks Jackson!

 

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson
Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Jackson Murphy (a.k.a. Lights-Camera-Jackson) has been a film critic/entertainment reporter on TV and radio since the age of 7 1/2. He currently appears weekly on WFLY radio (Albany, NY) and his reviews appear in The Record (Troy, NY) newspaper.

You can find Jackson Murphy anywhere below:

Website: Lights-Camera-Jackson.com

Facebook: Lights Camera Jackson

Twitter: @LCJReviews

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (Brands and Bloggers) 3 Signs That You Should Shut Down Your Business

business woman

October 23, 2015 | Posted in Entrepreneur, Social TV | By

business woman

First appeared in Entrepreneur.com

By Deborah Mitchell

I haven’t spoken to an entrepreneur yet who has not thought about walking away from a business at one time or another, especially if the business is only a few years old. The grind, lack of money and pure fatigue are usually the top reasons why business owners are ready to throw in the towel.

Rene Syler, CEO and founder of lifestyle brand Good Enough Mother, discussed in a recent blog post that she is still surprised when people complain about how much work is needed to build a brand:

“This is hard! It’s supposed to be. If it wasn’t, everyone would be doing it. There is not a timeline, no expiration date. You just have to keep going until it pays off. Or quit.”

Making the choice to quit your business is not an easy one. Owner and publisher Julie Wilson made the difficult decision this spring to close the doors of her Kentucky lifestyle magazine, Story, after almost four years.

“My passion for storytelling was no longer what was driving my business, and therefore, it wasn’t honest,” she says, adding that she knew it was time to let it go.

If you are business owner who is not sure if it is time to shut your doors, here are Wilson’s telltale signs that it might be time to close up shop.

1. You don’t recognize yourself anymore.

As a business owner, you want to be a better version of yourself. You may be a little different, but not completely unrecognizable. Wilson says she eventually morphed into someone she didn’t know anymore.

“I realized that toward the end, I was working so relentlessly to save the business that I had become a completely different person,” she says. “I was no longer the wife and mother I wanted to be. The business version of myself was a bit uncomfortable, though. The Julie I knew would never be using terms like ‘P&L statements’ or ‘accounts receivable,’ but I did what it took. I drafted a real business plan, then a working strategic plan, and all of this has to be referred to on a regular basis to make sure you stay on track. The snowball effect takes over, and you just try to stay one step ahead of it.”

2. It’s too much to handle.

As a business owner, you cannot and should not do everything yourself. It is a recipe for disaster. A business needs someone to plan present and future strategy, handle day-to-day projects, market and promote and handle the finances. If the business is expected to grow, then you need a bigger team.

“For the majority of the time we were in business, we had a daily staff of two that did everything from sales to publishing,” Wilson says.

With such a small staff, she admits that “marketing got the shaft.”

“One of the heaviest facepalm moments that I still struggle with is that we received a huge order for our last issue (more than double the number from the previous issue), but we were just too small to meet the demand,” Wilson says. “We created a champagne product on a watered-down Pabst budget, but in the end, there wasn’t even enough beer left.”

3. The thrill is gone.

It’s thrilling to say that you own a business, to hand out your cards and to find your website in a Google search. But the business of running your business can eventually take toll. As the boss, you are responsible for everything, including producing goods and services, payroll, providing health benefits and good customer service.  It’s a lot to juggle and maintain.

“I am a journalist by profession, but as the owner, the business side took more of my time than the creative,” Wilson says. “In the beginning, it was exciting — like I was doing research for an article about what a CEO looks like. Quickbooks, payroll, revenue reports — I learned all of it. I always felt like my type A/creative personality was a slam-dunk for playing the role of business owner. And I still think it is — I mean, I won the 2014 NAWBO Small Business of the Year Award — but when the business demands started overshadowing the time I could spend developing content, the creative spark was growing faint.

“When playing the role of CEO becomes a façade and not just a part of who I am, that’s a telltale sign,” she continues. “One area where I have stayed true to my personality is that I am one gutsy broad, and it took as much guts to call it quits as it did to start the business. For the first time in 15 years, I will not be working on a print magazine — and I’m OK with that.”

For some entrepreneurs, quitting is not an option. I circled back to Rene Syler, who has been building the Good Enough Mother brand for the last 10 years and asked her if she has ever experienced any of the above signs.

“Yes, I have. Every single one of them. But they typically plague me when I am tired or stretched too thin,” she says. “How do I handle them? I put myself in time out. For real. I understand that what I am doing, building a brand, takes time. Building anything of value does. So when I feel myself getting burned out, I take a step back, understanding that this is a marathon, not a sprint.”

Syler also believes in measuring your success in realistic terms.

“Sometimes, I take a look back at where I was a year ago and compare that to where I am now. That gives me a more accurate picture and reminds me that I am making progress, even if it’s not as fast as I would like it to be,” she says. “I would just urge people to ask a couple of hard questions: What are you going to do if you do throw in the towel? Are you willing to forego calling your own shots for a steady paycheck with less freedom? Is what you are feeling the result of short-term fatigue? Can you just take a step back and get rested? It’s not for everyone, but as difficult as it is, quitting now is just not an option for me, and I can’t see a time when it ever will be.”

Saying goodbye to a business can be an emotional and conflicting journey. When I spoke to Wilson by phone recently, she told me that even though she’s 99 percent sure she made the right decision in closing her business, there is still that nagging feeling that maybe she can start it again.

Have you ever closed or thought about closing a business? When did you know it was time to close the doors for good? Share your story in the comments section below.

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (Film) | Happy National Boss’s Day: Americans Choose Their Favorite Bosses on Film

Robert Downey Jr. stars as Tony Stark in  Avengers: Age Of Ultron

October 16, 2015 | Posted in Film, Social TV | By

 Robert Downey Jr. stars as Tony Stark in  Avengers: Age Of Ultron

Robert Downey Jr. stars as Tony Stark in Avengers: Age Of Ultron

October 16 is National Boss’s Day, so if you have a boss, who you love or hate, today is the day to honor them.  Americans chimed in to honor their favorite and not so favorite bosses of film in a recent  nationwide survey of 1,000 adults conducted by OnePoll for 1-800-Flowers.com in honor of National Boss’s Day.

