The Writers’ Room – Dan Harmon, Josh Thomas, Celia Pacquola & Luke McGregor, BingeFest 2016


[ Music ] [ Applause ]>>Hello, hello, hello, hello. Welcome. Have you
been here all day?>>Yes.>>Six of you [laughter]. What about the rest, you’ve
just come especially for this, the highlight [cheering]? Yes. Excellent, excellent. Okay, so this session
has an amazing plot that I have now discovered
in talking to our panellists, none of them have done
their homework, okay? None of them. So, what we’re planning
to do here, these are all fabulous
writers as we know. [Inaudible] very successful
Australian writers and then, of course, we have some guy from
the U.S. [laughter] as well. All right? What we want to do is get
inside the writers’ room. We want to hear the
kind of obstacles, the breaks, the politics. We want to know about casting
and sponsorship and you name it. We want to know the
inside story, okay? So, part of the homework
was that everybody had to construct a story,
a plot line to pitch. None of them did it, okay. So, I bugger it, I reckon,
we’re still going to throw that at them, okay, and we’ll
see what they’re capable of coming up with. First, we’re going to chat. We’re going to be around
our writers’ table here. We’ve even got a bottle of —
a bucket of grog over there. We appreciate your enthusiasm. We’ve had some questions sent
in, which we will try and kind of incorporate in a very nuance,
subtle way, otherwise known as possibly forget,
okay [laughter]? So, it is now my great honour to
introduce all of our panellists. Would you please welcome, this
is in no particular order, but we’re going with ladies
first, would you please welcome to the stage, she’s
been in Laid, Offspring, The Beautiful Lie, she’s
won an actor for Utopia, she’s won an Edinburgh Fringe
award, and she’s a cowriter of Rosehaven, would you
please welcome Celia Pacquola. [ Applause ] [ Inaudible ] [ Applause ] Next up, Celia’s
coconspirator in Rosehaven. He’s done a sexy bot show, which I think we all
learnt a bit from. How embarrassing
was that to watch? Yet, we persevered
and learnt a lot. He’s written for everyone
all over the place. He did look warm and
sexy, as I just said, award-winning standup, written
for Channel 31, Legally Brown, on and on it goes, would you
please welcome the fabulous Luke McGregor. [ Applause ] [ Inaudible ] [ Applause ]>>Oh, hi. [ Inaudible ]>>And now it is
my great pleasure to introduce a guy whose
show in its fourth series, he’d never even written
anything prior to that. He’s won many awards for it. Please [inaudible], he’s won
an actor, a Writers Guild, Logie award nomination,
best comedy international, Emmy nomination, and everybody
has said that his work is great, from Entertainment
Weekly to The New Yorker. So, pretty amazing and
he’s only six [laughter]. Would you please welcome to the
stage the fabulous Josh Thomas. [ Applause ]>>[Inaudible] this
is your wine. That’s your wine.>>Thank you. [Laughter]>>This is my beer [laughter].>>He is too young
to drink, isn’t he? All right, and now we
just found some random guy out in the foyer. He said he’d come and join us
and then he casually mentioned that he’d won an Emmy,
he created Community and was the EP on that. He created Rick and Morty. He founded Channel 101. He’s the star of HarmonTown
and he is on every — you know, he’s an
influence beyond belief in the comedy [inaudible]
in the U.S. and globally. He’s under strict,
strict instructions that if he talks too much, I’m
going to tell him to shut up, okay, because we have
to share the stage. Having said that, we want to
hear what everybody has to say, so we could be here
until tomorrow. Okay, would you please welcome
all the way from the U.S. and he’s jetlagged
and [inaudible], would you welcome Dan
Harmon [applause].>>Hello, Dan.>>Hello, hello. [ Applause ] [ Laughter ] [ Inaudible ]>>That’s very funny,
[inaudible] bottle [laughter].>>I was just getting
frustrated. Everyone thought you were
the one being healthy with your water.>>Yeah, my water, my
Russian water [laughter].>>Now, obviously we’ve set
this up like a writers’ room. There is no alcohol in a
writers’ room [laughter]. Would you say that?>>You can do whatever you
want in my writers’ room.>>All right.>>Yeah, our writers’
room is my flat.>>Okay. Obviously,
this is an exotic world. And tell us, Dan, your writers’
room traditionally is what kind of environment?>>Always incredibly
gender balanced, you’re welcome [laughter],
by own volition, in spite of the system
telling me, don’t do it, enforce the patriarchy. I’m like, fuck you [laughter]. A little thing called
women, heard of them much?>>No.>>But, that’s actually true. I just want to point out that
I’m making it sound like a joke, but that’s true also, which
is less funny that it’s true. But, it’s what? You know, that’s
not a real question. It’s just a downbeat question. Okay, go ahead. It’s a — it smells
like mustard [laughter]. There’s Legos everywhere.>>I’m just following
the bouncing ball. That’s fine, but we were
talking about gender balance when we were in the green room
and working on who was going to carry the drinks on. So, it was a pretty important
strategy going on there. And we’ll get to gender balance, but I think actually the working
environment is interesting in terms of television shows. Are you in — on the
lot writing, Dan, when you’re there
with your people? Or, is everyone in
your apartment?>>Is — what was the or? I’m in on the writing, yeah.>>No, but I mean situationally, where are you located
when you write? Are you all in a group?>>Yes.>>You have like
quite a serious — like my show we write in my
lounge room and there’s me and my best friend and
Liz [assumed spelling]. And their show they
write in the lounge room.>>We’ll play PlayStation
for four hours and then just a half hour impro.>>But, you’ve got
like golf carts.>>An office.>>I [laughter] –>>Right?>>Yes, but then the golf
carts get smaller and smaller. I mean, things are
changing in the States. Everything is balancing out. So, small [inaudible] as you
might think, whatever is going on here is, if you’re doing
a Hulu show or something it’s like — it’s all becoming that. So, yeah, but, back in the old
days when my beard was red, yeah, we had golf carts
and, yeah, golf carts.>>[Inaudible] golf carts.>>But, the people that gave
us those golf carts were like, why are only 2 million
people watching your show, you utter failure,
you terrible person?>>Yeah, what kind of
numbers do you look for now watching a show?>>What? Sorry, I didn’t
hear the top of that.>>When we talk about
a hit show in the U.S., what kind of numbers
do you usually?>>Oh, well, now if a million
people are watching anything you make, someone will regard that
as an opportunity to monetize. Broadcast television, it has
to be like over 10 million to be a hit; therefore, those — like broadcast television
is becoming like dancing and sports. You know, just like people — celebrities just in
dunk tanks and –>>Yeah, yeah.>>Being catapulted,
like Harrison Ford in a Tilt-A-Whirl or something. I don’t watch broadcast
television. Nobody really does
for narrative, and so it’s like we
call it the golden age of television in the States. What that means is that
finally there’s less money, so some of the douche bags are
leaving the business [laughter]. And so, now, Vince Gilligan
is allowed to be himself when he does Breaking Bad, because AMC can’t
afford to give him notes. That’s the golden
age of television. Like someone has to pay
you a lot of to tell you to put a dog in it, you know.>>Okay.>>So, just before we
move on to everybody else, just is there a connexion
between creativity and a lower budget
or a higher budget? Is there any correlation
between how creative people are?>>Yeah, there’s correlation,
but that’s different from saying cause-and-effect. I don’t think if your
show is super popular that means it’s stupid. It could be a fluke. I don’t know. I’ve never had a
popular show [laughter]. I’d love to think there was
a cause effect relationship. I’d love to just say
Big Bang Theory is dumb, that’s why it’s popular, but
I don’t think that’s true. There must be something. I don’t know, you
tell me [laughter].>>Hey, Dan, Google it,
right while you’re there. Okay, now, let’s start here, because today we’re
imagining pitching a show. Did you guys pitch Rosehaven?>>Yes.>>How did that happen?>>We — Rosehaven was
sixth show we pitched.>>Can you tell us
about the other five?>>Space Ninjas [laughter].>>Ghosts.>>No, but –>>Seriously, there
was a ghost one.>>There was a ghost one. There was one where it was —
we were real estate agents, but the houses we were showing
were haunted [laughter].>>Really though, it’s true. Yeah, we thought
it was a good idea.>>Yeah, so like there’d be a
guy [inaudible] the walls bleed, but after midnight the
blood dries up and if you go to work they won’t be
able to see the blood on you even though you’d
be covered in blood. And it was — but it didn’t — that was kind of all
we had [laughter] and they saw right through it.>>Really though, that pitch
was less believable than one of our other pitches,
which was us married.>>Us married, yeah.>>No.>>No.>>Never happen.>>Didn’t want to
kiss each other so –>>No.>>But other than that one, but
it was weird because you put — the first pitch was like a
— it was one of us was a — one of us was psychic
[laughter].>>It was — it was
— I love this idea. So, it was I worked at
a psychic call centre.>>Yeah.>>And I was a sham and I
was doing it for a sham, but then it turned out that I
could tell the future for him.>>Just me.>>But only him.>>Yeah, and we thought –>>And we hated each other,
but we hated each other, but you needed to follow me around because I could
tell you your future.>>Yeah.>>And I needed a job. It was a bit psychic
pretty woman [laughter].>>And we spent —
we spent ages on it. Like we high-fived for
weeks and we were like –>>So it was really –>>We were like — we put a
lot of effort into this pitch. And then the first meeting
with the network, within about, I think it was like
seven seconds, they go, nah, we’ll see you out. We had nothing [laughter].>>I left it in the
car, excuse me.>>Yeah, excuse me.>>And, Dan, just to set this
up, these guys are both starring in hit shows prior
to pitching this, so they’re already
coming with a success. Celia, you look like
[inaudible]?>>Oh, yeah, but
not of pitching. We’ve acted in –>>Yeah, acting in them.>>But we’ve never written.>>I like Rosehaven
so much and I’m so thrilled you were rejected
to the last five times, because they are
horrible pitches.>>Yeah.>>Yeah, yeah, yeah.>>What about you, smarty
pants, what did you?>>I didn’t — I –>>Nothing?>>I mean, it was so long
ago me pitching my show that I was straight, so it’s like [laughter],
quite seriously.>>Yeah, but –>>The original pitch for my
show was me having trouble with the idea of girls, right? And I [inaudible]
the producer said, we went into the pitch
meeting and he said, don’t talk [laughter]. I said, okay. And then we, I don’t
know, then we did it. But, it took us five years. I mean, we were pitching
for five years and I didn’t talk once. But, now you can’t shut me up.>>I’ve noticed.>>Yeah.>>Yeah. Now, let’s [inaudible]. So, this was the only one
and your sexuality changed and you got it through?>>Well, sexuality
didn’t change [laughter].>>But, my public perspective?>>Yeah, yeah, yeah, just –>>Dan, how’s your sexuality?>>It’s good. You know, I’ve been
