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Tuesday, May 29, 2007

"On the Lot" Turns Us Off

052907lot (AP Photo/HO/Fox/Mike Yarish)

Lights! Camera! Where did the action go on Fox's "On the Lot" reality filmmaking competition? The first two episodes, where 50 finalists were cut down to 18, were fast, interesting and chocked full o' the kind of behind-the-scenes drama that we've come to expect from Hollywood. But all that "Apprentice"-style reality TV fun was left on the cutting room floor during last night's first snoozy "American Idol"-style episode, which featured screenings of the contestants' mostly dull one-minute commercials comedy shorts. And at no point were the viewers at home told how much time, money or crew the contestants had to make these films.

Worse than the short films (which utilized such high-brow comedy material as fart jokes) were the poor judges, who really had nothing to contribute. Carrie Fisher looked pained to actually critique anything and followed almost every submission by saying "and I know you're a really great filmmaker." Then there was Garry Marshall, who kept awkwardly telling the female directors that they should be more, um, female. Is this a beauty pageant or a filmmaking competition!? Whatever "On the Lot" is trying to be, The Slug is sure of one thing: It's a wrap on our DVR. Next!

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