Creating & Pitching Unscripted DocuSeries for Reality TV
Understanding This Hot Genre in Reality Television, and why TV Producers Want Compelling Families, Businesses and Lifestyle Subjects for TV Series Development.
One of the most popular genres within Reality TV is the Docu-Style Series. A docu-style series is a reality-based series that focuses on a specific real world subject, person, profession, lifestyle, family, business or venue. Hit docu-style series include; “Deadliest Catch”, “American Choppers”, “Dog The Bounty Hunter”, “Flipping Out”, “Real Housewives”, “L.A. Ink”, among countless other businesses and families cast in reality series.
At the TV Writers Vault top industry executives are reaching out to everyday people pitching concepts, subjects and stories for development and production as a docu-style reality series.
Many of the projects scouted at the TV Writers Vault are based on true life concepts. Almost all of our projects that have been purchased by Production Companies have been reality-based concepts exploring unique people, families, and businesses that translate into a docu-style series for television.
For the Writer and Creator of television concepts, this brings a special opportunity to deliver a unique project with tangible content. It also brings a huge opportunity for people from all walks of life to propose their own unique world, profession, or lifestyle as the subject for a television series.
Why Docu-Style? Everyone has different tastes in entertainment viewing, but Network executives and producers know that the most loyal viewers are those engaged in following docu-series. “Deadliest Catch”, “Dog: The Bounty Hunter”, “Little People, Big World”, “Kate Plus 8”, “Keeping Up With The Kardashians”, and countless others are the focus of pop-culture today. Networks like them for their relatively low budgets, and Producers like them because they know that real life drama always delivers good content.
But why are Producers more likely to buy docu-style concepts from just about anyone? They know what they’re getting, and they don’t have the access themselves. A unique proposal for a docu-series with access to the person or subject gives the person selling it more leverage and opportunity to land a deal.
What Concepts or Subjects Fall Into The Docu-Style Reality Genre? Any person, business, venue, lifestyle, or corner of the world can be the subject of a docu-style series. General categories include; Unique Professions or Businesses, Family, Lifestyle, Sports, Adventure, Pop-Culture, and countless other variations. Your business of building hot-rod golf carts may be a great subject for an A&E series. Your college dorm may be the real life Animal House that MTV wants to produce. Your business of hunting serial killers might be right for HBO. Your job of sailing other people’s sailboats from point to point around the world may be the adventure Discovery is looking to produce. It doesn’t always have to be an extraordinary situation to make for a great docu-series, but it does rely on strong characters and personalities involved. Many of today’s shows like “Gold Rush”, “Flipping Out”, “American Chopper” or “Miami Ink” explore somewhat unique professions, but the true focus is on the personalities and relationships of the people involved. Another great venue for gaining direct access to reality television producers seeking unique people for shows is CastMyReality.com.
How To Pitch A Docu-Style Reality Series: Similar to pitching any TV or Film concept, you’ll pitch a Title, Logline (one-liner), and Synopsis of what the project is about. For the docu-style series you want to make very clear impact, immediately communicating how the business, subject, family or person is unique and would be entertaining to watch (comedic, dramatic, informative, suspenseful, inspiring qualities, etc.). Describe the specific people or central character involved, and detail the unique situations or challenges they face in day to day life. If you have any video on the subject, that’s a big plus, and most likely what a Producer will request if pursuing your project. At the TV Writers Vault, anyone can register a proposal for a docu-style reality series, selecting “Docu-Style Series” as the genre, and any sub-category that fits the project for executives to scout.
If you have questions related to the development or sales of docu-style series, feel free to contact us and we’ll be happy to share advice or insight. You may also want to read some of our recent success stories and testimonials for details on tv shows discovered at the TV Writers Vault, and producing deals landed by many of our members.