Ready4Air (Brands and Bloggers) | Creating Your Brand’s Storyline: A Few Tips From TV And Movie Pros

RealityTV1-2

December 16, 2014 | Posted in Brands and Bloggers Connect, Social TV | By

Photo Credit: Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Photo Credit: Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Whether you are writing a blog or producing video for television or online, content is king. Nothing makes better content than a good story, and everybody–including individuals and brands–has a story. Storytelling is an art, and with brands competing for the short attention span of audiences online and on-air, the story always needs to contain a few key elements. It should be compelling, informative, and entertaining. So if you’re thinking about telling your story off- or online, here are a few great tips I’ve picked up in the last year from successful on-screen professionals who know how to tell a good story:

Mob Wives New Blood - Season 4

Mob Wives New Blood – Season 4

Authenticity is key. Unlike the popular perception, most reality TV show producers do not encourage fake storylines. According to Jenn Graziano, executive producer of the highly successful show Mob Wives, the key to creating the constant action is to be selective with the life events that are followed on the show. She says, “Our commitment to honest, true storytelling has always remained the same across all seasons.”
Brands finding authenticity. A business can learn a few lessons from that. Instead of creating gorgeous scripted videos, they can find their stories in their corporate culture. Employees who run in marathons, volunteer in soup kitchens, or give back to the local community are creating great content for a brand to engage its audience more in a Facebook conversation. It personalizes a brand and makes the people behind the product more human.
Mike Sargent with Gina Prince-Bythewood on the set of Arise On Screen Photo Credit: Michelle Lynne Madar/Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Mike Sargent with Gina Prince-Bythewood on the set of Arise On Screen
Photo Credit: Michelle Lynne Madar/Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Build the anticipation. In a recent interview with Arise On Screen host Mike Sargent, Beyond the Lights writer and director Gina Prince-Bythewood highlighted the most important element in successful storytelling. She believes that “a good story is one that I’m listening to and makes me want to know what happens next.”
Build the anticipation for a brand. This is a crucial point, since oftentimes there’s a very small window of opportunity to keep a viewer interested. During a television commercial or YouTube video, the viewer has the option of skipping the ad after five seconds. In those crucial few seconds, the brand has to try to get as much of the message through so that it reaches viewers, even if they choose to skip it.
Steven Ramey, Senior Producer Arise America for Arise News Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell/ Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Steven Ramey, Senior Producer of Arise America for Arise News
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell/Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Be concise in your story. Steven Ramey, line producer at Arise On Screen, has the delicate main task of time management on the show. He’s a fan of brevity, and his favorite saying is, “If you want to say something, have something to say.” He’s right! Just because TV shows and commercials have to be an exact length in order to fit in regular programming does not mean that online videos don’t have time constraints. A bored viewer is less likely to watch a video again if it goes on endlessly and aimlessly.
Brands, be concise. The essence of a message is all that matters, and any unessential elements to your story should be edited out. According to Steve, “It’s better to say something short and meaningful than to fill a lot of hot air that doesn’t mean anything.”
Lyndsay Christian, Media Professional

Lyndsay Christian, Media Professional

 
Appeal to your viewers’ emotions. As a media and television consultant, Lyndsay Christian knows how to put the best of both worlds in her stories. Her advice is to appeal to to a viewer’s heart: “Start with the subject, build out the story, and end with the subject. What is the story you’re trying to convey? What is he or she experiencing? How is the subject feeling? Write vividly to express those emotions.”
Brands know and appeal to your consumers. A business that connects with its audience on an emotional level is more likely to create brand loyalty because the stories it tells are not about the sale or even the present. The best videos are the ones that recognize the past and look forward to the future, giving meaning to their journey with their customers.
Businesses put a lot of effort and money into cultivating a brand image, so make sure your message has the meat, the heat, and an angle. Making a great video requires a great story, and in a social world, the story has to be real, vivid, and to the point. Before hunting down the best director for the next commercial, ask this question: Does my brand make a difference or change lives? If so, these are the stories that will captivate the hearts of your audience and motivate them to share what they see.
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Coming up: Holiday Gourmet Delights from Munich’s Dallmayr Market
Deborah J. Mitchell

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

 

TV/Social Media Producer Debbie Mitchell is an Emmy nominated producer who is a member of the Producers Guild of America (PGA). She is currently a member of the James Beard Broadcast and New Media Awards Committee. Deborah is Executive Producer of Arise On Screen a global and socially interactive movie review show. If you are a brand interested in Social TV, blogger outreach campaigns, or a blogger or personality interested in television placement follow Debbie Mitchell @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com, or email Nay Ayache on naydmma@gmail.com.  

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Ready4Air (Film) | Writer And Director Gina Prince-Bythewood Goes ‘Beyond The Lights’

Beyond The Lights

November 13, 2014 | Posted in Film | By

Mike Sargent with Gina Prince-Bythewood on the set of Arise On Screen

Mike Sargent with Gina Prince-Bythewood on the set of Arise On Screen.

Writer and director Gina Prince-Bythewood’s latest film, Beyond The Lights, opens in theaters nationwide on Friday, November 14. Fans of her debut film Love & Basketball, which is now a classic, won’t be disappointed in the new film that stars Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Nate Parker. It’s a modern-day love story that explores the world of music superstardom and the sacrifices that are made to make it to the top and stay there. Arise On Screen host and film critic Mike Sargent sat down with the director for a taping, which will air on Saturday, November 15. He also talked to Prince-Bythewood beforehand for his radio show. I caught up with them during that interview, and here is what Gina had to say.
By Mike Sargent 
What does this film mean to you?
This film is very important to me. It’s a story that’s been locked in my head for many, many years. It’s really about a young woman who’s pushed into a highly sexualized persona to get ahead in the music industry and it works. She becomes very successful, but at a cost, and the film is really about that cost to her soul. It’s about putting yourself out there in something inauthentic for success and how hard it is to pull back from that once you’ve achieved that success. It’s something we see in the music industry over and over again–almost like there’s a script for young singers to follow. It works, but the problem is that the envelope keeps getting pushed further and further, and there’s really nowhere else to go but off a cliff.
I agree with you. How much can you relate to this character, and if you had this idea over time, how did it change?
It’s interesting. It started from a personal place as a writer, just envisioning not having a voice. I don’t think there’s anything worse than not having a say in your own life. As a writer, I felt trapped. In addition, there was an issue that happened in my own life. I was adopted. I searched for my birth mother and found her. I was an adoptee who had this fantasy that it was going to be amazing–running into each other’s arms–and it wasn’t that at all. It was pretty troubling, and learning the circumstances of how I came into the world was pretty tough. I realized that if this woman had kept me, I would have grown into a home where I would have been loved and hated. I just thought that was a very interesting character to deal with, someone who didn’t grow up with unconditional love. And as a writer, the great thing is that you can use it as therapy. I was able to put that personal thing into this character and put her into this world of hip hop and R&B, which is a world I really wanted to explore.
Mike Sargent with Gina Prince-Bythewood on the set of Arise On Screen

Mike Sargent with Gina Prince-Bythewood on the set of Arise On Screen.

You slightly answered the question I was going to ask you. Was writing the movie and getting it made cathartic for you?
 
This film was so clear in my head. I’ve had it trapped in me for so long. With the project almost going and then dying over and over again, I was a miserable person for a couple of years. To be at this point now where the film is about to come out and the audience is responding to it–it’s really surreal to see how far I’ve come and how many noes we’ve overcome.
I went to see the film and sitting behind you was Malcom Lee. There were just a few of us, but we were all so into it. When did you first know you wanted to be a storyteller?
 
I’ve been writing stories ever since I was a little girl. It’s funny because my parents came for the premiere of Love & Basketball, and they brought this short story I wrote when I was 9 years old. It was a little story about a turkey on Thanksgiving that pretended it was a pig so it wouldn’t be eaten. The fact that my parents had saved it and recognized it had always encouraged me. As I got older, I thought I wanted to write for soap operas. I used to watch five of them a day, and then I heard how much money they make (Laughs). But it wasn’t until I got into college in UCLA that my aspirations got a little bigger and I saw film as a really great way to tell stories because the format is so big. You go to the theater, it’s dark, and you totally enter a new world. I thought that was really cool.
And why do you think as human beings we like to tell each other stories?
 
Wow! I honestly feel that film can change people. A great film can change you, it can change your thinking, it can change who you are, and it can change the conversation, which is what I’m hoping to do with this film. It’s important to be able to put yourself into other people’s shoes. I like to go to a great film and lose myself in it, discover new worlds, new people, and new ways of life. I think it’s important because film has the ability to bring us together.
 
