Media, Darling: Chris Perez

Chris Perez has been working in television for over a decade – and for the last five years as a producer for CTV and Canada’s top rated entertainment magazine show, etalk. Chris is usually found immersed in hours of tape, interviewing famous types or on the phone pushing publicists for “exclusive access.” He covers a wide range of beats, but his current focus is on special projects, the most recent being a backstage prime time special featuring Lady Gaga. 



Twitter: @lespanman , @eTalkCTV


What was your favourite class in high school? Why?
Grade 12 English. This is probably thanks to a certain Dead Poets Society/“Professor Keating” type named Mr. Geddes who gave me my first flash of passion for the arts and social science. From there on life outside a lab didn’t sound so bad.


How did you get your start as a producer?
I began my career as a hobby. An occasional co-op placement at a local community television station turned into a part-time volunteer ‘gig’, which evolved into actual paid work, which grew into an unexpected full-time job. I know people say it’s good to have a separate job and hobby. I say life is pretty awesome when you’d do your job for free! Just don’t tell my boss that.


If you weren’t a Media, Darling, what would you be doing right now?
Probably pursuing my side interest in Human-Computer Interaction and Sociology.


Pitching or follow up: Phone or email?
Emails give me time to think of ideas and speak to the ‘right people’ about making a story happen, so I prefer them for the initial pitch. Follow-up emails are good too, but once in a while it’s nice to put a voice to a name.


We know irrelevant pitches, calling you the wrong name and eight follow-ups are no-no’s; what else should publicists avoid doing?
It’s easy to dismiss a pitch because it’s too dense, doesn’t get to the point quickly or is too broad and doesn’t target me.  

An ideal publicist is direct, considers my audience and respects my objectives. Also, publicists who act as ‘middle-men’ and aren’t empowered on behalf of their clients are hard to work with. I prefer to deal with publicists who are organized, effective and are tightly connected with their clients so they can speak on their behalf.


Sunrise or sunset?
Mid day. 🙂


Scent?
Coconut.


Cookie?
Yes, please.


Flower?
Leaf? Mint. It’s gum, it’s tea, it’s anything you want it to be.

Ticklish?
Very.


Shower or bath?
Shower.


Film?
Lost In Translation.


Crush?
My fiancée, followed by Alicia Keys.


First job?
A half day of telemarketing when I was 16. The room was smoky and filled with cranky 40-year old men. I took an executive lunch and didn’t go back.


Inspiration?
The idea of learning something new and experiencing something new as often as possible.