YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollectionsTelevision Pilots

Television Pilots

February 25, 1985 | Associated Press
Samantha Smith, the schoolgirl whose letter to former Soviet leader Yuri V. Andropov won her VIP treatment from Moscow and worldwide fame, has been cast in a television series. Samantha, 12, who is in the seventh grade, is scheduled to begin filming a pilot show next month with actor Robert Wagner for a weekly adventure series, her father said. The Columbia Pictures show is slated for ABC-TV next fall, he said.
January 17, 2013 | By August Brown
Back in 2000, the L.A. producer/musical gadfly Jon Brion pitched a TV pilot to VH1. "The Jon Brion Show" was pegged as a kind of neo-variety show with guest musicians (a familiar format to anyone who knows his Largo roundtables). Director Paul Thomas Anderson even lent his hand to the pilot. The network declined to pick it up, but Anderson on Thursday posted a video with a note on his YouTube channel: " I tore up the floorboards at H.Q. the other day  and came up with this little number on VHS.  She holds up well.
June 27, 2012 | By Richard Verrier
In the latest effort combat production flight, the Los Angeles City Council is weighing a plan to waive fees producers pay to shoot television pilots in the city. The City Council's Jobs and Business Development Committee on Wednesday endorsed a proposal to waive the various fees pilot producers pay when they shoot substantially in the city. The motion comes in the wake of growing evidence that L.A. is losing its share of new television production, much as it did with feature film work.  In the most recent pilot year, 51% of all television pilots were filmed in the L.A. area, down from more than 80% in prior years.
June 9, 2011 | By Richard Verrier, Los Angeles Times
It was a banner year for the production of TV pilots, but most of the increase didn't spill over to Los Angeles. That was the takeaway from the annual survey of TV pilot production by FilmL.A. Inc., the nonprofit film permitting group. Thanks to a boom in cable TV production, and cable comedies in particular, the most recent pilot season — stretching from June 1, 2010, through May 31 — was the most productive on record, with 169 pilots produced. Pilots are test episodes or premieres for TV series filmed in advance of screenings for advertisers in May. At first blush, the recent numbers are positive for L.A., where 87 pilots were produced last season, up from 76 the prior season and the second-highest annual take in Los Angeles since local pilot production peaked in the 2004-05 season, according to the FilmL.A report.
February 13, 2013 | By Joe Flint
After the coffee. Before seeing if Christopher Dorner coverage got higher ratings in Los Angeles than the State of the Union address. The Skinny: Is it "Happy Gilmore" week on AMC? Every time I flip to AMC that Adam Sandler classic is playing. Wednesday's headlines include Comcast's move to buy out General Electric's stake in NBCUniversal, and Netflix makes another push into original programming. Also a peek at TV pilot season. Sorry, movie buffs, there was a shortage of real cinematic news today.
June 18, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
The family of a Colorado woman who was killed during filming of a reality TV pilot for Discovery Channel has sued the producers and Discovery Communications for negligence. Plaintiff Mel Bernstein and his daughter have filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court of Colorado alleging that Discovery and Anthropic Productions failed to take adequate precautions to prevent the death of Terry Flanell, Bernstein's wife. Flanell died at a shooting range in Colorado Springs last June during filming of a pilot for a proposed show called "Brothers in Arms.
October 3, 2013 | By Dawn C. Chmielewski
Amazon Studios has put into production three comedy pilots as the online retail giant deepens its investment in original content for its Prime Instant Video streaming service. The studio struck deals with several established Hollywood writers and producers - including Jill Soloway, producer of the Emmy-nominated HBO series "Six Feet Under," and writer Roman Coppola, who received an Oscar nomination for best original screenplay for "Moonrise Kingdom" - to develop the latest pilots.
January 21, 1986 | United Press International
A helicopter carrying an ABC television correspondent and a producer to cover a meatpackers strike at Geo. A. Hormel & Co.'s Austin plant crashed today in thick fog, killing the ABC employees and the pilot, authorities said. The ABC employees were identified as correspondent Joe Spencer and producer Mark McDonough, both 31 and based in Chicago, an ABC spokesman in New York said. The Odyssey Helicopter Service in St. Paul, which leased the helicopter, withheld the pilot's name.
Brandon French hit town four weeks ago, one more aspiring actor aiming to make his mark in the cutthroat, high-tension world of Hollywood. * But he had to bring his mother with him. Setting up shop at the Oakwood apartments near Burbank, the blond-haired Coloradan spends long afternoons tirelessly stalking auditions from studio to studio, meeting countless rejections from movie producers and commercial casting directors with poker-faced aplomb.
Los Angeles Times Articles