I’ve been going through some of my old stuff for a special surprise I want to share with everyone next week and I came across a pitch packet for one of the very first television shows I ever developed called “What In The World Is Going On?” or WITWIGO for short.
I developed it with my writing partner at the time, Amy Tarr, and it was going to be a really fun reality show where we traveled the country in search of people that were doing something to make the world a better place. Each week we would immerse ourselves in the lives of these special people. We would be their “wacky guests from out of town” and we would go to work with them, hang with their friends and family, go to their favorite places and celebrate them with a party at the end. The goal was to make this a fast paced, fun and comedic look into the lives of people we could all potentially look up to. An alternative to all the negetive programming we felt was cluttering up the airwaves.
We even put together a playful little opener for the show that went like this:
“This show is not about pestulance, violence, or what isn’t making sense, acid rain, hurricanes, or the latest blown out brains, heart stopping deadly shopping, or over the counter pill popping, kidnappings, carjackings, or celeb cop slappings, homes on fire, hits for hire, or living out your deep desires, tragic vacations, bizarre copulations and don’t forget no masturbation, last on our list of what you’ll miss out on you won’t hear a word about OJ Simpson.”
No wonder it never got made. We put right in our pitch that this show would not be about all the things that are guaranteed to grab ratings. LOL. Oh my silly little naive heart. 🙂
Anyway as I was reading it I remembered all the reasons that she and I created this show and felt all those old feelings of still wishing a show like this existed so that I could watch it. And then I looked at the date and remembered the other reason it never got made.
See this pitch was dated February 1995 and even though we were fully prepared with a treatment, a scripted opener, budget and even a promo we had shot with my new cam corder my grandpa had bought me, we were turned down flat by the one TV Producer that we had access to at the time. He told us that it was a cute idea but that it would never happen because that’s just not how it’s done. He said and I quote “television will never be unscripted.”
Really? Oh why on earth do I listen to people?
The good news is I have long since learned my lesson. I have stopped asking for permission from the gatekeepers and although it has taken me way longer than I would like, my resources are expanding and I am now confident that as time goes on I will get my projects out there regardless of whether “it’s the way it’s done” or not.