Thursday, January 3, 2008

Late Night Returns Despite Writers Strike

Last night the prime time talk shows made a return after a two month hiatus as Late Night with Conan O'Brien, The Late Show with David Letterman, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson all returned to the airwaves. Only Letterman and Ferguson have struck an interim deal with striking writers through the Worldwide Pants Production Company (owned by Letterman) that will welcome writers back onto the show, while O'Brien and Leno continue to air the show without union writers.

Write On
Having been able to view the first shows back (Leno and O'Brien) I can honestly say I developed a more acute appreciation for professional late-night writers. Being a big Conan fan, I was able to feel the awkwardness in between the comedy and time stalls during the show and could clearly distinguish the difference of where comedic writing meets comedic instincts (which still had me craking up...just didn't care much for the timing).

Since having to co-write the original screenplay for "Shiro's Head", I know first hand how big a deal it is - the importance of needing writers to help bring your material to its peak. Unfortunately, that was a resource that Don and I didn't have and had to go at it alone. And even though Don and I weren't experienced screenwriters, we still had to get through it and be keen enough to write around resources.

Says Who?!
On a "Hollywood" level, however, the demands involved with the strike seem to be so fair and so simple that I can't believe it took a strike to get the producers of the industry to sit up and notice what the writers should be getting. Talent like that of a professional writer is one that is worth way more than is being asked for by the strikers. I mean, how does one other than yourself actually justify what you are worth?

For more of the latest on the Writers Strike check out the United Hollywood site.