In your estimation, what makes a story worth telling?
(Laughs) That is a tough question. Honestly, a good story is one that I’m listening to and makes me want to know what happens next. It’s as simple as that.
Reggie Rock Bythewood and you are among the few black husband-and-wife teams and he produces films with you. How often do you two get to work together?
 
The funny thing is that we have been producing for each other from the beginning, but I only took producer credits on Biker Boys and this is the first time he is taking credit for one of my projects. But we’ve been doing it forever. Our scripts have to get past each other before they even go out in the world. And it’s a blessing to have each other on the set because directing is so tough. I love it, but it’s very tough. You’re fighting about everything. The fact that I have somebody on set who has my back–who only cares about the film and about me–is such a comfort. My hope is that when he directs his next film, I can do that for him as well.
Mike Sargent with Gina Prince-Bythewood on the set of Arise On Screen

Mike Sargent with Gina Prince-Bythewood on the set of Arise On Screen.

As you know, I’m a filmmaker too, and I believe that a film is directed three times. You direct it in your head when you write it, then when you’re on the set you get what you can, and then when you’re editing you can literally craft a new film. Do you agree with that? Which is your favorite part and what do you get out of each?
 
You are 100% correct, and I don’t think enough people understand that. First and foremost, it starts with the script. You cannot make a good movie from a bad script. For me, the script stage is what takes the longest. I can take a couple of years to write a script. Beyond the Lights took 55 drafts. I write and rewrite endlessly. But it is kind of amazing because you’re seeing the film in your head.
Shooting is my favorite part. It is so immediate, there is so much adrenaline, and you’re just creating and chasing that perfect take. It is collaborative–everyone is working together for a common thing. I love working with actors, and dope actors make it so much fun.
I hate post-editing. I feel so bad for my editor, who’s done three films so far with me. The first couple of weeks, all I see is what I didn’t get. I think I’m a failure and that I made a terrible film. She has to put up with me as I’m curled into a ball feeling miserable. But once you start shaping it and it comes together, it gets exciting. It is the toughest part for me.
Beyond The Lights

Beyond the Lights

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Stay tuned!
Deborah J. Mitchell

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

TV/Social Media Producer Debbie Mitchell is an Emmy nominated producer who is a member of the Producers Guild of America (PGA). She is currently a member of the James Beard Broadcast and New Media Awards Committee. Deborah is Executive Producer of Arise On Screen a global and socially interactive movie review show. If you are a brand interested in Social TV, blogger outreach campaigns, or a blogger or personality interested in television placement follow Debbie Mitchell @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com, or email Nay Ayache on naydmma@gmail.com.

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Ready4Air (The Week Ahead) | Lessons For Female Entrepreneurs | Previewing ‘Beyond The Lights’ | In VO-Know Your Voice

2014 American Express Open Forum: CEO Bootcamp
Photo credit: Deborah Mitchell Media Associates.

November 10, 2014 | Posted in Film, Lifestyle Lineup (Food,Fashion,Travel,Books), TV Production | By

 

2014 American Express Open Forum: CEO Bootcamp Photo credit: Deborah Mitchell Media Associates.

2014 American Express Open Forum: CEO Bootcamp
Photo credit: Deborah Mitchell Media Associates.

I am always amazed at how quickly the weeks go by, especially when it’s the holiday season. I can’t believe it’s the start of a new week already. Just last week Monday, I was at the Sheraton Times Square attending an all-day event for female entrepreneurs. The free event was sponsored by American Express and was called the OPEN FORUM: CEO BOOTCAMP. When fellow entrepreneur–Suncera Johnson, founder of Amass Digital–told me about the event, I decided to check it out and I’m glad I did. The day featured 30-45 minute breakout sessions on topics like “Standing Out in a Crowded Marketplace,” “Workshops on Strategies For Small Business,” and “Bootcamp For Your Books.” I paid very close attention to the session entitled “Social Media Power Hour” and sat in on the “Social Media Lab for Twitter and Pinterest.” The experts heading up those sessions had a lot to say and gave good advice that any business or brand could use. Designer Diane von Furstenberg was on hand for a panel discussion where she shared the story of how she built her brand, and she doled out a bit of advice for a couple of up-and-coming designers.

 

2014 American Express Open Forum: CEO Bootcamp Photo credit: Deborah Mitchell Media Associates.

2014 American Express Open Forum: CEO Bootcamp
Photo credit: Deborah Mitchell Media Associates.

 

The event featured the sessions in several ballrooms and the ladies had a chance to have their photos taken in front of a snazzy step and repeat wall. This event was perfect for me since I am a die-hard American Express fan. Those membership points have paid for many a vacation. LOL! I’ve been an American Express member since college, and I’m usually quite put off when a merchant doesn’t take the card, which happens often when I travel internationally.

However, my favorite session at the OPEN FORUM: CEO BOOTCAMP was the one led by TV personality JJ Ramberg entitled “The Perfect Pitch” where we learned to refine our company pitch into a 30-second elevator pitch. Once Ramberg gave us instructions on what to do, each table of entrepreneurs had to come up with a pitch and practice on each other. The exercise was challenging, but very useful in the end. Later this month, I will be sharing more of what I learned along with my fellow female entrepreneurs.

Beyond The Lights

Beyond The Lights

Related Post: Ready4Air (Film) | Gina Prince-Bythewood: When A Woman Is The Writer And Director

Director and writer Gina Prince-Bythewood is one entrepreneur who is very busy these days. On Friday, her latest film Beyond the Lights–a modern-day love story starring Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Nate Parker–opens in theaters nationwide. The writer and director has a great track record in Hollywood and fans of her highly successful debut film Love & Basketball are waiting to see if she’s done it again. Prince-Bythewood will join us on Arise On Screen on Saturday, but host Mike Sargent sat down with her for a radio interview and asked her what the new film meant to her.

Prince-Bythewood had this to say: “This film is very important to me. It’s a story that’s been locked in my head for many, many years. It’s really about a young woman who’s pushed into a highly sexualized persona to get ahead in the music industry, and it works. She becomes very successful, but at a cost, and the film is really about that cost to her soul.”

This week on Ready4Air (Film), more of Mike Sargent’s interview with Gina Prince-Bythewood.

Voiceover Artist Bob Hennessy

Voiceover Artist Bob Hennessy

Related Post: Ready4Air (Gimme The Mic) | The Daily Auditioner: Home Recording Your Voiceovers

We are ecstatic to have another guest post from voiceover artist Bob Hennessy. I met Bob during the holiday season last year and he’s a former veteran television cameraman who has reinvented his career and I love it. Doing voiceover work may appear easy, but it is harder than it looks. It turns out that doing voiceovers is one part of having a good voice along with being a good actor.

This week in Ready4Air (TV), Bob writes about finding your voice as a voiceover artist. Hennessy lets us know that, “First of all, you know your own voice. Maybe you’re not Don Pardo. Maybe you’re more Don Knotts. That’s fine; there’s work out there for you.”

That is good news. If you know your voice then you could be working it.

on air

And finally, if you are in New York City on Tuesday, November 11, join me at the latest Savor The Success event. I will be the guest speaker for the NYC LIVE Mastermind: How to Master the Art of Being Interviewed. As an entrepreneur, you and your brand will want press at some point. When you get in front of the camera, you want to be ready for air and I will be giving tips on how to be your best before the cameras.

During the intimate group session, I will share the following:

• How to increase your comfort level appearing in front of any media audience and how to use your own particular style with ease to get your message across
• Discover how to handle challenging questions
• Use the power of three to tell stories concisely and efficiently anywhere
• Design an effective website, YouTube channel, and sizzle reel to maximize your media appearance

These tips will take you and your business to the next level. So make a little time to top by and say hi.

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Coming up: Mike Sargent’s interview with Gina Prince-Blythewood

Deborah J. Mitchell

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

TV/Social Media Producer Debbie Mitchell is an Emmy nominated producer who is a member of the Producers Guild of America (PGA). She is currently a member of the James Beard Broadcast and New Media Awards Committee. Deborah is Executive Producer of Arise On Screen a global and socially interactive movie review show. If you are a brand interested in Social TV, blogger outreach campaigns, or a blogger or personality interested in television placement follow Debbie Mitchell @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com, or email Nay Ayache on naydmma@gmail.com.  

 

 

 

 

 

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Ready4Air (The Week Ahead) | Do This Before You Lose A Job | Tips For Self-Publishing | November Sweeps

Arise On Screen, Halloween special with host Mike Sargent, film critics Justine Browning and Julian Roman

November 3, 2014 | Posted in Social TV | By

 

Arise On Screen, Halloween special with host Mike Sargent, film critics Justine Browning and Julian Roman

Arise On Screen Halloween special with host Mike Sargent and film critics Justine Browning and Julian Roman.

