City Paper is not for tourists
Jon Gann wants to be on TV. Specifically, the upcoming reality show On the Lot, created by Steven Spielberg and Mark Burnett (Survivor, etc.). To that end, the filmmaker created a Web site, Put Jon on TV, excoriating exhorting people to vote for him.
The show pits filmmakers against each other for a supposed $1 million production deal, each potential Scorcese creating instant movies based on assigned criteria (genre, prop, character, etc.), the same premise as D.C.’s 48 Hour Film Project. Gann, a director, graphic designer, and creator of the DC Shorts festival (which City Paper is a sponsor of), notes that the program is “basically 48 Hours ripped off, and it’s something I’ve excelled at in the past. And I thought, Wow, why wouldn’t I do this?“
The 40-year-old Gann applied “under the premise that I’m older, but I’m a community builder, I believe in short film, I run a festival, blah blah blah, I see hundreds of films, so therefore I’d be an ideal candidate as someone who understands the craft of filmmaking. I may not be the world’s best director, but I understand what audiences want.”
The show’s hopefuls are asked to submit an under-five-minute example of their work. Gann submitted his 2004 48 Hour award-winning flick Signs four months ago. For reasons unclear, it didn’t show up on the site until earlier this week, putting Gann way behind the “vote-for-me” curve.
“My plan was to e-mail everyone I knew and get a lot of press out of it and have everyone vote for me so I could walk into the interview and say, ‘Hey, look—-I have 1,000 views!'” I was going to have postcards made. I was going to hand them out in the subway going, ‘Vote for me! Vote for me!’ I put that on the back burner, ’cause I didn’t know what was going on, or if it was every going on.”
But Gann is not giving up yet.
“I have a B plan that I can’t really talk about yet,” he says, explaining only, “My B plan would actually keep me in Washington and have me sort of working on the show at the same time. We shall see.”