Take Me To The Pilot

Paul Guyot talks about why he never leaves behind a "leave behind" when pitching a pilot. I’ve heard both sides of the argument.

LEAVE THEM NOTHING. No treatment, no "Leave behind." I firmly
believe that you greatly reduce your chances of a sale when you leave
them something that they can pick apart and overanalyze.

The idea of leaving them with something is archaic.  That was the
way things were twenty years ago, but not now. And the reason so many
[Aspring Writers] think they should do this is because they’re reading books and
taking classes from writers who haven’t worked in TV in ten or twenty

Frankly, I’ve always left a leave-behind. I guess that makes me a dinosaur — or it explains why I haven’t sold a pilot yet this season. I’ve got another pitch coming up, maybe I’ll try it Paul’s way this time…

4 thoughts on “Take Me To The Pilot”

  1. Well as a guy who appeared in several seasons of Lee’s scripts that’s certainly true, but anyone that can go from a stand-in to CAA and numerous staff writing jobs on primetime shows ain’t chicken feed either.

  2. Don’t forget that night shift at Denny’s – Paul, ya never got the “over-easy” part of the eggs right, what up wit’ that?
    I, for one, come from Iowa, proud home of piles and piles of pigsheet, which we got paid four dollars and hour just to shovel. That’s my dream job.
    Now I gotta get back to my real job, behind this desk, chopping verbal cotton.

  3. Lee, I agree with both of you! I wouldn’t leave a treatment behind. Paul Guyot is right. Too much they can pick apart. “Ooh, we don’t like the act break.” On the other hand, I just pitched (with Randy Anderson) “Solomon vs. Lord” to CBS. We didn’t give them the book. We didn’t give them our written treatment. But we left a blow-up of the book cover which conveys the tone of the piece (and a generous quote from Harlan Coben). And we left the room with a script order.


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