open about the fact that I’m a creep [laughter]. It was a brave choice to
put that into my work. But, yeah, I’ve written about putting pantyhose
on mannequin legs. [ Cheering and Applause ]>>So, Dan, in terms of
pitching, these guys, each have a — they’ve all got
successful shows at the moment. We’ve heard the track
record there, five and none. And then, what — how many did
you pitch before you had one that a network would pick up on?>>Oh God, I mean –>>Or an outlet?>>How many pitches
before Community? Like, it — I’m just
going to roundabout guess like 30, 20, 20 or 30. I don’t know. It’s kind of like, it is
like dating in the sense of like the years go by
and then it starts to, if you remember all of them it
would be very counterproductive to [laughter] do
well in the 29th one. Like you don’t want to remember
how many times you’ve asked someone out if 29 of
them have said no. It — because that
will change the odds. It — so, I never counted. I never — you don’t go into a pitch meeting
going like, here we go. I kind of forget. Like you — it’s this
rollercoaster in Los Angeles.>>Do you pitch a few
shows at the same time?>>Now I do for sure.>>Yeah.>>Now that I’m getting
like Gandalfy [phonetic], I am like now — and, also, now that syndication is no
longer the American dream in TV, it’s not really the
— no one is going to make The Simpsons again. Financially it’s
not going to happen. No one is going to make Friends. No one is going to
make Seinfeld. Like back end syndication,
it’s kind of gone. So, that means in order to
have a pension, I don’t want to worry you kids about this
shit, but I’ve done the math and it would appear in order
to keep my standard of living until I’m, how long
I’ll probably live, which based on the writer
actuarials is 66, like I’m going to — I’m going to need
to start flying coach or have 10 shows on the air. And by on the air I mean
mobisodes on a digital shoelace.>>But — sorry, so
syndication is finished because of the online
distribution? Is that why?>>Yeah, I think it’s
just syndication was based on this old world thing where,
I don’t even quite understand it because I never really got
my beak wet in that area, but I was just — Community
was like the mudskipper of between old media and what –>>Syndication is there’s
— you’ve got 100 episodes. You have 100 episodes,
five days a week, you can play it at six p.m.>>Yeah.>>So then –>>And then –>>If you hit that many episodes
the network can slate it and get an audience into a
habit of watching the show without having to really
advertise, because it’s just like Neighbours or Seinfeld,
at that time, [inaudible].>>Because there was
that comedy that –>>But, now nobody is
watching television at six p.m. unless
you’re old [laughter].>>That was based — that was — that was old one-way
transmission world’s way of filling a vacuum that’s
now been filled by the fact that there’s an internet. I mean, it was like
Seinfeld five days a week and you’d see the commercials
that were like Tuesday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Wednesday,
oh she’s a — she’s a backskipper [laughter]. Like these [inaudible]
now you can do like this [clapping sounds] with
the Friends theme like every day of the week and The Simpsons. Like it was like, oh, I
remember that show running for 100 episodes and now
I’m getting home from in between school and
nursing school [laughter]. I don’t know how labourers
function [laughter]. I guess they — I guess they
go to school and then they go to nursing school, I don’t know, and in between they
have a sandwich. That’s when they watch my work. I don’t know. But, anyways, sorry,
yeah, I’m babbling. But, that dream is dead
now for sure, right? We’re not going to make — it doesn’t matter what
country we’re from.>>No.>>We’re not making no Simpsons. We’re not going to — we’re
not going to retire on one show because it became
like this huge hit. We have to — we’re
like fishermen or loading dock workers. We’re honest labourers
now in television.>>Are they –>>Oh my God, my dad is going
to be so proud [laughter].>>Yeah, I’m from
Wisconsin, which is this place in the States that’s like
in the middle, like on top.>>Where all the
fishermen come from.>>Yeah, well, or at least the
people that hate themselves for having ambition,
like so [laughter]. Like everybody — the way our
country worked was they all landed on the, what’s the — it’s the stage right
of the country, and then as we proceeded stage
left, you know, like the people who their waggons broke down
in the middle [laughter] and natural selection
favoured people who were able to say this is good
enough [laughter]. And, so, if you’re born in
the midwestern United States and you head west, you’re doing
so like because of some — why am I talking about this? When did I [laughter] –>>I don’t know.>>I will hijack your show. I –>>Well, actually it’s
an interesting point. And, Luke, I’m aware of you here
because we’ve got two people with stark contrasting
style here, Dan and Luke. Because Dan just blurts and
Luke keeps going but, maybe, and he’s going to contribute. [ Inaudible ] So, I’m going to
allocate a question — just every now and
then I’m going to say, anything you want to say, Luke? Celia, I’ll do that
for you, too.>>I don’t know. I’m sorry, I try when no
one is looking get further under the desk. That’s kind of my
style [laughter]. I was just going to ask
though, when you were talking about The Simpsons, what
would happen with The Simpsons if it was released now,
if it was a new show? Would it –>>Oh God, well, it
would — no, it would — I think it would be –>>It would be the same as –>>It would be the same.>>[Inaudible] like they
would just be doing in the –>>Yeah.>>On Netflix as a –>>Yeah, yeah.>>Cool kind of –>>I agree with that,
BoJack Horseman or –>>Yeah, yeah.>>Like that would
be like popular. And now it’s like –>>And it would be [inaudible].>>If you can get 2 million
people watching your show, especially if it’s, yeah,
it’s like respectable. And that was from a
day when it was like — remember, The Simpsons
started as this weird, short during Tracey Ullman’s –>>Yeah.>>Show and then
it became like — it was just a series of strange
odd flukes and it was allowed to develop under the
tutelage of – you know, Sam Simon gets a
lot of the credit. Like he stepped in
and he hired a lot of Harvard Lampoon writers. And like they used that
thing as an unprecedented, now kind of mainstream
thing, which was like, oh, it’s animation, joke writers
can have Nano control, that’s not a phrase. They can have microscopic levels
of control over the execution of their jokes, and I think they
took that to such an extreme that — why do I
do these tangents? As like — yes, pickles
are good here [laughter]. What –>>Yeah, but it’s
interesting because –>>Rubbish pickles.>>Because Rick and –>>That was a close –>>Why is that open? Like this is in my contract. I’m like if I’m on a panel
of writers I’m the one with a laptop in front of me.>>This guy hasn’t seen
your face the whole time.>>There’s a — there’s
a sticker on the lid that says writer at work. I’m like [groaning].>>So, let’s — Rick and — is
it Rick and Morty or is it Rick and Marty [assumed spelling]?>>Rick and Morty.>>So, that’s animated.>>But you can — it’s –>>Oh no, you’ve got to remember
that, you know, nothing. Go on [laughter].>>If you were — yeah,
you got to remember, I don’t give a fuck what
you think [laughter].>>That is — you
know, that’s exactly. And then I was thinking,
now it’s being recorded. So, thank you for
saying it for me.>>It’s being recorded?>>What [laughter]?>>Oh shit [laughter].>>Okay.>>Yeah, you confessed. Your sexuality is
on record, sir.>>Did that just come out?>>Yeah [laughter].>>Sorry, mum.>>This guy’s got a
boyfriend backstage.>>Shush, Dan, shush. All right.>>Are these all TV executives?>>No, they’re laughing. They never laugh.>>Because they’ve got some
great ideas [laughter]. So, Celia can fly, but Luke
can’t fly, and they’re broke.>>I mean, I love it [laughter].>>So, this is actually
an interesting reflection of how a writers’ room can work, because there are
relationships between people. They can make some stronger. There’s the young up start and then there’s
the old bearded one.>>[Inaudible] passive
aggressive.>>That pretty — would you
say that kind of sums it up? Is this ratio of male to
female about accurate?>>Well, unfortunately,
this is the norm. I mean, if cutting off the
table before we even get to you. That’s part of the problem, is
that diversity is still a — it’s still quota enforced and
it’s still, even if you’re — even if you’re aspiring
to achieve representation in the room, it’s
representation. So, it’s like –>>It must be so frustrating
for you being a white man –>>Yeah.>>Now. How dull.>>Yeah, yeah. Well, it’s frustrating
because only I can solve racism and sexism [laughter].>>Yeah. [ Inaudible ] [ Applause ]>>It’s not easy.>>[Inaudible] in gay, you
know what I mean, [inaudible].>>But imagine being the only
— imagine being the only woman, or even one of two women
in a 10 writer room, it — what we found with gender
balance, the reason that’s so important, balance,
not representation. Not like get one in there and
now we don’t have to feel guilty on the way home at night. Like it’s — the reason
balance is important is because then every single woman,
if there’s five women in a room of 10 writers, each one of
them can just be a writer. Not a single one of
them has to worry about representing their gender. So, if one of them is more
partial to blue humour, or one of them feels more,
you know, like I don’t like to work dirty, like they
don’t have to then philtre that through, oh, I’m the woman.>>Yeah.>>Like they can all — and, yet, then you do have
the whole point of diversity, which is that you
have representation — yeah, blah, blah, blah. And then Dan Harmon got a medal
from Australia [laughter].>>Celia, what were
you about to say?>>As the woman — [ Laughter ] I take that point, but you
can’t not put everything through the philtre of
— as a woman in comedy.>>I’ll tell you
what you go through. [ Laughter ]>>Do go on, Celia.>>Spoil me. I — in standup and everything,
there is a certain aspect, and whether that’s
people putting on you of representing your gender, it
very much feels like in comedy, we’ve talked about this
before, if a man is not funny, it’s that guy’s not funny. If a woman’s not funny, it’s
like, see, chicks aren’t funny. It’s all of them. But, so you can’t
help but do that. I don’t think it stops you,
but there’s always going to be an element at this point that you do go whatever I
put forward is going to be — it’s just — it’s just — it’s just something in your
mind goes this is a woman and then the jokes, but it doesn’t stop
you from making jokes.>>When you were
writing you were one of the joke writers
for Good News Week.>>Yeah, yeah.>>Is that correct?>>And that was an amazing
opportunity to learn, that they opened that —
I don’t know if it was for women specific, but I think
it was Clay [assumed spelling] who recommended me for it. And it was a trial programme
just to give people experience. Maybe it was women
specific, I’m not sure. And from that I got a job
on their show for a year and a half, which was
great, which was based on — and the thing is,
whenever there’s something like if people — if I get an
advantage for being a woman, because they’re looking for
a woman so there’s less of us to choose from, I have zero
