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Ran

The Competition

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Two more pilots have been picked up, [i]How to Make It in America[/i] and [i]Bored to Death[/i], [url="http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/content_display/news/e3i8cb71d29182efee634bd6ed3788684f8"]according to The Hollywood Reporter.[/url]

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Wow, they really start moving. So that leaves 3-4 slots free. That's three comedies given the greenlight, and two dramas canned (including 1%, which was turned down in late October).

As noted in the article, all of these seem a little male-centric, so ... [i]The Washingtonienne[/i] seems kind of dangerous. And [i]Treme[/i], too, really... Getting kinda tight if [i]Game of Thrones[/i] is really being put into the pool of ~7 shows that will get the go ahead.

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[quote name='FM Ramsay' post='1625065' date='Dec 18 2008, 21.11']I understand that some on the board are concerned with the Scorcese show as a competitor because it is a "period" piece. IIRC, I was watching [i]Rome[/i] and [i]Deadwood[/i] back-to-back on Sunday nights in 2005 and 2006. HBO will not be concerned about two shows being both period pieces. What they will be concerned with is scripting, production, and interest. If both pilots are good, both will be greenlit. The built-in audience of ASoIaF gives it some (not much) advantage.[/quote]
Well, the concern about more than one period piece is that pieriod pieces tend to have much higher production costs than contemporary projects because every location either has to be a set or has to be dressed to it's original form (in say the case of a castle or a old fashioned dance hall or something). Costumes are a huge cost if you can't just go and buy stuff off a rack somewhere and just do alterations, and things like armor are even more-so.

One of the problems for HBO when both Deadwood and Rome were on at the same time was that they really couldn't afford both shows. Both had huge budgets in the $100 million range, IIRC, requiring gigantic, custom built sets that were incredibly detailed. The Scorcese project sounds like, though a period piece, it might not be nearly so expensive a period piece as AGoT, Deadwood or Rome, so that's good. But it is still something of a concern.

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[quote name='Halfhand' post='1625709' date='Dec 19 2008, 12.29']Two more pilots have been picked up, [i]How to Make It in America[/i] and [i]Bored to Death[/i], [url="http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/content_display/news/e3i8cb71d29182efee634bd6ed3788684f8"]according to The Hollywood Reporter.[/url][/quote]

So, what Pilots are left in the running? I'm not really understanding how HBO could make any final decisions until they've seen all the pilots, unless as someone said above, a certain number of slots are reserved for certain genres. But is there any chance that they decide to go with 3 other series before they even see the pilot for AGoT? If not, what does the time frame look like for the completion of it's likely competition?

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I've been updating the first post noting who's out of the running, who's gotten the greenlight, and who appears to remain in contention. It's not absolutely clear that GoT is _really_ having to hope HBO leaves at least one or two slots for next year. It may be that the reports of HBO approving 6 or 7 shows is referring strictly to those shows that already have pilots shot.

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I think the pick-up of the comedies is a good sign for AGOT. I'd expect HBO to follow up with 3 dramas and one more comedy, probably The Washintonienne. Of course I'm being cautiously hopeful and not completely realistic here.

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I think they might be picking these up because they can move very quickly into production. It may be that they are only looking to pick up 1 or 2 larger more slow moving projects. Significantly less pre-production envolved because they are comedies and contemperary.

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Also remember that part of being picked up is "Can you deliver what you are promising at the cost that you said?" rather than just "is it any good?" I'd say that the leaked pilot script is promising in showing not only good sense in how to translate to the screen (old rule of visual media: all important people and places must be introduced as early as possible), but how to do it with an eye towards budget as well (Others closing in to the actors rather than them interacting with them comes to mind).

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[url="http://www.variety.com/article/VR1117997700.html?categoryid=14&cs=1"]HBO seals deal with Maria Bello[/url]

[quote]HBO has sealed a deal with thesp Maria Bello ("The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor") to develop and star in a new series for the pay cabler.

Untitled hourlong project will be created and penned by Gary Lennon ("The Shield"). Bello is set to star as a woman who's forced into a life of crime to support her three teenage sons after her husband is killed. Bello's character employs her sons as henchmen, leading them all down a destructive road.

Bello will exec produce with Lennon; Gavin Polone and John Carrabino are also exec producers.[/quote]

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Sounds like Weeds meets The Sopranos and has a threesome with Breaking Bad. Is HBO just going to offer up repackaged versions of its, and other network's, successful shows? Whatever happened to original programming? This is making me a bit nervous about ASOIAF's chances.

