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December 2011 Archive


Legendary East's Hong Kong Partner PYE Shelves Deal, Cites Insufficient Share Sale

UPDATE: Legendary East released the following statement: "The goal is to relaunch a placing exercise in 2012. Legendary East will issue a formal announcement when the new structure and transaction is solidified." PREVIOUS: Legendary East’s proposed partner Paul Y Engineering has put its $220.5 million investment in the venture on hold. The Hong Kong construction company said it had been unable to raise the necessary funds in a share sale to investors ahead of the year-end… Read


SAG Awards Ballot Instructions Mailed Out

Postcards with ballot instructions for voting on the 18th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards will be mailed today to nearly 100,000 SAG members. Eligible members who paid their November dues by Friday, December 16 can vote for outstanding performances in five movie and eight television categories. Online voting is encouraged. Paper ballots may be obtained by request only by calling toll free (877) 610-8637 before 5 p.m. (PT) on Monday, Jan.16th. A list of this year’s… Read


Joe Halderman, Foiled Blackmailer Of David Letterman, Is 'On The Case With Paula Zahn'

The former CBS News producer who tried to blackmail David Letterman for $2 million has joined the staff of Investigation Discovery's On the Case with Paula Zahn, TVNewser reported today. Joe Halderman, who was a producer for 48 Hours Mystery, joined the crime documentary show On the Case as a producer a few weeks ago. Exec producer Scott Weinberger cited “Halderman's professional accomplishments as an Emmy award-winning producer for 48 Hours and CBS News" in a… Read


'Ghost Rider' Rights Belong To Marvel, Federal Judge Rules

Rights to the flaming-skull motorcycle-riding Ghost Rider belongs to Marvel Comics, a federal judge ruled. The vigilante played by Nicolas Cage in a 2007 movie and its upcoming sequel debuted in 1972 after Marvel freelancer Gary Friedrich first conceived him, the judge ruled. In his 2007 lawsuit, Friedrich claimed Marvel had infringed his rights to the character and its use in movies and merchandise. The judge said Friedrich relinquished his rights to Ghost Rider when he… Read


SAG Extends David White's Term Until 2014

The Screen Actors Guild has extended executive director David White’s contract through 2014, Deadline has confirmed. The extension was not announced. White’s existing contract would have expired in February 2012, but with the proposed merger of SAG with the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists on the agenda next year SAG’s board wanted to maintain continuity in leadership. White has been executive director officially since October 18, 2009. He had been… Read


2011 Basic Cable Ratings: USA Still On Top, History & FX Up, Nick At Nite & TBS Down

YEARENDER: There was little change at the top of the primetime basic cable rankings for 2011, with USA finishing the year as No. 1 in total viewers and adults 18-49 for a sixth consecutive time on the strength of its original series. The cable network added another hit to its original slate this year with rookie Suits. There was one change each in the Top 5 among total viewers and 18-49 from 2010. History broke into the Top 5 among total viewers after doing the same… Read


Demian Bichir's Surprise SAG Nomination Boosts Best Actor Oscar Chances

Summit Entertainment got a head start on on awards season the day after Labor Day, September 6, by sending out DVD screeners of their boxoffice-challenged A Better Life. Because this Oscar hopeful is a small human drama they opened June 24 (the same “good luck” weekend Best Picture winner The Hurt Locker opened two years ago) the company knew they would have to define it in different ways. It became the first movie of the season to set up Q&As in June with star Demian… Read


Production Locations: Top 10 U.S. & Beyond

The “Top 10: United States of Production” summarizes steps taken by various states to lure or retain production. The “Top 10 Locations In The Universe” looks at the situation globally. Note the overlaps or lack thereof. California rates tops in the Universe but only fifth in the USL Top 10: United States Of Production 1. Louisiana 2. Illinois 3. Florida 4. Georgia 5. California 6. Connecticut 7. New York 8. Utah 9. New Mexico 10. Michigan Top 10 Locations In The… Read


Jessica Chastain, Howard Shore To Be Feted By Palm Springs Film Festival

Jessica Chastain will be honored with the Spotlight Award and composer Howard Shore will receive the Frederick Loewe Music Award at the 23rd annual Palm Springs International Film Festival. Chastain will be recognized for her roles in The Help, The Tree of Life, Take Shelter, The Debt and Coriolanus. Shore, a previous recipient of the Loewe Award in 2005 for scoring Martin Scorsese’s The Aviator, will be honored for his work on Scorsese's Hugo. The Awards Gala will be… Read


HBO Leads ASC Society's TV Nominations

LOS ANGELES, December 28, 2011 – The American Society of Cinematographers (ASC) has announced nominees in three television categories for the 26th Annual Outstanding Achievement Awards competition. The awards ceremony will be held here on February 12 at the Hollywood & Highland Grand Ballroom. Nominees in the one-hour Episodic Television Series/Pilot Category are: David Franco for HBO’s Boardwalk Empire (“To the Lost”) Jonathan Freeman, ASC for Boardwalk Empire… Read


R.I.P. Cheetah

Cheetah, the impish chimpanzee who starred in the Tarzan films of the 1930s alongside Johnny Weissmuller and Maureen O’Sullivan, died on Christmas Eve of kidney failure at the Florida primate sanctuary where he had been living since his retirement from showbiz. He was 80. “It is with great sadness that the community has lost a dear friend and family member,” the Suncoast Primate Sanctuary in Palm Harbor announced on its website. Cheetah had performed in such classic films… Read

Univision Ratings Shine Over Rival Reruns

For the second time this week Univision on Tuesday moved to the top of primetime ratings, tying with CBS for No. 1 in adults 18-49 for the night and outranking all other networks in adults 18-34. Univision’s Una Familia Con Suerte (A Lucky Family) continued as a particularly solid performer in the younger demo and matched or outperformed repeats as with NCIS on CBS, and other weaker programming on competing networks. On Monday night, Univision was the highest rated… Read