How to make a good mockumentary: 7 lessons from modern film and TV

Christopher Guest doesn’t care much for “mockumentary.” “It’s a term I don’t like or use,” he once told New York magazine. “I think it’s a bit cheesy.” His misgivings about the shorthand aside, few have done more to advance the cause of the mock-doc, starring in and co-writing This Is Spinal Tap before undertaking a…

HBO at the TCA press tour: Nothing will ever have to end again (except Enlightened and Treme)!

HBO doesn’t always deign to present an executive session at the Television Critics’ Association press tour, but every so often, in the summer, CEO Richard Plepler and president of programming Michael Lombardo can be lured out of their great money vault to appear before the unwashed masses, and, inevitably, the…

Chris O’Dowd on Family Tree and being in the market for a castle

HBO’s Family Tree is a long time coming on a pair of counts: First, it seems like co-creator Christopher Guest should’ve translated the droll, loosely scripted style of his faux-documentary films to television ages ago. (He made one previous attempt for HBO in 1999, but it didn’t go to series.) Second, the story of a…

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