Winter 2020


Jodie Taylor

Verbal Precision in Three Words or Less

By Becca Nadler

I think the less words you use on headset the better," says associate director Jodie Taylor, who coordinates among the director, producers and stage managers during tapings of Showtime's Desus & Mero. "I see it as part of my job to disseminate information as precisely as I can within three words or less without causing an interruption of the show."

Key to Taylor's process is having "a common language unique to the show in order to streamline communications and work as fast as humanly possible… so that you can be nimble and easily and quickly problem-solve within three words or less during the taping of the show," she says. "It saves confusion, and you're not stepping on anybody else's cues or information that needs to be relayed."

Taylor, who has also directed episodes of The President Show and the documentary Pennhurst, often utilizes her multifaceted experience of working in different disciplines to foster efficient problem-solving during prep and taping. "All of the problems I've come across over the years have translated into extremely thorough prep, so that [they] can be foreseen as opposed to having to deal with them last-minute as we're taping," she says.

(Photo: Kevin Scanlon)

At Work With

Short profiles of Guild members in all categories sharing their experiences at work.

More from this issue
This issue trains the spotlight on directors of non-fiction programming, including documentaries, news, sports and reality programming. In this regard, the subject of our centerpiece DGA Interview is Barbara Kopple. The three-time DGA Award winner and recipient of two Oscars discusses her relentless quest for truth and her uncanny ability to get her subjects to bare their souls. Read about Kopple's career and more in our latest magazine.