Spielberg's Movie-making Reality Show On the Lot, featuring Canadian Competitors!

Canadian Competitors Revealed When On The Lot Premieres May 22 on CTV

Spielberg Calls on Industry Vets Carrie Fisher, Brett Ratner, Garry Marshall
and Jon Avent to Judge Semi-Finals

Toronto, ON – Lights! Camera! Action! CTV announced today that On The Lot, the new moviemaking competition series executive-produced by Mark Burnett and Steven Spielberg and featuring Canadian competitors, will premiere following the final American Idol performance episode on May 22 on CTV. The names of the movie industry vets who will serves as judges for the first two “audition episodes” were also confirmed today: actress, author and screenwriter Carrie Fisher (Star Wars, Postcards From The Edge), as well as directors Brett Ratner (Rush Hour 3, X-Men 3: The Last Stand), Garry Marshall (Georgia Rule, Princess Diaries, Pretty Woman) and Jon Avnet (Fried Green Tomatoes, Up Close & Personal). Judges for additional rounds as well as the series’ host will be announced at a later date.

Canadian competitors found in a global casting call will step into the spotlight in front of the four-member judging panel when the series’ two “audition” episodes premiere Tuesday, May 22 at 9 p.m. ET and Thursday, May 24 at 9 p.m. ET on CTV (visit CTV.ca to confirm local broadcast times).

After receiving a record-setting 12,000 video submissions at thelot.com from aspiring filmmakers around the globe (over 4,000 of which were from Canadians), CTV has officially entered the summer movie blockbuster race with the new filmmaking competition series On The Lot from Mark Burnett and Steven Spielberg. In March, On The Lot producers visited Toronto and Vancouver where they interviewed 27 Canadian filmmakers hoping to be cast on the show. Now, the Top 50 applicants (including Canadians) will discover the magic of moviemaking when they are brought to Los Angeles to visit a real-life film set for the first time.

After facing the judges for the first time with their personal submission film, the 50 semi-finalists must endure a rigorous “Hollywood Boot Camp.” There, they must survive a Hollywood-style “pitch” meeting; a “24-Hour Film Shoot,” where they each must shoot and edit a short film in a 24-hour period; as well as a “One-Page, One-Hour” film shoot, where they will have an hour to film a one-page scene with the help of professional directors of photography, camera and sound operators and actors. The judges will give their ultimate feedback and select the Top 18 Finalists, who will move on to compete in the first “Film Premiere” episode the following week.

A special two-hour “Film Premiere” episode, featuring the first films produced by the 18 finalists, will air Monday, May 28 from 8 – 10 p.m. ET on CTV. It will then be up to the public to determine the first finalist to be eliminated from the competition. Voting results will be announced the following night on the first “Box Office” results show, airing Tuesday, May 29 from 8 – 9 p.m. ET on CTV.

On the Lot’s weekly, one-hour “Film Premiere” episodes air in their regular time period beginning Monday, June 4 at 8 p.m. ET with the weekly half-hour “Box Office” results shows airing Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET/PT starting Tuesday, June 5 on CTV.

Judge Details

Carrie Fisher
Since her feature debut opposite Warren Beatty in Shampoo in 1975, Carrie Fisher has been a compelling force in the film industry. She attained international recognition as “Princess Leia,” a role that made her a cultural icon, in the box office phenomenon Star Wars and the smash hit sequels The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. On the literary front, Fisher wrote The New York Times best seller Postcards From the Edge, for which she won the Los Angeles Pen Award for Best First Novel. Three additional best-selling novels, Surrender the Pink, Delusions of Grandma and The Best Awful, followed. Along with writing the telefilm These Old Broads, Fisher also wrote the screenplay based on her bestseller Postcards From the Edge, which starred Meryl Streep and Shirley MacLaine.

Brett Ratner
In a very short time, Brett Ratner has established himself as one of Hollywood’s most successful directors. Ratner’s seven feature films have grossed over $1 billion dollars worldwide. Ratner recently shattered several box office records with his latest release X-Men 3: The Last Stand. The film opened with a staggering $123 million in just four days. Ratner is currently finishing post-production on Rush Hour 3, the third installment of the blockbuster Rush Hour franchise, in which Chris Tucker and Jackie Chan reprise their roles as LAPD Detective James Carter and Royal Hong Kong Police Chief Inspector Lee. The film is scheduled to be released on August 10.

Garry Marshall
Garry Marshall’s long and illustrious career has encompassed directing, producing, writing and acting. Marshall started his career in television as a writer/producer on such comedy classics as The Dick Van Dyke Show, The Odd Couple, Happy Days and Laverne & Shirley. He is best known as one of the leading directors of romantic comedies, including Pretty Woman, Beaches, Runaway Bride, Overboard, The Princess Diaries and its sequel, The Princess Bride 2: Royal Engagement. His most recent directorial effort, Georgia Rule, starring Jane Fonda, Felicity Huffman and Lindsay Lohan, opens in theaters May 11.

Jon Avnet
Jon Avnet has directed and produced more than 50 motion pictures and television movies over the last 25 years, from box office hits like Risky Business and Fried Green Tomatoes to the critically-acclaimed Uprising, The Burning Bed and Heatwave for television. His work has won or been nominated for multiple Oscars, Emmys, Golden Globes and Directors Guild of America awards, as well as Writers Guild of America awards, the Peabody, the Humanitas and CableACE awards. On Broadway, he produced the Tony Award-winning Spamalot, The Pillowman, The History Boys (which received six Tony Awards, including Best Play) as well as this year’s revival of Inherit the Wind, starring Christopher Plummer and Brian Dennehy. Avnet recently directed and produced the feature film 88 Minutes, a thriller starring Al Pacino, and serves as director and executive producer for the upcoming cable miniseries The Starter Wife, based on the best-selling novel by Gigi Levangie Grazer.

On The Lot affords aspiring filmmakers the opportunity of a lifetime: the chance to win a $1-million DreamWorks development deal. Each week, the hopeful filmmaker finalists will produce short films from a chosen genre, running the gamut from comedies to thrillers, personal dramas to romance, sci-fi to horror. They’ll have access to the best resources the industry has to offer – professional writers, actors and crew – to help create their films.

After the teams have battled time frames, budgets and all the usual chaos that goes along with filmmaking, their films will debut and be critiqued in front of a live audience during the “Film Premiere” episodes.

But the filmmakers ultimately will be judged by the harshest critics of all – the public. It will be movie fans whose votes determine which films should be left on the cutting-room floor. On each “Box Office” results show, the director whose feature garners the fewest votes will be sent home.

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  • Anonymous

    i have seen episode 1 and 2 it’s def the apprentice for filmmakers, not bad but nothing new :-)