guilt taking that advantage because of the pile of
bullshit that I have to put up with to get there. And then even when
you get there, you still have to
prove yourself. So, I do not see it
as like a — as a — as an extra advantage
for being [inaudible].>>And that small inconvenience that if your male
boss has a crush on you you’re absolutely fucked. Like, because there’s
a power thing.>>Yeah, never happened.>>And like –>>Yet, Celia, yet.>>As a –>>Yeah, you don’t have
to feel guilty about — like, yeah, it’s [inaudible]. And I would — do not mean
to imply at all that it’s — like I wasn’t — I wasn’t
labelling the problem with women –>>Oh, no, no, I didn’t –>>I was going like
even though we said it in gest, it actually is true.>>Yeah.>>What is my role in any
of this at all, if anything? I mean, it’s not a hard job
but, yeah, what’s my job? It’s to try to create
an environment of — as close as possible to Roddenberry-esque [phonetic]
fairness, egalitarian. Can I please just take a vile
and add 17% African-American to this writers’ room? Like it’s — that’s my only
job if I’m being proactive.>>Yeah.>>Other — my only alternative
to being proactive, being like, and I’m not saying these people
are bad people, but you’re kind of David Milches who are just —
like they’re so — they’re so –>>Who is that?>>Oh, he — NYPD
Blue, Deadwood. He’s very respected.>>Racist [laughter].>>He — [ Inaudible ] He famously like in panels
like when the concept of diversity was first becoming
a real hot topic, he was, some would say, admirably honest
because he wasn’t pretending –>>Not the vodka.>>I know, I know, I’m sorry. Some would say admirably honest
because he simply said, look, I’ll just tell you the truth. He said something like white
rights like, or something like that, where
he’s like, yeah, I tend to hire white writers
because I like — I — they understand the
neighbourhood I grew up or something. He kind of just explained. He wasn’t making any — he wasn’t claiming that
he had the answers. He just said, this is what I do. Get out of my way
and don’t ask me to make my writers’ room a place
where progress is achieved, because it’s hard enough to make
good writing achieved there. I’m putting words in his mouth. I don’t — I’m from the Norman
Lear kind of camp of like, look, call me a, you know, white
knight, like kind of fake, call it protesting too
much, call it compensation, I have too much guilt about it. I want to create a
fair environment, because then I want it
to be a talent contest.>>Yeah.>>And I want — I want
everything to be fair because I want to prove
I’m better than everybody.>>Yeah, but also, it’s
not just about fairness. I think it’s about
shutting yourself off from a different point of view. Like I always wanted
to, first time, to try and write a
TV show with a guy.>>As a — as a redhead — [ Laughter ] [ Multiple Speakers ] [ Laughter ]>>But you know what I mean? Like I think it’s better
for you, it’s beneficial if you’ve got people from
different backgrounds, different life experiences,
because they’ve got more of the world that you don’t see.>>One of my favourite
things about your show is that it’s a male and a
female that are friends without any sexual tension. It seems like sort of
weirdly subversive to have — you don’t see that
very often, you know? It’s like you sort of
pretend in society like boys and girls shouldn’t
be friends a lot.>>We had — it was funny
how much we had to fight just to make the characters stay
friends and not get together.>>Well, it’s very hard
because do you know what — do you know what is
really easy to write, you two falling in love. Like if you want to
have an easy month –>>Not easy to act.>>And write like a season
[laughter], but you like –>>He doesn’t like
me [inaudible].>>It’s — romance is easy. It’s like –>>Yeah.>>Paint by numbers. You know how to do it. Yeah.>>It’s interesting there. So, once again it’s a stereotype
that we’re trying not to pursue. But it’s interesting,
Dan and Celia, once you’re in that writers’
room there are also — there are a whole lot of layers
of sexism that isn’t just because it’s a patriarchy, but it’s because there
are more boys than girls. Boys perform their material
differently in a writers’ room. If you’re outnumbered you
might be seeking the approval of male executive producers
who may or may not be white. So, there are a whole lot of
layers that you can be playing into that affect whether
your material gets through. What do you think, Celia?>>The [inaudible] I did — I
did a law review because the — because the [inaudible]
generation did it, who are like my idols and
I wanted to be like them.>>Yeah.>>So, I did the Melbourne
[inaudible] law review, even though I didn’t go to
Melbourne on study [laughter]. And I found it was a real
boy’s club, not on purpose. So, there was like 40
— it was like 20 dudes, real clique [inaudible] guys
and I found it really hard to fit in, and not on purpose,
sexist, which is kind of the — like they weren’t bad guys. I don’t think they noticed they
were doing it, to the point where I’d say a thing
in a group and nothing, and the guy sitting next to me
would say the exact same thing that I had just said and
everyone would laugh. And it was really upsetting. But, it taught me a
very valuable lesson, which made me write my fucking
ass off, because all the chicks, all the pitches just
got thrown away and I just drowned
them in scripts. I just went, right, you turned
that one down, here’s 20 more. I’m going to give you 30
more until they get through. And I ended up getting like five
of my sketches on the thing. So, it was shitty, but also
a really valuable lesson, which is prove yourself
by your work.>>Yeah, well, well done.>>Rather than getting annoyed,
rather than — because I did. At night I’d go home and like,
well, I just want to quit because it feels like I’m
not being listened to. This is too hard. But, then I’d lose again, so.>>Yeah, I find — I find
this a lot, by the way, when I’m talking to
female writers about this. First of all, I always know,
I’m talking to a female writer, I record it and I record the
date and time [laughter].>>And a [inaudible].>>I must remember this the
next time I have an audience.>>Do you want me to
sign something for you?>>Yeah, I make sure there’s
a lawyer present all the time. Like sometimes your
fly is unzipped. It’s just, it’s an
accident [laughter].>>Oh gross.>>I do find like there’s a
dynamic, there’s a thing playing out here that’s totally
understandable and it’s actually
the healthiest thing, which is I think the patriarch,
the Gandalfy guy going, at best going, oh, there’s
so much that needs to be done and I [grunting] and the —
but, the young female writers, of course, if I put myself
in their shoes, I can’t, you’re welcome [laughter].>>Because they’re high heels?>>But it’s like — it’s like,
of course you’re a writer first. If you’re a writer first then
there’s this like you don’t want to be — you don’t want to be
talked about or to in this way. You want it to be a meritocracy,
too, and so that landscape, as jagged and uneven as
it is, you’re like — your counterpoint is always
going to be as an individual and as a — as a possibly a
role model to young like females that want to be writers,
like which is a — it’s better for you to say what
you’re saying, which is like, yeah, kind of — kind of
suck it up, buttercup, a little bit, is the –>>Oh yeah.>>But you — I hope you agree
that you should be saying that and I shouldn’t,
right [laughter]? Like you — like everybody
— I think the python guys, who are all white straight
males, ostensibly, I don’t know, there was the Oxford versus
Cambridge thing and it was like less guys from
Oxford or Cambridge. The — anybody who’s worth
their salt in a writers’ room, no matter how hard
they think they have it because of any hazing,
I’m the new fireman, I’m the old fire man
team, I’m a firewoman. Firewoman? Like a firewoman worth her salt
is going to be the one that’s like I don’t want to hear any of
this shit about like fairness –>>Yeah.>>And all that stuff,
like and actually I find that American comedy
writer women, one of whom is my girlfriend, like I took [banging
sound] her [laughter]. I — when I found her,
she was an American female comedy writer. Now, she’s my girlfriend
[laughter]. It’s just — I find
— they’re — it’s a weird tango that
your mind has to do. If you’re — if you —
if you’re a writer that’s like being a Jedi. It’s like, that comes first. It’s like, fuck you, my lightsaber moves
faster than yours. I don’t want to have this
conversation kind of.>>Yeah, there to represent
your mind, not a gender.>>Yeah.>>I did have an idea for a
show the way you’re saying that, firewoman. And you think it’s
going to be all like super positive chicks
[inaudible] fires any woman who works for hi9m.>>Yeah [laughter].>>Hey, hey, you got a vagina? Get out. Next on Fire
Woman [laughter].>>Fabulous.>>Simple as that,
guys [applause].>>[Inaudible] number seven.>>Really, if Hillary
Clinton had just — had said you’re fired more –>>Yes.>>She could have
been president.>>See, she should have
been the fire woman.>>You’re fired, you’re
fired, you’re fired. I’m president.>>I barely ever –>>If we think about kind of
flavours of the [inaudible] and what’s in this, guys,
whether it’s women writers, women representation,
or ethnicity, how successful do you
think you would have been at getting Please Like Me
through the door 10 years ago?>>I mean, even five years ago
we had gay kisses that were like big conversations. I was having fights about
the gay kiss, right? And I was, myself, like
oh, should we not keep it on for this many seconds because
it’s going on the television and people will it off, which
they will, and they did. But, even now it’s changed. I very rarely hire heterosexual
men, no offence [laughter].>>Why is that?>>We have heterosexual men
that lift things [laughter] and we have heterosexual
men that [inaudible] and –>>The smoke detector
is always on the fritz.>>Outside of those two areas on our show I think
we have almost zero.>>Is that intentionally bias?>>I don’t know, I
only just realised over the last five minutes
because I got worried. I was like, am I misogynistic? And I was like counting
through our crew and I realised that I’m heterophobic
[laughter]. Yeah.>>I think it’s okay to
be that at the moment.>>I just don’t want them
around [laughter], no offence.>>Is that because
they’re down, like why?>>I don’t know.>>You want your gang.>>I only just realised
about two minutes ago that I hate heterosexual men. This is a big moment
for me and I’m working through it with you guys.>>And that –>>Are we still doing –>>Doesn’t include you.>>Are we still doing movie
night tomorrow [laughter]?>>You’re not really — you
guys aren’t heterosexual men.>>No [laughter], not
by [inaudible] no.>>That’s not like –>>Oh, you’ve got to give
us a couple of bullet points on what describes a heterosexual
man then, don’t you?>>No.>>Well, it’s [inaudible]
too well.>>There’s no like managers or
like there’s no, you know — well, the thing is,
right, because I — it’s my show and I have
to keep the power dynamic. I need to own it. So, we don’t hire big –>>Alphas.>>Alpha men. I just would never. I don’t know. It’s all lesbians and gays and
I don’t know, I just realised.>>Well, if we were
pitching a show –>>Also, the show is very —
the type of people that’s going to work — like going to want to
work to on Please Like Me are — they’re very Faye, you know,
