Michael grew up in Harrisville, Rhode Island during the 1990’s NBC sitcom boom and WB teen dramedy craze, which should explain his obsession with comedic angst. He attended Emerson College in Boston where he majored in Visual and Media Arts with a concentration in Television. Michael’s first industry job was at CAA where he broke the glass ceiling for men everywhere and became their first male receptionist ever (before then, CAA had segregated based on sex: guys in the mailroom and girls in reception). From there he worked his way up to a desk in TV Packaging, before jumping to Ryan Reynolds and Allan Loeb’s TV pod, DarkFire TV. He moved on to work as the Director of Development at Krysten Ritter’s company, Silent Machine Entertainment, where he worked closely with writers to develop their ideas to pitch to studios and networks. Michel continues to develop independently and on the writing side, he co-wrote the comedic-musical stage show: ARMAGEDDON: A Night of Laughs and Pleasant Songs, which enjoyed a sold-out run in the LA Fringe Festival in 2011. He has placed in numerous writing competitions including: Top 5 Sitcom Pilots in the Austin Film Festival writing competition, and 1st Place in TVWriter.com’s comedy pilot competition. Michael is also a comic book geek and wrote the graphic novel The Arcs which was published by Fanboy Comics and premiered at the Comikaze Expo in November of 2013. http://www.thearcscomic.com/ Full Bio »
Learn directly from Michael Poisson, the former Director of Development at Silent Machine Entertainment, Krysten Ritter’s production company that has a first look deal at Universal TV. Michael is also a comedy writer who used his insider knowledge to land a manager, and get two projects in development at TV production companies.
In this Stage 32 Next Level Webinar, your host Michael Poisson will guide you through the business side of how to become a working writer in Hollywood. Writing an awesome script is only part of the process for becoming successful in this industry. Having worked on various projects from both the executive side, as well as the writer side of things, Michael has obtained great insight for how to avoid the difficult terrain when meeting and working with producers, studios, and networks. And while the process of finding a manager or agent is daunting, keeping a strong relationship with them so that they’re doing the most for you as their client can be equally difficult. Michael will share with you his insider knowledge to help: keep your writing on track, your meetings fruitful, and your industry contacts strong. If you’ve ever wondered what you should talk about in “general meetings”, how to take notes from friends/producers/execs that you don’t agree with, or how to be a more prolific writer, this webinar is for you!
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In this Stage 32 Next Level Webinar, your host Michael Poisson will teach you how to write a kick-ass comedy pilot that will get executives’ attention. This webinar is not only about how to properly execute writing a comedy pilot, but also about how to make it your strongest sample so that it can get noticed! You will leave the webinar knowing: The 3 most important things Producers/Execs look for in a pilot as they relate to concept, structure and voice. How to properly highlight your unique comedic voice and stuff your script with laughs. How to create a crisp 1-2 sentence pitch that will get executives excited about your idea. How to navigate the competitions and fellowships. How to think from a Producer/Manager/Executives POV and understand what they're looking for so you can apply it to your script. Michael Poisson is a former Director of Development who's worked for Ryan Reynolds TV production company DarkFire TV, Krysten Ritter's company Silent Machine and CAA and is now a writer on Netflix's Raising Dion. This background gives has given Michael a unique perspective for what kind of script stands out among the hordes on everyone’s “Weekend Read” lists and he is here exclusively with Stage 32 to share that knowledge with you. PRAISE FOR MICHAEL'S TEACHINGS: He was amazing -- professional, articulate and knew his subject inside-and-out! – Jan S. It was very obvious Michael knows [his stuff]. He was very organized and I feel like he answered many questions that I've had for years. Thank you so much. – Betty S. Michael was sensational; one of the few who can actually DO a webinar and keep an interest. Nice voice inflection and tone; no distracting "um's" and such. Great material; learned a ton! - Geno S. Very informative and in great detail and explanation, Michael. Time very well spent. – Jean B. Excellent seminar with relevant information. Great job. – Matthew M. I really found the examples [he] references on current programs and series very useful. The information was concise and allowed me to visualize my next steps. – Ashanti G. He was excellent! – Tina F. Good information, well thought out, organized and easy to follow. Many useful takeaways. Thanks Michael!! – Lesa B.
