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Report – CMC SkillBuilder: Building a Bible

Posted on: Tuesday 03 July 2018 11:24pm by Cate Zerega

Takeaway:

·     The best bibles don’t tease the broadcaster, they show that you can do the job.

·     Collaboration is about finding people who understand your style.

·     The most effective pitchers are magicians – they have passion, they have vision for the pipeline and most importantly they are adaptable.

Detail:

Alison Norrington, CEO of Story Central, kicked off the session on Building a Bible with a challenge to all workshop attendees. Think of your audience in terms of the literary archetype rather than the industry standard metric of age. Who is the hero? The trickster? The wise person in and viewing your story? Whilst the wise person stereotypically sports a beard like Gandalf, they might also be a six year old boy a la ‘The Sixth Sense’. The expert panel analysed the ways a bible is useful for them, making it clear that your pitch bible is most effective as a breathable tool that carries your story across platforms. BBC Children’s Head of Development Ros Attile, commented on the need to see a strong idea holding the bible together.

Eric Huang, Digital Director of Made in Me, reflected on the need to see the brand possibilities of the bible’s world. Michael Dee, Director of Content at Coolabi Group, highlighted the importance of partner contribution and presenting the opportunity for this as part of the pitch.

All panellists agreed that a strong mission statement makes a pitch meeting worthwhile. They are always asking questions. Why now? What is the audience going to get? What is the need? The takeaway from the panellists is to avoid the temptation to over-think and over-produce your pitch. Mark Wilson recalled an unsuccessful pitch meeting where the project creators splashed out on leotards and pitched in character. He suggested that it is better to save money on the spandex and instead work on communicating your IP’s story. The workshop scheduled plenty of time to network and connect with writers, producers and illustrators, as well as giving the opportunity to create an exciting vessel to pitch.

Will Brenton, a director at Wish Films, provided the quote of the session: “A very flashy bible can’t sell a bad idea”. We are all drawn in by storytelling and the most successful pitches tell a story from the inside out rather than worrying over pitch, pitch, pitch.

Cate Zerega

About the author

Cate Zerega

University of Nottingham, Student

Cate hails from Chicago - so she likes her theatre fringe and her pizza deep. Her MA thesis analyses male anxiety in post war Hollywood film for the Institute for Screen Research at the University of Nottingham. Cate has worked in casting, as a talent agent and as a nanny;… Read more

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