Memorable film bosses include George Clooney as Danny Ocean, the leader of a gang of casino thieves in Ocean’s 11; Darth Vader, the Jedi gone bad as voiced by James Earl Jones in the first Star Wars trilogy; and Tony Stark, the billionaire businessman turned superhero played by Robert Downey Jr. in Iron Man. Love Downey as Tony Stark!

While we all love and want a good boss there is just something so special about a bad boss. One of my favorite bad bosses on film is Meryl Streep as fashion maven and nasty boss Miranda Priestly in The Devil Wears Prada. Whenever the movie is on television I watch it for not only for the fun clothes but Streep’s efficient but nasty glares and one liners including this one she utters to an underling as she tells an underling: “By all means move at a glacial pace. You know how that thrills me.” Love it!!  In the survey, Streep’s performance ranked second in the category of bad bosses on film.

Another one of my favorite films, Elf starring Will Farrell and featuring  bad boss Ed Asner as Santa Claus came in at No. 5.  Among dramatic film bosses, Marlon Brando as Don Corleone in The Godfather is No. 1 with Al Pacino as son Michael Corleone in The Godfather: Part II as — what else? — No. 2.

When we go back to famous bad boss one liners Streep’s Miranda Priestly in The Devil Wears Prada line I mentioned earlier  was No.1  ad in third is Sigourney Weaver as Katherine Parker, Melanie Griffith’s conniving boss, in Working Girl: “Never burn bridges. Today’s junior prick, tomorrow’s senior partner.”

“We always remember bosses who have inspired us throughout our career,” says Chris McCann, president of 1-800-Flowers.com. Whether mischievous like Willy Wonka or coercive like Don Corleone, the most memorable bosses are often colorful people who leave a lasting impression,” says McCann. “They might not always be so easy to deal with, but they do make life more interesting.”

Happy National Boss’s Day!

Courtesy: Nationwide survey of 1,000 adults conducted by OnePoll for 1-800-Flowers.com 

Top funny TV bosses

1. Sam Malone (Ted Danson), Cheers
2. Lou Grant (Ed Asner), The Mary Tyler Moore Show
3. Angela Bower (Judith Light), Who’s the Boss
4. Philip Banks (James Avery), The Fresh Prince of Bel Air
5. Monica Geller (Courteney Cox), Friends
6. Michael Scott (Steve Carell), The Office
7. Larry Tate (David White), Bewitched
8. Jay Pritchett (Ed O’Neill), Modern Family
9. J. Peterman (John O’Hurley), Seinfeld
10. Liz Lemon (Tina Fey), 30 Rock

Top funny movie bosses

1. Willy Wonka (Gene Wilder), Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory
2. Miranda Priestly (Meryl Streep), The Devil Wears Prada
3. Willy Wonka (Johnny Depp), Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
4. Felonious Gru (Steve Carell), Despicable Me
5. Santa Claus (Ed Asner), Elf
6. Margaret Tate (Sandra Bullock), The Proposal
7. Dr. Julia Harris (Jennifer Aniston), Horrible Bosses
8. Dr. Evil (Mike Myers), Austin Powers
9. Franklin Hart Jr. (Dabney Coleman), 9 to 5
10. Cruella De Vil (Glenn Close), 101 Dalmatians

Top dramatic movie bosses

1. Don Corleone (Marlon Brando), The Godfather
2. Michael Corleone (Al Pacino), The Godfather: Part II
3. Danny Ocean (George Clooney), Ocean’s 11
4. Darth Vader (James Earl Jones), Star Wars
5. Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.), Iron Man
6. Oskar Schindler (Liam Neeson), Schindler’s List
7. John Milton (Al Pacino), The Devil’s Advocate
8. Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas), Wall Street
9. Charles Xavier (Patrick Stewart), X-Men
10. Frank Lucas (Denzel Washington), American Gangster

Top movie bosses we would most like to work for

1. Willy Wonka (Gene Wilder), Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory
2. Santa Claus (Ed Asner), Elf
3. Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.), Iron Man
4. Margaret Tate (Sandra Bullock), The Proposal
5. Dr. Julia Harris (Jennifer Aniston), Horrible Bosses
6. Willy Wonka (Johnny Depp), Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
7. Danny Ocean (George Clooney), Ocean’s 11
8. Miranda Priestly (Meryl Streep), The Devil Wears Prada
9. Walter Burns (Cary Grant), His Girl Friday
10. Jordan Belfort (Leonardo DiCaprio), The Wolf of Wall Street

Scariest movie bosses

1. Don Corleone (Marlon Brando), The Godfather
2. Michael Corleone (Al Pacino), The Godfather: Part II
3. Darth Vader (James Earl Jones), Star Wars
4. Cruella De Vil (Glenn Close), 101 Dalmatians
5. Miranda Priestly (Meryl Streep), The Devil Wears Prada
6. John Milton (Al Pacino), The Devil’s Advocate
7. Ebenezer Scrooge (Alastair Sim) in A Christmas Carol
8. Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas), Wall Street
9. David Harken (Kevin Spacey), Horrible Bosses
10. Dr. Evil (Mike Myers), Austin Powers

 

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air(Film) | Lights-Camera-Jackson on Why “Star Wars” Will Ruin the Holidays

"Star Wars: The Force Awakens"  Photo Courtesy: Disney

October 16, 2015 | Posted in Social TV | By

"Star Wars: The Force Awakens"  Photo Courtesy: Disney

“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” Photo Courtesy: Disney

By Jackson Murphy

On December 18, 2009, James Cameron’s Avatar opened. The Oscar-winning adventure about the tall and noisy blue people on Pandora became the highest-grossing domestic release of all-time and single-handedly forced every studio to either make or convert every upcoming big-budget action movie in or to 3D. This December 18, Star Wars: The Force Awakens will begin its quest to top Avatar’s box office records.

There’s no doubt that diehard fans of the legendary franchise will come out in droves (and in costumes, if theater chains will still allow it) to see if this seventh installment lives up to the years of hype. Hopefully, The Force Awakens is an exciting introduction into Disney and LucasFilm’s revamping of the series that will include two more regular “Episodes” as well as several spin-offs currently in development.

