Third Floor, Ladies Lingeré.

The Elevator Pitch

A good elevator pitch should last no longer than a short elevator ride of 30 seconds to 3 minutes, hence the name.  

You should practice your elevator pitch, regardless of whether you will be able to pitch to someone at your favorite movie studio or art gallery. It will help you to encapsulate your ideas and to bring brevity to your vision. It will boost your confidence! It will help you resolve questions of continuity. It will get you past that awkward stumble when someone asks you what you are working on.

Do you remember the elevator movie scene in Pulp Fiction? John Travolta and Samuel L. Jackson discuss a foot massage gratuitously given to the wife of a drug dealer. The drug dealer was so incensed that he murdered the massager. The low-angle two-shot pulls you into their conversation. While their conservative suits and ties belay their mission – to intimidate a client to pay for his drugs – their conversation is more deliberate and guttural. You get the pitch. You feel the tension that will lead to the next scene, in which Jackson shoots up the apartment.

The elevator scenes in Mad Men were often devoid of conversation. While you had to be in on the narrative to know what was occurring, the silent elevator scene is as memorable as the one in Pulp Fiction.

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