The expression “What I really want to do is direct” has been replaced with “What I really want to do is produce TV shows” among Hollywood actors and actresses.
The AP reports that the expansion of original programming on cable an online platforms is creating increased opportunities for celebrities to become producers.
Roy Ashton, head of TV for the Gersh Agency, explains: “Actors need to produce because they need to control material and be ahead of the business. With the Netflixes and Hulus and everything else, it’s really about owning content, controlling it and controlling your destiny.”
A recent example is Brad Pitt, who has already explored film producing with “12 Years a Slave” and “Selma” and has been shifting his focus to TV with the upcoming miniseries “Lewis and Clark” and the limited series “Feud.” Meanwhile, Reese Witherspoon is producing and starring in an upcoming limited series, “Big Little Lies.”
“Actors who have a way with words can become sought-after producers, the result of TV’s traditional reliance on writer-showrunners in contrast to filmdom’s worship of directors,” the AP notes. “Tina Fey (‘Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt’) and Amy Poehler (‘Broad City’) are among the examples.”
Click on the link near the top of this story to read the AP’s in-depth report.