‘Mad Men’ director comes to QU

By on November 11, 2009

Emmy Award-winning director Alan Taylor visited Quinnipiac on Wednesday, Nov. 4, bringing with him experience working on hit television shows like “Lost,” “Sex and the City” and “The Sopranos.”

“I was pleased to see so many people turn out for the event,” Michael D. Calia, director of the Ed McMahon Mass Communications Center, said. “The School of Communications is happy to produce these special events for our students and any other members of our campus community who are interested, but we need to see that students truly value these experiences and want to support them with their attendance.”

After watching the pilot episode of one of Taylor’s recent projects, “Mad Men,” adjunct professor Fran Rzeznik, introduced Taylor. Rzeznik, a longtime colleague of Taylor, teaches in the Film, Video and Interactive Communications program. The two sat on stage and discussed the business of film.

“I can advocate careers in television now better than I could have a few years ago,” Taylor, who received his graduate degree from NYU’s film school, said. “One filmmaker that was an inspiration to me was David Lynch. He said that ‘the future of directing will not be about creating stories, it will be about creating worlds.'”

Taylor shared the logistics of making a television episode, noting a typical hour-long episode takes up to seven days of production, if they’re lucky.

“Good episodic television is just like making a movie every week,” he said.

Taylor also recommended that anyone looking to delve into this field should take time after college to make their own short film.

“My career happened because of my short student films,” he said. “It’s important to show them what you want to do [with film], so you are not bound to something else.”

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