The Arise On Screen film team had a little fun with Halloween when they dressed up to talk about the most controversial horror movies ever made. Host Mike Sargent was in his sci-fi element dressed in a Star Trek costume. Film critic Justine Browning came as Aphrodite and Julian Roman became a mega critic when he put on his Megamind head.

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Check out our show wall. The Arise graphics team went all out and created a creepy, yet fun wall as the backdrop to our Halloween madness! So how was your Halloween?

Control Room Arise TV Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

The control room of Arise TV.
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

The day before Halloween was the beginning of the November sweeps rating period, which runs from October 30 through November 26, the day before Thanksgiving. Shows will be pulling out the big producing guns to keep viewers and advertisers glued to the small screen. Pay close attention to what is on your favorite shows in the next few weeks.

Related Post: Ready4Air (TV) | Top 5 Tips for Public Relations Pros Pitching Sweeps Stories

IMG-20120202-00102

As the year begins to wind down, I start looking back. May 2015 will be five years since I was terminated from CBS networks. As I reflect on it, I think I would do a couple of things differently before I got fired. The last few years at CBS, from 2007 to 2010, there were a lot of changes in management. Fourteen weeks after a new executive producer came in, he called me in and told me that he wasn’t happy with my work. I was surprised because no one had complained about my work to me and I had always gotten great reviews. The ironic thing is that a year before, I had re-renewed my contract and upper management had told me that I was doing a great job as usual. Now, just like that, I was out the door.

While working in television can be all-consuming with little time to do anything else, I think with good planning anything can be figured out.

This week on Ready4Air (TV), I write about a few professional plans to put in place before you get fired in the post “Professional Moves To Make Before You Lose Your Job.”

Related Post: It’s Never Easy To Hear Those Words… “You’re Fired!”

Smartphone_Tablet_Libreria

And finally, after a short absence, the Buppy Hipster is back with a new guest post for Ready4Air (Brands and Bloggers). This week in her post “Buppy Hipster’s Tips For Self-Published Authors,” she writes, “Before there is a bestseller or media tour or film, you must first have the goods.” The Buppy Hipster shares a few common mistakes new authors often make that can stall or derail the journey to having their book published.

The team over at DMMA will be paying very close attention to these tips. Stay tuned to find out why.

For now, have a great week!

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Coming Up: Buppy Hipster’s Tips for Self-Published Authors

Deborah J. Mitchell

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

TV/Social Media Producer Debbie Mitchell is an Emmy nominated producer who is a member of the Producers Guild of America (PGA). She is currently a member of the James Beard Broadcast and New Media Awards Committee. Deborah is Executive Producer of Arise On Screen a global and socially interactive movie review show. If you are a brand interested in Social TV, blogger outreach campaigns, or a blogger or personality interested in television placement follow Debbie Mitchell @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com, or email Nay Ayache on naydmma@gmail.com.  

 

 

 

 

 

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Ready4Air (TV) | Actor Joe Pantoliano Talks TV, Movies, And Mental Illness

Joe Pantoliano on the set of Arise On Screen. Photo credit: Michelle Lynne Madar and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

October 7, 2014 | Posted in Film, TV Production | By

Deborah Mitchell with Joe Pantoliano. Photo credit: Michelle Lynne Madar.

Deborah Mitchell with Joe Pantoliano. Photo credit: Michelle Lynne Madar.

Yes, he has been in over 100 movies and television shows, but all I could think of when I met Joe Pantoliano last month was the late HBO hit show The Sopranos. He was Ralph “Ralphie” Cifaretto , who coupled up with Tony Soprano’s baby sister, Janet, to form one of the most dysfunctional couples in my television history.

The day he was scheduled to be interviewed, we almost lost our tape slot since Arise America had to run a news special covering the execution of another American journalist by ISIS. The special aired during our 4:00 p.m. pre-interview time. But instead of Joe walking away to the offer of a later tape time, he sat for a long radio interview with our host, Mike Sargent, and cooled his heels in our green room until we could fit him in the studio. Nice guy!

Related Post: Ready4Air | Coping On The Job As A News Journalist

Joe Pantoliano on the set of Arise On Screen. Photo credit: Michelle Lynne Madar and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Joe Pantoliano on the set of Arise On Screen. Photo credit: Michelle Lynne Madar and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

During his wait time, crew members and staffers stopped by to chat with him. With his signature pageboy cap flipped around backwards on his head, Joey Pants didn’t look like a man about to turn 63 in a few days. The funnier thing is that everyone who met him recalled their favorite character he played, including Captain Howard in Bad Boys with Will Smith, Cypher in The Matrix, or Cosmo Renfro in The Fugitive. Joey Pants has made a name for himself as a great Hollywood character actor, but even with the good times he’s faced a few personal challenges: he suffers from dyslexia and clinical depression. He speaks about his mental illness publicly and has founded a non-profit organization, No Kidding, Me Too! to unite members of the entertainment industry in educating the public about mental illness.

Related Post: One By One My Mobsters Are Leaving Me

Joe Pantoliano with Arise On Screen host Mike Sargent. Photo credit: Michelle Lynne Madar and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Joe Pantoliano with Arise On Screen host Mike Sargent. Photo credit: Michelle Lynne Madar and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

You gotta love a guy who can talk about the good and the challenges in life, and that’s what Joey Pants did when he sat down for this interview on Arise On Screen.

Take a look:

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Coming Up: Gina Prince-Bythewood: When A Woman Is The Writer And Director

Deborah J. Mitchell

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

TV/Social Media Producer Debbie Mitchell is an Emmy nominated producer who is a member of the Producers Guild of America (PGA). She is currently a member of the James Beard Broadcast and New Media Awards Committee. Deborah is Executive Producer of Arise On Screen a global and socially interactive movie review show. If you are a brand interested in Social TV, blogger outreach campaigns, or a blogger or personality interested in television placement follow Debbie Mitchell @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com, or email Nay Ayache on naydmma@gmail.com.

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Ready4Air (Social Media) | A Photographer Gets Close To The People Before The Lens

Film critics Raqiyah Mays and Bobby Rivers having fun backstage Photo credit: Nick Viagas and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates
Film critics Raqiyah Mays and Bobby Rivers having fun backstage
Photo credit: Nick Viagas and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

October 1, 2014 | Posted in TV Production | By

Nick Viagas (center) in Arise On Screen control room Photo Credit: Briana Montalvo and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Nick Viagas (center) in the Arise On Screen control room.
Photo Credit: Briana Montalvo and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

At Arise On Screen, I am the production photographer–a name I made up. Nobody not named “Nick Viagas” has ever called me that. I’m Mike Sargent’s intern, who fell into the lovely job of taking photos of our Saturday tapings for social media. Though I have no experience as a photographer, I have found a couple of tricks that help me take photos I think are pretty cool and really pop out on people’s news feeds.

 

First, I always take photos with people in them. The first week or so, I took photos of just about everything. Looking back on it, I understand that nobody wants to see 20 pictures of a dimly lit, empty hallway. People are more interesting. It’s what the show is about.
Second, I take photos that are as close as possible to the subject. When I volunteered to be the PP, as I call it, Terry Richardson was the only photographer whose name I knew. When I take pictures of the guests backstage, I’m basically doing a second-rate impression of his work and process. I don’t have the expensive camera or the big-time subjects, but what I respond to is the close range of his pictures. It makes the photo feel more intimate, like you’re meeting the subject at a party. I think allowing our guests to do whatever they want without posing them makes for a better picture. Although I can’t always do this in the control room or during taping, I try to have as little negative space as possible in any photo I take for the show. Here’s an example:

 

Related Post: Ready4Air (Social Media) | Creating Social Media Buzz For Arise On Screen

Film critics Raqiyah Mays and Bobby Rivers having fun backstage Photo credit: Nick Viagas and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates Film critics Raqiyah Mays and Bobby Rivers having fun backstage Photo credit: Nick Viagas and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Film critics Raqiyah Mays and Bobby Rivers having fun backstage. Photo credit: Nick Viagas and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

 

Isn’t that adorable? This came from simply telling Raqiyah and Bobby to do something fun in the green room. Since they are professional entertainers, this is what came out.
Arise On Screen host and film critic Mike Sargent Photo Credit: Nick Viagas and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Arise On Screen host and film critic Mike Sargent.
Photo Credit: Nick Viagas and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

 

 

Finally, I try to take a lot of photos in the studio because they always look good. It’s a room made to be looked at through a lens. I always have the “On Screen” logo in the background if we’re in the studio. For all I’ve said about creativity, the most important thing about social media photography is advertising. You’re trying to get people to like your page. If someone looks at that picture on their feed, they are going to know that this is a photo from a TV show called Arise On Screen.
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Thanks, Nick!Coming Up: Ready4Air (TV) | Yes, I’m Networking!: TV Jobs Are Really Hard To Find 

Deborah J. Mitchell

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

TV/Social Media Producer Debbie Mitchell is an Emmy nominated producer who is a member of the Producers Guild of America (PGA). She is currently a member of the James Beard Broadcast and New Media Awards Committee. Deborah is Executive Producer of Arise On Screen a global and socially interactive movie review show. If you are a brand interested in Social TV, blogger outreach campaigns, or a blogger or personality interested in television placement follow Debbie Mitchell @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com, or email Nay Ayache on naydmma@gmail.com.

