If you’ve ever wondered about building a true crime series around a real police detective, today’s episode is for you. We’re sharing everything you need to know, broken down in five easily-digestible tips. What kind of detectives? Which cases to pitch? How do you know if your detective can sustain a series? We’re giving away everything we know. Plus, what you can learn from the behind the scenes of our new Investigation Discovery series Deadly Recall.
What Networks Want From You When Pitching These Concepts
There’s a lot of reasons why networks pass on potential shows built around detectives. Do they have the right kind of cases? Have they solved enough of them? Are they great on camera? The list goes on.
To set up our new Joke Productions TV series Deadly Recall, we needed to make sure we had every single list item nailed down.
Today we’re sharing everything we know and learned along the way. Just some of what we cover today:
- The qualities every detective you pitch must have
- Why some cases work for TV, and some don’t
- What’s a “solve rate” and why is it important?
- The process of pitching cases to the network
- Why you need to know about “overlap checks”
- Being sensitive and only telling stories that should be told
- And…Why Biagio is turning into his Grandmother
Hit that giant PLAY button above to listen now!
Deadly Recall in Deadline Hollywood
We were very pleased that Deadline Hollywood covered the news of our new series. Here’s a bit about what they had to say:
The Discovery-owned cable network will air Deadly Recall on March 5. It will follow Detective Pat Postiglione, who remembers every single detail of the crimes that he’s tasked to solve.
With over 25 years of experience as a Nashville homicide detective, Det. Postiglione has seen hundreds of crimes scenes, and he remembers each as if it happened yesterday.
The series is produced by Joke Productions, the company behind CNN’s true crime series Unmasking A Killer, which told the story of the Golden State Killer. Joke Fincioen, Biagio Messina and Jeff Kuntz are executive producers. Alongside Investigation Discovery’s Tim Baney is executive producer.
An Incredible Series to Make
Deadly Recall would not be possible without the amazing Pat Postiglione. A Nashville Detective for over 25 years, he helped solve hundreds of homicide cases in a very unique way. Pat has a photographic memory, and never forgets a single detail of a crime scene or suspect interview.
But it’s a blessing and a curse. Pat’s happy he’s been able to use his gift to bring justice to grieving families. On the other hand, every victim’s face, every gruesome crime scene, live on in Pat’s mind. It can be a heavy burden to bear.
See for yourself. Check out Deadly Recall on Tuesday, March 5 on Investigation Discovery.
Helpful and Related Links
Yet again today we talk about the importance of second hooks (for Deadly Recall it was that Pat had a photographic memory.) Here’s a deep dive on how second hooks work.
Alexis Linkletter, true crime journalist and TV producer, discusses all aspects of casting true crime.
Todd Lindsey discusses teaming up with us on our CNN/HLN series Unmasking a Killer, and describes the journey from his initial concept to hit TV show.
Everything you ever wanted to know about our company, Joke Productions, and how works with Producing Unscripted to find and team with new filmmakers and talent.
Reach out to us on Twitter! We try to respond regularly, and have actually met a lot of good people there.
Check out the Joke Productions Real Screen Story for the inside scoop on how we built our company.
Let’s Make some TV Together
Looking to become a TV producer? Pitch your own detective based true crime projects? Other genres of unscripted television? Thinking about pitching to us and our company Joke Productions?
Here’s what you need to know:
Read our in-depth page about how to pitch us a show. It also talks about what it’s really like to work in our business, the unscripted TV and film industry.