Thats my way of paying it back and my legacy. Kid Pickers has more potential than American Pickers in a lot of ways. Its insanely popular around the world because people love the treasure hunt. Who better to treasure hunt than children? But antiques arent the only treasure in mikes sights. Im pitching another show right now called meat a reality show of a place i used to work, a butcher shop in Chicago.
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This is a huge market for children. The site is rocking and dissertation rolling. There are thousands of kids on there, talking about what they collect. They have profiles loaded and help download pictures of things they find. They do all of the research together. This changes the game of how he can pitch the project. Unlike his first attempt with American Pickers, mike now has a format, a solid foundation for his show, and the experience as an Executive producer. It will be a competition show having two young adults hosting. The kids wont be knocking on strangers doors like he and Frank Fritz. But he can use the success of American Pickers and the audience of children who are fans of it, the success of Kid Pickers website, the book, the books tour, and the contest Pick tell with the history Channel to sell the show.
First, we have the book that comes out on April 15th. I wrote an outline with my friend whos a 3rd grade teacher, and caa sold it immediately. Then we created a website, m, where we can get a lot of buzz and kids on the site. Its like facebook for kids who pick. The audience is growing, and hes proving there is demand for his show. Everywhere we go, were getting wheelbarrows full of mail from kids. The kids come to father's the store all the time.
He chose business a friend, libby calloway, whos not only a great writer, but also a woman who comes from two generations of pickers. Even though she had never written a book prior, mike knew she was the one. The experience of writing the American Pickers guide to picking also helped him with his Kid Picker book. Kid Pickers book is going to change everything. Theres nothing like it out there. It teaches children when they find things, they can learn about their familys history and history in general. Its teaching them to repurpose and recycle. These kids are even decorating their rooms in vintage. Heres the big question, after hearing everything mike had learned from pitching American Pickers and working on this new cbs show, what is his strategy for selling Kid Pickers show?
History has a department on educating children. They now have put American Pickers show into a curriculum format, so kids are learning all about history through. History teamed up with Kid Pickers for national contests, one called. Pick tell where children would find something and write an essay about. I gave the prizes to the three children who won at the Smithsonian in dc this year. Theyve never had a show that connects with kids the way ours does, and theyve never had so many children respond to a contest before. When he was approached to write. American Pickers book, he originally declined, wanting to do a book himself. But he ended up striking a deal if he helped them with the book, american Pickers guide to picking, he was going to choose the writer.
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So he wrote the future outline, cbs has okayed that, and now hes writing the full script, every inch. . so that was obviously really cool. As we learned in, part 1, american Pickers didnt have that kind of luck. Looking back on any journey, sometimes we find theres a beauty to being green and having a sense of ignorance. If mike knew everything he knew now, he might have run screaming out of his shop instead of diligently pursuing his dreams. I just looked at things the way a child would.
Thats why kids have always inspired. Im doing a new project called Kid Pickers. Were pitching that how now, and the book comes out in April, published through Macmillan. However, The history Channel wont be picking. Kid Pickers because its a childrens show, so if any network is reading this, give mike a shout. But History is in complete support of mikes younger audience.
With the show idea, head writer and director in place, it was time to put his pimp hat back on and pitch cbs. So we go into this room, and there are eleven of us on one side and three on the other, and theyre like, hey when you go in there, these people arent going to talk to you, they arent going to say a word. They are just going to sit there and listen to you talk. I thought to myself, shit, Im not going to talking very much anyway, so i wasnt worried. Tannenbaums opened up the meetings and said theyre turning it over.
I talked the whole freaking meeting! (laughs) Then Tom Brady talked about the outline and character descriptions, threw it back. At the very end of it, they said, lets do it! Everyone stood up, so i thought that means, lets. And in the hallway they were all excited cbs jumped on it right away, saying they never say yes in the room, its always a well get back to you. Im like, so are they doing it? What does this mean? Theyre like yeah, didnt you hear what they said? (laughs) It means Tom is going to start writing the script.
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He was this self-made dude, kind of a troublemaker in high school, like i was. The guy ended up graduating from Harvard. Hes been writing sitcoms for 20 years. Hes just amazingly brilliant. And when I said his name to the. Tannenbaums, they said thats who writings they liked too. But they let me say who i liked. They didnt just decide who was going to write and direct it; they let me go through the process. The guy we chose to direct, i love him, is Fred savage from the wonder years.
As writers, Im sure you and i are sitting here thinking the same thing mikes this guy who didnt even come up with this show idea but now he has all this power! Granted, i highly doubt this is the standard practice, but when you click with people, they trust you. The tannenbaums clearly felt comfortable with mikes ability to point them in the right business direction. Yeah, four years ago, i was a guy sleeping in my van, and now I have all these big writers coming up to me on the lot of cbs pitching themselves! I didnt even know what to ask them. I was asking where they were from, tell me what youve done before, where do you see this going, and what do you like about the idea? The lesson here is, as writers, we are not only selling our story ideas, but were also selling ourselves. I settled on this guy named Tom Brady (Tool Time). He and I got along really well.
about an hour and a half, and they said theyd love to do this, even more now than they did before. They asked me to meet with the writers. Youre going to be in a room with about 10 to 14 people just tell us which ones you connected with, which ones you liked. Im like, by myself, Im going to do that!? So i met with all these writers and then a few directors.
Being self-employed, i am always thinking beyond the show. Im pitching three shows right now. Surely as mike picked through dusty, crowded barns, he never imagined one day hed be approached to take part in a scripted show for cbs. Im working with the, tannenbaums (Two and a half Men) bringing a sitcom to cbs. Now Im going from unscripted to scripted its a modern day sanford and Son. It wasnt even my idea. I got a call from caa saying these people want to talk with me about a show.long
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Rarely do i write a three-parter in fact, this is a first for. Balls of Steel but, mike wolfes journey from the, american Pickers show idea to night The history Channel and beyond cant be summed up in one article. If youd like to catch up on the first two parts, part 1 covers how mike got the show on air, and. Part 2 shares the joys and challenges of actually seeing your show come to life. After meeting mike, its obvious hes not the kind of guy to sit still for long. American Pickers success, he caught the attention of representation let this be a lesson to all, you dont need to be repped to get a show on air, but once you build it, they will come! But despite finally getting representation, he quickly learned the hustle never ends.