Producer Interview Series

Insider interviews with some of the TV industry's top producers and executives at the TV Writers Vault

Beyond the selling and scouting of television formats for writers, creators and producers, The Television Writers Vault works to provide our members with firsthand, personal insights and perspectives from many of our top Industry Executives. In this continuing series, Scott Manville, Founder of, shares these focused discussions to bring you more understanding and knowledge of the inner-workings of the television industry, with many of the executives who use our service to scout and produce new shows.

Byron Allen
Chairman, CEO, Entertainment Studios
"For me, it was an unbelievable front row seat...I remember sitting there as a kid watching them, and that's when I had the epiphany- I knew what I wanted to do with my life..."
Darryl Trell
Sr. VP Production & Development, Brian Graden Media / Smoke & Mirrors Creative
"I started reflecting on my pitch style, and noticed that I was far more successful in selling shows that I had some sort of personal attachment to."
Chris Cowan
Executive Producer | Angel City Factory
"Finding an extraordinary adventure in real life circumstance is something we've always been drawn to. I love reality competition arcs and I love relationship arcs. Something that allows you to follow a set group of characters over a long period of time. Something that shows growth. Something that shows the evolution of stories. That to me is by far the sweet spot of the reality genre."
Rita Mullin
Executive VP Programming & Development | Oprah Winfrey Network
"I think there's a golden age for scripted TV right now, and they often inspire my thoughts about making our own non-scripted shows stronger."
Fenton Baily
CEO, Executive Producer | World Of Wonder Productions
"What reality TV does more than any other genre is explode the myth of the ordinary"
Jim Kiriakakis
Executive Producer, Head of TV | Buck Productions
"TV Writers Vault offers one of the only services out there, where a Creator can put their concept out to Producers in a user-friendly manner. Its my go-to source."
Phil Gurin
Executive Producer | The Gurin Company
"If you believe in your ideas, stick with them. Passion and skill will rule at the end of the day."
Corie Henson
Vice President of Alternative Series & Specials | ABC Entertainment
"We�re looking for something that will be the next step in reality. Not to reinvent the wheel, because there is comfort in the familiar, but to think big and take a unique approach."
Natalie Mashaal
Executive Producer |  Media Brand Consultant
"...Interesting people or places in the world. Tiny slices of life that we never realized existed. Those make for the best stories"
Sara Hansemann
Vice President, Development | Zodiak USA
"Television and film takes storytelling to the next level by enriching it with the texture of sight and sound"
Karyn Smith-Forge
Vice President of Programming | Fox Television Studios
"...stay true to your own voice and style... those fresh, original voices are what studios and producers look for."
Paul Gilbert
Senior Vice President of International Formats | CBS Studios International
"Be a leader, not a follower. As Michael King used to say to me all the time, "We have to zig, when everyone else is zagging."
Stephen Bulka
VP Original Movies | Lifetime Television
"At the end of the day it�s still all about the storytelling--starting with a good idea, finding the right writer, and then rolling up your sleeves and doing the hard work..."
Vin Di Bona
President & CEO | Vin Di Bona Productions
"...When I sold my first network series (Animal Crack-ups), that sale was the result of 138 pitches. My second show (AFV) was sold in four minutes on the first pitch!"
Dan Riley
Executive Producer | E! / Port Magee Pictures
"Hollywood is chewing its proverbial fingernails, and on its knees praying every day that something original and exciting will fall into its lap."
Nate Barlow
Vice President of New Media | Automatic Pictures
"...every project has its natural format, for which it is best suited"
John Meindl
President | Sports Branded Media
"...Do your homework, ask questions, network, do more homework, and be tenacious as hell"
Dena Hysell
VP of Development | Slate of Eight Productions
"...Networks are looking for projects that can air long enough to go into syndication"
Dave Pullano  
Executive Producer
"...the beauty of this town is that any idiot can make it... It's also one of the problems"
Paul Gagne
Executive Producer
"...if you have a personal experience that is highly marketable, definitely write it"

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