It's fair to say that I am an ardent fan of Amy Sherman-Palladino. I think Gilmore Girls is one of the best television series of all time (read my recaps at FYA here), and I was heartbroken when her recent ABC Family show Bunheads was unfairly canceled. Sherman-Palladino is a screwball genius, a pop culture craftsman, an artist of dialogue, someone who, without fail, brings earth-shaking performances out of brilliant actresses. And actors, sure, but under ASP's guidance, Lauren Graham, Kelly Bishop, Sutton Foster and Alexis Bledel have created roles for the ages.
She's also a bit of a Salinger, very rarely granting interviews or attending conventions (which just makes her cooler), so the fact that ATX Television Festival has secured her for their third year is an enormous coup. I'm sort of losing my mind a little here. I am not feeling cool about this. I am, to be perfectly frank, freaking out.
There's a whole lot of other exciting programming announced below in their First Wave: a Hey Dude reunion! An Everwood reunion! Carlton Cuse and Graham Yost and Kerry Ehrin! And it's early yet - I've attended ATX for their first two years, and I'm continuously impressed by how strong their programming is for such a young festival. It's a really great event, and I can't recommend attending it enough. I mean, I love TV, and ATX feels like it was made for people who love TV. It's smart programming, but it's also fun and energetic and appreciative. Plus, June's a really nice time in Austin! Get your badges for June 5-8 here, and read on below for the press release!
Austin, TX— November 7, 2013--- ATX Television Festival is pleased to announce the launch of the second annual Pitch Competition in collaboration with Final Draft, the creators of the number one selling screenwriting application in the world. The competition will allow aspiring writers and show creators to pitch their original idea for a scripted series to some of the biggest decision makers in the television industry at the third season of ATX Television Festival in Austin, TX next June 5-8th.
Participants in the Pitch Competition have ninety seconds to present their original idea for a scripted series to industry judges through a self-filmed video. The competition is open to any and all pitches for scripted series ideas.
ATX Television Festival will screen all submissions and choose twenty-five semi-finalists to be judged by a panel of industry professionals including: Paul Scheer (Creator/Actor on NTSF:SD:SUV::, The League), Bryan Seabury (VP of Drama Development at CBS Network), Julie Plec (Creator/Writer The Vampire Diaries, The Originals, The Tomorrow People), Kyle Killen (Creator of Lone Star, Awake. Mind Games), Katie Krentz (Director of Comedy Animation; Cartoon Network), David Semel (Executive Producer/Director, American Dreams, Dawsons Creek, Hemlock Grove, Homeland), and special guest judges, who will narrow the twenty-five semi-finalists down to ten finalists.
The ten finalists then compete at ATX Television Festival (June 5-8, 2013) in Austin, TX to pitch live before the panel of judges, who will choose one winner. This winner will receive a meeting with one of the judges to explore the idea of their series and gain notes to better develop the series, then will get a pitch meeting in front of one of the festival’s studio/network partners to try and sell their pilot for production!
All participants receive a discount code for 32% off the latest version of Final Draft (retailing at $249) as well as $25 off of any level ATX Television Festival badge [to be given after Finalist are announced]. Semi-finalists receive Panel badges to the Festival, and Finalists receive a Weekend badge to the Festival, plus two tickers to the opening night screening and after-party to start the festival off right! The Finalists will also receive a complimentary copy of the most recent version Final Draft, courtesy of Final Draft.
“The pitch competition was eye opening and door opening all at once. We got to see pitches for nine other amazing shows and watch what and how they connected with the industry judges. Then, with the help of our incredible mentor, Dina Hillier, we got to work our idea into a full-length pitch. That process was invaluable for learning the artistic and business demands for a TV show. Then, as if that wasn't enough, we got to take our pitch to showrunners and execs at studios, broadcast and cable networks!” said Marc Muszynski, First Annual Pitch Competition Winner.
Submissions will be accepted December 6, 2013 to January 15, 2014 through the website http://www.atxfestival.com/pitch. The twenty- five semi-finalists will be announced on February 27, 2014 and the top ten finalists will be announced on April 3, 2014.
ATX Television Festival is also pleased to unveil the initial list of confirmed panelists who will be at the third annual festival in Austin, TX June 5 – 8, 2014, as well as the first round of confirmed programming partners.
In addition to the new programming, ATX Television Festival is excited to announce two special reunions:
Everwood with guests in attendance: David Hudgins, Rina Mimoun, Chris Pratt, Emily Van Camp, Gregory Smith, Tom Amandes, Treat Williams, Scott Wolf, Stephanie Niznik, Vivien Cardone, John Beasley, and Merrilyn Gann.
"Everwood was my first job in TV and a great experience. Everyone has gone on to do other things since then, which is why I am so thrilled that we all be reuniting at ATX Television Festival to reminisce and trade old stories. I can't wait!" – David Hudgins
Hey Dude with guests in attendance: Graham Yost, Alan Goodman, Lisa Melamed, Debrah Kalman, Kelly Brown, David Lascher, Geoffrey Coy, and David Brisbin.
Please see below for the current list and stay tuned for additional programming announcements.
Amy Sherman Palladino, Creater/Writer: Gilmore Girls, Bunheads
Graham Yost, Creator/Executive Producer/Writer: Raines, Boomtown, Justified, Hey Dude
Carlton Cuse, Executive Producer/Writer: Bates Motel, Lost
Kerry Ehrin, Executive Producer/Writer: Bates Motel, Friday Night Lights, Parenthood, The Wonder Years, Moonlighting
Ben Blacker, Nerdist Writers Panel
Kyle Killen, Creator/Writer: Lone Star, Awake, Mind Games
Liz Tigelaar, Creator/Writer: Bates Motel, Life Unexpected, Nashville
Julie Plec, Creator/Writer: The Vampire Diaries, The Originals, The Tomorrow People
Richard Hatem, Writer: Grimm, Once Upon a Time in Wonderland
Andrew Miller, Creator/Writer: The Secret Circle
David Hudgins, Executive Producer/Writer: Parenthood, Friday Night Lights, Everwood
Bryan Seabury, VP of Drama Development at CBS
Paul Scheer, Creator/Writer/Actor: The League, NTSF:SD:SUV::
Tim Doyle, Executive Producer/Writer: Last Man Standing, Roseanne, Ellen
Arielle Kebbel, Actor: The Vampire Diaries, Gilmore Girls
Scott Porter, Actor: Hart of Dixie, Friday Night Lights
David Semel, Director/Producer: Hemlock Grove, Homeland, Intelligence, American Dreams, Dawson’s Creek
Bates Motel from A&E
Rectify from Sundance Channel
Including Programming from participating Network/Studios:
Sony Pictures Television
Badges to ATX Television Festival are available for purchase here. Weekend Badges are now available for $175 for a limited time. Additional ticketing options will be available for purchase in 2014.