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Ready4Air (Film) |Spending Saturday Morning With Action Hero Michael Jai White

Executive Producer Debbie Mitchell with Falcon Rising star Michael Jai White
Photo Credit: Nick Viagas and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

September 25, 2014 | Posted in Film | By

(l) Arise On Screen Director Larry Michaels, Actor Michael Jai White and Host Michael Sargent

(l) Arise On Screen director Larry Michaels, actor Michael Jai White, and host Michael Sargent.

Falcon Rising star Michael Jai White stopped by the Arise On Screen studio a few weeks ago and sat down for a chat with our host Michael Sargent. Director Larry Michaels took time out from the control room to get a photo as White talked about his new film, his role as an action hero, and his love of martial arts. White is an eighth degree black belt and did his own stunts in the movie. He’s on a short list of Hollywood’s African American action stars and says his latest role is one he’s been waiting for his entire career.

Related Post: Ready4Air (Film) | Let the 2015 Oscar Award Campaigns Begin

Executive Producer Debbie Mitchell with Falcon Rising star Michael Jai White Photo Credit: Nick Viagas and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

Executive Producer Debbie Mitchell with Falcon Rising star Michael Jai White
Photo Credit: Nick Viagas and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

White was the best guest on an early Saturday morning, taking time  to pose with members of the staff and chatting with the crew.  Michael Jai White, you are invited back anytime.

This week on Ready4Air, we are happy to look back at our chat with Michael Jai White, Hollywood’s newest action hero. Watch the interview below:

 

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Coming up: Interview With  Writer and Director Gina Prince-Bythewood

Deborah J. Mitchell

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

TV/Social Media Producer Debbie Mitchell is an Emmy nominated producer who is a member of the Producers Guild of America (PGA). She is currently a member of the James Beard Broadcast and New Media Awards Committee. Deborah is Executive Producer of Arise On Screen a global and socially interactive movie review show. If you are a brand interested in Social TV, blogger outreach campaigns, or a blogger or personality interested in television placement follow Debbie Mitchell @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com, or email Nay Ayache on naydmma@gmail.com.

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Ready4Air (TV) | A TV Host Talks About His Best and Worst Interviews

Arise On Screen Host and Film Critic Mike Sargent
Photo Credit: Nick Viagas and Deborah Mitchell Media Associates

August 5, 2014 | Posted in TV Production | By

Arise On Screen Host and Film Critic Mike Sargent Photo Credit: Nick Vargas and Debbie Mitchell

Arise On Screen Host and Film Critic Mike Sargent
Photo Credit: Nick Vargas and Debbie Mitchell

First of all, Ready4Air would like to thank Arise On Screen host Mike Sargent for sharing the good, the bad and the ugly aspects of hosting a show. Last week, Mike told us that about the hardest part of being a television host. “Probably the hardest part for me is a combination of giving my insight and commentary, getting my guest’s critiques while being concise and making it all seamless and invisible to the eyes of the viewer.”

As I’ve told you before, being on air talent is a job that looks easy but is harder than you think. Today, Mike Sargent reflects on his best and worst interviews on  Arise On Screen.

Here we go…

Mike, how do you know during a show when the taping is not going well?     

I know things aren’t going right for any variety of reasons. Things can start to feel ‘off,’ but if I’ve properly prepared and I have the proper amount of rest I should be able to pull it off, get back on track.  But again, if for any number of reasons I don’t recover, the mistakes start to grow and I can go from being ‘off ‘ and recovering to being ‘off’ and staying ‘off’. People watching may not notice but I and quite probably my producer and/or director know something’s not quite ‘right’. These mistakes affect my confidence, insecurities seep in, and undo the integrity of what I am trying to achieve.
Arise On Screen Host and Film Critic Mike Sargent Photo Credit: Nick Vargas and Debbie Mitchell

Arise On Screen Host and Film Critic Mike Sargent
Photo Credit: Nick Vargas and Debbie Mitchell

Related Post: Ready4Air (TV) | A TV Host Breaks Down His Show Prep And Performance

What are a few of the common mistakes that you make during a show taping?

The most common mistakes I’ve made are:
  •  Mispronouncing  a name or word
  •  Forgetting a key point I want to bring up during a discussion of the film. Sometimes this occurs  as I listen to the reactions or reviews of  a co-host. My  mind just blanks on something I spent time preparing and researching.
  • Arise On Screen Host Mike Sargent on set reviewing prompter Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell and Nick Viagas

    Arise On Screen Host Mike Sargent on set reviewing prompter
    Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell and Nick Viagas

Sometimes I default to my radio background. When I get nervous or feel slightly insecure I default to certain radio habits like talking too much and not being as concise as I should be with a comment or question. Sometimes I am  distracted or trying to remember something and I don’t have the safety-net of notes to look at as I would when hosting on the radio.
And by far the biggest mistake I can make, and will never do again, is not making sure I got enough sleep the night before. Your mental acuity, alertness, and presence of mind is everything for TV.  When you are not operating at maximum mental capacity it makes it easy for you to make an error and not recover the way you would if you were on your “A”game.
In TV, lessons like these are not just painful, they are also eternal because not only can the rest of the world potentially see or experience your error, but now that error has been captured and archived. The blessing and curse of  performing poorly is that you can go back and watch, and if it’s painful enough you’ll make sure that those kinds of mistakes never happen again.
Arise On Screen Host Mike Sargent with film critics Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi and Jackson Murphy Photo Credit: Nick Vargas and Debbie Mitchell

Arise On Screen Host Mike Sargent with film critics Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi and Jackson Murphy
Photo Credit: Nick Vargas and Debbie Mitchell

Best show to date and your favorite interview?
I’d say one of my best shows was one I did a couple of weeks ago with Jackson Murphy and Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi. I felt the show went very well for variety of reasons. I thought our repartee was good, the conflict of opinions, reviews, and chemistry were good. Chemistry is something that you cannot fake. When it comes naturally, it is an ideal situation,  I felt that show was very strong.
Probably my favorite interview so far was my interview with Chaz Ebert, the widow of  film critic Roger Ebert, when we were at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. I felt connected to her as a subject and felt that connection allowed for a deep interchange.

Related Post: Ready4Air (TV) | On-Air Chemistry: When The Co-Hosts Connect (VIDEO)

Worst interview to date?
Probably my worst interview is one you may never see. I’ve prided myself on my interview skills for the last 15 to 20 years because I’ve always gotten compliments from my subjects about how much they enjoyed the interview. But most of the interviews I’ve done have been for radio.
During any interview, it is a personal goal of mine for each of my subjects to compliment my questions by  saying at some point  “good question” or “that’s a great question”. In television that goal is not always the best goal. In my worst interview to date, a movie junket interview, the guests complimented my questions but the questions were not the best questions for a 3 1/2 minute interview. I didn’t get the answers that I needed to make it a good interview. I didn’t have my executive producer Debbie Mitchell, review and approve the questions and  she hated the interview. It never made it to air.
Television time is very different from radio time. Even though over the years,  I’ve taught and spoken on how to conduct a good interview I had to let go of my pride and be open to the wisdom of my executive producer on and how to ask better questions in  3 1/2 minutes. I realize the limited time is similar to what I do on the red carpet. I have to be  concise, direct, and as my producer likes to say, advance the narrative of the interview with each question, especially, with my first question.
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Mike, thanks for your honest breakdown of what it’s like to be in the talent  hot seat!

