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Arts
TV & Film
Performing Arts

Two Words with Taku

Updated 1 day ago

Arts
TV & Film
Performing Arts
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I'm Taku Mbudzi and this podcast is dedicated to my love of writing and storytelling. Season 2 is the step-by-step story of how, against the odds, I'm making my first live action kids' TV show in Australia. The podcast focuses on screenwriting and all the behind-the-scenes things I’m learning. I also include interviews with the amazing people who are helping me along the way. Podcast recorded in Melbourne, Australia.

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I'm Taku Mbudzi and this podcast is dedicated to my love of writing and storytelling. Season 2 is the step-by-step story of how, against the odds, I'm making my first live action kids' TV show in Australia. The podcast focuses on screenwriting and all the behind-the-scenes things I’m learning. I also include interviews with the amazing people who are helping me along the way. Podcast recorded in Melbourne, Australia.

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Cover image of Two Words with Taku

Two Words with Taku

Latest release on Jul 16, 2020

The Best Episodes Ranked Using User Listens

Updated by OwlTail 1 day ago

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This means that the episode rankings aren't working properly. Please revisit us at a later time to get the best episodes of this podcast!

Rank #1: Episode 100 — Answering Your Podcasting Questions on Instagram LIVE

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Episode 100! I finally took to Instagram LIVE to answer your burning questions about podcasting. Watch the whole video, complete with show-and-tell of my recording gear at https://www.instagram.com/takumbudzi.

Thank you for listening and supporting Two Words with Taku since 2017 — here's to 100 more episodes!

See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Jul 16 2020

55mins

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Rank #2: 99 Episodes but a TV Show Ain't One

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I've finally made it to Episode 99 of this podcast! Here's a quick update on what's happening with my TV stuff and what I'm planning for my 100th podcast episode. Thanks for listening and stay safe! x

See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Apr 25 2020

11mins

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Rank #3: Pitch Perfectin' with Producer and Filmmaker Sher-Li Tan

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"Pitching is a verbal way of selling your story, and I like to leave something visual so they remember my pitch." — Sher-Li Tan

I thought I was the Queen of Pitch Preparation until I met producer and filmmaker Sher-Li Tan. We first met at YouTube conference VidCon and she blew me away with how passionately she spruiked her projects. In this episode we talk about how she prepares for pitching her shows — everything from the documents she creates to how she researches her audience and the people she's pitching to.

We also discuss how pitching can be a way to test the market for your ideas, and different ways to measure the success of your pitches. Sher-Li's full of great insights and stresses the importance of nurturing relationships with the people you pitch to along the way. 

Podcast Guest Profile

Sher-Li Tan is an early-career producer with an interest in storytelling and production excellence. She strongly believes in the power of the film to connect and engage.

Raised in both Mauritius and Singapore, she aspires to use her exposure to different cultures and backgrounds to inform her filmmaking. She is also a trained speech pathologist and hence a vocal advocate for communities from various under-represented populations.

Time Stamps

0:53 | How I've approached pitching my TV ideas

5:45 | Interview with Sher-Li Tan

Interesting Links

Say Hello!

I'm at taku.com.au, Instagram/Twitter: @takuspeaks or Facebook: @TakuTV.

See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Nov 16 2019

44mins

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Rank #4: Short Courses with Wendy Gray, AFTRS Head of Industry Program

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"Children's television is wonderful for people starting out in the industry because there tends to be more opportunity for people who don't have a long list of credits." — Wendy Gray

I've fast-tracked a few skills after discovering the short courses offered by the Australian Film Television Radio School (AFTRS). In this episode, I chat to Wendy Gray from AFTRS about their courses and who they're designed for. We also chat about Wendy's career in the screen industry, including her extensive experience working in children's television. 

Friendly manners: this is not a paid endorsement.

Podcast Guest Profile

Wendy Gray currently runs the short course and industry certificate programs at the Australian Film Television Radio School (AFTRS). Over the last seven years she has been Head of the Open Program, Head of the TV Unit and began life at AFTRS as the Industry Program Manager. In her current role she liaises with Industry through the Industry Advisory Panels, runs industry-related events and oversees the development and delivery of industry short courses and industry certificates.

Wendy started her career in the media at ABC TV, where she worked for twelve years in a wide variety of production roles, across all genres. Her final years at the ABC saw her devising, producing and directing a number of children’s television series including AFI-award winning series The Ferals and forty episodes of Play School.

Subsequently as a freelance producer Wendy worked on a wide range of television productions, including documentary series Greatest Cities of the World with Griff Rhys-Jones, and The Upside Down Show, an award-winning children’s series with The Umbilical Brothers, Nickelodeon US and the Children’s Television Workshop. She returned to the ABC joining the (then) New Media Division to work on the launch of ABC2, designing and executing channel branding and program development and production.