like gentle spirits [laughter]. My show is very gentle.>>I –>>It has a dog, which you
made a comment about earlier.>>Did you think –>>It’s fine to have a dog.>>I saw you bristle like –>>It’s a fucking —
it’s a fucking cute dog.>>I’m sure it wasn’t
a studio note. You didn’t [inaudible] a
straight guy didn’t say put a dog in it [laughter], right? Otherwise, if so, you should
be ashamed of yourself.>>I said if you
don’t put this dog, if you don’t put my actual
pet dog in it I’m walking.>>You know — you know, Josh,
I’m not going to get a hard on watching your show, the least
you could do is put a golden retriever in it [laughter]. I’m not asking for
tits [laughter].>>Well, actually [inaudible]
interestingly ventures into some otherwise
unexplored area. So, it’s not only homosexual
men kissing and having sex in the show, but there’s also
representation of mental illness with the character who –>>Gross, gross,
gross [laughter].>>What if it’s a dog that
has mental illness [laughter]?>>That’s your eighth pitch.>>Fun, fun, fun.>>There you go. There’s the next –>>Like Lassie. Lassie was fucking psycho.>>Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.>>So, Josh, how
open were the powers that be to these inclusions? Did they encourage it? Did you have to fight for them?>>Well, there’s a
little stuff we did in the show which was weird. And there was a lot of meetings
where people would look at me and they’d be like,
I don’t really know. Like, I mean, when we
— should I say this? When we like — we didn’t
get [inaudible] funding because they were like
the scripts aren’t ready. And then I put in the exact
same script that they rejected to the Writers’ Guild
award and we won, right? And they — that’s [inaudible]. So, we had a lot of people
that were reading the scripts and they just didn’t
understand what was happening until we made the show. So, and then, I don’t know, the
second season there’s an episode where like Josh and mum go
on a hike and it’s just them for the whole time
talking about suicide. So, like, obviously like
if you’re an executive and I’m sitting down and I’m
like, yeah, they just like chat about suicide in
the bush [laughter]. I had to get very good at
like defending my ideas. Like one of the big things
I’ve learnt in this show is how to communicate why I think
something is a good idea. Because before this I just did
standup and I would just walk out and do it and I would
find out pretty quickly. But, this show you have to
— when you work in a show and they’re giving you millions
and millions of dollars, you have to convince people
and you have to get them on board and that stuff. Penetrative anal sex,
yeah, you got to — you’ve got to be able
to sell [laughter]. You’ve got to have your sales
techniques down if you want to do a penetrative anal sex
scene in a — in a warehouse.>>What’s your one-line pitch?>>Did you say penetrative?>>Penetrative anal
sex [laughter]. You heard me.>>As opposed to –>>Penetrative —
Well, you can like –>>Osmotic?>>Rim [laughter].>>You can — you can what?>>You can rim. It’s when you lick a
— is this recorded.>>Oh, oh, oh, okay,
yeah [laughter].>>Yeah.>>With your mouth. Oral.>>Anal.>>Oral anal.>>Oral anal sex.>>Like you’re —
like it’s like a –>>Yeah.>>It’s like a, yeah [laughter].>>So, I’m glad we
cleared that up.>>We don’t have any.>>Does anyone want to
draw this conversation on the one [inaudible]?>>This is what the
laptop is for [laughter].>>Don’t get started.>>You’ll write that down.>>Yeah.>>Luke, yes, what
were you going to say?>>No, I regret it [laughter].>>Hey, yeah.>>For me it’s like –>>Believe in yourself.>>I just don’t think
— like is it possible to have sex without — [ Laughter ]>>Dan?>>Yeah?>>You can’t write all the time.>>Okay.>>Because everybody will
read that and not listen to what Luke is saying. Is that okay? [ Laughter ]>>Oh, this isn’t final draught. I have to actually — okay. I just put –>>Dan?>>I just — it’s OCD.>>Finish your sentence.>>I just have to –>>You’re only allowed
to finish [inaudible].>>Okay, okay [laughter].>>Okay. Luke [laughter]?>>Okay, etcetera, etcetera. [ Laughter ]>>Luke?>>Yes?>>You were just saying that
you didn’t have anything to say and then we were
rediscovering that you did.>>No, I can’t — it’s not — it’s too much build
up now for –>>I know, it’s difficult. Do you want to make
something else up or — like, well, let’s talk for
a moment about Rosehaven. Which –>>What I was going to say –>>Oh okay.>>Is I think that it’s
imposs [phonetic] — is it — it’s impossible to have
sex without some kind of penetration, right
[laughter]?>>No, well, that was the Bill
Clinton question, wasn’t it?>>No, it’s –>>Welcome to my life.>>Oral sex still involves –>>Well, okay, so do you
know what rimming is? Because I feel like
we covered it, but –>>No, I don’t mean
penetrate, I just mean like — it all depends like
let’s say like in soccer if you get a goal it’s goes
passed the line [laughter]. That’s a goal.>>Dan, I just have to point out that Luke actually
did a whole show.>>Yeah.>>A series, what is
it three, six part — was it a six parter [phonetic]?>>It was a six part —
it was a six [inaudible]>>Educating himself about sex. It clearly has not worked, but. So, yes, rimming, is
that where you were at?>>Like you can — you can do
— yeah, you don’t have to — I guess you’re very
dick focussed on this.>>No, no, if you think
of the soccer goal.>>Yeah.>>This is the line, as the rim.>>You know that soccer and
sex are like not [laughter] –>>Has this become very
sophisticated bullying? Or, are we just –>>That means –>>What do you do? What do you do? Do you use your tongue
or what [laughter]?>>Oh, I think you
were bullying Luke. I’m the one being bullied.>>Well, I’m just saying like –>>I don’t want to be
the one being bullied.>>How many — how many
— I’m just saying, how many questions are we going to have before it
becomes like –>>Oh, no, I’m sorry, I
didn’t mean about that. I mean, it was about — it was
— it was semantics about a –>>It was a sport question.>>It was a question
about soccer [laughter].>>You can see how they
work well as a team. Luke, was it a sex question, because we can answer
it if you need it?>>No, I’m — I’ll –>>I think we’re talking about when you’re
trying to pitch ideas –>>Yes, so what I’m wondering –>>Yeah.>>Because I think you might
have become, sorry, Dan, [inaudible], you might have
become an accidental activist with Please Like Me because
you were pushing things that are important in your life.>>Well, I always forget
that I’m gay, because like for nine months of the year
I’m just making the show and I don’t think about
being gay that much, right? When I wake up and my
boyfriend is there I don’t go like [gasping sound] [laughter]. What? And that’s what
[inaudible] so I’m like writing my scripts
and I’m like, you know, Josh kisses Arnold
[assumed spelling] and I don’t ever really consider
it and then it goes to air and every interview is
like, gay, you are gay? And I’m like, oh, fuck yeah.>>Well, what about you
guys with Rosehaven, which is perhaps
the polar opposite? Are there hidden political
and social statements hidden in there that [laughter]? Is it about [making
sounds with mouth] –>>It’s [inaudible].>>Is it conscious? Is it — did people
make you remove them or that was not your intention? What was your goal
in writing it?>>No, no, no, we wanted
it — we just wanted it — the pitch for this, the
original pitch for this was Luke and I talk and share and they
went we need more [laughter]. So, it was never
to make a point. We wanted to — we
thought it would be nice to have a show that’s nice,
that’s got real heart, that’s idiots trying to
get along and it’s not mean to anyone, it’s not
making fun of anyone. It’s just silly and dumb fun.>>Yeah, it was [laughter] –>>You did, but you did
it really successfully.>>So, we — it was — I
guess we thought about it. Like we had in one
episode the — there’s two tenants that are a
couple, but we just tried not to make that heavy
relevance on the plot that it’s more a gay couple. Or, if we had people –>>What did you do with the — what did you do with
them [laughter]?>>With it — with who — we?>>What happened
with the gay couple?>>Well, they were
tenants and then we –>>Yeah.>>They were — you’ve
seen the show, haven’t you?>>So they were renting?>>They were renting — they
were renting and they –>>Yeah, so that’s
not feasible, stop it.>>Were leaving the –>>I don’t know, I’m trying to make him uncomfortable
[laughter].>>But, you were a
little bit sexist because they had a very clean
apartment, surprisingly clean. Do you remember that? [ Inaudible ]>>See, well, if we had made
them horrible tenants then people would be like –>>You can’t win. You can’t win. If you made them
pigs, then you lose. If you make them
tidy, then you lose. Do you know what the answer is? No gays.>>No gays [laughter]. No gays. Well, really, we
wanted — like we wanted — that’s the hard thing about
trying to be inclusive. We wanted it to be more diverse. So, like when you see the
promo shot it is so white, which makes us feel –>>Yeah, I feel the same.>>Awful –>>Yeah.>>About our show.>>No, about my show
[inaudible].>>But, like we didn’t
do enough, but we tried. We had — we had an open
casting call in Tasmania and we just couldn’t
find — it’s [inaudible].>>Do you know what I
think the thing is, right? So, in Australia — this
is going to sound racist. Well, let’s find out [laughter]. Because we’ve tried really
hard for years now, right, and we’re really — we’re
really, but I think most of the immigrants in Australia
have come pretty recently. And generally, first or second-generation
immigrants don’t want to actors. They like have real
jobs, you know. And it’s like hard — it’s hard. I really — I don’t know. I found it really hard. It was a high priority
for us from the beginning.>>But it’s [inaudible]
but we’ve got a lot of — we’ve got an 84-year-old
woman, we have a lot of strong, older female characters
on our show.>>Yeah.>>If only Luke was black
everything would be –>>The only thing about
making a television show that I didn’t know about that
I found quite confronting, was because you have to pick
every person in the show. So, it’s like, Josh, you know, like what do you want the
7-Eleven worker to look like? And it’s like, do you make them
Indian or is that offensive? Or, then if you make them
white is that like a bit like you’re lying
really like [laughter]. So, then it’s like –>>Well, but also –>>Like what do you do?>>It’s taking a job away
from an Indian actor.>>Yeah.>>If you don’t —
but like, I see.>>It’s like hard. You don’t want to like —
what answer is not offensive? I don’t know. There’s always –>>We’re probably
not going to come to the answer, too,
with this panel. It’s very [laughter] –>>Well, we might, because we
haven’t heard from Dan yet. What are your thoughts
on this one, Dan?>>Well, we love to all
around that Monopoly board. I mean, we’ve got diversity
in the writers’ room, which I’ll say from the States, I have no idea what
your situation is here.>>It’s easier in
the States I think.>>I mean, I — here’s
the thing in the States.>>With casting, I’m
talking about casting.>>I’ll tell you the
situation in the States. Racial diversity in the writers’
room, the obstacle between now and what we would like
to see, if we’re liking to see representation, is
that it’s this unspoken fact that being a writer,
a television writer in the States is a lot like
being a doctor, a dentist. It requires a support system,
