I meant to post this earlier but got caught in the onslaught of Banff/TV, eh? posts … remember House writer David Hoselton’s funny bio from the Banff festival site? To recap, before recounting his path to Hollywood, he complains: “Law school was a mistake. Being a lawyer looked cool on TV. Halfway through second year law at U of T, I discovered that television lied to me.”
Well, TV critic Jaime Weinman of Maclean’s Magazine hilariously riffed on that theme:
Moral of the story? Instead of being lied to by television about the law, go into television and lie to us about medicine instead. There are people now who, seeing episodes of House written by ex-lawyers, will go to medical school and discover that medicine isn’t like House told them it would be, so they’ll get jobs writing for lawyer shows, inspiring a future generation of Davids Hoselton and Shore to go to law school and, later, write medical shows. And thus goes the cycle of renewal and rebirth.
There’s probably something pretty great in a piece on the whole connection between writing and law. Maybe it’s the discipline both take. All I know that other than privileged Harvard types, ex-lawyers are the backbone of the tv writing game.
In my class at the film centre there were three people who went to law school. A couple were practicing lawyers. You’re always running into lawyers in this business, or ex-lawyers. I almost went to law school. It’s one of them weird things.
Hoselton addressed some of that in our interview – that they both require analytical abilities, and the ability to see both sides of an argument.
I don’t think I put this in to the article but I think a really good point is he also said that when he was growing up, if you were good in the sciences you took medicine, if you were good in the arts you took law. (Unless you were not the practical, career-driven type and took, say, an English lit degree instead.)