Here’s the bad news: Star Wars: The Force Awakens is going to overpower every movie theater in its path and become every movie studio’s worst holiday nightmare. It comes down to basic math. Cinemas only have a certain number of screens. The demand for The Force Awakens will be so high opening weekend that theater owners across the country will be forced to devote the vast majority of their screens to Hans Solo and company, squeezing the rest of the current releases onto either a very limited number of remaining screens or pushing them out altogether. I wouldn’t be surprised if The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 (opening November 20) is gone from the majority of multiplexes on December 17.

Five days after The Force Awakens opens, the Christmas blockbusters begin rolling out, starting with Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked on Wednesday December 23. The Big Short, an all-star financial drama from Paramount, will also be expanding that day. Christmas Day itself brings the action remake Point Break from WB (which I honestly believe will get pushed to 2016) and the Paramount comedy Daddy’s Home starring Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg.

And let’s not forget that Santa will be leaving other presents in the form of awards season hopefuls Concussion (the NFL drama with Will Smith) and legitimate Best Picture, Director, and Actress contender Joy, starring Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro, and Bradley Cooper. Audiences are going to want to spend their movie gift cards on these films. However, it’s likely they’ll only be available for limited showings on limited screens, so sell-outs will be a problem. Those predicting how these movies will do at the box office would be smart to keep their expectations low.

Finally there’s this: The Force Awakens comes out right in the middle of nomination season, with every studio–large and small–trying to get their movies seen by critics and audiences to drum-up buzz and sway voters. It’s going to be much tougher for publicists and marketing departments to do their jobs when practically every website and magazine will be devoted to endless Star Wars news, analysis, and box office breakdowns.

To sum it up: I’ve got a bad feeling about this.

Related Post: Lights-Camera-Jackson on Space “Finest” Frontier

Thanks Jackson!

 

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson
Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Jackson Murphy (a.k.a. Lights-Camera-Jackson) has been a film critic/entertainment reporter on TV and radio since the age of 7 1/2. He currently appears weekly on WFLY radio (Albany, NY) and his reviews appear in The Record (Troy, NY) newspaper.

You can find Jackson Murphy anywhere below:

Website: Lights-Camera-Jackson.com

Facebook: Lights Camera Jackson

Twitter: @LCJReviews

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (Brands and Bloggers) | #TBT 3 Ways to Give More and Be Proactive at a Networking Event

networking

October 15, 2015 | Posted in Brands and Bloggers Connect, Entrepreneur, Social TV | By

networking

 

First published on Entrepreneur.com

How much do you give when you attend a networking event? When I met Mark E. Sackett at a networking event earlier this year, he told me that he found networking events to be empty and didn’t believe they actually work. I slowly looked around the room of hundreds of people ready to meet and greet and then asked him why not.

Sackett explained that people are too preoccupied with the sell.

“The reason for showing up at a networking event is to build your business, and once you have determined that you cannot do business with this person, the sorting process begins,” he says. “Asking ‘what do you do for a living?’ is a sorting methodology, a method of selling. Depending on the answer, people begin to shut down, they don’t engage, their body language changes, they start glancing around the room and they try to figure out how to extract themselves from the conversation so they can move on to the next more productive person in the room.”

Sackett says that people need to understand that it is not always about the sell.

“Don’t always make it about the sell,” he says. “We are well trained in the sell but not in the listening and giving.”

Related: Networking Is a Contact Sport

An entrepreneur, Sackett is also a speaker and founder of the networking organization The Art of Active Networking, where he encourages people to shift how they do business with the giving of themselves with the simple question, “How can I help you do better right now?” Sackett’s mission in business and life is to shift the conversation from “the get to the give.”

In a later phone conversation, Sackett reminded me that in the end, people choose to do business with people they know, like and trust. So whether it’s meeting at a networking event or somewhere else, here are a few ways to build a more giving relationship and be a better networker.

1. Make it a give and not a get.

Instead of trying to sell yourself or your business, work on building relationships. Listen carefully and engage with the person you are interacting with at the event. Practice asking these four questions:

  • What is your name?
  • What do you do for a living or what do you want to be doing?
  • Why are you here tonight?
  • What is it in life that you are most passionate about?

If someone states something that they need, figure out how you can help them by thinking, “What can I do to help that person do better?” If you offer to help someone do better right now, you are more likely to build that know, like and trust needed in a business relationship.

Once you figure it out, offer to help by giving them a business card and say, “I know a number of people who might be able to help you. Call me to get their information and I will make the introduction.” There is a good chance this person will call you and that is the beginning of a business relationship.

Related: 3 Reasons Your Follow Up Sucks

2. Follow up after your meeting.

Seventy-five to 80 percent of people who receive a business card at an event do not follow up. Sackett and I found common ground immediately by talking about something other than work. When you hand someone a business card, it is a form of respect and there is an obligation to follow up. It may take time, but you should always follow up. It is never too late.

It’s also important to know what you want and what you’re going to say when you follow up. If someone follows up with you, have integrity and follow back. Respond and say something: either advance the conversation or end it. If you follow up with someone, do not start with the hard sell, just say, “Hi, it was a pleasure to meet you. If there is any way I can help you, please let me know.” Offering up your network to strangers is a great way to break the ice.

3. Continue to show up for people.

It is easy to reply to an email and say “stay in touch.” Say it and mean it. Decide what you want and what you can give. Do your best to build relationships. I know I personally cannot send out emails each week. So when I meet people, I make notes about them: how and where we met, if we know anyone in common, their birthdays, etc.

Also, don’t immediately ask for a favor when you connect with someone. I will help you, but you also need to help yourself. Be clear about your ask, know what you want and be specific so someone can tap into their networks to possibly help you.

With about 135,000 to 150,000 people in his network worldwide, Sackett says there is an art to having conversations and building relationships. When it comes to networking, Sackett encourages people to “give their network referrals. Think of the people in your network, who can help the people you know or are having new conversations with and make an active, energetic referral for that person. Pay it forward and shout them out.”

Today, with social media, this is as easy as pushing a button.

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (TV) | Lights-Camera-Jackson on Star Power Lights-up FOX Tuesdays

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October 9, 2015 | Posted in Social TV, TV Production | By

 

FOX

Actor John Stamos of “Grandfathered” and Rob Lowe  of “The Grinder”
Photo courtesy – FOX

By Jackson Murphy

ABC has the prestige of Kermit and Miss Piggy kicking-off their Tuesday night lineup. But with mixed reviews of the first few episodes of “The Muppets” (the “Pilot” was loaded with celebrity cameos, adult references and a quirky, off-putting tone) and a 35% viewership drop from Week 1 to Week 2, things aren’t looking so good. And you can’t discount the competition. The two new sitcoms on FOX will definitely give The Muppets a run for their money.

