Andy George's curiosity has taken him all around the country for his new show, How To Make Everything, which premieres this Saturday. The pilot episode was originally filmed as a documentary, titled How To Make A Sandwich, where he decided to learn how to make every single element of a sandwich from scratch.
“It really started out as a personal challenge,” says George via email chat. “I had been experimenting with making my own bread, and was curious what the outcome would be I took it to the full extreme and made it all the way from scratch.”
[jump] Like any true adventurer, he had questions. Would the sandwich taste better if it was made from scratch? How difficult would the process be? He spent six months documenting the project, as he did everything from milking a cow to growing crops to making a trip to the West Coast for salt from the ocean.
The documentary turned out great, garnering many positive reviews after it was screened at various film festivals. The process itself was fulfilling to George, but his curiosity wasn't letting up.
“I realized there are so many other things I use everyday that I have no idea how [they] are made,” he says. “That's when I had the idea of turning the documentary into a series.”
Just like the original film, the show is driven by George's curiosity of how things are made. Viewers will learn about a wide range of topics, including textiles, glass making, and metalworking.
The program also requires a lot of research, which is done a couple of ways.
“It begins with lots of internet research, of course, but eventually winds up with us connecting with local experts, who have [been] doing their craft for years, and learning from them,” he says. “We actually still use the library to gain insight from good ol' fashion books.”
A show like this has many challenges, and the most difficult is scheduling. A lot of the ingredients they need to find are only available during certain times of the year, and other ingredients take months to make.
“In order to create an entire season in under a year, we have to create a schedule months ahead of time, shooting pieces of different episodes at different times,” he says, adding that another big challenge is the traveling required. With the show's small budget, this is especially difficult for overseas trips.
Then there the time slot. While there's not a ton of new programming on at 11 p.m. Saturday night during the summer, the fall brings the premiere of Saturday Night Live. George isn't too worried.
“I believe How To Make Everything offers a really unique viewing experience that's unlike today's 'reality' or 'lifestyle' shows, “ he says. “It manages to be both entertaining and funny, yet also really educational at the same time. The show takes an honest look at today's world, and offers viewers a unique vantage point to see our planet in a new light.”
He's also very upfront about not being the expert on the program. The audience will learn with him.
“This is a show that aims to make you feel like you've expanded your understanding of the world by the end of it,” he wrote.
How to Make Everything's series premiere debuts Saturday, June 27, at 11 p.m. on KSTC-45 with the sandwich episode.