Compelling writing is the foundation

Even the greatest actors often can’t do justice to bad writing / storylines.

I noticed this when I had a conversation with my brother about television shows. We went crazy over the quality of overseas productions, specifically American ones and the genius of Indian films and storytelling. Of course, in the US, the arts are taken seriously and the government gets involved in pedaling the industry forward. This results in deeper pockets of funding and thus, better quality of their work.

Then again, I cannot ignore the fact that talent — specifically awesome Writing — goes a long way even when funding doesn’t come in boatloads. For this, consider the South African series, Ayeye, produced by Bomb Productions. It was shot in Johannesburg in many places I am familiar with and have visited. But their story is so kick ass that I don’t disregard it for a TV series with scenes filmed in New York city.

I’m currently watching season six of Aaron Korsch’s Suits. And watching episode number eight, I realised a mere ten episodes of #Suits are far better than 200 episodes of Generations The Legacy. Hiring great names onto their cast to resuscitate the soapie opera hasn’t helped much to make it riveting.

Which reminds me of Kevin Spacey’s remarks made in a presentation at the Content Marketing Institute seminar about two years ago.

People always ask me how I create the characters that I play, and my answer is, ‘I don’t!’. The Writer does. My job is to serve the writing. So, if the writing is non compelling, non interesting, I can’t do anything. I am only as good as the material I have.

Writers, although they almost never appear on the red carpet events alongside the stars who serve their stories, are crucial. I’d even argue they are the foundation in the whole building of award winning movies and television series’.

Because, again, even the greatest actors often can’t do justice to bad writing.