PPME Keynote 2: Ron Moore, Battlestar Galactica
The second keynote speaker is Ron Moore, Executive Producer of Battlestar Galactica. They do a podcast to help promote the show.
The first email about the podcast: Sci-Fi.com is planning a “podcasting stunt” to promote the show. Audio commentary for the episodes. They chose to do 5 episodes. Ron records them on minidisc and they are FedExed from his home in California to New York. Feedback on the first few episodes: bad sound quality. New rule: “the podcasts are not for whiners.” That didn’t stop the whining, but the whiners were mocked and ridiculed in the forums.
At the beginning, he saw the podcast as just more work. He had already tried to start a blog, but “my infrequently updated blog sits and mocks me on a daily basis.” But now, the podcasts are fun. Relaxing to sit and chat about the show; now he sees it as the final stage of producing an episode. “Put the show to bed, give it a kiss goodnight, and that’s it.” Commentary is fresh because it’s done the same week. The show hasn’t been aired yet, so the commentary isn’t colored by audience response. “I like this episode, and here’s why.”
In writing for TV, you’re never there when the audience sees the product. The podcasts (and internet in general) are a good way to connect with the audience. Better than focus groups. (Focus group before BG aired said it was the worst show they had ever seen.)
Podcasting: no rules, no middle man; you get to have total control. Potential for this medium is “pretty limitless.”