Tuesday, February 8, 2011

What's your line on a log line?

Hi, Animated People,

In class last night, we were going over log lines and an interesting point came up about the two types of log lines.  There's a log line that summarizes your television series in a sentence or two.  Then there's the log line that describes your show by making a comparison using two existing shows.  You've heard these before "It's Rugrats meets Batman"

I always ask development execs about which log line they prefer.  Most don't like the one that compares two shows but some do.  I don't like it either but my reason is this:  what if the development exec or producer you're pitching to hates one of the shows you're using in your log line?  You're dead-man talking. 

The problem really is this, you have no idea what the association is that the person you're pitching to will make with the shows you're comparing or using in your log line. If they don't like it, you're done.  Even if they do like them, you still don't know if what you wanted to get across is what is going on their head. Too much guess work for me, the process is hard enough to begin with. 

Try to hit that bull's eye.  I think the most successful log line is the one that summarizes your show in one or two sentences in your own words.  It should capture the energy, the fun, the irreverence or the whatever of what your show is -- comedy, mystery, adventure, etc.  

It should be the hook to make someone want to know more about your show.  This is not easy to do by any means, but worth the time and energy it takes to do it.  You don't want any negative connotation attached to your show that doesn't belong to your show.  This can happen easily if you use the comparison type of log line. 

Be totally original.  It's not easy but like anything else, with practice you can get better at it, just try!  You CAN DO IT!  Send in some of your best log lines, vhy not!

Big cheers to you,


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