In the competitive TV and streaming landscape of serialized dramas, complex comedies, and sprawling genre epics, series bibles have become essential selling tools to help writers illustrate their visions. A dynamic and intriguing bible can create interest in your project, and push your pitch or spec script over the edge to a sale. It’s your chance to lay out the larger arc of your story, list examples of future episodes, and explain the broad themes your show will explore. It conveys confidence to producers and executives by saying: “I've thought about this in the long run, and I have a slew of awesome ideas to explore in series.” Because there is no standard industry way to format your bible, they can be extremely confusing to create. Executives receive bibles as small as 4 pages (a mini-bible, really) and as long as 27 pages. Should it include your personal connection to the material? In-depth character bios? Visual motifs? Artist’s renderings of the setting and characters? Although bibles can vary greatly from project to project, there are some general rules and strategies to follow to make sure yours stands out from the pack as professional, polished, and powerful. Michael Poisson's career is one that has been filled with incredible ambitious drive and creative passion. He is a veteran television executive and is currently a writer on HBO Max's Tom Swift and previously wrote on the hit Netflix series Raising Dion, as well as Adult Swim's Robot Chicken. But Michael’s story begins with his first industry job at CAA where he broke the glass ceiling for men everywhere and became their first ever male receptionist (before then, CAA had segregated based on sex: guys in the mailroom and girls in reception). From there he worked his way up to Rick Lefitz’s desk at CAA in TV Packaging, before jumping to Ryan Reynolds and Allan Loeb’s TV pod, DarkFire TV, for two years. He moved on to work as the Director of Development at Krysten Ritter’s company, Silent Machine Entertainment, where he worked closely with writers to develop their ideas to pitch to studios and networks. Michael has also had numerous successes as a screenwriter. In what has become an ultra-competitive environment, Michael will teach you the ins and outs of creating a compelling and willing TV bible. Starting with the proper formatting, how to introduce dynamic characters, and moving through how to include active and engaging episode examples, Michael will show you what grabs and keeps an executive's attention. Michael will also discuss artwork, articles and visual aids and whether your bible truly needs them or if they should be left out entirely. He will show you how to create and present carefully crafted, season long arcs that include strong and relatable themes. Always a challenge for writers, producers, and filmmakers putting together a series bible, Michael will teach you how to be clear and concise in explaining your direction for the series. He will spend quality time explaining and teaching the importance of a strong wrap up and closing beat and how to nail both. Michael will even teach you how to identify and decide which network or platform may be best for your show. PRAISE FOR MICHAEL'S TEACHINGS: "Answered so many of my questions about bible writing. Took away my fears as well! I can't wait to get started." -- Mia L. "Demystification complete." -- Lorraine R. "Michael has energy and knowledge to spare. Best investment I've made in years." -- Regina K. "Some really great organizational/structural ideas for a bible." -- Rebecca S
Class Space Limited: Maximum 20 Writers August 13, 20, 27 and Sept 10 from 1pm-3pm. Your TV Series Bible is an extremely important, and often overlooked tool for selling your pilot in the industry. It’s a document which explains in detail – who your characters are, what they will be up against, where future conflict will come, and what themes your show will be exploring. It gives studio and network executives confidence that you know what you’re doing, and that the show has the story potential to live on for multiple seasons. The problem is that there isn’t a lot of literature out there detailing how to construct a bible. This Stage 32 Intensive is aimed to give you the information and guidance that you need to write a strong bible that can be used when sending out and selling your pilot script. Each week, your instructor Michael Poisson (Director of Development at Silent Machine Entertainment, Krysten Ritter’s production company that has a first look deal at Universal TV) will be giving a lecture about how to write one section of your series bible, and then you’ll be assigned to write that section for a project of your own. The following week Mike will offer one-on-one skype sessions to discuss your work, give you any notes, and answer any questions that you may have. So, at the end of this Intensive, you will have a strong and well-executed bible that you’ll be able to use as a selling tool for your own TV series. Mike has worked at CAA, two production companies, and as a showrunner’s assistant on a TV series, and at each job he has seen the importance of bibles and how they have been used to get series sold and on the air. As a writer, Mike has also used them in his own writing career, and a well-written bible of helped him to secure his manager, and get multiple production companies interested in his work.