Coming Up: Ready4Air (Music) | Music Makes My Life w/ Afrobeat Musician Femi Kuti 

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

TV/Social Media Producer Debbie Mitchell is an Emmy nominated producer who is a member of the Producers Guild of America (PGA). She is currently a member of the James Beard Broadcast and New Media Awards Committee. Deborah is Executive Producer of Arise On Screen a global and socially interactive movie review show. If you are a brand interested in Social TV, blogger outreach campaigns, or a blogger or personality interested in television placement follow Debbie Mitchell @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com, or email Nay Ayache on naydmma@gmail.com

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Ready4Air The Week Ahead |A Screening for Chef Helen Mirren|A Food Blogger’s Re-Branding |A Summer Series…Music Makes My Life

DreamWorks Pictures’ THE HUNDRED-FOOT JOURNEY

August 4, 2014 | Posted in Social TV | By

DreamWorks Pictures’ THE HUNDRED-FOOT JOURNEY

DreamWorks Pictures’ THE HUNDRED-FOOT JOURNEY

This week is already off to a great start. Tonight I am going to the world premiere of  Disney’s The Hundred-Foot Journey starring Dame Helen Mirren, Manish Dayal, Om Puri and  Charlotte Le Bon. The film is produced by Steven Spielberg and Oprah Winfrey, bringing the two back together professionally. As you may recall, Winfrey starred in Spielberg’s 1985 film  The Color Purple, her first big screen role. Tonight Winfrey, Spielberg and the  stars  of the movie will walk the red carpet at New York’s Ziegfeld Theatre to be followed by a screening.

In the movie, Mirren stars as the chef or a five star restaurant in the South of France. When an up-and-coming chef of an Indian restaurant decides to move across the street, all hell breaks loose. Food and Helen Mirren are two of my favorite things, it’s going to be a good Monday night.

Related Post: Ready4Air (Culinary Cues) |Chef Helen Mirren Fights Over Food In The Hundred-Foot Journey

Food blogger Michael Munoz formerly known as the Gay Gourmet at the launch party for  his new blog The Kitchen Gaily  Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Food blogger Michael Munoz formerly known as the Gay Gourmet at the launch party for his new blog The Kitchen Gaily
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Speaking of food, I went to a great launch party last week for the food blog The Kitchen Gaily. Formerly known as the Gay Gourmet, food blogger Michael Munoz has re-branded and threw a great party at the GE Monogram Design Center in New York City to celebrate. One of the highlights of the evening was a very tasty gluten-free menu, including  cocktails made with gluten-free vodka. Yes! gluten- free vodka. To say we had a gay old time is an understatement.

Tune in for this week’s Ready4Air /Culinary Cues for more about the fun.

Arise On Screen Host Mike Sargent on set reviewing prompter Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell and Nick Viagas

Arise On Screen Host Mike Sargent on set reviewing prompter
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell and Nick Viagas

In part two of our conversation with Arise On Screen host and film critic Mike Sargent, he discusses his less than perfect performances on the show. No television talent likes to have an off day but it happens to the best of us.  While everyone would like to bring their “A” game every single time they go before the camera, it’s not always possible.

This week on Ready4Air Mike Sargent discusses common mistakes he makes during tapings and his best and worst interview since Arise On Screen launched this year.

Related Post: Ready4Air (TV) | A TV Host Breaks Down His Show Prep And Performance

Nigerian Musician Femi Kuti and me in the Arise On Screen greenroom Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Nigerian Musician Femi Kuti and me in the Arise On Screen greenroom
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

And finally, Ready4Air will launch its latest series titled Music Makes My Life with our first guest, Nigerian musician Femi Kuti. Kuti was in town  last week to perform as well as promote the new documentary, “Finding Fela” about his dad, Afrobeat music pioneer and political activist, Fela Kuti. The documentary opened on Friday, August 1 and takes us behind the production of the 2009 Broadway play “Fela”, and features interviews with family members as well as a glimpse of never-seen video of Fela Kuti. While I had heard of Fela and seen the play a few years ago, I didn’t know a lot about the man until watching the film.  If you get a chance, I highly recommend it.

This week in Ready4Air Femi Kuti tells us a little about what gets him going musically in Music Makes My Life.

So stay tuned and have a great weekend.

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Coming Up: Ready4Air (Music) | Music Makes My Life w/ Afrobeat Musician Femi Kuti
Deborah J. Mitchell

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

TV/Social Media Producer Debbie Mitchell is an Emmy nominated producer who is a member of the Producers Guild of America (PGA). She is currently a member of the James Beard Broadcast and New Media Awards Committee. Deborah is Executive Producer of Arise On Screen a global and socially interactive movie review show. If you are a brand interested in Social TV, blogger outreach campaigns, or a blogger or personality interested in television placement follow Debbie Mitchell @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com, or email Nay Ayache on naydmma@gmail.com

 

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Ready4Air (TV) | A TV Host Breaks Down His Show Prep And Performance

Arise On Screen host and film critic Mike Sargent
Photo Credit: Briana Montalvo

July 29, 2014 | Posted in TV Production | By

Arise On Screen host and film critic Mike Sargent Photo Credit: Briana Montalvo

Arise On Screen host and film critic Mike Sargent.
Photo Credit: Briana Montalvo

Hosting a television show, whether live or taped is no easy task. While on camera, an on-air personality is expected to look good, impart information, and be engaging all at the same time–every single time. But there are days when all three things do not line up. If the show is live, then the viewing audience gets to see the flubs unfold in real time. However, if a show is taped many of the mistakes can be smoothed out and corrected in post-production. You would be amazed at the “magic” that can happen with editing in post-production.

Arise On Screen control room Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Arise On Screen control room. Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

I’ve been working with Arise On Screen host and film critic Mike Sargent over the last seven months as he has made the transition from radio personality to television personality. Every week, his goal is to bring his “A” game to the taping and avoid mistakes. Some weeks are harder than others. I asked Mike to honestly discuss the challenges of being on top of his performance every week.

Arise On Screen host Mike Sargent Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Arise On Screen host Mike Sargent.
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Mike, tell me the hardest part of sitting in the host seat. Probably the hardest part for me is a combination of giving my insight and commentary, getting my guest’s critiques while being concise, and making it all seamless and invisible to the eyes of the viewer.

How important is it for you to prepare and what do you do to prepare for an Arise On Screen taping? I am learning more and more that you can never be over-prepared in TV. After last week’s experience where I made several errors during taping, I’m rethinking how I might go about breaking down my preparation for the show. Here’s basically what I do now:

  • The first stage, of course, is seeing the movies. I generally don’t read up too much on a movie prior to seeing it. I do most of my research after. This can get to be a lot when we’re reviewing six movies. However, the research allows me to speak about the movies effortlessly. Giving my opinion is the easy part, but to give out information and insight as to the process or behind-the-scenes (as I say in the introduction of the show), it is essential for me to read as much as I can and have as much background on the film and filmmakers before each segment.
  • The second thing is the actual writing of the rough draft of the show script. Writing it allows me to have a sense of the flow of the show and how one film in a segment can relate to the other or contrast. During the process of the scriptwriting, I’m also looking at clips, EPK materials, interviews, and trailers. After going through all this, I get a sense of how the film has been marketed and what people are expecting, which can influence how I will craft my review.
  • The third thing is an amazing tool I learned from my executive producer, Debbie Mitchell, which is getting the guest critic’s talking points about each film. That allows me to not only get a sense of what they think of the film, but what their sensibility is in reviewing it. This is key in keeping the conversation lively, interesting, and a way to spot potential conflict of opinions between the critics and myself, which makes for good TV. In our production meeting day of air, we generally go over what additional movies and specific scenes we may reference during our review. This also influences how I may set up certain questions for my co-hosts.
Arise On Screen production meeting Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Arise On Screen production meeting.
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

  • The fourth thing is just familiarizing myself on day of air with all of the teleprompter material, including running through the script in the teleprompter prior to going on set.
  • Finally, just prior to going on set, I review my notes and talking points.

Related Post: Ready4Air (TV) | TV Hosting 101: Driving A Segment and Interviewing Guests

How do you know during a show taping when it is not going well? I know when things aren’t going well, when I make a mistake like stumbling or mispronouncing a name or sometimes it is a prompter issue. The prompter may be rolling slowly or is in the wrong place. I consider this a technical mistake. Debbie reminds me that it is important to reread and review the show script ahead of tape day. As a host, you must be focused since you are juggling a number of balls and a number of distractions can come at anytime. It can range anywhere from my being unable to hear communication through my IFB earpiece to being distracted by something on the set that’s going on during the show. Distractions come in all forms, including an internal distraction over a mistake or error made or from something else that may have happened prior to the show earlier that day or during the week. If something is not going right during the show, I get an overall feeling. I may know that the co-host chemistry is not quite right or that I didn’t get the response I expected, but I have to keep the show moving. As show host, I set goals for myself, for the segment, and for what I would  like to get out of my co-hosts. If mistakes occur, ideally, I would  like to be able to keep the show on track, but sometimes (as in the case of last week) I don’t recover the way I want to. It is easy to feel insecure at this moment. Related Post: Ready4Air (TV) | On-Air Chemistry: When The Co-Hosts Connect (VIDEO)

Arise On Screen host Mike Sargent and film critics Justine Browning and Matt Donato Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Arise On Screen host Mike Sargent and film critics Justine Browning and Matt Donato
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

After a show is taped and you watch it, what do you look for when critiquing yourself? In critiquing myself, the main things I look for are:

  • How I look on on-air–my clothing, hair, how I’m positioned in the chair, etc.
  • Whether I am engaging my hosts and at the same time playing to the camera when I need to.
  • How I sound and come across. Have I made the points I wanted to make? Have I gotten the most I could out of the segment and co-hosts?
  • Do I repeat a phrase too often, such as “I think,” “in my opinion,” or “like,”? Do I repeatedly use words like “interesting” as a opposed to a more descriptive phrase or sentence?
  • When I stand back and look at the show as a whole, I ask myself if I would continue watching and what have I gotten out of the show as a viewer.