like way more than you have in a lower income home. Like the problem — the
syndrome starts with the fact that third grade black girls
aren’t being told TV writer is up there with astronaut
and doctor and all the things
that you can be.>>I feel like I just
tried to say this and they thought it
was racist and I love that you’re doubling down on it. But, it’s like — like
it is like when people — so, it’s [inaudible] casting,
we don’t hire writers. We’ve got three writers since
the beginning and that’s it. But, like finding people who have been giving
the same opportunities where they then get to go and be
great in acting is really hard. But, none of the other shows are
hiring people that aren’t white. Finding an experienced actor
that’s not white is really hard. So, then you find yourself
in a situation where you’re like we want to be more diverse,
but this person doesn’t have as much experience as this
person, and then it’s hard to know what to do, because you
also don’t want to be putting — you don’t want to be favouring
people and putting them on when they’re not
doing a good job.>>In the States the answer
is you have to look harder. Like you — and then you can — you have to look so hard that
you can sleep like a baby.>>Yeah.>>You know, you have to — and the truth is it changes
every day in the States. There’s a gold rush right
now for women because it’s like you can be a female,
that’s half of the population of the United States, even
more technically, and you — why did I throw that in? Fifty-one percent,
don’t forget [laughter]. Power in numbers. The — but, it’s
like that’s a — I’m not saying, I’m
not equivocating or — it’s a different thing to
achieve gender diversity, gender equality in
a writers’ room. Then the racial thing comes in among the writers,
your writing staff. If your writing staff
is lily white, that is a different obstacle
to overcome because it — because the reason for the
need for that is not because we like to see different colours
when we look into rooms, the need for that is because we
sense this syndrome happening where television is being
written by rich white people for — and then everyone’s
getting the signal that you — if you are — if you are a
different colour then you’re not supposed to write
television or be on — all the jokes and
the observations and the things, it’s
just a syndrome. You don’t know what
chicken is laying what egg. All you know is that
when you ask for a pile of the best writers you get
them from the best agencies and there is a very,
very small amount of technically diverse people. And then the diverse people in
that pile are people that went to Harvard, people
that went to Yale, people whose parents could
afford to have their kids say, I don’t know what I
want to do for 10 years, and that is the bottom line. Like –>>Dan?>>Like it’s harder to be poor, which is the actual diversity
you want in the States. It’s class, not race,
that’s the important thing, it’s unfortunately
connected to race, which is an important
thing to notice. You don’t want just — is someone doing a cricket
sound effect on purpose? Is that just Australia?>>They’re fine [laughter].>>Is it — are we in the bush?>>The sun is setting.>>I thought — I thought that
was like your sound guy was just like wrap it up,
Yankee [laughter]. It’s — there are — it’s — there’s bigger issues
to address. All you can do is
stand your station and be proactive
within your station. If you’re a show runner,
you have a responsibility, in my opinion, you can’t
fall back on like –>>Not just a responsibility, but surely it just
makes the show better. Like you just want
diversity and voices. You want different perspectives. You want — if you’re
building a show with lots of different characters you want
to show as many different point of views as possible
to make the show good.>>Yes, but I would
also say it –>>I’m not trying to be a hero. That’s [inaudible].>>No, actually, no, I
think you’re bravely — you’re actually,
because of what you’re — because you’re kind of — I’m
the one who could be looked at as reaching too
hard to be a hero. But, I — because I
truly believe in actually that extra six inches
of proactivity, penetrative proactivity
[laughter]. That — but, not you. You implied maybe a little
bit of self-effacement when you were like, oh, I just
like the people that I trust and like they’re going
to enable me creatively. This isn’t your — it comes
around to this joke again where it’s just like I’m
a straight white male. It’s my fucking job
to just like, I’m going to fix everything. Like what else do I do? Your job isn’t to do
that as a show runner. Like our goal is
to get to a place where even straight white males
can just hire straight white males if that makes
them comfortable. That will be after
we achieve this goal of breaking this chain reaction of you can only be
writing television if you’re a straight white male. This is all State oriented, too. I don’t know how it
works in Australia. I have no idea what
your situation is.>>Dan, can you just — sorry?>>Oh sorry.>>Luke, sorry.>>I get — always get scared
talking about these issues because I don’t —
but, I guess –>>>>Don’t [inaudible].>>I saw a — it was — I’m worried I’m going
to [inaudible] this up. I saw a — I saw a comic. It was a cartoon once
and it was about equality and it had three people of
different heights looking over a fence and they all had
the same box to support them, which meant that because they
all had the same box they’re all given equal opportunities. The shorter two couldn’t
see over the fence. It was on a — so,
then it said — it was something like equality and then the other
version was proactivity, or something like that. Where — what was it, sorry? [ Inaudible ] Equity. Was it? Whatever they said, that
was the correct answer.>>Yeah.>>Anyway, so and then it was
people of different heights with different sized boxes to — so they could all
see over the fence. And I think if you are in a
position where you’re handing out the boxes, and I
think that’s what Dan and Josh were talking
about before, is that you do have
an obligation to if someone needs a bigger
box to see over the fence, then you should give
that to them.>>Beautifully said [applause].>>Why were you worried
about that?>>I don’t know.>>That’s just a lovely — I saw a cartoon and you
should give people boxes.>>But –>>Fuck, what risk did you
think you took in that anecdote?>>I don’t know. I was afraid I was going to
finish with and I love Hitler or something [laughter].>>Dan, [inaudible] I
heard some people talking about Community recently
and saying that was in fact profoundly
subversive in their eyes, elevating community
college and representation. How many years ago was
the first series up?>>2009 was, yeah, the
year that was a hit.>>Do you think if [laughter] –>>Maybe they’ll
believe me, I don’t know.>>If you were to start that
series again, are there elements that you would change
because it’s a different time and place now?>>Are you — are
you talking about –>>Cast wise, the
voices within it. Do you think that show
would still take off if it started day one today?>>Yeah, I think I nailed it. I mean [inaudible],
it’s timeless. I did [applause] — I — well,
because we did — there was — and it’s not to my
credit honestly. I — there is a — I wrote a — it’s based on a real
experience I had, which is me, as a narcissistic like guy, I
took a community college class and ended up in the same —
I had this real experience and I was like this seems
like a TV kind of thing. So, then I pitched it and
in development the guy that was my boss, who’s like
the guy that I would come to like shit on and be like
you’re a [inaudible] get out of the edit bay, you
know, the non-creative like producer guy
that’s like the guy that gets it all started. Like he was — you know,
he looked at my first list of characters, which was like this guy is a
divorced black shoe salesman who comes from Kentucky. And it’s like he — everything
was like very cosmetic. Like it was all about
background. I thought I was — that was me
thinking I was doing my job, like Norman Lear. Like, oh, I’ll have the
Hispanic blah, blah, blah and the Russian immigrant. And the — and the producer
that looked at it said, this — are you writing a
Benetton billboard? Or, like if your emphasis is on
achieving like this randomness, then don’t make it so fixed. Figure out what you think
makes people different from each other, and then we
cast it we’ll use techniques available to us to
randomise the casting. And that was the first huge
boom to that whole thing. Like, that wasn’t my idea. I went — I was like
that’s brilliant. Let’s do that. So, I varied the
characters based on age. And in the script most of
them were raced neutral. Like I didn’t — I didn’t know. There was — Abed
had a background that was part of his thing. I’m going way off
on a tangent here. This is not helpful.>>Was his character named Abed?>>Yes, and then there was — and then there was an issue
with the fact that I was — he’s Palestinian and we
hired the funniest brown dude that came in who was Indian,
half Indian half Polish. And I — this is a weird —
it’s a weird — it’s weird shit. We could do a whole panel about
it for six hours [laughter]. But, I wouldn’t really do that
much differently, not in front of the typewriter, or even
in front of the computer that we all use [laughter]. Who am I trying to impress
with my pocket watch? I wouldn’t do anything
really differently in the executing of
it in that regard. I’m assuming there’d be more
jokes about having a bad back, because it’s like years later. But, and then in the casting
of it that’s what we did. We had — we had just like — we just saw everybody and
then we were like, okay, I guess Annie is white
because Alison Brie just came in and nailed it. So, check a white off of
this bingo card [laughter]. Like we can’t — we — and
that’s the unfortunate — like this is happening
in community college. We can’t have seven
white people. So, we just burned
a whitey, you know. We just like [laughter].>>I’m so sorry I don’t know —
I don’t know the actor’s name, but I’ve watched every
episode of Community. The dean is my favourite.>>Jim Rash.>>Jim?>>Right.>>Jim Rash.>>We knew that. Thank you.>>Here’s the crazy — so, here’s the crazy
thing about Jim Rash.>>Yes, please.>>The reason why —
like we had cast a guy who was this crazy looking
like really tall guy with a sharp Adam’s apple. And Ben Silverman, one of the last things he
did before he left NBC, he came to the Community
table read and all of the actors had been cast,
including that guy as the dean, and Ben Silverman’s one note
was this is going to be great. You’re a superstar. Why don’t you recast the dean? There’s not enough
diversity in your thing, because he was a white guy. So, we went, fuck,
we love that guy. And that poor guy, he’s
like I’ll never show up to a table read
again, fuck [laughter]. But, we cast a wide net. We spec [phonetic] —
and we were like, really, you’re telling us he
has to be not white? And he’s like, no, wisely. Like, no, that’s a
line you can’t cross. No, he can’t — he’s not
forbidden to be a race. That will really lose a
battle before we win the war.>>Yeah, yeah, yeah.>>What we’re telling you is
re-shake the Yahtzee cup and see if you can find — see if
you can beat that guy and, also in addition to it, cosmetically achieve
the overall effect of diversification of ethnicity. God, Jesus Christ,