“Grandfathered” marks the TV return of John Stamos, who plays Jimmy, a 50-year-old bachelor and restaurant owner who suddenly finds-out that he is not only a father to Gerald (“Drake & Josh”‘s Josh Peck) but also a grandfather to little Edie. Watching Stamos’ scenes with the baby girl in the “Pilot” did bring me back to his “Full House” Uncle Jesse days, and there’s nothing wrong with that (and having Bob Saget as a restaurant patron at the end of the “Pilot” was also a nice touch.) But beyond this obvious, yet appropriate comparison, the inaugural episode of “Grandfathered” was consistently funny with a high number of great one-liners and some clever moments, including a decent homage to “Kramer vs. Kramer”.

And then there’s “The Grinder”, which features Rob Lowe playing Dean, the star of a fictional TV courtroom drama called “The Grinder”, which just ended its eight-season run. Dean returns to his small-town home to watch the series finale with his family, including brother Stewart (Fred Savage from “The Wonder Years”), who is a real-life lawyer. But Stewart isn’t exactly the most polished attorney and Dean thinks he can use his knowledge from the show to help Stewart help his clients.

“The Grinder” relies heavily on Lowe to carry everything else along, and he absolutely delivers. Lowe is terrific playing a Hollywood actor – charming, confident and playfully over-dramatic in everyday situations and conversations. He’s the reason to watch this show. My one concern going forward is that the weekly storylines may be more of the same: Stewart struggling and Dean assisting by smooth-talking his way through the case.
Hopefully both “Grandfathered” and “The Grinder” provide for breezy, good-hearted entertainment over the course of their seasons (how ever long they will be). And if they both become hits, they may just dims the lights on Kermit & Co.

Related Post- Ready4Air (TV)  Lights-Camera-Jackson: A New “Report” From Stephen Colbert 

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson
Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Jackson Murphy (a.k.a. Lights-Camera-Jackson) has been a film critic/entertainment reporter on TV and radio since the age of 7 1/2. He currently appears weekly on WFLY radio (Albany, NY) and his reviews appear in The Record (Troy, NY) newspaper.

You can find Jackson Murphy anywhere below:

Website: Lights-Camera-Jackson.com

Facebook: Lights Camera Jackson

Twitter: @LCJReviews

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (Brands and Bloggers) | #TBT 5 Useful Skills TV Producers Possess That You Should Too

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October 9, 2015 | Posted in Social TV | By

 

producer


Photo Credit: Nick Viagas and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

First appeared in Entrepreneur.com

When you read through the credits of a television show, you will see various producer titles — executive producer, supervising producer, senior producer, broadcast producer and producer, to name a few. While every producer has different responsibilities, chances are they share a few of the same skill sets and traits that have made them successful in a very demanding industry.

After 25 years in the television industry, I’ve found that producers with longevity and awards in the television business have a few things in common. Whether you are an employee or business owner, here are five useful qualities TV producers possess that you should have to make your business life more successful:

1. Natural curiosity

Most producers have a natural curiosity about things and people. They are either asking or thinking the questions whowhyhow and when? Producers read a lot. Whether it’s newspapers, online articles, listening to the radio or just talking to people, they always want to stay on the pulse of what’s going on.

Related: 8 Tech Skills Entrepreneurs Must Have to Succeed

You should stay on top of what’s going on in your industry. Read trade publications and follow your industry’s leaders on social media. Better yet, reach out to them and ask a question.

2. Great communication skills

Producing is storytelling with words and pictures to a mass audience. Whether it’s for television or your co-workers, it’s important to share your message clearly in different mediums. Hone your writing and practice your presentation and speaking skills. Always think about the group you are addressing and make your presentation relevant, concise and if possible, entertaining. You want to keep your audience engaged and informed.

3. Open to criticism

Television producers are constantly being criticized about things ranging from bad story ideas to a guest who fails to give a good interview. A boss criticizing a worker is a part of any job. This is the perfect time to put your ego away.

Reporter and producer Lyndsay Christian of FiOS1 wrote in a recent post for my blog Ready4Air: “Develop tough skin. Critics are tough. Accept criticism graciously. Learn from mistakes. Always look at the positives in every situation.” This is good advice that can be used in any business situation.

Related: The 17 Skills Required to Succeed as an Entrepreneur

4. Organized

Turns out, being organized is helpful in every profession. In television, producers are constantly juggling several balls at the same time, so it’s important to have your ducks in a row. I am a big fan of lists. Making a to-do list and crossing off each accomplishment as the day or week goes by helps you to keep track of your project. Remember, the devil is in the details so keeping a list is a surefire way to avoid making a mistake.

5. Good collaborator

Producing, just like business, requires teamwork. No two people ever think alike so learning to collaborate as a group is key and doing it with a good attitude is a plus.

Meachun Clark, who was an AFTRA (American Federation of Television and Radio Artists) coordinator for a major cable network, explained to me in a recent interview that one important quality is to be personable.

“It also helps to be personable when dealing with talent, as well as their reps, to get everything you need taken care of,” Clark says.

Finally, it is always important for a team to stay open to new ideas and different ways of doing things. With teamwork and great communication, any television show or business can be successful.

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

Read More...

Ready4Air (Film) | Lights-Camera-Jackson on Space: The “Finest” Frontier?

"The Martian"starring Matt Damon
Photo Courtesy: 20th Century Fox

October 2, 2015 | Posted in Film | By

 "The Martian"


“The Martian” starring Matt Damon
Photo Courtesy: 20th Century Fox

By Jackson Murphy

In 2013’s “Gravity”, Sandra Bullock played a rookie astronaut who, in less than 90 minutes, alone and against all odds, did everything she possibly could to get back home. In 2014, Bullock’s haircut was then styled for Anne Hathaway, who joined space explorer Matthew McConaughey on a groundbreaking “Interstellar” adventure from the mind of Christopher Nolan. Midway through Matt Damon showed-up and nearly killed McConaughey. But he survived (alright, alright, alright!) However, he still had to face his biggest test: getting back home. And I still don’t understand that film’s final few moments.

