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    From: J. Michael Straczynski <>
 Subject: B5 v Star Trek
      To: CIS  
    Date: 4/20/1996 8:16:00 AM  

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{original post unavailable}

No, we're still waiting on renewal, same as every show.

To take off my producer cap for a moment and put on my fan
cap...yes, I understand your position. Lots of people in this town
obsess about money, and everybody wants to tell you what to do. I know
the problems Bellisario had with "Leap," and some of them were of his
own making, but the majority were from the Suits at Universal. A large
measure of what eventually comes out of your show depends on who you
luck into as far as a studio liaison is concerned. We got very lucky
in having someone who understands what we're trying to do, and hasn't
given a single script note since episode 2 of year 2. DB didn't have
that luxury; I don't think anyone at Universal really understood what
he was trying to do, which was unfortunate.

My response was mainly from the other side of the statement,
implicit or stated outright, that implies everyone working in TeeVee
does so only for the bucks, that money talks and nothing else matters.
There are some of us who are dedicated storytellers, first, foremost
and forever. Tarring everyone with the same brush is just another form
of prejudice, and when it appears, it needs to be corrected.

A lot of what happens out here in *The Industry* horrifies me.
The quest for more, bigger, money-money-money. Yes, on one level,
writers are vastly underpaid for what we do *in terms of* the amount of
money that the final product actually makes.

But we are also vastly OVERPAID in terms of what people doing
the really important jobs are being paid: teachers, nursing staff, the
many layers of people who keep the nation going and prepare it for the
future. So from where I sit, NOBODY out here has ANY reason to beef
about their money. We're hideously lucky to be working in a field where
we can entertain, and tell stories, and be well compensated for it.
And I think too many people out here forget that. Having grown up
fairly poor for most of my life, I *can't* forget it.


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