these conversations. I mean, they’re not unlike
conversations that were had in the most problematic of
times, because we’re talking about people like
they’re fucking property. And so, but we did cast a
hugely wide net and we did pray to Christ because we
wanted a television show not to get cancelled that
someone perfect for the role, who was coincidentally
Asian, Latino, black, would walk in the door. But, Jim Rash walked
in a sea of just like, give us humanity, everybody. George Takei came in. It was crazy. It’s pronounced Takei
[laughter]. Jim Rash came in and
it was like, holy shit, this is so much more
important than that. This is a dean that’s never
been seen in my opinion.>>He’s so funny.>>Yeah. [ Inaudible ]>>For those in the audience
who are actors or directors, for example, how much
is an actor allowed to embellish the
character on the paper, and how much do you want them —
you’ve envisioned the character and you want them to nail
it the way you’ve seen it? Anybody got input on that?>>I — yeah, I’ve —
we rarely — we have — Australia doesn’t have
that many actors, right? So, like I think casting for you
would be — you would have — you could have any specific
type of person you wanted — you could sort of get. Australia you can’t do that. So, later seasons,
as we’ve gone on and cast new characters,
I’ve written them. We’ve often have gone into
casting with no age, no race. We’ve had a gender before
because she was sharing a house with my mum in a mental home,
so she had to be female. But, otherwise we wouldn’t have. And we’ve just tried to
find people with personality that we find sort of –>>You like working with.>>Exciting.>>Yeah.>>And then once we
cast them I went through and rewrote the character
to match. This is [inaudible] who ended up
getting — I’m thrilled about. But we, you know, so
that’s how we do it.>>I think that’s –>>I found you have to
be very flexible with –>>And it’s a complicated
task when you’re in front of a word processor, I
upgraded from typewriter, the — because now think about, I recently wrote a pilot
with a collaborator. We tried to do —
we tried to think, could we do that with gender? Can you write a gender-neutral
character? The answer is no, there’s
a thing called pronouns in English. Like you can’t — it’ll read
like ketchup instructions. You’re like he or she
then does this or that. It’s like, okay, so with
— but, this kind — like the writer producer
in TV has to have this like
kind of weird –>>If you have the luxury
of writing it and then going to cast it, then you can decide
that you will find someone that you love and change it. It’s annoying, because it’s
like extra work because you have to like convince the
network with a character that you’ve constructed that you
might not actually end up using.>>Right.>>And then you have to
go through and retype it. And that’s a [laughter] –>>But –>>That’s a [inaudible].>>It is — it is an amazing
exercise to ask yourself like, okay, so suppose this person
wasn’t Mexican, you know. Like you go like, oh, so
what drives this character? It really — and then
you go and cast them. Then if a — if a
Latino-American in our case like walks in the door and like
nails the part, you’re like — then you go that actor, who
might be a standup comic, he might be a writer,
he might be a — he might be a she [laughter]. He might even –>>I was.>>Be a she [laughter]. They then bring — I’m just
rephrasing — I’m just re–>>Yeah.>>I’m just reselling
what you just sold, it’s just that’s the [multiple
speakers] they come in and you’re like, holy
shit, yeah, age, too.>>Yeah.>>Like, oh, I didn’t know
this person could be 70, and then they go like, yeah,
I’m a 70-year-old Latino. And I was thinking this guy
might be a big Jets fan. What are — what are
you talking about? I’m not into sports and
then they start talking and you do another pass on
the script for that actor.>>Yeah, and then you find, as
you’ve done the first season, you go into the second season
and you’ve the real person in your mind and then they –>>Yeah.>>Start bleeding
in to the character.>>Yes, Luke?>>The only — the only
example I can think of where — that doesn’t — where they
actually wrote a script and then you could — there’s
a game called Mess Effect and they wrote a script
that was a neutral script. And I’m pretty — I don’t know,
correct me if anyone knows, but I don’t think the
script was changed at all whether you select a
male or female voice cast, the script is identical. Is that right?>>Yeah.>>Yeah, as a — I played
through it quite a few times.>>Hang, hang, hang on. You like videogames? [ Laughter ]>>But it’s the only example
in my mind I can think of where it was a
fully voiced role in the character that lasted. And, you know, this is hours
and hours and hours of dialogue because it’s a videogame, but
a really high production one. But, the character was
essentially neutral. You could choose the sexuality. You could choose their gender. But, the dialogue from what
I understand was identical and it –>>Sounds like a good game. [ Laughter ]>>Well, we’re going to get
on to our game in a second, but I just want to ask two
more things [laughter]. In [inaudible], I know.>>You bully them. You bully them.>>Are they bullying?>>I’m from the States,
I can see it. I can recognise all of it.>>It’s so hard. It’s so hard.>>It also has some
gay on nerd bullying, it’s one of the biggest
problems [laughter]. It’s like, I thought —
it’s not long ago we were on the same side,
the, i.e. the ’80s. Like we were all just different
kinds of nerds and now, God damnit, these
gays [laughter].>>Okay, quick –>>What, this homosexual
is bitchy?>>Quick question. In terms of anybody here
who’s thinking of writing, how open do they need to
be for execs coming in and destroying a script,
putting their two bobs worth in, not understanding
it, changing it for sponsors, audience,
whatever?>>With the least experience
in this [inaudible], I’d say picking your battles and
compromising and not getting — like if a [inaudible] comes
in that you don’t like, your instinct is what the fuck
did you say about my baby? Yeah, but to chill. And then the things
that you really — are really important you
say, let little things go so that the ones that
really are important to you that you can fight for them.>>Yeah, I agree. It’s — sometimes you —
because we had a couple things where we just like, no. But, and sometimes — and
sometimes the note comes through and it’s not the note. I don’t know how to describe it. Like they don’t — they
say they want something, but it’s not actually
what they want.>>Not what they want. After the pages the problem
is four pages earlier.>>Yeah.>>They’re like this
isn’t working. And you’re like, no, this
scene is fucking beautiful. But, then you have to go like,
why are they not getting it? You have to ask yourself that.>>Yeah.>>Like I don’t agree
with what they’re saying.>>Yeah.>>But, why are they
not getting it? And then take a step back and
usually it’s on page seven.>>Yeah, the note
behind the note.>>Yeah.>>We say. But, that’s our way of
not addressing their note. We address the note
behind their note. We’re like, this dummy doesn’t
know how to say he needs — he needs the pilot to
be more sad, you know. He’s saying put a dog in it.>>Yeah.>>Like, yeah, and
it — and it’s — I agree, the pick your battles
thing with a slight tweak on the reason you’re
really doing that. It’s not — I think it would
be a mistake for a writer to view the collaborative
development process as a chessboard where
battles are won and lost. I think you’ve lost when
you start to look at it that compartmentalised. Like okay, well, let’s take
a hit on this bad idea. If they genuinely are telling
you to make your show worse in your absolute expertise,
and that’s a big, huge if, because get over yourself. Like good TV is a fluke. You don’t — you feel
like you know everything, but like it’s a big if. If you really like
they’re straight up saying make your show
worse, address this note, then tell them, as a carpenter
would, you just told me to put no fire exits
on this building. Why is a carpenter being hired
to put fire exits [laughter]? I want them all made of wood.>>Very thorough carpenter.>>It’s a bad architect. I want these wood fire exits. I want a rustic feel to them. You should have to — they
should be powered by coal. The only thing, in the event
of a fire will they truly — okay, but that — when I say
that’s a big if, it’s like yeah. It’s such a big if that
it’s usually not true. So, I’m just tweaking that thing
because it’s a 43-year epiphany that like, wait a
minute, it’s not always about their bad note and oh. I hear a lot of writers talk
like that, like we will — let’s let this one go and
that one go and that one go, because then when it really
matters then they’ll agree with us and we’ll
have the good idea. Slight tweak on that is
like, there’s got to be a way to work with their note. There’s got to be a way that their bad idea can be a
good idea if you’re so good. [ Inaudible ]>>If you’re so smart.>>You have to build
the skills to like — I feel like 40% of
writing and editing, when I’m doing that
job, is selling.>>Yeah.>>And doing conversations
and convincing. And really, it depends
on the executive. Like over four years
I think we would>>have had like eight or nine, and two of them were
fucking idiots. And that’s just the way it is. So, like the rest of them
I really enjoyed the notes process –>>Yeah.>>Because they’re the first
people that read the script.>>Very helpful a
lot of the time.>>And it’s exciting and
often it’s usually helpful. I mean, they rejected your
first six pitches [laughter], you know. And then you got to Rosehaven,
which is a magnificent show. Like that, thank you, right? Like, and that is like
they are often in that job because they know
what’s going on, but then occasionally you
just got to [inaudible].>>If you’re pitching
Friends in the States and the executive says,
what if Joey had a monkey? And you’re positive that
ruins Friends [laughter], maybe you’re not that good
of a writer [laughter]. Maybe you should be working on
Friends and put a monkey in it. Like, why do you have that
opinion about Friends? Friends is clearly a warm glass
of milk before you go to bed. Like maybe a monkey in
it would make it great, and it did [laughter]. Joey had a monkey
and it was fine.>>You tell me one time when
a monkey made something fun?>>I’m so sorry — [ Multiple Speakers ]>>Really, really specific
people losing their minds, Ross had the monkey, sorry. I just had to say it [applause]. I know, I know what that
says about me, but –>>Okay.>>Sorry [grunt sound].>>Now, I think we do see
how this relationship works, don’t we? One is nitpicky and perfect and
the other one is [inaudible]. It gets there. All right, now this
is what we want to do. You guys are going
to vote on this. This is the homework they
were supposed to have done.>>What?>>Yes, Josh says he
never got the e-mail.>>I didn’t get the e-mail.>>Dan, did you get the e-mail?>>No, I was — I was at a
women’s march [laughter].>>I’ll just give you
the key components. If — okay, there’s a network. It’s a — well, shall
we say it’s Free to Air, just a normal network.>>It’s Free to Air?>>Yeah, that’s what we call it. So, it’s not a pay TV.>>Okay.>>But, because they seem to
be the ones desperate to try and get an audience
back that is not older. They want young ones. So, that’s what this
show wants, this network. It’s 8:30, okay? They’ve decided — are