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[quote name='Fate's Bitch' post='1629512' date='Dec 24 2008, 12.43']Sounds like Weeds meets The Sopranos and has a threesome with Breaking Bad. Is HBO just going to offer up repackaged versions of its, and other network's, successful shows? Whatever happened to original programming? This is making me a bit nervous about ASOIAF's chances.[/quote]

In this vein, isn't AGOT Rome meets Deadwood with elements of the fantastic? Going on that premise with previous HBO shows like Carnivale, Rome, Deadwood ( all canceled due to high cost, not ratings) and recently True Blood, there already is an audience and it might actually prove to be benificial to ASOIAF's chances.

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[quote name='Commodore' post='1629111' date='Dec 23 2008, 14.50'][url="http://www.variety.com/article/VR1117997700.html?categoryid=14&cs=1"]HBO seals deal with Maria Bello[/url][/quote]
[quote]HBO has sealed a deal with thesp Maria Bello ("The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor") to develop and star in a new series for the pay cabler.[/quote]
OT, but it makes me die a little inside to see Maria Bello, an exquisite goddess of cinema, who lit up the screen in "The Cooler" and was agonizingly good in "A History of Violence", receive her parenthetical reference for "The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor".

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Ser Greguh:

I agree.. she was excellent in the [i]Cooler[/i] and [i]A History of Violence[/i], as well as [i]Payback[/i].

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[quote name='FM Ramsay' post='1629910' date='Dec 24 2008, 14.38']Ser Greguh:

I agree.. she was excellent in the [i]Cooler[/i] and [i]A History of Violence[/i], as well as [i]Payback[/i].[/quote]
And let's not forget Coyote Ugly. :leer:

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[url="http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/content_display/television/news/e3i4bf70b129a075208c142e2f2326f83a6"]Michael Pitt set to star in [i]Boardwalk Empire[/i] pilot[/url]

Steve Buscemi, Kelly MacDonald, and now, Michael Pitt. They are assembling quite a nice cast. I'm sure having Scorsese's name on the project helps. I really hope that [i]Empire[/i] isn't in direct competition with [i]Thrones[/i]. It is going to be hard for HBO to turn this one down.

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[quote name='Halfhand' post='1641021' date='Jan 7 2009, 15.17']Steve Buscemi, Kelly MacDonald, and now, Michael Pitt. They are assembling quite a nice cast. I'm sure having Scorsese's name on the project helps. I really hope that [i]Empire[/i] isn't in direct competition with [i]Thrones[/i]. It is going to be hard for HBO to turn this one down.[/quote]


The bottom line for assembling an all-star cast and crew can't be cheap. Hopefully it bites them in the ass.

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The decision on whether the show would be picked up would be done at the end of this year, likely, for a 2010 premiere of the series. That's assuming everything goes normally.

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[quote name='The Mance' post='1641856' date='Jan 8 2009, 14.52']The bottom line for assembling an all-star cast and crew can't be cheap. Hopefully it bites them in the ass.[/quote]

As much as I want to see ASoIaF picked up, I can't wish that about this show. I'm sorry, but it sounds [i]good[/i]. I'd definitely tune in for it.

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Just read this whole thread, and now I'm worried! BUT, I've got a great idea for all of us to hype GoT without having to actually sabotage all the others in contention. How's this--each of us in our own local neighborhoods from New York to LA, starts surreptitiously stenciling gigantic words 'WINTER IS COMING' on bridges, viaducts, brick walls, plate glass windows, etc. THEN, somewhere along the same route, 'IT IS KNOWN.' So, passersby will see this huge WINTER IS COMING and think wtf? Then, a little further on, they see IT IS KNOWN. They'd be like, [i]what[/i] is known? What the hell? Or, coming from the other direction, they'd see IT IS KNOWN and then WINTER IS COMING.

Everything depends of course, on none of us breathing a word to anybody about what it all means. Word would start to get around, local papers would pick it up, probably offering obscure opinions on what it might mean and who's doing it and why. Then, all it would need would be for CNN or somesuch to do one of those human-interest stories on it, showing people in towns all ovr the U.S. saying 'I have no idea where it came from or what it means. It just showed up overnight!' It'd become a national obsession, everybody trying to figure it out, you'd have shrinks opining about it all, anti-terror conspiracy types issuing dire warnings, mayors huffing and puffing about gang-graffiti, etc etc.

Finally, of course, we'd have to send an anonymous explanation to HBO, which could then issue a statement that the banners are words from their HOT NEW SERIES (whilst, of course, denying any involvement in the thousands of WINTER IS COMING and IT IS KNOWN banners that now stretch from coast to coast. We could then start wearing t-shirts that say 'I Knew It All Along.'

wOOt! Delicious stuff... :hat:

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