On the Lot
In 2007, DreamWorks, working from an idea by reality television pioneer Mark Burnett and Steven Spielberg, brought a competition series about filmmaking hopefuls to the small screen when On the Lot aired on Fox.
The limited-run show brought aspiring filmmakers together from across the nation—50 semifinalists selected from a submission pool of over 1,200 applicants, to compete for the chance to work with the studio.
Apart from the top prize for the show's winning filmmaker to earn a residency with DreamWorks and $1 million budget to develop a feature film, all of the contestants had the chance for their work to be seen by a national audience on network television during On the Lot's 16 episode run.
Industry judges including Jon Avnet (Boomtown), Michael Bay (Transformers), Wes Craven (Red Eye), Carrie Fisher (Hook), David Frankel (Band of Brothers), Penny Marshall (1941), Eli Roth (The House with the Clock in Its Walls) and Brad Silberling (Casper), amongst others, appeared on the show critiquing and mentoring finalists on the short films they created with a standing cast and crew of collaborators during the series' run.