show episodes
 
Science for people who give a sh*t. The 6-time Webby nominee delivers deep conversations with the world's smartest people (scientists, doctors, CEO's, farmers, and more!), and digestible news updates every single week. Get Action Steps you can take to feel better, and build a better future for everyone. We're talkin' clean energy and coral reefs, COVID vaccines and pediatric cancer research, clean water and carbon capture tech, asteroid deflection and artificial intelligence ethics. "A vital ...
 
The official podcast of the miniseries Chernobyl, from HBO and Sky. Join host Peter Sagal (NPR’s “Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!”) and series creator, writer and executive producer Craig Mazin after each episode as they discuss the true stories that shaped the scenes, themes and characters. Chernobyl airs Mondays at 9 PM on HBO and Tuesdays at 9 PM on Sky Atlantic. The Chernobyl Podcast is also available to stream on HBO NOW and HBO GO starting Monday, May 6 at 10 PM.
 
The official podcast of the HBO series Watchmen. Over three episodes, host Craig Mazin (HBO's Chernobyl) discusses Watchmen with its Executive Producer and Writer, Damon Lindelof. Join Mazin and Lindelof as they divulge narrative choices, explore the show’s connection with the groundbreaking graphic novel, and how it reflects our modern times. Watchmen airs Sundays on HBO at 9 PM.
 
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show series
 
This week, we revisit some of our favorite conversations with TV writers, including Mindy Kaling (The Mindy Project), Alison McDonald (American Dad!), Ryan Knighton (In the Dark), Aline Brosh McKenna and Rachel Bloom (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend). They share their philosophies and practical advice for writing television. We talk about getting staffed, the …
 
Editor and critic Julia Turner puts John and Craig in the hot seat to review the past ten years of Scriptnotes. They cover the original mission, behind scenes fights, notable guests, and their biggest regrets. We also predict what we think the next ten years will bring and share a Scriptnotes love story. In our bonus segment for premium members, Ju…
 
I’m very excited to share an awesome show with you today, from the fine folks at PBS! God, I love PBS. The show is called “NOVA Now” and I’m a longtime huge fan. This episode is near and dear to the moment we’re in. As the Western U.S. faces increasingly dry conditions, the show takes a look at the technologies and practices being developed to cope…
 
This week: Solar’s wilding out; $65 billion for the next pandemic; Better, cheaper, more inclusive clinical trials; Protecting farmworkers; Biden’s AI board Find links from this newsletter and more at importantnotimportant.com/newsletter Got feedback? Email us at questions@importantnotimportant.com Follow us on Twitter at @importantnotimp Important…
 
John welcomes back writer/performer Ashley Nicole Black (A Black Lady Sketch Show, Ted Lasso, The Amber Ruffin Show) to prove good things come in twos. They dive into her two Emmy nominations, joining a show in its second season, and the opportunities of both writing and acting in a series. We follow up on the WGA East elections and ghosting produc…
 
This week: Climate tech billions; COVID goals; A new hope for neurodegenerative diseases; An IPCC for food; Facial recognition knows no bounds. Find links from this newsletter and more at importantnotimportant.com/newsletter Got feedback? Email us at questions@importantnotimportant.com Follow us on Twitter at @importantnotimp Important, Not Importa…
 
John and Craig take a look at the WGA East elections, specifically the debate over who the WGA should represent and how to prepare for new trends in digital media. We revisit predictions we made about superhero movies and break down logical fallacies in a follow up to our conspiracy discussion. We also answer listener questions about ethical writin…
 
If we're going to make this world a better place, things have to change. That's why we talk with the changemakers who have the power – and the courage – to get things done. We wrap up every conversation with one question meant to get to the root of that superpower: when was the first time you realized you had the power of change? To make a change, …
 
This week: Wind NIMBY’s; More nurses, stat; Diabetes on the rise; Evictions; Cybersecurity commitments. Find links from this newsletter and more at importantnotimportant.com/newsletter Got feedback? Email us at questions@importantnotimportant.com Follow us on Twitter at @importantnotimp Important, Not Important is produced by Crate Media…
 
John welcomes back writer/producer Kelly Marcel (Venom, Cruella) for an action-packed episode. They break down a scene on the page, and then Kelly walks John through how she adapts and rewrites scenes in real time on set. We also discuss writing scripts with a star and why you should always cast your movies before writing them (at least in your min…
 
Each week we kick off our conversations with the smartest people in the universe with one humble question: “Why are you vital to the survival of the species?” The responses typically range from laughter, modest denial, to audible discomfort. But when the air clears, we typically get some gems of insight that give us a glimpse at how we all have som…
 
This week: Operate from a place of self-awareness; God, we are so bad at math; A half-century later; Drive pediatric cancer research; What’s the future of meat work? TikTok misinformation enters the chat. Find links from this newsletter and more at importantnotimportant.com/newsletter Got feedback? Email us at questions@importantnotimportant.com Fo…
 
