I Met With a Reality Show Producer

A TV producer recently contacted me because he's supposedly a big fan and thought I'd be great to pitch a show with.

He warned me that I wouldn't make that much money directly off the show. But, obviously, he'd do much better than that or he wouldn't have been suggesting it.

After a phone call, we got together at a local boite to discuss the possibilities.

Our conversation:

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Me: What are your credits?

He: I produced a show on VH1.

(I looked it up later on imdb. His name was not listed for that show. Nor was it listed for any show. Still, imdb isn't always right, right? I didn't hold it against him.)

He: And I was all set to do a show where we were going to document [star's] falling apart and messing up her latest gig. We even had a replacement in place. But [star] wouldn't sign!

Me: Pretty smart of her. I guess she knew she was being set up.

He: (incredulous) Really? You think she's smart? Anyway, I'm definitely doing a reality show about [blah, blah] for [such-and-such network].

Me: Great! When does that start?

He: They want it. But so does another channel. There's a big bidding war going on.

Me: Oh, OK. Anyway, having my own show might take too much time away from my job. Maybe I can just be a judge on a show. I'd feel more comfortable with that.

He: Frankly, you're too local to be a judge.

Me: Huh? I thought you liked me! I've been on national TV for 17 years. And most TV judges are well known in their fields but that's it. Some of them are complete unknowns. I'm actually better known outside New York in some ways.

[Pause.]

Me: Anyway, maybe a show following me around clubs? The clubs are amazing and colorful right now, and I'm basically the point man.

He (looks excited): Like a Wild On kind of thing?

Me: Um, not exactly. Maybe you don't know my work so well.

He: A fish out of water show would be the best. We could send you to Abu Dhabi.

Me: Alas, I don't travel much, and after Sex and the City 2, I doubt anyone will shoot there for years.

He: How about a panel show, talking about the culture?

Me: Who would I have on, for example?

He: Bernadette Peters, Whoopi Goldberg, a baseball player, and a ballerina.

Me: I'd love to do it, except for the baseball player and the ballerina, but I doubt anyone would pick it up.

We were striking out left and right, but I was still thoughtful enough to e-mail him a few weeks later to express my misgivings and ask for his thoughts. He never responded!

So he's icky, insulting, AND rude!

And, by the way, he vehemently shot down one idea I ran by him, but I just got a call from someone doing just that kind of show and they want me for it!

Maybe things DO happen (or don't happen) for a reason.

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