### Coming Up: Mike Reveals His Best and Worst Interviews

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

TV/Social Media Producer Debbie Mitchell is an Emmy nominated producer who is a member of the Producers Guild of America (PGA). She is currently a member of the James Beard Broadcast and New Media Awards Committee. Deborah is Executive Producer of Arise On Screen a global and socially interactive movie review show. If you are a brand interested in Social TV, blogger outreach campaigns, or a blogger or personality interested in television placement follow Debbie Mitchell @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com, or email Nay Ayache on naydmma@gmail.com

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Ready4Air The Week Ahead |When A Host Isn’t On His “A” Game | Highlights From Blogger Bash |Tell Us About Your Blogger Conferences

Behind the scenes of the Arise On Screen set
Photo Credit: Mike Sargent

July 28, 2014 | Posted in Social TV | By

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One of the things I used to enjoy about my summers when I was a talk show producer was the fact that I had several weeks off with full pay. Most syndicated talk shows go on hiatus usually starting at the end of May all the way through to the middle  of July; so that is close to six weeks of vacation. We actually needed those six weeks  to recover from our insane production schedule. We lived for those weeks during our production season,  LOL! Talk show producers today tell me that those days of paid summer hiatus are long gone. Now, syndicated show producers spend their summers working other jobs or they rest up and vacay do without pay. I am sorry to hear that since I know how hard these producers work. With this in mind, I cherish my past summer memories even more.

Behind the scenes of the Arise On Screen set Photo Credit: Mike Sargent

Behind the scenes of the Arise On Screen set
Photo Credit: Mike Sargent

These days my work schedule with DMMA and Arise On Screen keeps me busy all year round. As you know by now, we tape on Saturdays. The Arise On Screen team usually finds a way to have a good time even while we  work on thru the summer weekends. Sometimes the work is a little harder than we expect, but we make do. A good example is this past Saturday. The studio was booked with several additional shows to be taped so we had to get in and out of the studio with little time to spare.

Arise On Screen host and film critic Mike Sargent Photo Credit: Briana Montalvo

Arise On Screen host and film critic Mike Sargent
Photo Credit: Briana Montalvo

While a producer’s job can be  challenging, a show host has the more  difficult task of bringing  his “A” game  (especially if the show is live) every single time he or she is in front of the camera. But sometimes doesn’t always happen.

This week on Ready4Air, Arise On Screen host Mike Sargent will share his story about just what happens when he’s not feeling like he’s on his “A” game during a show taping.  “As host you have your goals for yourself, for the segment, and for what you’d like to get out of your co-hosts. If any number of those things doesn’t happen, ideally you’d like to be able to recover but sometimes (as in the case of this week) you don’t recover the way you like and that’s when the danger of your insecurities starting to slip in and rear their ugly head.”

Related Post: Ready4Air (TV) | TV Hosting 101: Driving A Segment and Interviewing Guests

2014 Blogger Bash Media Panel- Samantha Meiler, Deborah Mitchell and Samantha Murphy Kelly, Photo Credit: Robert Thompson

2014 Blogger Bash Media Panel- Samantha Meiler, Deborah Mitchell and Samantha Murphy Kelly,
Photo Credit: Robert Thompson

This week we’ll be sharing more highlights from the recent Blogger Bash and Sweet Suite event hosted by Toy Insider Mom Laurie Stern Schacht and her team. We are still collecting and sorting through pictures so more posts are definitely on the horizon.

Related Post: Ready4Air (Brands & Bloggers) |A Day Of Fun And Connecting At Blogger Bash NYC 

And finally, if you are a blogger  interested in sharing your stories about conferences you’ve attended this year let us know. Blogger Bash was mine for the summer but I know there are many of you who are able to attend more than just one this year, so please let us know what we are missing.

Enjoy your week!

Coming Up: Blogger Bash NYC 2014 Review

Deborah J. Mitchell

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

TV/Social Media Producer Debbie Mitchell is an Emmy nominated producer who is a member of the Producers Guild of America (PGA). She is currently a member of the James Beard Broadcast and New Media Awards Committee. Deborah is Executive Producer of Arise On Screen a global and socially interactive movie review show. If you are a brand interested in Social TV, blogger outreach campaigns, or a blogger or personality interested in television placement follow Debbie Mitchell @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com, or email Nay Ayache on naydmma@gmail.com

 

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Ready4Air (TV/Film) | Jockeying For A Shot: When The Press Is Covering The Red Carpet

Mike Sargent with George Lucas

July 16, 2014 | Posted in Live Event Production Notes | By

25th Anniversary Celebration Spike Lee's "Do The Right Thing." Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

25th anniversary celebration of Spike Lee’s Do The Right Thing
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Celebrities walking the red carpet during awards season and for movie premieres has become a show unto itself. The stars, the fashion, and the chaos! With the paparazzi and media eager to get the perfect shot or soundbite from a celebrity, covering the red carpet can be a bit challenging at times. A few weekends ago, I attended the 25th anniversary celebration of Spike Lee’s film Do The Right Thing and had a chance to catch up with the cast on the red carpet as they arrived for the screening and experienced the chaos for myself.

Bill Nunn played "Radio Raheem" in "Do The Right Thing" walks the red carpet Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Bill Nunn, who played “Radio Raheem” in Do The Right Thing, walks the red carpet.
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

I didn’t have a camera crew with me but was able to get a couple of photos. Unfortunately, I didn’t walk away with an interview. Bummer!

Since covering the red carpet isn’t my usual beat, I decided to ask Arise On Screen host and veteran film critic Mike Sargent about  his years catching up with the stars as they walk the carpet.

Mike, tell me about a couple of your favorite red carpet events that you have covered during your career.

My first favorite red carpet experience was the one for the final release of the Harry Potter films on DVD. It was one of my favorites because Warner Brothers flew us to Florida and put us up in a five-star hotel. And the red carpet was inside the Harry Potter theme park, which they opened for press only that evening. The whole evening was, to say the least, magical. The entrance to the park is an exact replica of Diagon Alley, the wizarding alley and shopping area supposedly located in London, England, featured in the Harry Potter films.

It was great to interview the cast and actors who have played major to minor and recurring characters over the course of the series of films. It made me, in many ways, feel like a kid again walking through the park doing one-on-one interviews prior to the red carpet event itself. It reminded me of why I wanted to be a film critic and fell in love with the movies to begin with. The enthusiasm from the fans  roped off on the sidelines as the stars walked the red carpet was infectious. I felt privileged and special to be interviewing stars who are so beloved worldwide and have given so much pleasure to the world.

Mike Sargent with George Lucas

Mike Sargent with George Lucas. Photo credit: Mike Sargent

My second-favorite red carpet experience was when I got to interview George Lucas when he produced the World War II African-American fighter pilot film Red Tails. The experience was very special and personal to me on several levels.

Me greeting my Great Uncle Wesley Henderson (one of the original TUSKEEGEE AIRMEN) @ the RED TAILS Premiere. — at The Ziegfeld Theatre.

Mike Sargent with his great-uncle Wesley Henderson (one of the original Tuskegee Airmen) at the Red Tails premiere. — at The Ziegfeld Theatre. Photo credit: Mike Sargent

First, I had recently discovered that my uncle was actually a Tuskegee airman. He had kept his service a secret, not even telling my aunt, his former wife, all the years they were together. He was at the premiere and I got to see him. It was a meeting of different worlds: American history, my family and childhood, my love for film, my pride as an African-American, and a great many things were all rolled into one.

Secondly, I got to meet George Lucas. Star Wars and that original movie trilogy were defining for me as a young boy growing up and only fueled my love for science fiction. Lucas was an icon I’d always dreamed of interviewing. To shake his hand, take a photo with him, and be one of the privileged few on the red carpet to have a conversation with him and be acknowledged by one of my heroes was deeply satisfying.

David Thewlis, Robert Emms, Jeremy Irvine, Tom Middleton, Steven Speilberg, Emily Watson @ the WAR HORSE premiere. Photo credits: Mike Sargent

David Thewlis, Robert Emms, Jeremy Irvine, Tom Middleton, Steven Spielberg, Emily Watson @ the War Horse premiere. Photo credits: Mike Sargent

My third-favorite red carpet experience was the red carpet I did for War Horse, and I got to interview Steven Spielberg and some great actors and celebrities whose work I have enjoyed over the years.

