DDI Lab NY Biz of TV

The Business of Television: What Directors Should Know About the Creative Process

February 22, 2020 A DGA Director Development Initiative interactive lab in New York

On February 22, the DGA Director Development Initiative held its first interactive lab of 2020 on the East Coast. DGA members seeking ways to better prepare for their next episodic directing assignment gathered at the Guild’s New York offices for The Business of Television: What Directors Should Know About the Creative Process. This session was designed to give episodic Directors insight into the entire process — from pilot to series — in order to understand how to maximize their positioning for hiring.

The lab kicked off with a welcome by DGA Assistant Executive Director Michael Berger, who introduced the instructors: DGA Diversity Task Force Co-Chair Bethany Rooney (Bull) and Director Brooke Kennedy (The Good Fight). Rooney spoke briefly about the program and then showed a PowerPoint presentation that covered the entire “Television 101” process. Then she and Kennedy explored various parts of this procedure including how and where the episodic director for hire enters a show’s ecosystem, the broadcast TV cycle from pitching product to pick-up and the recent trend towards streaming services.

Following the panel discussion, the participants engaged in an open forum with the attendees where they answered questions and provided feedback on ideas.


Bethany RooneyBethany Rooney
Rooney has directed over 200 hours of primetime television including critically acclaimed series such as ScandalArrow and Nashville, and classics including Desperate HousewivesAlly McBeal and Brothers & Sisters. She began her directing career on the 1980s iconic television show, St. Elsewhere, where she also served as an associate producer. In addition to co-authoring three books on directing with Belli, Rooney has taught directing at UCLA Extension and numerous acting workshops in the LA area. A DGA member since 1985, Rooney currently serves as the Fifth Vice President of the DGA and is a member of the Western Directors Council. She also formerly served as a Co-Chair of the Guild’s Women’s Steering Committee, an alternate on the DGA National Board, and she Co-Chairs the DGA Diversity Task Force.

Brooke KennedyBrooke Kennedy
After beginning her career as a location coordinator, Kennedy served as an executive producer for several television series including Third Watch and The Good Wife for which she directed select episodes. Other directing credits include episodes of The Good FightStumptownStrange Angel and BrainDead. Currently, Kennedy serves as a member of the Eastern Directors Council and she formerly served as the Second Vice President of the DGA and as a member of the National Board. She has been a DGA member since 1985.

About the Director Development Initiative:

The Director Development Initiative is designed to provide current information on the Director’s craft in order to further the Guild’s mission to increase the diversity of the industry.


photos by Marcie Revens

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