This year’s blockbuster space movie (because, apparently, it’s become an annual thing) is “The Martian”, starring Mr. Damon. And here’s the tagline on the film’s poster: “Bring Him Home.” That’s right, after a Mars mission goes wrong and all the other astronauts leave the planet thinking that Damon’s character is dead, he wakes-up. And so the others decide, again all odds, to go back and try to rescue him. Jimmy Kimmel is sure to either love or hate “The Martian” depending on how it ends.

Related Post: Lights-Camera-Jackson Interviews “Hotel Transylvania 2” Director

It’s clear that Hollywood is more in love with exploring space than anyone currently working at NASA. And the connection between the Cinema and celestial exploration has been around since movies began. Among the highlights – “2001: A Space Odyssey”, which is still considered one of the (if not the) greatest sci-fi movie ever made, “E.T.”, one of my all-time favorites, and “Close Encounters of the Third Kind”.

But this triple-header of similar Awards Season go-getting, astronaut-saving movies is a bit unique. I’m not sure if “The Martian” will earn Visual Effects Oscar honors, as “Gravity” and “Interstellar” did (it could end-up battling the latest in another space saga – “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” – for that statue). But maybe we’ve seen the last “astronaut in peril” film for a while. Next time, he/she can just “phone home.”

Thanks Jackson!

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson
Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Jackson Murphy (a.k.a. Lights-Camera-Jackson) has been a film critic/entertainment reporter on TV and radio since the age of 7 1/2. He currently appears weekly on WFLY radio (Albany, NY) and his reviews appear in The Record (Troy, NY) newspaper.

You can find Jackson Murphy anywhere below:

Website: Lights-Camera-Jackson.com

Facebook: Lights Camera Jackson

Twitter: @LCJReviews

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Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (Film) | Lights-Camera-Jackson Interviews ‘Hotel Transylvania 2’ Director

IMG_0024 (1)

September 25, 2015 | Posted in Film | By

Hotel Transylvania

Jackson Murphy with Hotel Transylvania 2 director Genndy Tartakovsky

By Jackson Murphy

The animated comedy Hotel Transylvania was released in 2012, and it quickly became Sony Pictures Animation’s highest-grossing domestic film of all-time. No surprise that a follow-up was ordered, with Hotel Transylvania director Genndy Tartakovsky checking back in for Hotel Transylvania 2. In this LCJ Q&A, I talk with Tartakovsky about making the all-star sequel, working with co-writer (and voice of Dracula) Adam Sandler and the legendary Mel Brooks, and I tell him why he may want to book a return trip to Romania.

Related Post: Ready4Air (Film) | Lights-Camera-Jackson On Great Performances That WON’T Be Nominated

Thanks, Jackson!

abcPhoto Credit:

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson
Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Jackson Murphy (a.k.a. Lights-Camera-Jackson) has been a film critic/entertainment reporter on TV and radio since the age of 7 1/2. He currently appears weekly on WFLY radio (Albany, NY) and his reviews appear in The Record (Troy, NY) newspaper.

You can find Jackson Murphy anywhere below:

Website: Lights-Camera-Jackson.com

Facebook: Lights Camera Jackson

Twitter: @LCJReviews

####

Coming up: Ready4Air (Brands and Bloggers) 5 Useful Skills TV Producers Possess That You Should Too

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

Read More...

Ready4Air (Brands and Bloggers) #TBT 10 Skills That Make A TV Producer A Great Hire Or Partner For Businesses

television producer

September 24, 2015 | Posted in Social TV | By

television producer

Producers can direct a department, coordinate a live event or conference and produce a corporate video. If a company needs in-house help for coordinating an on site-video conference, media training or handling public relations with the press, a producer knows how to juggle those responsibilities.

First published on Entrepreneur.com

The next time you are looking to hire someone for your team and you see a resume, perhaps mine, with “television producer” on it, take a second look. Producing a show is a lot like founding and running a business — you need a message, a team, content or service and great execution. Any company will benefit by having a producer as a consultant or on staff.

Career-reinvention coach John Tarnoff explained during a radio interview on midlife career reinvention that we all have transferable work skills. I would add that television producers have carefully-honed skills that are particularly suited for businesses and brands. We are excellent big-picture leaders, storytellers and managers who are trained to work under extraordinary pressure.

Producers can direct a department, coordinate a live event or conference and produce a corporate video. If a company needs in-house help for coordinating an on site-video conference, media training or handling public relations with the press, a producer knows how to juggle those responsibilities.

Related Post: Ready4Air (TV) | A Good TV Producer Can Make Any Business Better

Here is a list of 10 transferable skills that producers bring to businesses:

1. Team builders and leaders

Just like the employees of a company, producers are usually part of a bigger team where they are charged with leading a production. Business owner Andrew Schmertz, co-founder and CEO of Hopscotch Air, Inc., is, like me, a former television executive producer.

“If you are a producer, you need to involve your staff in the production of the entire program and encourage employees to ask for help and guidance from each other,” he says. “Include people in the decision-making process, even when it is outside their job titles.”

2. Communicators

Communicating with your boss or staff is key. Whether writing or speaking for a three-minute segment or an hour-long special, producers must connect to a diverse audience.

Anjie Taylor, a supervising producer and writer at The Talk, chimes in: “Producers have the ability to write quickly, with clarity and in a style that fits the business culture we are in. The person who best commands language will always be an asset and will usually stand out.”

3. Big-picture planners

As a business owner, you are always thinking broadly about the company and all its components. Producers are big-picture planners.

Investigative producer David Manoucheri confirms this: “Any program has a lot of moving parts that have to fit together like a puzzle. You have to know how it all fits. We have the ability to make the necessary changes without being too married to something. Producers see the big picture.”

4. Major multitaskers

Companies expect employees to perform more duties than ever before, and producers have extensive experience wearing many hats and juggling several balls at one time and dealing with all types of people. Shelly Heesacker, a field director and producer for national shows, says something as simple as making nervous people feel comfortable is a paramount skill for getting anything done.

5. Constant connectors

Producers are great networkers. I have acquired an eclectic list of contacts over the years that I can turn to when necessary. And if I don’t know someone, I definitely know somebody who can connect me.

6. Rock-star negotiators

Business people negotiate every day, whether it is for themselves or their companies. The goal is to eventually make the deal.