How do you prepare for a red carpet event?

I prepare similar to the way I prepare for any interview. I do research on the actors and the film and usually have a pretty solid idea of what I’m going to ask. One of the fun things about the red carpet is getting a chance to talk to the celebrities who are there and have nothing do with the movie.

Basically, one of the keys to a good red carpet interview is to quickly engage your subject, be knowledgeable about the star and movie, and ask something that is professional and insightful. Try to have questions that are unique. Remember, they’ve been asked the same questions repeatedly by other media as they walk the carpet.

When people watch celebrities walking the red carpet, it looks very exciting. As press, what is the atmosphere like when covering the red carpet?

The pre-star arrival atmosphere is not so much exciting as it is pressure-filled. Often, you’re waiting around and then suddenly you have to jockey for a better position when the celebrities arrive since handlers are moving them along to talk to different outlets and pose for photo opportunities. Most times, you have to be aggressive but respect your colleagues and fellow paparazzi, as well as get your time with said celebrity on the red carpet. It’s thrilling, exciting, and not like anything else. The bigger the star, the bigger the amount of press and crowd waiting, and the crazier it can become.

 James Earle Jones, Terrence Howard & George Lucas @ RED TAILS Premiere. — with James Earl Jones, Terrence Howard, George Lucas and Spike Lee at The Ziegfeld Theatre.

James Earl Jones, Terrence Howard, and George Lucas at the Red Tails premiere. Photo credit: Mike Sargent

How much access does press have to the celebrities on the red carpet?

Basically, you only get a few minutes, depending on the size of the red carpet. Every actor or celebrity of note has a handler ushering them from spot to spot on the red carpet trying to find the ideal place to stand so their client will get the most press bang for the buck. There are times when you don’t get the interviews or photos you want to get and it’s very disappointing. However, there are times when they come right up to you for a few moments before they get pulled away to talk to the next media outlet. On occasion, handlers will skip over you to get to a larger outlet and promise they will come back to you, but you know they never do. Relationships with PR firms are important. Depending on your relationship with the PR company and the publicist in question, they will take care of you and make sure you have a prime position and make sure the celebrity you want the most talks to you.

Related Post: Ready4Air (Social) |The Emmys’ Social Media Red Carpet #FAIL We’re All Talking About

How do you get access to cover the red carpet?

Most of the time you have to get invited to red carpet events. Invitations go out to a bunch of what they call red carpet press. Once you are invited to cover a red carpet event, it is not a guarantee that you will get in to cover it. As with all things in this business, depending on the size of the outlet and the relationship you have with the publicist, and the value they see of having you there, you can sometimes have great access.

Are you guaranteed a spot on the red carpet?

Your spots on the red carpet are preassigned, so you do want to show up early because if you’re not there, you could lose your spot. It’s also good to arrive early in case your assigned spot is not there, and you have to straighten things out. It is best to arrive a minimum of a half-hour before the start of red carpet coverage in order to make sure everything is in order.

SS AFTER INTERVIEW ON RED CARPET LINE

Steven Speilberg after an interview on the red carpet line

And finally, we know the celebs get dressed to walk the red carpet. How about you?

If you’re there from a newspaper or a radio outlet and don’t have access to the actual screening or after party, there may be no need to get too dressed up, but generally, people don’t show up in flip-flops and cut-off jeans.

You get dressed up for the red carpet. I’ve covered red carpets for both on camera and strictly radio. If you’re covering the red carpet, you’re talking to people who are dressed their best. You want to look good too because it is a red carpet premiere, and if you’re lucky, you may get invited to the after party!

Thanks, Mike!  

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 Coming Up: A few words from “Arise On Screen” cohost Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi 

Deborah J. Mitchell

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

TV/Social Media Producer Debbie Mitchell is an Emmy nominated producer who is a member of the Producers Guild of America (PGA). She is currently a member of the James Beard Broadcast and New Media Awards Committee. Deborah is Executive Producer of Arise On Screen a global and socially interactive movie review show. If you are a brand interested in Social TV, blogger outreach campaigns, or a blogger or personality interested in television placement follow Debbie Mitchell @SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com, or email Nay Ayache on naydmma@gmail.com

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Ready4Air (TV) | With Close To Two Dozen Films Released Weekly, Which Ones Should We Review?

Arise On Screen
Photo Credit: Nick Vlagas & Debbie Mitchell

May 7, 2014 | Posted in Social TV, TV Production | By

 

Arise On Screen Photo Credit: Nick Vlagas & Debbie Mitchell

Arise On Screen
Photo Credit: Nick Viagas & Debbie Mitchell

As I gear up to tape our 19th episode of Arise On Screen, I am excited about this week’s show. Today, I’m laying out the top portion of the script for this Saturday’s show. Included in the program is our “A” block, which includes the show intro, box office winners of the previous week, and the latest movie news both before and behind the cameras. In the meantime, Mike Sargent, Arise On Screen host and film critic, structures the second half of the program, the “B”-“D,” which includes the movie review segments.

Related post: Ready4Air (TV) | With The Clock Ticking Producers Prep On Show Day

Mike determines the movies to be reviewed and knows the release dates of films well in advance. Most of the time, release dates land on Fridays, and he attends the advanced screenings to review the movies prior to the show. Our guest cohosts must see the movies in order to be a part of our lively reviews. On average, between one and two dozen  movies are released each week in theaters.

So how does our show decide which movies to review?

Arise On Screen, Host/Film Critic Mike Sargent with film critics Justine Browning and Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi Photo Credit: Nick Vlagas & Debbie Mitchell

Arise On Screen host and film critic Mike Sargent with film critics Justine Browning and Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi
Photo Credit: Nick Viagas & Debbie Mitchell

Mike Sargent says: “The release dates are set the previous year but they are not written in stone. They can change from month to month.” Each week, Mike tries to review two big movies that people want to see and at least one documentary, one indie film with a potential studio interview, and one film that has a more global or foreign feel.

Related post: Ready4Air (Brands & Bloggers) |Why Are Bloggers Mad At The Upcoming “American Blogger” Documentary ?

Sargent says, “A documentary can be an indie film, but we like to have on independent narrative film.” Mike can screen a film anywhere from a few days to weeks in advance. In rare cases, he will screen a film months in advance.

“If they have me see a film that far in advance, they either want me to give a quote on it, or get an early reaction or spread the word. Most films have ‘long lead’ screenings, which are ideal for magazines and periodicals that are produced months in advance.”

A good example is the new James Cameron underwater 3D film, Deep Sea Challenge, which is scheduled to be released on August 8.  Mike viewed the film last week. He said it is very good.

When it comes to the movies Mike reviews, he says if given the choice, he will always lean towards a film starring, produced, or directed by a person of color in any of those categories.

His weekly choices fit right into the Arise On Screen brand, which is a glance at filmmaking from a global perspective, both in front and behind the scenes.

As for now, it is time for me to get back to work. Saturday’s show is waiting.

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Coming up: Foodie Friday on the High Seas

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

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

TV/Social Media Producer Debbie Mitchell is an Emmy nominated producer who is a member of the Producers Guild of America (PGA). She is currently a member of the James Beard Broadcast and New Media Awards Committee. Deborah is Executive Producer of Arise On Screen a global and socially interactive movie review show. If you are a brand interested in Social TV, blogger outreach campaigns, or a blogger or personality interested in television placement follow Debbie Mitchell@SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com. If all else fails, her resourceful assistant, Sang, will find her.

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Ready4Air The Week Ahead |Brands & Bloggers | Filling The Audience Seats |Finding On-Air Chemistry

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March 17, 2014 | Posted in Brands and Bloggers Connect, Culinary Cues, Pros Talk TV And Social Media, Social TV, TV Production | By

BBDMMA.1

At Ready4Air we are definitely ready for some warm weather! Spring is in close view and after Thursday, March 20, nature will begin to bloom. Our team at Deborah Mitchell Media Associates is also in bloom and excited about a few things on the horizon including our chance to work with more bloggers and brands. We will be offering a spectrum of opportunities for bloggers and brands to work together in social media and social TV through customized blogger outreach campaigns and brand awareness programs. These campaigns and programs will be  ideal for corporations eager to leverage specific markets within the blogger community.

DMMA will collaborate with blogger networks on campaigns including Twitter parties, which are strategic, interactive online discussions, and blogger events. The blogger community is very diverse and we have access to a niche group of bloggers that includes fashion, food, beauty, travel and of course mom influencers.  And if you are a blogger or personality interested in honing your on-camera skills we offer training and placement on your favorite television show.