Wendy has also worked on a number of online projects including working as Online Content Producer in the marketing department for Southern Cross and as a senior website producer for Gadfly Media, supervising website content for clients such as SOCOG and NRMA.
She also worked for the Australian Film Commission (now Screen Australia) on a major online content project Australian Screen Online and taught production at SAE Byron Bay.

She has a BA (Communications) from Macquarie University and a Grad Dip in Interactive Multimedia from UTS.

Time Stamps

0:53 | Why I've been doing short courses through AFTRS

8:01 | Interview with Wendy Gray

Interesting Links

Say Hello!

I'm at taku.com.au, Instagram/Twitter: @takuspeaks or Facebook: @TakuTV.

See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Nov 15 2019

23mins

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Rank #5: Chain of Title with Lawyer Dee Mbugua

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"…without the proper documentation proving the ownership of the work, there’s no protection from legal action."

The world of television is full of great ideas and magic...and contracts and legal agreements that underpin how all that magic comes together. In this episode, lawyer Dee Mbugua explains what 'chain of title' means and why it's so important in the media industry. She also gives useful tips for seeking legal advice, especially when it comes to the fineprint. If in doubt, don't make a wild guess and definitely don't sign anything!

Podcast Guest Profile

Dee Mbugua is the Deputy Director, Industrial, Advice and Advocacy at Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance. She’s an experienced lawyer and writer with a demonstrated history of working in the alternative dispute resolution industry. Dee enjoys sharing her stories via social media, radio broadcasting, digital media, public speaking, and writing.

Time Stamps

0:53 | Why I needed to find a lawyer

3:07 | Interview with Dee Mbugua

Interesting Links

Say Hello!

I'm at taku.com.au, Instagram/Twitter: @takuspeaks or Facebook: @TakuTV.

See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Nov 14 2019

25mins

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Rank #6: Writers' Guild with Screenwriter and Podcaster Evrim Şen

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"The way that we can tell stories if we use audio, specifically fiction, is so interesting and diverse. Audio is such a freeing medium." 

I joined the Australian Writers’ Guild (AWG) so I could meet inspiring young screenwriters like Evrim Şen. We met at an Animation Writing Workshop and hit it off instantly — we're both fired up about stories for and about young people. In this episode, Evrim shares how joining the AWG is helping her writing career and how things are different in real-life writers' rooms vs what she learnt at film school.

We also chat about her fun podcast Script Roulette, where in each episode, she and her team produce an audio drama based on a random prompt, written by an emerging writer. 

Podcast Guest Profile

Evrim Şen is a podcast producer and screenwriter, working in creative and youth sector non-for-profits with a focus on social enterprise and social impact.

She has a Masters in Screenwriting from the Victorian College of the Arts, and her passion is representing the perspectives of and writing for young people and children.

She’s been part of the production of numerous podcasts including, the fiction / talked-based podcast Script Roulette, and radio play series Troll Foods.

Time Stamps

0:53 | Why I joined the Australian Writers' Guild

8:08 | Interview with Evrim Şen

Interesting Links

Say Hello!

I'm at taku.com.au, Instagram/Twitter: @takuspeaks or Facebook: @TakuTV.

See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Nov 14 2019

26mins

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Rank #7: Authentic Voices with Vlogger and LGBQTI+ Advocate AJ Clementine

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"I love that this younger generation is being more expressive and feeling their emotions, instead of trying to not feel things. "

We keep hearing that we need more authentic voices telling their own stories. But what does that look like when you’re creating a TV show with different characters? How do you, as a writer, make their stories feel authentic, if you haven’t personally lived those experiences? In this episode, I chat candidly with YouTuber and content creator AJ Clementine about why she started sharing her stories online. We also discuss how young people in the LGBTQI+ community are representing themselves and supporting each other online.

Podcast Guest Profile

AJ Clementine is an Australian creator known for being an LGBTQI+ advocate for the community. She is also a vlogger who often shares life experiences about being transgender, while also covering lifestyle and fashion content. This year AJ was featured on the 'Barcroft TV' YouTube channel for the 'My Trans Life' series, and walked the Mardi Gras parade with Instagram in Sydney. She has been a Featured Creator at VidCon AU in 2017, 2018 and now 2019.

Time Stamps

0:53 | Why I want to include authentic voices in my show

5:29 | Interview with AJ Clementine

Interesting Links

Say Hello!

I'm at taku.com.au, Instagram/Twitter: @takuspeaks or Facebook: @TakuTV.

See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Nov 13 2019

42mins

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Rank #8: Writers' Rooms with Screenwriter and Script Editor Wendy Hanna

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"Read scripts from the shows you like and shows you don't like. Have a good look at how they lay things out. " 

Wendy Hanna's episode is full of great tips about writing, finding other writers, growing your community of writers and even entering writing competitions. Hear how we first met at an Animation Writing Workshop and how the mock writers' room she created inspired me to re-think how I'd find writers for my show. 

Podcast Guest Profile

Wendy Hanna is an AWGie nominated screenwriter and creative development consultant with a passion for people, characters and big ideas.

