Plight of a Scriptwriter

Here he is, the creator of Carnivale’s story and characters, without any censorship or hesitation.

When I create, I do so with unconditional passion, pride and dedication. Whether the results are worth the effort may be debatable, but what is not debatable is the cold hard fact that I love every one of them as I would my own child. To see them locked up, languishing on a dusty shelf rather than woo and thrill and seduce and move an audience is intolerable.

Worse, I have grown increasingly impatient with playing Mother May I with a bunch of timid, arrogant punks.

Every good writer and showrunner I know is absolutely miserable in the current production environment. Virtually no creative decision—no matter how trivial—can be made without being second, third, fourth and fifth-guessed by terrified rabbits. To resist or discuss—much less argue—the validity of a network note is tantamount to career suicide; if one doesn’t immediately and cheerfully comply with even the most egregiously bad “suggestion,” one risks being branded difficult and suffering years of unemployment.

People may be familiar with Firefly and Babylon 5. Both suffered from the same issues. It isn’t something exclusive to tv series. It isn’t something exclusive to Hollywood movies. It isn’t something exclusive to cable networks. This is a problem they have had ever since Hollywood forgot how to make patriotic movies. When people no longer love their country, they will soon begin to hate original ideas from other people. Those with a true passion, who are truly dedicated to achieving something productive, are often well adjusted and balanced personalities. Those who are not, often lack something vital. Something you cannot describe, but it is still lacking.

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