 

Kelly and Michael Audience

Speaking of television shows, this week on Ready4Air we take a look at the audience who help bring a television show to life. A television host will be the first to tell you that their audience is a big part of a show’s success. The audience  brings energy, fun and sometimes make for  a  few good on-camera moments.  So  the job of show audience coordinator, who manages the fans who come out to support and be entertained,  is a very important one.

This week we hear from the head audience coordinator behind one of television’s hottest morning shows, Live! With Kelly and Michael. We’ll find out how much planning goes into getting an audience for the show,  if the audience receives anything for being a part of the audience and whether or not  the audience ever gets to meet or take pictures with show hosts Kelly Ripa or Michael Strahan.

DebAmadeus

 

As I gear up for my monthly visit with Chef Amadeus in the radio show  Southern Passion Lounge, I am taking a look back at a few of our past conversations about chefs  and branding. Being a chef is busy work and while they are busy creating culinary magic in the kitchen it leaves very little time for them to create and implement a social media presence and strategy. During my conversations with Chef Amadeus we figure out and I give tips on ways  for chefs to get started in the social media space.  This week, I will revisit a few of those leads.

On Screen Hosts.CoHosts

If you’ve been keeping up with the new show Arise, On Screen (where I am the Executive Producer), then you know that every week we have rotating co-hosts who join show host Mike Sargent (Film Critic) to review upcoming movies. Sitting in the co-host seat is not as simple as they make it appear and is even more challenging when you are sharing the co-host seat. It’s a delicate balance. Every week we decide who is the best fit to sit in the chair and banter with our host.

This week on Ready4Air I will share what goes into the decision process and when I know it’s the right fit. So stay tuned!

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

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

TV/Social Media Producer Debbie Mitchell is an Emmy nominated producer who is a member of the Producers Guild of America (PGA). She is currently a member of the James Beard Broadcast and New Media Awards Committee.  If you are a brand interested in Social TV, blogger outreach campaigns, or a blogger or personality interested in television placement follow Debbie Mitchell@SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.com. If all else fails, her resourceful assistant, Sang, will find her.

 

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Ready4Air The Week Ahead | The Control Room Gremlins Are Back| Sitting In The Guest Host Seat

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January 27, 2014 | Posted in Social TV | By

Arise On Screen Control Room with Director Larry Michaels Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Arise On Screen Control Room with Director Larry Michaels
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

The first month of 2014 has been busy and some of you know, I’m working on Arise TV’s new movie review show: Arise On Screen. That means my weekdays and Saturdays have quite busy. We prep for the show during the week and tape on Saturday mornings. Yes, Saturday is now an official work day. 

This week on Ready4Air we revisit a few old posts that I’ve been thinking about during the last three weeks since the launch of the new show. We begin the week with: When Gremlins Hit The Control Room.

Last Saturday we taped our third show and it was a crazy morning in the control room. You name it, it happened. This is what I call, gremlins in the control room. I wrote about them in a post last summer. Read more about those gremlins this week.

Arise On Screen with host  and film critic Mike Sargent and guest co-hosts Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi and Diva Velez Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Arise On Screen with host and film critic Mike Sargent and guest co-hosts Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi and Diva Velez
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

ATTENTION! Working in TV Is Not A 9 To 5 Job

My Saturday mornings are now reserved for the studio.

After 25-plus years in this business, I can honestly say I’ve canceled or missed several hundred holiday meals, special events, and dates because of a deadline due to a breaking news story or was just plain too tired from working. When I worked in news, my family and friends would ask why did I have to work on the holidays. My answer was always the same:

“Because when you turn on the TV you expect to see something on the other side of the screen.”

On Screen Host  Mike Sargent with guest co-host International film critic Chiara Spagnoli Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

On Screen Host Mike Sargent with guest co-host International film critic Chiara Spagnoli
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Arise On Screen host, Mike Sargent, shares the show every week with two guest co-hosts, film critics who bring a different perspective with their movie reviews. This week we will revisit what it takes to sit in the guest host seat?  Stay tuned for those tips.

Chef Amadeus, Radio Host Love Shots Photography

Chef Amadeus, Radio Host
Love Shots Photography

Finally, tune in today as I join Chef Amadeus in the  Southern Passion Lounge with  Chef Brad “The Grill Sergeant” Turner and  Chef Ron Williams . Chef Turner will be discussing his worldly travels, what it is like cooking in the US Army and being a Chef in the civilian life. Chef Williams will chat about being a demo chef around the country. And as for me, I’ll talk social media and ways to put your YouTube channel together and how to promote your channel effectively.

Stay Tuned!

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Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

TV/Social Media Producer Debbie Mitchell is an Emmy nominated producer who is a member of the Producers Guild of America (PGA).  She is currently a member of the James Beard Broadcast and New Media Awards Committee.  If you are interested in “ Book Case TV” or are a brand interested in Social TV, blogger outreach campaigns, or a blogger or personality interested in television placement follow Debbie Mitchell@SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.comIf all else fails, her resourceful assistant, Sang, will find her.

 

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Ready4Air (Social TV) | In The Movie Critic’s Corner With Arise “On Screen”

IMG_1035

January 7, 2014 | Posted in Social TV, TV Production | By

 

On Screen Host, Mike Sargent in studio set Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

On Screen Host, Mike Sargent in studio set
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

In yesterday’s Ready4Air post I mentioned a new project that I’m working on. It’s the launch of another show on Arise TV, called “On Screen” and it’s very different from the one hour daily talk show I worked on last summer. It is a half hour magazine program where the host and film critic Mike Sargent, reviews the latest films to hit the screens in 2014. Mike is a seasoned radio personality and has appeared as a guest on numerous programs over the years. However, this is his first time in the television host hot seat, hosting his own show, and being a part of a show he also helped create.

Each week Mike will be joined by a co-host. Together they will give viewers their take on new films, backstage access and interviews with the hottest filmmakers and celebrities in Hollywood as well as the world of independent films.

I asked Mike about the new show and this is what he had to say about bringing it to life  “Having hosted numerous radio shows I look forward to the challenge and experience of hosting a weekly film review show where we cannot only cover what Hollywood puts out but shift the focus to filmmakers of color and give them the much needed exposure they deserve on the world stage.”

Related Post: Ace Your Interview With The Power Of Three

On Screen Host  Mike Sargent with International film critic Chiara Spagnoli Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

On Screen Host Mike Sargent with International film critic Chiara Spagnoli
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Yes, movies!  Everyone loves a good movie and there is so much to talk about. We shot the pilot last weekend with international film critic Chiara Spagnoli as guest co-host.

Related Post: So You Wanna Be On TV: Sitting In The Guest Co-Host Seat

On Screen Host, Mike Sargent and Filmmaker Melvin Van  Peebles Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

On Screen Host, Mike Sargent and Filmmaker Melvin Van
Peebles
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Also in the studio for an interview was legendary filmmaker, actor, director and composer Melvin Van Peebles. Peebles is best known for creating the acclaimed film “Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song ” in the 1970’s, which opened the door for a new breed of filmmakers and African American films. And for those you don’t know, Melvin is also the father of actor and director Mario Van Peebles. As they say, the apple does not fall far from the tree!

I asked Mike what is the biggest difference between hosting a radio show versus a television show? He said,“For a film review show you can actually see not just hear the films and filmmakers we are interviewing. It lends itself to the medium. In television less is more.”

EP, Debbie Mitchell in Arise Control Room Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

EP, Debbie Mitchell in Arise Control Room
Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

For myself, it was great to be back in the control room.  So friends have asked me if there’s anything different about this show launch?

A few of things. First, the show is 30 minutes long and is filled with different taped elements including movie clips trailers and sound bites. The program relies heavily on videotape and photos to keep the program moving along but is completely driven by Mike’s extensive knowledge of movies, his personal opinions and reviews of the films for the week. Mike creates engaging dialogue and chemistry on camera with his co-host, which is a unique skill.

Since I’ve never actually given birth, I can only imagine that the pain of launching a new show is similar to the pain of having a baby. Once the delivery pain is over you are ready to sign up and have another baby. I feel the same way about launching a show. Once I have forgotten the pain and craziness of the start-up, I am ready to sign up and do it all over again.

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Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

Photo Credit: Debbie Mitchell

TV/Social Media Producer Debbie Mitchell is an Emmy nominated producer who is a member of the Producers Guild of America (PGA).  She is currently a member of the James Beard Broadcast and New Media Awards Committee.  If you are interested in “ Book Case TV” or are a brand interested in Social TV, blogger outreach campaigns, or a blogger or personality interested in television placement follow Debbie Mitchell@SocialTVDeb and/or email SocialTVDeb@gmail.comIf all else fails, her resourceful assistant, Sang, will find her.

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