087 – Hand of God Creator Ben Watkins

Ben Watkins moved 14 times by the time he graduated high school. As a kid, his experiences ran the gamut from living in a fancy, gated community, to being homeless and sleeping in a 1976 Ford Monarch. He was married and had a family by the time he graduated college.

Before he turned to writing, Ben had worked more than 30 jobs ranging from plastics salesman to paralegal to soap opera stud. With such an eclectic background, it’s no wonder he has emerged as one of the most original storytellers in television.

Watkins began the transition to writing with the award winning Sundance short film Quest to Ref, which he wrote, co-directed and starred in. Soon after adapting that project into a feature screenplay for Universal, Watkins joined USA Network’s Burn Notice. He rose from staff writer to executive producer, before moving on to create the provocative Amazon Originals series, Hand of God. Watkins recently completed production on season one of Hand of God, which premiered this month.

Ben resides in El Segundo, California, with his wife and four sons.

Follow Ben on Twitter: @_benipedia_

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Didn’t get your questions asked? Make sure you follow Gray on Twitter (@GrayJones) so you can get the scoop on who is being interviewed and how to get your questions in. Also check out our TV Writer Twitter Database to find Twitter addresses for over 1,000 TV writers. Find our previous episodes and other resources at www.tvwriterpodcast.com or on Gray’s YouTube channel.

 
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Hosted by Gray Jones, the TV Writer Podcast is devoted to interviews with working TV writers. It is brought to you by Scriptmag.com, the leading source for scriptwriting information on the web.

079 – Aaron Ginsburg (The Finder, The Good Guys)

Think there’s only one way to break in? You won’t after watching this interview with Aaron Ginsburg! He could win a prize for the most outrageous way of breaking in.

Aaron Ginsburg is a writer/producer who has worked in television, film and video games for over a decade. Along with his longtime writing partner, Wade McIntyre, he was recently a Co-Producer on NBC’s DO NO HARM, he wrote the next installment in the popular family comedy HOME ALONE franchise (HOME ALONE: THE HOLIDAY HEIST), and he is currently co-writing a new comic for SKYBOUND (The Walking Dead) entitled CLONE.

Ginsburg & McIntyre have also written for FOX’s quirky comedies THE FINDER and THE GOOD GUYS, and Ginsburg spent three months in Bogotá, Colombia producing USA Network’s BURN NOTICE prequel feature, THE FALL OF SAM AXE. Their comedy short, A NINJA PAID HALF MY RENT, was an official selection at the Sundance Film Festival several years ago and where it went on to be featured at dozens of other festivals (including HBO Aspen Comedy Arts Festival, SXSW and the LA Film Festival). Ginsburg & McIntyre sold the 1/2 hour single-camera comedy CROWDED APARTMENT to SPIKE TV, and wrote the dark indie thriller INSIGHT (starring Justified’s Natalie Zea, Chuck’s Adam Baldwin, and Christopher Lloyd) which was released in over 40 theaters and is currently streaming on Netflix.

In the gaming world, Ginsburg & McIntyre wrote the script for Activsion’s mega-hit videogame, CALL OF DUTY 2: BIG RED ONE which won the prestigious award for Outstanding Achievement in Story and Character Development from the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences. For the past 7+ years, Ginsburg has directed LA’s hit stage show, THE THRILLING ADVENTURE HOUR at Largo at the Coronet.

Follow Aaron on Twitter: @DrLawyercop

Transcript from Aaron’s guest chat on the TV Writer Chat: CLICK HERE

Buy Gray’s book for only $4.99! How To Break In To TV Writing: Insider Interviews.

Didn’t get your questions asked? Make sure you follow Gray on Twitter (@GrayJones) so you can get the scoop on who is being interviewed and how to get your questions in. Also check out our TV Writer Twitter Database to find Twitter addresses for over 1,000 TV writers. Find our previous episodes and other resources at www.tvwriterpodcast.com or on Gray’s YouTube channel.

 
Subscribe: iTunes (Video)iTunes (Audio)PodBean (Audio)
Hosted by Gray Jones, the TV Writer Podcast is devoted to interviews with working TV writers. It is brought to you by Script magazine and Scriptmag.com, the leading source for scriptwriting information in print and on the web.