Tag Archives: contests

Cable-access idol

Vox, Videotron’s community channel, is conducting a contest to decide on its newest TV series. Three finalists have been invited to create pilots, and viewers vote on their favourite. The winner gets a 12-episode deal for 2008.

Razzia is a show about fantasy photo shoots. Its pilot episode follows actress Mélissa Desormeaux-Poulin as she fulfills a dream of being photographed as a beat up boxer. (The video of pre-production answers a few questions about how it works.)

My take: Score one for a very original idea for a series. (Either that, or having stolen an idea from an obscure enough source.) But while it shows a lot of the photo shoot itself, there’s very little interview with the subject, and why she wants to be photographed in this way. There might be some interesting stories behind these dreams, but we’re not getting them. It’s hard to see a long-term series being based only on someone being made up and photographed.

Also, the cinematography is downright annoying. Tilted camera angles and ultra-fast zooms do not make an uninteresting interview more interesting. Try more editing and less dizzying camera movement.

Triple W is a … well, it’s hard to explain. It’s a sitcom about guys who create online comedy sketches, interspersed with humorous man-in-the-street interviews. You know what, I’ll just let them explain it. The pilot episode is about junk food.

My take: Humour is one of the things I think can work in low-budget productions. It’s more about the ideas and writing than special effects or high production values. But I’m not crazy about this meta concept (surely a standard clip show would be easier to understand), nor the cheesy animated web graphics.

Ultime is a show about extreme sports. It also has something to do with disabled kids or something, though the kids don’t participate in the extreme sports. The pilot involves people repelling down a rope tied to a bridge. (Pre-production video)

My take: Extreme sports shows have been done before, and I don’t see much new here. The poor-disabled-kids angle seems tacked on and pointless.

(via Yannou)

Corus killed the radio star

I’d never heard of it before, but apparently Corus Entertainment runs a songwriting competition every year called Canadian Radio Star. It awards $10,000 in cash and a bunch of smaller prizes to one Canadian act.

And based on the Photoshopped clip art on the site’s homepage, you apparently also win Finger Eleven. (Is that just a one-night thing or can you, like, sell them into slavery?)

I’ve never been one for contests of creativity. They always seem more about a big company getting a cheap source of new ideas than they are about encouraging independent talent.

Here’s the skinny from the contest’s rules:

  • Submit a song that you record yourself and that hasn’t been published anywhere (in other words, write a song for the competition for free)
  • That song can be used by any Corus station as much as they want without paying you a cent. (Though you might get some money through SOCAN)

I know some artists are so desperate to get signed they’ll do just about anything, but it just doesn’t seem fair to me to work for free hoping that some stations will play a song you won’t get paid for. Especially when the grand prize is only $10,000. Surely a song good enough to win a national songwriting competition is worth more than a measly $10,000.

Am I just being cynical? Maybe. Maybe it’s just that horrible clip art graphic that’s getting to me.