you concentrating, Celia?>>Yes.>>Or, have you done
your homework? Okay, 8:30, they’ve decided
that what they want is coming after a gameshow, before a footy
show where men like to dress –>>Is this Australian
Free to Air?>>Yeah, yeah.>>They’re not buying any
of our shows [laughter].>>No, you’ve got to —
you’ve got to get it in there.>>It’s before a footy show?>>What did you say
before about Harrison Ford in a twirly-whirly [phonetic]?>>Yes.>>Everything is before
a footy show here.>>What’s a footy show?>>A footy show is like –>>I’m moving here before
you answer, by the way.>>It’s a show about
football and like –>>Oh, all right. I’m moving back.>>What they do is like boys
dress in girl’s clothing and they like sing
a sing a song.>>Wait.>>And it’s so funny.>>You are whiplashing me.>>Yeah.>>Okay, have we organised
what a footy show is? The usual evening audience
is over 45 on this network, but they want to
get the young ones in whilst keeping
the older ones.>>What is this network
[laughter]?>>It’s a — it’s a
like an obstacle course. When in the Army do you run
through tyres [laughter]?>>I don’t know why
you’re so bewildered, Josh. I think it could be nine.>>It’s on nine.>>Or 10 or seven.>>I’m not pitching to
channel nine [laughter].>>Are you working
with me, Josh?>>Are you kidding?>>Work with this.>>Okay.>>Dan, bizarrely, is
the professional one at the table at the moment. Thank you for coming
on board with it, Dan.>>You know what, fuck
your adverb [laughter].>>Okay –>>Dan bizarrely is
the professional one.>>Okay.>>I think it might
be the cup of vodka.>>Listening, Josh. The sponsors, the show
comes with sponsors, adult diaper company and a
funeral parlour [laughter]. Okay? They want it
to be cutting-edge. You see, I’m starting to think
you guys might be a bit spoiled at the ABC. You’ve never had — yeah, Celia.>>You’ve never had
to take a network job where they told you it was about a funeral parlour before
a footy show [laughter].>>Okay, this is all stuff
that’s absolutely normal, but –>>I don’t know if we can tie
this into the panel discussion.>>Yeah.>>As useful advice, but
right now I have to go to the toilet so
badly [laughter]. And I’ve never had to go to the
toilet during a pitch meeting.>>If you get to
go, I get to go.>>Oh, do you have
to go as well?>>Oh my God.>>Oh boy, and I
have to go so badly.>>That doesn’t help,
neither of you can go.>>So, can we –>>Sorry, what was the — so we’re pitching the
show to channel nine.>>And –>>Are you two going off to have
a secret meeting [laughter]?>>I think he’s –>>You have to go separately.>>Can we go together and –>>No.>>Okay.>>Because if you go
together you’ll take longer. Luke, you can go first. We are going to keep
working here [laughter]. Wait.>>[Inaudible] and you stay, I’m
going to be forever [laughter].>>I didn’t know we were allowed
to ask to go to the toilet.>>There are no rules.>>All of a sudden, he’s
the forward on [laughter].>>I know.>>He’s the one making
it happen.>>Okay, stars, you can
have whoever you want. You can have an international
star and they want it to have an Aussie feel.>>I’m having Meryl Streep.>>All right [laughter].>>I want Meryl Streep.>>An Aussie feel, Dan means –>>I’ve picked Meryl Streep. Who are you having?>>Wait, can I take notes
on my laptop I brought to –>>No, Dan, you can’t.>>I can’t, I can’t?>>Because what you’re going to
do now, while Luke is not here, is guide us through a
little bit of how a story — you know how you’ve got
that wonderful thing of how a story structure work?>>Uh-huh.>>Could you share that
with us on the whiteboard?>>I could, but I need to — I need you to repeat a
lot of what you said. Like I [inaudible] –>>Okay, will do. So, now this –>>It’s a — it’s a — it’s a
— first, I would pool the ideas that are — you said
— you said –>>Would you mind
asking me the questions?>>Yes.>>Because I don’t want to –>>Yes.>>Prattle on irrelevantly.>>You said it’s on at
8:30, which whatever.>>Yeah.>>The — you said
it’s lead in is what?>>A gameshow.>>A gameshow, okay. Now, this is not — you’d
never be in a writers’ room like going, because
you wouldn’t — if you have a writers’ room
your show exists, you know. So, but this is just me going,
okay, I’ll solve this problem. Gameshow. And you said –>>We don’t really have
gameshows, like what she means in America, but it’s like
Hollywood games night. It’s like the only time you’ve
ever had to [inaudible] what that means is a gameshow.>>But, are you –>>Who Wants to Be
A Millionaire, I’m just telling you like a
gameshow is like a funny — here it’s like people
sit at a desk and they –>>Well, more — but, yeah, it’s
people who still believe in TV.>>Yeah.>>It’s people who think that,
you know, they have shit to do.>>Yeah.>>Gameshow to me means the
same thing basically as sports, which is like I got shit to do. Like I don’t want your TV show
to ask the question, what is TV?>>Yeah.>>I want it to be something
that’s on while I change shoes to slippers and make
a sandwich [laughter]. Like this is why Chuck
Lorre isn’t here tonight, he’s snorting diamonds
on the moon [laughter].>>Next question.>>But, I’m happier. [ Laughter and Applause ] I’m fucking happier [laughter].>>Yes, so –>>And so — and so — and so that’s the lead
in, is a gameshow.>>Yeah.>>Mine was Billy Bush talking about whether Shakira was
racist, like Access Hollywood. We were eight p.m. on Thursday. The thing that’s
coming after it is what?>>It’s a footy show.>>Footy show.>>Which means that
it’s male oriented. It’s pretty sexist. What else would describe
a footy show audience?>>Bad.>>Bad. Anyone else?>>Dumbasses.>>Dumbasses. Okay.>>Okay, so we’re — our
lead in is stupid people and we’re building to stupid
people [laughter] or — we’re writing television. That’s what we’re doing.>>But, remember, as you’ve
possibly found in these kind of scenarios, a network
will look at the success of someone else’s show
and say we want that.>>Right.>>We want their audience. We want the sponsorship
dollars attached to it.>>Right.>>Make it work for us.>>Sure.>>But it’s in between
these two things.>>Right, but you’re — it’s in between these two
things on the schedule.>>Yeah.>>But, then you
mentioned a funeral home.>>They’re the sponsors.>>Oh okay.>>Funeral home and diapers.>>Funeral home is the sponsor.>>And adult diapers or diapers?>>They’re multi-purpose.>>Okay [laughter].>>Okay, well, a funeral
home is the sponsor, that’s like the easiest thing
for me to like deal with, because I would just divide a
circle into two halves and say if we’re — like we want
to cross a threshold into what we’re worshipping, and
it has to be pro-funeral home. So, I would say that
means people need to die, and that has to be a good thing. [ Laughter ] So, down here is death and up — wait, no, that might
be not true. Oh okay. No, let’s just — let’s just work forward
and not backspace. So, down here is death
and up here is life. And then we divide it down
the middle and we say, we want to worship at the
alter of two different things, so the story changes directions. You know, each quarter. So, we have — and I usually
just go with like it’s dishonest on this side and it’s
honest on this side. By the way, this is a
shortcut, and I’m sure — don’t let this leave
Australia [laughter]. It’s — no matter what you
put up here and down here, it’s always good and bad. We’re all children. Like, so it’s good dishonest
is how you start your story. You cross a threshold
into bad dishonest, which is an adaptation. Oh, I should die my hair. That’s why I’m not complete. That’s bad like dishonesty
and it leads you to good — or, I’m sorry, bad honesty,
which is like, holy shit, my life is meaningless,
my parents beat me, this is why I’m lashing out. Everything is going to shit. We all die. And then you cross a return
threshold into good honesty, which is, okay, now
we’re dealing with things the way they are,
so we’re no longer flawed. You can look at this as like
flawed logic versus flawed chaos and then going into
perfect chaos and then going into perfect logic, maybe. That’s like a psychological
process. So, your funeral home people
want you to make propaganda for them, so you want to — you want to end up here where
funeral homes are a good place. Okay, so we want to
break this into good — we have dishonest life,
which should be characterised as people — whenever people
die they just get thrown into a big pit, okay, and then
people pour gasoline on them and set fire to them [cheering]. So, this is the story
of a person — this is the story of a
person who is asked to, maybe we should treat
the dead better. And that person says, fuck that. I’m a gasoline corpser
[phonetic]. I love burning [laughter] bodies
and throwing them into pits. I have no reason. And then they lose their wallet. They get mixed up. There’s a trip to Mexico. We don’t know. They end up crossing a
threshold into — they die. Let’s just have them die. And, so, they’re
a ghost down here. And it’s fun, they
can do ghost things. They can run around and they
can go I didn’t know my aunt hated me. And then they — and then
there’s probably a commercial for a footy show
coming up [laughter]. Then they’re like, holy
shit, I hate being dead. Being dead sucks. It’s the worst. I don’t even know if I want
to ever be alive again, but then they have to
cross the return threshold and become the kind
of living person that gives the people
funeral homes [laughter]. And that’s the — it’s six
feet under [applause], right? Isn’t it? It would be —
it would be six feet under. That’s what it is. It’s people die and
six feet under and they’re not taken care of. I never saw the show. I’m sure [laughter] — and then
they deal with their own shit. It’s like it’s done in an
HBO like sophisticated way, but really, yeah, it’s like a
commercial for funeral homes. Yes, girl [laughter]?>>I was just wondering,
like when they’re — when they’re ghosts and they’re
having a great time being ghosts and they’re doing all the
ghost stuff, would they need to rent properties [laughter]? We’re back in.>>Yes.>>It’s our pitch. It’s our pitch [laughter]. Thank you.>>I don’t get the joke
so I’ll [inaudible].>>Thank you [laughter].>>Oh no.>>Hysterical, thank
you very much.>>By the way, every time you
guys were facing this way I couldn’t understand you tonight. Only when you were
accidentally facing this way, because of the acoustics,
not because of your accent. It’s a beautiful language
you speak [laughter]. So, I don’t know. This didn’t apply. Like –>>Can I just ask, Luke, you’ve
got a very good question. What is it?>>What about the
diapers [laughter]?>>Yeah.>>What about diapers?>>It’s funeral homes
and diapers.>>Diapers?>>Yeah.>>Because you want to — you
want to do panels and not have to make pee-pees [laughter]?>>Oh no, no, no. I think it’s [laughter] –>>Oh my.>>Did you come — did you come
up with that idea on the toilet?>>I’m sorry.>>You’re like what
if I had special pants that I could make pee-pees in?>>I’m really sorry I did that. No, wasn’t it funeral
homes and diapers?>>Oh.>>Yes.>>Yeah.>>Well, look, I didn’t
— I wasn’t on that call.>>What’s this being
recorded for [laughter]?>>What, Josh?>>What’s this being
recorded for [laughter]?>>I don’t know, but
we will get the tape. Don’t worry.>>I’m going to have
another beer.>>We’ll destroy it. Now, do you find, Dan, that
that template can apply to any successful comedy when — whether the intention at the
beginning, can you impose it on the end and go, actually,