“Every TV producer knows ‘no’ is not a final answer — it’s just the beginning of a dialogue on the road to ‘yes,'” says Katherine Ann, a senior supervising producer of an Emmy-winning nationally-syndicated talk show. “We are used to outsmarting roadblocks.”

Related Post: Ready4Air (Brands and Bloggers) | #TBT Land On A TV Producer’s Radar With These 5 Tips

7. Terrific troubleshooters

Most producers realize the importance of staying calm under pressure. Producers cover wars, disasters and reality-reunion shows gone amok.

“Producers know how to be a solution, not a problem,” says former CBS News manager Nanci Ross Weaver. “When all falls apart, we have plans B, C and D before reporting in.”

Senior casting producer Sharon Nash Alexander says producers are great troubleshooters and are flexible.

Executive producer and showrunner Eric Streit adds, “We know how to go into any situation at any spot on the globe, take stock of our resources and then adapt to create successful outcomes.”

8. Super salespeople and marketers

Imagine an employee being able to creatively tell your brand’s message in only 30 seconds to anyone who will listen. When producers aren’t producing a show, they are concisely selling ideas to their bosses.

Producer Ava Odom Martin says, “We are able to break through the intricacies of your business to tell your story in the elevator speech.”

9. Master money savers

With companies constantly cutting budgets, money needs to go far. Shows are notorious for wanting a lot of production with little resources. Producers know how to stick to a budget. If we cannot afford something, then we can probably negotiate a deal to get whatever is needed in even the most unusual situations.

10. Organized time managers

Every company wants their employees to put out as much work as possible in a day. Producers understand the value of time, money and meeting a deadline.

Emmy Award-winning talk show producer Joyce Coleman Sampson maintains that “it is extremely important to be organized and pay close attention to details. Effective time management is key because time is money.”

Producers bring these 10 skills and more to the business table, and as I like to say, once a producer, always a producer. If you are an employer searching for that certain someone to add to your team, a producer is that person.

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Coming up: Ready4Air (Film) Lights-Camera-Jackson interviews ‘Hotel Transylvania 2’ director Genndy Tartakovsky

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (TV) | A Producer Reflects: The Night I Won An Emmy (REPOST)

Image-12-copy

September 23, 2015 | Posted in Social TV | By

 THE DOCTORS "2010 Daytime Emmy Awards" Winner Outstanding Talk Show/Informative at 37th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards , Las Vegas Hilton in Las Vegas, NV USA June 27, 2010

The Doctors, 2010 Daytime Emmy Awards
Winner Outstanding Talk Show/Informative at 37th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards
Las Vegas Hilton in Las Vegas, Nevada, June 27, 2010

This post was originally published on June 4, 2014.

Coming off my trip to Cannes celebrating what may be the best in film, I’m now thinking about what may be the best in television. The 2014 Daytime Emmy Awards is on June 20, and while I’ve only been nominated for an Emmy, I have several producer friends who have actually won one. The Emmys is television’s equivalent to the Grammys in music and the Oscars in film. Given by the New York–based National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences and the Los Angeles–based Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, it recognizes great work in American daytime television programming.

Related Post: So You Want To Be On TV: Tips For Pitching Your Television Segment

For some producers, the Emmy win is not only a title change for them–now, their name is “Emmy Award-winning producer”–but also a lifelong dream come true. Longtime friend and fellow producer, Joyce Coleman-Sampson, is presently the supervising producer of daytime talk show The Bill Cunningham Show. In 2010, she became a daytime Emmy winner for her work on The Doctors.

Joyce Coleman-Sampson with Jay McCraw of The Doctors in 2010

Joyce Coleman-Sampson with Jay McGraw, creator and executive producer of The Doctors in 2010

Being nominated for an Emmy is one thing, but actually winning it is another. What did it feel like when your show ‘The Doctors’ won?

It was a very funny situation. Picture this: The producers and executives are sitting in their seats waiting for our category and the winner to be announced. When Alex Trebek announced that The Doctors was the winner, people started flying out of their seats. I was the last one to get up because I was in disbelief. After I got myself together, I ran towards the stage. Once there, I realized that I was the shortest one in the bunch and needed to find a spot front and center on the stage so that I could be seen. What an awesome experience! As I stood there, I just looked out into the audience at the sea of people. I remember telling myself to take it all in and process this moment. Take a good snapshot and brand it into your memory. After I did so, I then remembered it was time for me to give my hand signals to my family that promised I would do if I won. Fast forward to when I saw the playback of me on television, I looked like a crazy person jumping up and down. Winning the Emmy was like winning the Super Bowl or the Olympics, or even an Oscar.

Did you dream about winning an Emmy?

Yes, many moons ago. I eventually gave up thinking about it after so many years went by. I think everybody that works in television dreams of winning an Emmy one day. After X years in the business, I was finally nominated for an Emmy several times while working for the hit television show The Doctors. The show was nominated once before we finally won the ultimate prize for television in 2010.

What did it feel like when you got the news that you were nominated for an Emmy? 

The first time, it was shocking and exciting! I was a bit numb. I was really blown away when The Tyra Banks Show beat us the first time around.

How long have you been in television?

I have been in television longer then I can remember. I have had an amazing career thus far, and the best is yet to come. I never intended on becoming a television producer turned television executive. I wanted to be a recording artist, but God had other plans. I was lucky to land my first television gig shortly after I graduated from William Paterson College. My first job was as a producer working for the largest cable company in the industry, Cablevision. It was there that I gained valuable experience as a producer, which eventually led me to become a systems executive producer/systems manager. After spending several years working in cable, I began to spread my wings and reach for the sky. I knocked on hundreds of doors before I made it to the major leagues.

Related Post: Ready4Air (TV) | Got An Idea? Steps To Developing A Show For Television

 

Montel Williams and Joyce Coleman-Sampson at 2010 Daytime Emmy Awards

Montel Williams and Joyce Coleman-Sampson at the 2010 Daytime Emmy Awards

Montel Williams gave me my big break into the syndicated world. I spent seven years with him as a producer. I left his show holding the title of senior producer. I have been blessed to work with all of the major talk shows. The only one I did not work for was The Oprah Winfrey Show. I really did not have any interest in working for her because her show was in Chicago, and that was a bit too cold. Silly me! I have worked on the East and West coasts. I’m currently working as the supervising producer for The Bill Cunningham Show.

