TV Industry

Go behind the scenes of the TV industry to learn how TV shows are produced.


How did AMC wrangle so many viewers via Twitter and Facebook for shows like "Mad Men" and "Breaking Bad"? And did its strategy really break ground for the future of television marketing?

When the president speaks, we listen. But when the president asks for airtime, do the networks have to say yes? It's not a simple answer.

Think you're the next Rupert Murdoch or Ted Turner? Good luck with that. But seriously, if you want to run a little TV network from home, it can be done -- well, sort of.

In times past, if your favorite TV character was about to get married or have a baby, there was a good chance it would happen in February, May or November, because those were Sweeps Week periods. What are the Sweeps, and are they still relevant?

Have you ever wondered how footage from that storm, war or crazy reality show ended up on film? Well, it turns out that the cameramen often travel -- and suffer -- right along with the hosts of the most extreme shows on television.

The pickup truck in this commercial climbs an 80-foot steel corkscrew to the sky, then drives through a tunnel of fire. Is this for real, or is your TV playing tricks on you?

Let's say Ronald McDonald is running for president. In this commercial -- where he hopes to gain the golfer vote -- he needs to include a voice-over: "I'm Ronald McDonald, and I approved this message." Why?

If you started watching "The Simpsons" when it took to the airwaves in 1989, you may have been annoyed when Fox moved it to the same time slot as another popular show -- "The Cosby Show." Who decides how to schedule network TV shows, and how much do timeslots really matter?

We've all seen sitcoms, laughed with them and probably even sung along to their theme songs. But why are we so partial to these half-hour television shows and what is their history?

The term "reality tv" may be new but the concept dates back for decades. Where did it begin and how did it come to captivate so many viewers? Get the history and low down on this incredibly popular television phenomenon.

Jackpot! A network has bought the TV show script we've been following. Now it needs producers, directors, writers, actors and a production crew ... and to actually make it into the fall lineup.

You've read How TV Writing Works and now it's time for step two -- pitching your new show to the television networks. We'll tell you how to get a meeting, how to prepare your pitch, and how to sell it to the executives who make the final decision.

TV and film writers may be on strike, but there's no reason you can't go ahead and prepare your great idea for production. Learn all about how to write a TV show, including understanding characters, treatments, and loglines.

When CNN first launched, many people thought that the idea of a 24-hour news network was silly. Find out how CNN became one of the most respected news organizations in the United States.

Typically it takes nine months or more to create one half-hour of an animated show, while you can push out a live action sitcom in just a few weeks. Learn about all the steps involved in the process of making an animated TV show.

The Emmys -- from the glitz and glamour of red-carpet fashions to too-long award speeches, this award show is not to be missed. But what does it take to get the Emmys off the ground?

A show that has several million viewers may seem popular to us, but a network may need millions more watching that program to make it a financial success. How do they figure out how many people are watching a show?