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Understanding the Business of Entertainment by Gregory Bernstein

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Chapter 14Making It Into the Business

Michael Poryes

Michael Poryes has written sitcoms for more than thirty years. The shows he’s worked on include The Jeffersons, Alice, The Love Boat, Who’s the Boss, Facts of Life, Veronica’s Closet, Cybill and Roseanne. In more recent years, Michael created and executive produced two wildly successful shows aimed at young audiences—That’s So Raven and Hannah Montana.

From staff writer to showrunner, his career has been marked by tremendous success. And yet he started off waiting tables in a restaurant, telling jokes to the customers, both his writing and stand-up careers apparently going nowhere. His experience breaking into the business demonstrates the importance of tenacity, being located where breaks ...

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