Her credits include iconic serial Neighbours, popular drama Love Child and docu-drama Dating the H-Bomb, as well as numerous children’s programs including Giggle & HootDumbotz and Sydney Sailboat. She is also is co-creator of factual teen format MY:24. A former Development Executive for Essential Media & Entertainment, she has extensive development experience across genres including kids, drama, animation and factual, and regularly works with creative teams to help concepts find their best form. In 2017, Wendy was nominated for an AWGie for her work on ABC’s Hoot Hoot Go!

Time Stamps

0:53 | How I've set up my writers' room...so far

7:20 | Interview with Wendy Hanna

Interesting Links

Say Hello!

I'm at taku.com.au, Instagram/Twitter: @takuspeaks or Facebook: @TakuTV.

See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Nov 11 2019

40mins

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Rank #9: Funding Films with Filmmaker and Director Hawanatu Bangura

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"The key thing is, these funding bodies want you to contact them. They'll give you the time to explain what's required because they want people to succeed as well. "

How can you fund your creative projects whilst working a day job? Who do you need on your team to make your funding applications more competitive? How important is it to create a proof of concept to get more funding? In this episode I chat to filmmaker Hawanatu about how she's managed to get her films and web series made.

We also discuss the importance of valuing time and talent — yours and that of the people you're working with. The numbers start to add up and that's when you can look at applying to screen agencies for support. Hawanatu's latest project Afro Sistahs recently received funding from Screen Australia's Generate initiative.

Podcast Guest Profile

Hawanatu Bangura is an Afro-Australian writer, director and producer. Born in Sierra Leone, she migrated to Australia in 2002 and as a teenager discovered her interest in filmmaking when she was involved in a youth film project.

Since then, she has written and directed six short films in various genres including dance, experimental, drama, documentary and animation. Her films have been screened both in Australia and internationally at film festivals including the Legacy Film Festival (United Kingdom), Shaan-E-Awadh International Film Festival (India), Adelaide Kids Film Festival, African Film festival Australia and International Pan African Film Festival (Cannes), Toronto International Film Festival Kids. Her short animation film, ‘Money Tree’, about a boy who wants to become rich by planting a stolen coin was nominated for best animation at Montreal International Black Film Festival (Canada).

Recently, she joined forces with a group of Afro-Australian female filmmakers to create a web series titled Afro Sistahs a short form narrative comedy/drama that explores the complex nature in which culture, gender, race, love and of course, hair, intersect.

Hawanatu’s films are driven by her personal values – so themes of social justice, empowerment, identity, peace, hope and wisdom are strong in her work. The stories in her films are universal, resonating with audiences far and wide. Hawanatu is passionate about using her films as a platform to raise consciousness about social issues and social injustices. She was part of the prestigious Screen Producers Australia: One to Watch program in 2017.

Time Stamps

0:53 | How I've sought funding for my project  

4:45 | Interview with Hawanatu Bangura

Interesting Links

Say Hello!

I'm at taku.com.au, Instagram/Twitter: @takuspeaks or Facebook: @TakuTV.

See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Nov 07 2019

39mins

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Rank #10: Managing Money with Xero Australia's Amanda Newton

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"Don't settle for a relationship with your accountant or bookkeeper that isn't working for you. "

I know too many artists and creative people who don't feel comfortable talking about money — how much to charge, how to get more of it, how to manage it, how to grow it etc. I've finally had to confront my own fears and insecurities about money because my creative projects need proper funding to happen.

In this episode I share how I manage the finances in my production company and how I unexpectedly scored my first investor. I've also invited Amanda Newton from Xero Australia to explain the difference between an accountant and a bookkeeper, and how to know which one is best for you. Amanda's very friendly and also shares tips about working with people who can handle your finances and tax obligations.

Friendly manners: I've been using Xero for a couple of years and genuinely find that it helps me in my business. This episode is not a paid endorsement for Xero; I invited Amanda on the show because I wanted to interview an expert about accounting.

Podcast Guest Profile

Amanda Newton is Xero Australia’s Head of Community where she works closely alongside their valued community of bookkeepers and accountants on a daily basis to create, foster and nurture safe and engaging spaces for these partners to meaningfully connect.

In addition to serving as a liaison for Xero's accountant and bookkeeping partners, Amanda is a passionate advocate for the industry - presenting at industry conferences and events, and maintaining an active voice on social media.

Combining a Masters of Accounting with undergraduate studies in Marketing and Communications, Amanda's career currently spans two decades and has included leadership roles in small business, politics, large enterprise and non-profit sectors.

Amanda featured in the Top 50 Women in Accounting in 2018.

Time Stamps

0:53 | Managing money in my business and how I got my first investor

14:06 | Interview with Amanda Newton

Interesting Links

Say Hello!

I'm at taku.com.au, Instagram/Twitter: @takuspeaks or Facebook: @TakuTV.

See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Nov 05 2019

37mins

Play