 

Joyce Coleman- Sampson at 2010 Daytime Emmy Awards Ceremony

Joyce Coleman- Sampson at 2010 Daytime Emmy Awards Ceremony

 Tell me about the excitement of getting ready to attend the ceremony on Emmy night and going to the event?

It was a feeling like, WOW! You have finally achieved the ultimate goal. I felt like Hollywood royalty. I could not believe it. Preparing for the Emmys is like getting things tight and right for your wedding. First, you starve yourself to death. Then, you look for the perfect dress that makes you look skinny and beautiful. You experiment with finding the right makeup and look for shoes that will not kill your feet all night. You play around with creating different hairstyles and, finally, get your manicure and pedicure done. Once that was all figured out, it was showtime.

How has winning the Emmy changed or enhanced your career?

Not sure yet. However, it has taught me to never give up on your dreams and that if you can believe, you can achieve whatever you want in life.

Emmy Award Winning Producer Joyce Coleman-Sampson

Emmy Award Winning Producer Joyce Coleman-Sampson

Where do you keep the Emmy statue ?

I keep it in a showcase in my living room

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Coming up: Ready4Air (Brands and Bloggers) 10 Skills That Make A TV Producer A Great Hire Or Partner For Business

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (TV) | 2tvchicks: Wishing For A Peaceful Day, Ahhhh, If Only

2tvchicks

September 22, 2015 | Posted in Social TV | By

2tvchicks

 

By 2tvchicks

We all know that as moms, we wish we could have a peaceful day. By peaceful, I mean not one single iota of fighting, bribing, screaming, persuading, lecturing, begging, or crying from our little ones or from ourselves either! Wouldn’t life be so much easier if our kids would learn how to say the following:

Sure, Mom, I’d love to clean up my toys.
Speaking of toys, I have so many of them that I will never complain about being bored.
I love what you made for dinner. May I have more, please?
I’m tired. I’m going to go put myself to bed now.
I love the clothes you picked out for me today.
I’m going to brush my teeth twice today, and maybe even floss.
May I help you carry in the groceries, Mom?
I see you’re on the phone, so I am going to play quietly with my sister.
In fact, I love my sister so much that I am not going to fight with her ever again.
I have a ton of homework and a book report to do. Instead of watching TV, I’m going to get to work and not wait until the last minute.
I would rather read a book like you suggested instead of playing my video games today.
I’m going to take out the garbage for you so the house won’t smell.
I see you’re peeing, so I wont interrupt.
I see you’re pooping, so I will definitely not interrupt.
I was very sweaty today, so I am going to take a shower all by myself.
I may even clean my ears, wash my hair, and get all my body parts without you monitoring me.
I miss Me-ma and Pop-pop and know how happy it would make them if I called them, so where is the phone?
I know you just vacuumed, so I am going to take my shoes off before I walk in the house with muddy sneakers.
I know how bad candy is for my teeth, so I prefer if you stop buying it for us.
I love eating my vegetables, too.
I know I look messy when I don’t let you do my hair, so please brush it for me.
Mom, I know you’re tired from working so much, so why don’t you take a nap and we will play quietly.
May I have water? I hate sugary juice!
Mom, when I told you your belly jiggles I meant it was cute, not gross!
Mom, thank you!
AHHHH, if only!

Ready4Air (TV) | 2tvchicks: My Boy–A Mother Cherishes One Special Job

2tvchicks

We are Blondie and Red, two moms who leave our children at home and come to the television set of a national talk show and transition to the role of producers. We have a lot of love, a lot of guilt, and a lot of great stories to share that we know every fierce and fabulous working mom can relate to. Some call it bitching. We call it bitchin’! Read more about us at 2tvchicks.com.

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Coming up: Ready4Air (TV) The #NursesUnite controversy and ‘The View’

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell Graphic – Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (The Week Ahead) | 67th Primetime Emmy Awards | Why A TV Producer Is A Good Hire | #NursesUnite Controversy And ‘The View’

collage 1

September 21, 2015 | Posted in Social TV | By

Primetime Emmy Awards

Taraji P. Henson and Viola Davis were both nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award in the Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series category. Davis ultimately won the award for her work in How to Get Away with Murder.
Photos via Facebook

Happy Monday, All!

The television awards season is in full swing now that this year’s 67th Primetime Emmy Awards ceremony is over and television is slowly changing. Cable television was the big winner last night, with HBO’s Veep beating out ABC’s Modern Family for Best Comedy Series to HBO’s Game of Thrones with a total of 12 Emmy wins for 2015, beating out longtime fan favorite AMC’s Mad Men for the drama prize. But Mad Men was a winner for Jon Hamm. After seven nominations, Hamm scored Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series for the final Mad Men season. After the show, a producer friend called to tell me that she didn’t know many of the shows since she hadn’t been watching cable. I told her cable is where it’s happening and even the big-name celebrities are following.

As with every contest, there are winners and losers. This year, I tuned in hoping to see history be made. An African-American woman has never won in the Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series category. Both Taraji P. Henson of Fox’s Empire and Viola Davis of How to Get Away with Murder were up for Emmy nominations in the category, marking the first time two African-American actresses have made the list in the same year. Juilliard-educated Viola Davis walked away with the Emmy last night, her first Emmy nomination, and the first time in 67 years of Emmy history that an African-American woman has won it. Fellow nominee Taraji P. Henson gave 50-year-old Davis a big hug as she ran up to the stage where in her speech, Davis talked about having more roles for African-American women and thanked many women of color who are working in Hollywood today. Davis said “Let me tell you something–the only thing that separates women of color from anyone else is opportunity. You cannot win an Emmy for roles that are simply not there.”

For the first time in Emmy history, four actresses of color walked away with Emmy wins in one night. A few Emmy award-winning surprises included actress Regina King for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or a Movie for her role in American Crime. It was King’s first Emmy win ever, and Nigerian actress Uzo Aduba of Orange Is the New Black won her second Emmy for Supporting Actress in a Drama Series. Both Aduba and King seemed genuinely surprised by their wins. Like them, I was genuinely surprised and happy to see their win and history being made.

Congratulations to all of this year’s Primetime Emmy award winners!