This webinar includes a downloadable resource sheet that goes over a podcast checklist, equipment needs, platforms and voice over resources! Podcasts are hotter than ever with hits like HOMECOMING, 2 DOPE QUEENS, and DIRTY JOHN and are a great way to get your film or TV idea noticed. Podcasts are much less expensive than shooting your pilot or making your film on spec so they help you test the waters with storylines and characters, while figuring out the tone of the show and even building a loyal fan base for an eventual film or TV series. If you’ve got a great film or TV idea and are stuck trying to figure out how to get the right eyes, then you need to consider turning your idea into a podcast! This is such a new frontier, so it’s difficult for many to know where to even start. How do you tell the story you’ve imagined visually, through audio? Where do you even pitch a podcast? Not to mention, many creatives underestimate the power of audio, and making use of intimacy and soundscape to inform a story. Have you thought about getting into the podcast space? Or are you stuck with a film or TV idea that you can’t seem to get off the ground or have anyone pay attention to? With the guidance of someone who has found great success turning film and TV ideas into highly-coveted podcasts, you’ll be able to give your ideas a life you have yet to imagine! Podcast producer Caroline Slaughter's recent iHeartRadio podcast ASTRAY was ranked Top 15 nationally and is now being developed into a TV series. She is currently working on podcast TOM SLICK with Andy Samberg. She is also executive producing the podcast TOM SLICK: MYSTERY HUNTER with ANDY SAMBERG and screenwriter JEB STUART (Die Hard, Vikings: Valhalla) attached, which will launch in Spring 2022. Her next non-fiction podcast in BODY TRADE in collaboration with Trailblazer Studios and Reuters News. There is no one better than Caroline who knows what it takes to teach you how to create a successful podcast! Praise for Caroline's Stage 32 Teaching: "What a great teacher. Really. I learned so much from Caroline and did not even realize the potential for success from podcasts." -- Thomas W. "Informative. Effective. To the point. And friendly. Caroline is a great teacher who has loads of knowledge to give to her students." -- Christian M.
Jason got his start with Evolution Entertainment, moved into Studio Development, and now independently producers and writes. We discuss what makes a project marketable, how to push your career forward industry trends, & more, plus a live Q&A!
“What’s your story about?” Having a perfect logline ready to answer that question can help give you the best chance of seizing the opportunity when you are asked. Your logline is your most important asset. It's invaluable for keeping you focused on what makes your story unique and for always making sure that you nail the first impression when someone asks you about your work. Having the perfect elevator pitch ready to go can make or break you when the opportunity presents itself. Why do so many creatives struggle with coming up with that one-sentence? How do you get better at honing your logline? Stage 32 is here to help you. We have brought in Emmy-award winning producer Lane Shefter Bishop who has sold over 30 projects all from pitching just a logline. Touted as “The Logline Whisperer”, Lane Shefter Bishop has the specific tools you need to help you know how to sell what you write! In this exclusive Stage 32 Webinar, Lane will give you insider information on how you can best position your project to sell your work to agents, editors, publishers and producers. Lane has successfully sold projects to various networks and studios, including NBC/Universal, ABC/Disney, CBS, Lifetime, Sony and 20th Century Fox. All of these projects have one thing in common – they began with a single sentence, a top-notch logline. After all, you can have the best material in the world but, if you get on the phone or in a room, you need to know how to sell it with your logline! PRAISE FOR LANE'S TEACHINGS: "Lane made loglines so simple. I'll be able to take the 3 tenents with me for every one of my projects moving forward. I struggled with loglines and this really helped clarify things for me." - Alan B.