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October 2008 Archive

NBC Is Truly TV's Best Soap Opera Drama

I’m planning another piece on NBC for Sunday. But for now it’s fascinating to watch the network squirm.. Will BBC Worldwide America’s Paul Telegdy become EVP over just unscripted entertainment? Is Telegdy pushing to now or eventually be given a bigger job? Will NBC’s current reality czar Craig Plestis get shown the door despite Ben Silverman’s assurance? Will Jeff Zucker reup Silverman or could Ben decide to quit instead? What will happen to Katherine Pope, Teri Weinberg… Read

Top 10 'Most Anticipated' Movies Of 2009

According to a survey from conducted between August 8th and October 5th of nearly 4,000 movie fans who had just purchased tickets at the website, these are their picks for the “most anticipated” films over the next year: The Top 10 Most Anticipated Films 1.  Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Warner Bros) 2.  X-Men Origins: Wolverine (Fox) 3.  Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (Paramount) 4.  Public Enemies (Universal) 5.  Angels… Read

2ND UPDATE: Is BBC America's Telegdy About To Become A Top NBC Executive?

EXCLUSIVE: This is a really fast-moving story. For months now, I’ve been asking my sources when is NBC going to give more power to real programmers since salesman Ben Silverman isn’t one. So this morning Paul Telegdy suddenly and unexpectedly resigned from BBC Worldwide America. Now I’m told NBC is in negotiations with him about overseeing unscripted entertainment and possibly scripted as well. And my sources inform that it would be Telegdy’s decision whether to fire or… Read

Focus' James Schamus Fires Back At THR

James Schamus is really pissed at that Hollywood Reporter story carried by Reuters yesterday on the eve of the San Francisco premiere dissing the marketing strategy to supposedly not focus on the political significance of Focus Features’ Milk. Here’s the complaint Schamus sent to the trade: To the Editor: Slow news day, eh? As the CEO of Focus Features, I read with interest your October 28 front page article “Politics? Focus won’t ‘Milk’ it,” about our marketing of… Read

Gersh Theater Agent Goes AWOL Again…

Say you’re a tenpercentery with a hot agent who’s also a hot head. And say he walks off the job in a huff from time to time. Well, if you’re the Gersh Agency, you let John Buzzetti blow off steam and then welcome him back again and again. It’s because the New York-based partner and theatrical lit agent reps a bunch of quality musical theater and playwrighting talent. (Gersh’s theater department expanded in 2006 when it annexed the Joyce Ketay Agency.) So I’m told… Read

New 'Law & Order: CI' Season Delayed

UPDATE: I’ve confirmed now. Season 8 of what I consider the best of the Law & Order series was supposed to debut on November 7th. But last night the rumor on the set was that that Criminal Intent is postponed until sometime in 2009 on the USA Network. And, yes, the show is now delayed until first quarter of next year. CI has certainly undergone a lot of change in recent months: showrunner Warren Leight left to run HBO’s In Treatment and two Law & Order vets took his place… Read

Lionsgate Must Be Staffed By Mad Men; Execs Look To Replace Creator Weiner

EXCLUSIVE: It takes a lot to shock me when it comes to Hollywood business. But this is lunacy. I’ve confirmed that Lionsgate execs are calling Hollywood agencies looking for a showrunner to replace Matthew Weiner, the brilliant creator of Mad Men. The reason is that they think Weiner’s agents at CAA are asking for too much money for him. I hear CAA wants a multi-year deal that pays Weiner $10 million a year. (As opposed to what people tell me is the $2.5 million he… Read

Weinstein Company Blames Mystery Man For Spreading “False” Writedown Rumor

UPDATE: It’s not just that The Weinstein Company is denying today’s buzz in film financing circles that it’s taken a $50 million writedown because of all the movies it’s dumped into 2009. Nah, what’s way more interesting is that it’s blaming a specific guy for spreading the rumor. This afternoon, Harvey’s attorney Bert Fields phoned to tell me on the record: “This story is complete false. There is no Weinstein writedown, not for $50 million, not for $5. We think we know… Read