May 12, 2009The following entertainment article was written exclusively for Spreety TV Online by professional journalist Carolyn Giardina.
Series Creator Josh Schwartz Discusses Life in Rockville, CA
By Carolyn Giardina
Rockville, CA creator Josh Schwartz is not sure there will be another season of his popular original web series.
Speaking at the recent National Association of Broadcasters Convention in Las Vegas., writer/producer Schwartz - who is also the creator of series Chuck, Gossip Girl and The O.C. - reported that a greenlight would depend on his schedule as well as the cast's availability.
During the conference session, he discussed production of his web series and shared his thoughts on the rapid changes in content distribution and consumption.
On making Rockville, CA - which combines four-minute episodes with performances by indie bands - he says that web series production budgets are generally low, but the creative team can also maintain a lot of control. He explains: "People are getting paid something but it's well below what they would be for a television show. That said, the tradeoff is you are given an incredible amount of creative freedom (such as in script and casting). So creatively you are very invested because you have no one else to blame (if it is not well received)."
On viewing trends, Schwartz related: "The industry has recognized that we are now much more in the business of narrow casting, than broadcasting. You don't necessary have to have 20 million viewers anymore to be a relevant show - that can not only be successful, but brand a network. Gossip Girl's greatest value to the CW, probably, has been helping to brand the network."
When asked his view on how entertainment is changing, Schwartz responded: "I don't see it as a positive or negative. This is the way we communicate now. I try to evolve with it, observe it and find the art in it."
In addition to TV and web work, Schwartz is writing the next installment in Twentieth Century Fox's X-Men franchise, X-Men: First Class.
During his discussion, Schwartz shared a laugh with the audience as he described how he uses Facebook. "You can go on Facebook and your friend, can tag a photo album from a birthday party for someone you have not met. You can look through that person's entire photo album.
"I do that," he admitted, getting a big laugh from the crowd. "I just assume everyone else is living a more exciting life than I am. I just watch and think: 'that's a party I wasn't invited to.' "