Related Post: Ready4Air (The Week Ahead) | (VIDEO) Taraji P. Henson Talks About #Fashion Week’s New Destination | Shooting TV In The Streets Of NYC

The co-hosts for the current season of The View are (clockwise from top left): Whoopi Goldberg, Candace Cameron Bure, Michelle Collins, Paula Faris, and Raven-Symone.
Photos via abc.go.com

Well, I’m sure the producers of ABC’s The View weren’t expecting this kind of publicity when they came back for the new season. When they brought back former co-host Joy Behar to the panel–I am sure for big bucks–I was pretty excited. Joy was always my favorite, and I had stopped watching after her departure. But her highly-anticipated return to the show for its latest season has been derailed after the daytime talker received a firestorm of social media criticism for jokes made mocking Miss Colorado’s Kelly Johnson in this year’s Miss America pageant.

Turns out, America’s nurses didn’t find the comedian’s comments funny. Now, show advertisers, a total of five, are pushing the pause button and pulling out their sponsorship.

This week on Ready4Air (TV), can The View recover from this latest controversy, or is this the last year for fans to take a little time to enjoy “The View”?

Related Post: GoodBye Joy Behar: A New Day At The View

PicMonkey-Collage-Control-Room-Montage-1024x512

And finally, a few weeks ago, I wrote a post for enterpreneur.com outlining the multifaceted skills of a good television producer. The idea was born after I found myself continuously explaining to people how a producer’s skills can be valuable to any team in a variety of businesses. I posted a query to my television associates and friends in a variety of Facebook groups, asking them to list a producer’s transferable skills, which became the foundation of the story.

Well, the finished post turned out to be a very popular read and went viral on social media, with a total of 5,000 Facebook shares, 646 retweets on Twitter, and 876 likes on LinkedIn.

In this week’s #TBT, we will feature my most popular entrepreneur.com post to date “10 Skills That Make a TV Producer a Great Hire or Partner for Businesses.”

Thanks for stopping by and stay tuned.

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Coming up: Ready4Air (TV) 2tvchicks: Ahhhh, if only

Deborah J. Mitchell

Deborah Mitchell Media Associates – Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell – Graphic Design: Nay Ayache

Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

Read More...

Ready4Air (Film) | Lights-Camera-Jackson On Great Performances That WON’T Be Nominated

alicia-vikander-ex-machina

September 18, 2015 | Posted in Social TV | By

great performances

Alicia Vikander gave a unique, bold, and memorable performance in Ex Machina.
Photo courtesy of A24

By Jackson Murphy

Awards season is upon us, which means every movie opening between now and the end of the year will fight for recognition. And, it also means, in true “out of sight, out of mind” tradition, that practically every quality film and all the performances from earlier this year will get overlooked. Here are four fantastic performances that, due to the nature of this beast, will NOT get serious nomination consideration. (Note: these are not necessarily my favorites of 2015 so far):

Best Actor – Benicio Del Toro (Escobar: Paradise Lost)

The Oscar winner is excellent as notorious drug lord Pablo Escobar in this indie action/thriller. Escobar is portrayed as both ruthless and sympathetic, with Del Toro balancing both quite nicely, while also going toe-to-toe with Hunger Games star Josh Hutcherson, who gives a career-best performance. But hardly anyone saw this film and Del Toro seems to be picking up some momentum in the Supporting Actor category for Sicario, which co-stars Emily Blunt and Josh Brolin.

Best Actress – Alicia Vikander (Ex Machina)

This highly original sci-fi drama is one of the pure gems of 2015. It’s unique, bold, and memorable. The same can be said for Vikander’s performance. She plays an A.I. robot named Ava. I do think Ex Machina has a chance to sneak in the Original Screenplay race (if voters still remember this movie in December), but chances are Vikander won’t be honored for this performance. However, early reviews of The Danish Girl, in which she stars alongside Eddie Redmayne, claim she makes the movie, putting Vikander in a good position for some Best Actress nominations.

Best Supporting Actor – Harrison Ford (The Age of Adaline)

If you thought Ford’s career has taken a downfall over the last several years, and that his big comeback will be in the new Star Wars film, I have a question for you: Where have you been? In 2010, he gave effective and charming performances in the little-seen drama Extraordinary Measures and the TV news comedy Morning Glory. And in 2013, Ford deserved an Oscar nomination for playing Brooklyn Dodgers manager Branch Rickey in the Jackie Robinson biopic 42. In Adaline, Ford pours his heart into the role of an astronomer who unexpectedly reconnects with his former sweetheart. It’s a showcase for the legendary actor, opposite a lovely Blake Lively. But Adaline didn’t get much attention when it was released in April, and his performance is sure to be overlooked amongst a crowded category.

Best Supporting Actress – Maggie Smith (The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel)

Smith received a SAG Award Supporting Actress nomination for the original Marigold in 2012. But she’s even better in the lighter yet more powerful sequel. Smith gets a lot of screen time (you could argue more than star Judi Dench) and her character, Mrs. Donnelly, goes through the most pivotal arc of all of the characters. However, this sequel did not perform as well as the original at the box office and wasn’t as loved by critics. Smith may also be at a disadvantage for recognition with this performance, as she could contend for Best Actress honors for the dramedy The Lady in the Van, which opens in December.

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Thanks, Jackson!

abcPhoto Credit:

Film critic Jackson Murphy of Lights-Camera-Jackson
Photo Credit: Jackson Murphy

Jackson Murphy (a.k.a. Lights-Camera-Jackson) has been a film critic/entertainment reporter on TV and radio since the age of 7 1/2. He currently appears weekly on WFLY radio (Albany, NY) and his reviews appear in The Record (Troy, NY) newspaper.

You can find Jackson Murphy anywhere below:

Website: Lights-Camera-Jackson.com

Facebook: Lights Camera Jackson

Twitter: @LCJReviews

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Deborah J. Mitchell

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Emmy-nominated network television producer Deborah Mitchell is a veteran of ABC and CBS News, a member of the Producers Guild of America, and a board member of the James Beard Broadcast and Media Awards Committee. Through Deborah Mitchell Media Associates, she will create your online personality with a customized website, book you on the right television show, manage your social media profiles, and connect you with the best and brightest digital influencers. Deborah is a weekly contributor for Entrepreneur.com and author of So You Want To Be On TV. You can follow Deborah @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com.  

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