John and Craig host another round of the Three Page Challenge, analyzing a range of listener submissions from scripts set in rural Japan to Manhattan strip clubs. They discuss establishing setting, grounding big characters, and introducing narration. We also take a look at the lecture scene: how it can fall flat and tips for making it work. Then we…
 
In Episode 122, Quinn has big questions about AI ethics and, like many other situations, is left wondering: was Dr. Ian Malcolm right all along? Our guest is Dr. Rumman Chowdury. She is the director of the Machine Ethics Transparency & Accountability (META) team at Twitter, where she’s helping to build a new ethical backbone into Twitter from the i…
 
John and Craig examine why and how writers need to make bad things happen to their characters, and the ways in which hero suffering differs between features and television. We also answer listener questions about WGA jurisdiction, becoming a signatory, timing a script for television, and why all scripts aren’t available online. Then in our bonus se…
 
In Episode #121, Quinn’s got a fantastic new guest to help answer his favorite question: “What can I do?” Isaias Hernandez – or, as he’s known pretty much everywhere on the internet, Queer Brown Vegan -- shares the mic today. He’s built a massive following using an intersectional approach to reach people through empathy and education. In this serie…
 
This week: 50% isn’t good enough; Facebook fossil fuel ads; How to get shots to Africa; Oysters!?; Why has AI failed to help during COVID? Find links from this newsletter and more at importantnotimportant.com/newsletter Got feedback? Email us at questions@importantnotimportant.com Follow us on Twitter at @importantnotimp Important, Not Important is…
 
In Episode 120, Quinn discusses retraining our mind to understand and operate in the discontinuity we are in. Let’s get META. HIs guest is Alex Steffen, a longtime climate reporter and futurist, as well as writer of the forthcoming book The Snap Forward. The world as we know it is changing – in fact, it’s already changed. The changes brought on by …
 
John and Craig zoom out to analyze how the cultural context affects the perception of a movie, and the choices writers have to make. We look at vaccine mandates for productions and answer listener questions about cheesy writing, zombie references, and diversity fellowships. Finally in our bonus segment for premium members, we discuss the Black Wido…
 
This week: FDA got next?; Flooded subways; Delta's a game-changer; Epic (AI) fail; Fire predictions; Food stamp groceries delivered. Find links from this newsletter and more at importantnotimportant.com/newsletter Got feedback? Email us at questions@importantnotimportant.com Follow us on Twitter at @importantnotimp Important, Not Important is produ…
 
In Episode 119, Quinn asks: what’s in wildfire smoke, what does it do to your body, and how can you stay safe? Our guest is Dr. Mary Prunicki, the director of air pollution and health research at Stanford University under The Sean N. Parker Center for Allergy and Asthma Research. Her lab examines the impact of air pollution and wildfires on health …
 
John and Craig curate a collection of craft topics: character wants and needs, point of view, and letting your heroes drive scenes. From internal struggles to the external obstacles, they share how to design a story that best serves a character’s journey. We wrap up our clip show with a discussion on what we are still learning about craft. Defensiv…
 
I don't have to tell you folks – climate change is the story of our time. There’s been a sharp rise (like last week) in people are anxious, angry, and want action – and the opening for bold climate action has never been wider. And “A Matter of Degrees” gives them a place to find community: it's a narrative podcast from two of INI’s fan-favorite for…
 
This week: The climate crisis kicked down the door of the west and global north this week; The Pizza King of Vaccines; Mental health care now available everywhere; The Human-Machine interface; You like drugs, Danny? Find links from this newsletter and more at importantnotimportant.com/newsletter Got feedback? Email us at questions@importantnotimpor…
 
John and Craig hint at the best ways to tease expectations in their discussion of foreshadowing. They take a look at popular examples, the difference between foreshadow and symbolism, and techniques for executing it well. We answer listener questions on bad premieres, bad bosses, and good home theatre set-ups. We also double-down on on our pro-spoi…
 
In Episode 118, Quinn discusses: the big mosquito problem. Our guest is Dr. Omar Akbari, one of the world’s pre-eminent biotechnology and mosquito researchers. For how afraid people are of sharks, mountain lions, or even just other people (the worst), mosquitoes have actually killed more humans than pretty much anything on the planet. Ever. So, the…
 
This week: deep breath; COVID all around the world; there are two Americas and it’s obvious why; the global hungry jump to 768 million; call your doctor!; money for nothing; held hostage by hackers. Find links from this newsletter and more at importantnotimportant.com/newsletter Got feedback? Email us at questions@importantnotimportant.com Follow u…
 
John welcomes writer/producer/creator Jen Statsky to discuss getting started writing comedy, from late night to The Onion to The Good Place. Then it’s a deep dive on the Hacks pilot, looking at how jokes change from the page to the edit. We follow up on the best way to get fired, the WGA pilot guide, and answer listener questions on working in come…
 
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