People/Biz

Radarscreen 2011 online exclusive: Halogen TV

realscreen's 2011 Global Pitch Guide continues with another online exclusive as Marshall Nord (pictured), VP of programming for U.S. cable network Halogen TV, reveals what he is looking for and how best to get in touch.
October 4, 2011

realscreen’s 2011 Global Pitch Guide continues with another online exclusive as Marshall Nord (pictured), VP of programming for U.S. cable network Halogen TV, reveals what he is looking for and how best to get in touch.

What’s the preferred approach for pitching to you? Do you want brief outlines, bibles, or one-pagers?

Pitches go through me directly. Producers should email their queries to me at marshall.nord@halogentv.com and I will send them a submission form to sign. I will also send specific information useful to the producer who desires to understand our brand and make a successful presentation.

What can you tell us about your audience and your target demo? What tone of programming is connecting best with it?

Halogen intends to target the Millennial Generation, both male and female. Though demographics [18-34] are important, it is the psychographic variables – attributes relating to personality, values, attitudes, interests, or lifestyles – that are a strong consideration.

Program ideas presented to Halogen for consideration should be consistent with current programming – see www.halogentv.com – as well as conform to its ideal strategy. This strategy is to produce programs that have a connection to these three elements: Entertainment, Character-driven stories, and Pillar alignment (see below).

What are some pitching “don’ts” that you can warn us of – what shouldn’t people do when trying to pitch to you?

Please do not contact Halogen’s general manager, Becky Henderson, directly. Becky loves to connect with producers; however, she will forward all ideas to programming. Becky and I launched the network together and we are in sync with the brand and programming desires. If your idea is Halogen, then she will hear of it.

Please do not pitch talent, businesses, or organizations that you do not already have a relationship with regarding the project idea.

What’s the pricing range per hour for commissions, from high to low-end? What volume of series do you tend to work with?

Halogen will produce within the US$10,000-$75,000 per episode budget range. The process is pitch to pilot to series – four-episode increments with option, generally. We will be launching six new series in the fall of 2011 and four in early 2012. We currently have two series in development and are looking for more pilots to produce.

Are there any elements that you believe need to be at the core of programming for Halogen? What makes a concept a good fit?

Our tag line is “Be the Change.”

The aforementioned pillars of our programming are Purpose, Justice (social), and Connection. Adding entertainment and admirable central characters to those makes a project suitable for Halogen.

Some things to consider are: keep it simple, use real people, gain access to an interesting world, and reveal a journey experience. Redemption and/or transformational plot lines are a plus. Halogen does suggest format tweaks and oversee the creative development, casting, production, etc. However, it is easier for us to green-light programs where the development has already been completed. We are not just looking for good ‘ideas,’ but for pitch reels showing an ‘idea’ ready for pilot or series execution.

Conversely, what aren’t you looking for?

Please do not submit scripted, educational, religious, issue/topic-centered or similarly oriented material. Also, we do not produce ‘one-off’ projects.

What markets do you hit over the course of a year?

The Realscreen Summit, NATPE, MIPCOM, and MIPTV/MIPDOC.

About The Author
Andrew Tracy joined Realscreen as associate editor in 2021, following 17 years as managing editor of the award-winning international film magazine Cinema Scope. From 2010 to 2020 he also held the position of senior editor at the Toronto International Film Festival, where he oversaw the flagship publication for the organization’s year-round Cinematheque programming and edited its first original monograph in a decade, Steve Gravestock’s A History of Icelandic Film. He was a scriptwriter and consultant on the first season of the Vice TV series The Vice Guide to Film, and his writing and reporting have been featured in such outlets as Cinema Scope, Reverse Shot, Sight & Sound, Cineaste, Film Comment, MUBI Notebook, POV, and Montage.

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