GenreComedy drama
Directed by
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes10
Executive producers
  • Joanne Toll
  • Michael Hissrich
  • Tommy Hinkley
  • Grant Heslov
  • Matt Adler
Production locationLos Angeles, California
CinematographyTom Inskeep
Running time22-26 minutes
Production companies
Original release
ReleaseJanuary 9 (2005-01-09) –
February 27, 2005 (2005-02-27)

Unscripted is an American comedy-drama series that aired on HBO in early 2005. The series was largely improvised by its performers. It was executive produced by Steven Soderbergh, George Clooney, and Grant Heslov.

Unscripted is the second HBO series Clooney and Soderbergh collaborated on that has an improvisational structure, after K Street. Clooney directed the first five episodes.


Unscripted follows the misadventures of three struggling actors, who are all in the same acting class in Los Angeles, California, as they make the rounds from auditions to rejection and from personal struggle and to satisfaction. The three all play themselves, as the show blends fact with fiction as a movie/show within a show. It features many cameo appearances from stars playing themselves either in projects they're involved in, or involved in a social function, such as Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Noah Wyle, Hank Azaria, Richard Kind, Meryl Streep, Uma Thurman, Jon Lovitz, Shia LaBeouf, Keanu Reeves, Sam Rockwell, Danny Comden, Bonnie Hunt, George Lopez, Barry Corbin, director Doug Liman and producer Akiva Goldsman.

Main characters

Other characters

Critical reception

Unscripted received mixed reviews. Nathan Rabin of The A.V. Club wrote, "At its most bittersweet, Unscripted captures the vulnerability of actors fighting off that nagging internal voice that says maybe they just aren't fated to make it big, and their careers will peak with bit parts, softcore porn, or roles on second-rate soaps or sitcoms."[2] Tom Shales of The Washington Post wrote a positive review, saying, "If there's anything television doesn't need—or so you'd think—it's another show about show business…[but] Unscripted succeeds credibly and entertainingly in deglamorizing an occupation that most of us still probably think of as exciting and glittery even at its most rudimentary level”[3] and "it definitely grows on you the way good but quirky shows do."[3]

Tim Goodman of the San Francisco Chronicle was more critical,[4] writing, "Unscripted is a miss, and not because this cinema verite-styled show mixes fiction and reality in a way that is—what's the word?—confusing. It's not even that the series is insiderish. HBO's other series about actors in Los Angeles, Entourage, is so inside that you'll need a Daily Variety to find your way back out. The difference is that series is compelling."[4] He concluded, "Unscripted certainly does better attempting humor than trying to draw sympathy, but it lacks something inside."[4]

Home media

The entire series was released on Region 1 DVD in the U.S. on October 18, 2005, by HBO Home Video.[5]


  1. ^ Aurthur, Kate (February 13, 2005). "Playing Himself at His Own Expense". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved June 18, 2022.
  2. ^ Rabin, Nathan (October 16, 2005). "Unscripted". The A.V. Club. Retrieved June 18, 2022.
  3. ^ a b Shales, Tom (January 8, 2005). "HBO's 'Unscripted': A Promising Page From the Actor's Life". The Washington Post. Retrieved June 18, 2022.
  4. ^ a b c Goodman, Tim (January 7, 2005). "Jack's back to fight terrorists another day in '24' -- sans Kim". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved June 18, 2022.
  5. ^ Lambert, David (2005-08-04). "Unscripted - DVD Announcement & Cover Art". tvshowsondvd.com. Archived from the original on 2011-05-25. Retrieved 2009-04-25.