that’s what was happening in the Mary Tyler
Moore Show or actually, does it always hold true?>>I don’t watch
successful comedies. I get jealous and I can’t —
and anyone who’s watching them with me has to put up with
me going that’s an act break. And they go –>>Well, you’d love my show.>>Don’t you enjoy television? And I go, well, I
think about it a lot. And they go fuck you. I only watch Forensic
Files and The Fall with Gillian Anderson
[laughter]. The — and that’s over now.>>What is that?>>It’s a rape show [laughter].>>Okay.>>Actually, he just
murders, he doesn’t rape.>>Dan, because you have
the — because you did — have a great system — no,
so I probably actually –>>I can’t tell the difference
between nervousness and sarcasm.>>No, I am actually — I do —
I’m actually a really large fan, but I haven’t said to him
much because I am trying to be cool [laughter]. But, if — now, when you created
this system, was writing — did writing become more fun
and easier, or any of those –>>I think that,
to me, what it is, is that for 20 years I’ve
been trying to figure out how to eliminate the
work from writing, the misery from writing. The fact, when we go
to work every day we — if we’re doing it right we spend
the entire day not knowing what to do.>>Yeah.>>It’s agonising. Talk — like that’s
everyone’s definition of pain. It’s just not an
acknowledged thing. Like if you’re in a bar and you
say, do you have — my examples. If you say, do you — do you
know how to make a Negroni, and the bartender doesn’t
know how to make a Negroni, like they register, like there’s
a conflict in their head. It’s like the fact that
they don’t know how to make a Negroni
is like for a moment like that’s a failure
on their part. None of us want to
not know what to do. And writers in writers’
rooms, we spend all day –>>Not knowing. This is what I always
find so annoying, because if you write something
then that bit is done, and then you don’t know again.>>Yeah. That’s your
reward [laughter]. Congratulations, you know
nothing that you now have to move on like because
there’s a line producer waiting for that thing. Oh, you know? Like, and you’re like, okay,
now what do we not know? Let’s focus on that. And it’s — I’m not
complaining at all. I love this job. It’s so much better
than lifting things. Like I tried food service. I’ve tried washing dishes. I was like — but, it — I forgot why we were
bringing that up. It’s because — oh, the reason for this is it’s
Aspirin for that pain. It’s like the illusion
of we’re not that lost. All stories have a
general direction.>>Yeah.>>It’s just something
you say to yourself when you’re lost in the desert. Our car can’t be that
far away [laughter]. Sometimes you’re right,
sometimes you’re wrong, but the difference between
life and death could be that little bit of
confidence [laughter]. That could keep you
from eating your friends like five feet from your car.>>So –>>And waking up the next day
and going we were five feet from the car and I ate
my friend [laughter].>>Now, I think we’re
coming to a close.>>Fuck that, no.>>Would you like [laughter] –>>Only if — we’re writers. We come to a close
when we say so.>>Yeah, which is exactly why, if you feel like
raising your computer, and typing a bit
more you are welcome. And I’ll just ask these guys
a question before we get to you, Dan, if that’s okay. So, feel free to type away. But, what I’m wondering
with you –>>I’m not your monkey. I have a two-hour show
to do later [laughter]. That’s crazy.>>So, what I’m wondering,
Celia, have you started writing a
second series of Rosehaven?>>We have, yes. It’s not official or confirmed,
but optimism [laughter]. We are writing a second
season, yeah, yeah.>>Great. Anything that you,
having written the first one, you’ve now completely changed
the way you approach writing or what you want
to get out of it?>>It’s easier now
because it’s that thing of when you do the first
series of anything, it’s the first time we’ve done
this, but we had no clue at all. But, at least now going into second series we
know sort of the –>>I found that worse.>>The background — did you?>>I found the second
worse because I — because I knew what
we were doing. The first season I didn’t
know so I’d just be like, well, this would be cute. And then I learnt.>>Right.>>And then the second
season I was like, well, actually that’s not
what you meant to do. You meant to do this,
because I still didn’t know. And I found that harder.>>Guy, you’re both wrong.>>But good luck
with it, though.>>I’ve done six
seasons [laughter], guys, I didn’t mean to interrupt.>>I don’t know, it just
— we just — who knows. There’ll be extra pressure on it
because it’s the second series and because we’ve already
been told in some notes like you can’t rely on
the stuff that they liked about the first series because
it was new and exciting, and they hadn’t seen it before. They’re going to take
that for granted. So, what else are you
going to bring them?>>Who’s saying this to you? I know who it was [laughter]. I know who it was.>>Anyway.>>No, that’s stupid. There’s no extra pressure. They like your show now and
then they watch it again.>>Well –>>There’s no extra pressure.>>No, no, no.>>Don’t feel like that.>>No, no, but it’s
— no, no, we don’t. We work for — well,
for me, it’s exciting that we’ve got these characters
that we liked and we want to see what else they could do.>>Think of the audience, right?>>More big, dumb, stupid stuff. Have I said a bad
thing and get fired?>>No.>>It’s — I think it’s –>>I don’t think you should
feel like — I don’t know. I feel it’s the audience
feels the same way as you. They’re just excited to hang out with you two again
in the environment. And I’m just saying that you
should not feel extra pressure. You should feel confident,
because you made a show and it was good and
[inaudible] again.>>This anti-bullying,
I love it [laughter].>>The –>>Thank you. We are excited.>>But, also, the audience
is just consuming –>>Well, they’re expectations
are so high [laughter].>>They’re like, I can’t
— where’s my footy show? Oh, this is on [laughter]. There’s a gay guy
exploring his life. Like — [ Laughter ] I have to — I mean, I am –>>I am exploring, though.>>I agree with both of you. I mean, I hope — I
have to turn to you, even though I met you
tonight, you’re always — you’ve been on my
shoulder saying, fuck them. Like you did that already. That’s not extra pressure. That’s extra confidence. You’re always there. But, I agree with that. Like it’s — they — it’s almost like it’s our job
to hate ourselves.>>Yeah, yeah, totally. But, the thing is –>>And they hate
what we’ve done.>>That [inaudible] everything that I’ve done that’s
been scary, I’ve never stopped doing
it just because the thought of going maybe they won’t like
it as much [inaudible] there for everything, but I
think the difference is if that thought makes
you not do it because of the fear,
then it’s a problem. But, if it doesn’t and it makes
you try harder, then it’s okay.>>Yeah, and it’s — oh, sorry. Was I [inaudible]
interrupting you.>>That was the one [inaudible].>>I’m sorry. Like [multiple speakers].>>So, what’s your
feelings on this?>>Yeah, sometimes
I think you — like, sometimes when I thought,
oh, if we could just get paid to be writers like I wouldn’t
have any problems anymore. And I think with
like, quote unquote, dream jobs that they’re still — it’s still work and
it still sucks and everything is horrible. But, it’s really fun. And sometimes you’ve got
to like make an effort to remember how fun it
is and how lucky it is. Like, because it is really
hard work and we panic and we’re worried the second
series isn’t going to be as good as the first or we
won’t have any ideas. And, but it’s still great like.>>And Luke keeps losing weight
and getting fit and I’m worried in the second season everybody
will be like [makes sound with mouth], Luke looks hot. Celia has stacked it on. That’s my main concern.>>But, my teeth are so bad
and yours are so good I — but, no, yeah, it’s
[laughter], just believe in yourself [inaudible]
sorry [laughter].>>Now, I think I’m
running right for time. If — can you do a thumbs up? [ Inaudible ] Yeah, that’s exact —
that’s what I meant, yeah. It’s good I’m in
[inaudible] business. [ Multiple Speakers ] [ Laughter ]>>Your — yeah, that
thumb raising energy, that’s for the next
show [laughter].>>So –>>You used it.>>Final words. Dan, I’m going to give
you the final word. Celia, have you had
your final word? I mean, all these
people have come to adore and they love your shows, is that correct [cheering
and applause].>>I think so. It’s exciting for
us to be — yeah.>>Okay, so a secret release that they’re working
on the next series. Concur? Anything you
want to add, Luke?>>[Inaudible] not announcing that you’re doing
another season right now, because you’re absolutely
not allowed. I know you’re absolutely
not allowed to say that.>>I’m not saying —
no, we don’t know.>>No, she didn’t announce it.>>We’re — I said
we’re writing it.>>They’ve got nothing else
to do and they’re just –>>We’re just hanging
out and feeling it and sometimes we’ll
type something. It could be — Australian
Power Rangers [laughter].>>There’s [inaudible].>>Are they all green,
gold, obviously.>>Green and gold
and one of them –>>That’s it, only two. It’s just us. Why would we write
anymore Power Rangers.>>Perfect, [inaudible].>>Okay.>>What about you, Josh?>>What?>>Are we going to see another
series of Please Like Me?>>My American network shutdown, which doesn’t make me
feel that optimistic. And then, so they’ve
been taken over by Hulu, but then I don’t know. I don’t know.>>Well, good luck
in whatever –>>I wish I knew.>>Yeah, whatever the next. Is there another series in
you that you want to express or you ready for a new project?>>Oh, we’ll do another
season, of course.>>Yeah.>>If they let us. Yeah, I’ll take the employment.>>Right.>>Yeah.>>Do you want to help — you can help us write
ours if you want, nothing [inaudible] happening.>>Oh, I [laughter]
— oh, absolutely.>>And, Dan [laughter], Dan,
what about you [laughter]? What would you say to these
guys who, comparatively, and those in the audience
who are [inaudible] at an earlier point in
their careers than yourself?>>Yeah, well, these guys,
they’ve got it covered. They know — they know better
than me what they’re — what they need to deal with. I — if I were to say to people
who came here because they want to be these guys, or they want
to like be me, like don’t try to write good television. Don’t throw that idea away. Like we are living in a
blessed time right now where television is so
pulverised, so spread out, it truly is, even more so than
cinema, an invitation for you, and the demand is upon
you actually to think of what’s not supposed
to be there. Like do it wrong. Do it stupid. Do it personal. Like, and work in passes. Get all the way to the end of your draught before
you start fixing shit, because you’re going to throw
the first three scenes away. But, just jump in
and get personal and get confessional
and get real. It’s incumbent upon you. It’s the mandate now. That’s both your path to
success and, as an artist, that’s kind of your job I guess.>>Fantastic. Can you please — you’ve
been a wonderful audience. Can you please thank [applause]
Celia Pacquola, Luke McGregor, Josh Thomas, and Dan Harmon? Thank you so much [applause].>>Thank you.>>You’ve been great. [ Applause ]

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