How David Mandel & his 'Veep' writers became "mini soothsayers" For the past two seasons, former Seinfeld and Curb Your Enthusiasm writer David Mandel has been showrunning HBO's Veep. And while the show can have eerie parallels to reality, Mandel tells us that more often than not, it's real life that ends up imitating Veep.
Shawn Levy on 'Stranger Things' and redefining his career Director Shawn Levy built a career on the ‘Night at the Museum’ franchise, but wanted to break out of his box. He set out to produce, and this past year scored with the Oscar-nominated movie ‘Arrival’ and the Netflix megahit ‘Stranger Things.’ He tells us how he went about getting the industry to reconsider him.
In 'Speechless,' Scott Silveri combines comedy, family & disability Scott Silveri has written and produced sitcoms for more than 20 years. In all that time, he never encountered a TV family that looked anything like the one he grew up in -- with a mom, a dad...and a brother with cerebral palsy. He changed that with his show Speechless on ABC. Silveri tells us about looking to his own past for stories, and why he was determined to make a family comedy and not just a "disability show."
Revisiting showrunner Steven Bochco on his memoir Steven Bochco, the writer-producer behind record-breaking Emmy winners Hill Street Blues, LA Law and NYPD Blue, fought battles with everyone from out-of-control actors to network censors in his long career. He isn’t afraid to tell those tales in his memoir, Truth Is a Total Defense. This week we revisit the conversation where he shared some of his favorite stories with us.
'American Gods' showrunners Bryan Fuller and Michael Green The novel American Gods features countless mythological characters gearing up to fight an epic battle. The writer-producers of the new adaptation on Starz were determined to do justice to the book -- even if that meant constantly moving production and pushing the budget. Showrunners Michael Green and Bryan Fuller tell us why they're not worried about critics who say the show is confusing, and go into the thinking behind an especially memorable, explicit sex scene.
Comedian Vir Das offers 'Abroad Understanding' After selling out stadiums in India, comedian and actor Vir Das is looking to break through in the US with his new Netflix special, Vir Das: Abroad Understanding. He tells us about making the jump from Bollywood to Hollywood and how he hopes his pointed humor can redefine expectations in India and America.
Margaret Atwood and Bruce Miller on 'The Handmaid's Tale' Author Margaret Atwood realizes that Hulu's adaptation of her Dystopian 1985 novel The Handmaid's Tale has gotten a huge PR boost, thanks to a turn of events that hardly seemed possible when work on the series was underway. Atwood and showrunner Bruce Miller talk about adapting the story for television and the eerie timeliness of the new series.
Kitty Green on her unconventional documentary 'Casting JonBenet' Kitty Green's new film, Casting JonBenet, is an experiment in nonfiction storytelling. The documentary shows a series of people from Boulder, Colorado, auditioning for roles in a movie about the infamous 1996 murder. Green never really intended to film a reenactment of the crime, but it was hard to explain to the actors what she did intend. She tells us how she got people on board and speculates on the reasons behind the country's continued fascination with the still unsolved murder.
In 'Free Fire,' Ben Wheatley wants to "meet the audience halfway" British filmmaker Ben Wheatley has built up a cult following with his hyper-violent, darkly funny movies. His newest film Free Fire is an action comedy starring Brie Larson, Armie Hammer, and a whole lot of guns. The movie has the broadest commercial appeal of any of his work to date, but it's still a Ben Wheatley film, which means, spoiler alert...a lot of people die.
Bassem Youssef and Sara Taksler on 'Tickling Giants' Known as the "Jon Stewart of Egypt," Bassem Youssef hosted a satirical news show that was the first of its kind in the Middle East. The show was immensely popular, until the military-backed government forced Youssef off the air and out of the country. Youssef and director Sara Taksler tell us about their documentary Tickling Giants, which profiles Youssef’s leap from heart surgeon to super star satirist.
Damon Lindelof on the end of 'The Leftovers' Writer-producer Damon Lindelof wrapped up the hit series Lost in 2010, and he still gets lashed by fans who hated the ambiguous ending. Now as Lindelof launches the final season of The Leftovers on HBO -- another series that revolves around a mystery -- he still cares what people think of his work, but this time, he's stay far away from Twitter.
Rob Long on fixing a sitcom and embracing life on Long Island TV writer-producer Rob Long was brought in on short notice to run the faltering CBS sitcom Kevin Can Wait. Long talks about getting the sitcom back on track, why he hopes there's not a writers' strike, and what itPs like to be one of the few outspoken conservatives in Hollywood.
Bill Condon on the challenges of adapting a 'tale as old as time' Beauty and the Beast director Bill Condon is no stranger to musicals -- he wrote the screenplay for movie versions of Chicago and Dreamgirls -- the latter of which he directed as well. But when Disney approached him about making a live-action adaptation of its famous animated classic he was initially hesitant take it on. He talks about what changed his mind and how he set about making the movie his own.
James Mangold on 'Logan' and fighting franchise fatigue Filmmaker James Mangold has been making character-driven dramas for more than 20 years, but lately, he's been in the X-Men superhero business. In his latest film, Logan, Hugh Jackman plays the slashing Marvel mutant one last time, so Mangold wanted to make something more nuanced than the usual comic-book movie.
Ryan Murphy on how his Half Foundation led to 'Feud' Ryan Murphy oversees a small TV empire on FX, with series including American Horror Story, American Crime Story and his latest effort, Feud. The first cycle of that show focuses on the rivalry between movie icons Joan Crawford and Bette Davis. On all his shows, Murphy now has a strict rule: at least half of the directors and crew members must be women or minorities.
Oscars producer Michael De Luca on that fateful mistake In an exclusive interview with The Business, Oscars producer Michael De Luca remembers the night that culminated with the biggest flub in Academy Awards show history. De Luca tells us what happened in the moments following that epic blunder and what he thinks should have happened instead.