In the article written by Thomas Schatz it discussed the success of Desilu Arnaz and his wife as functioning independently from major networks. What I got from this reading is that Desilu was successful in his decision to remain independent from major networks because it was more beneficial for him in the end. 

It seems as though Desilu had an understanding for what he was doing when it came to the production of his series. There were some complications seen between Milton Biow and Desilu because one wanted the series to be done in New York and the other, Desilu, wanted to remain in control over the production of his series and for it to be produced in Las Angeles. In my personal opinion I would have been on board with Desilu when it comes to being independent because you have more freedom in your production and in some way you are your own boss. From what we have learned in class there are some positives with being associated with an independent association because you have some kind of freedom when it comes to creating and you can be more artistic. 


I think that the institutional independence of Desilu when it came to his production of his series is similar to the institutional independence we have been discussing in class. There are a few reasons I believe this to be true. One is because of the budget/ salary; for example Desilu had a budget for each of his episodes in the series and when it was necessary they increased the budget but as mentioned in the article, “Ball and Arnaz would have to come up with the rest out of their salaries”(Schatz, 120). This is similar to what we have learned in class because there are some independent films which have a low budget and sometimes have to provide a portion of the budget on their own. Also their is a similarity in which Desilu takes over full production and what we have learned in class about production of independent films. As I have mentioned earlier the positive of full production is that you don’t have someone else stating their opinion of what you should and shouldn’t do. Instead you have full authority over the creativeness of your film or in this case for Desilu the production of a series. 

Overall Desilu made a great decision standing his ground and remaining independent because he was able to become successful from having ownership over his series. The fact that CBS was willing to let Desilu have ownership was also a plus and the fact that they were flexible and willing to help with production and budget.


One thought on “I-N-D-E-P-E-N-D-E-N-T

  1. I find it interesting that you think the level of independence is similar to today’s market. I didn’t think of the budget in terms of its “independence” but I think you make a good point. The one thing I would wonder about is whether or not Arnaz’s ability to gain full control of a project and dictate that it be filmed across the nation would actually occur today? I think that there is the possibility for the studio to say that they wouldn’t allow so much control mainly because of the number of filming opportunities there are today.

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