UPDATE: WGA member Ed Decter (co-screenwriter of There’s Something About Mary) emails me: “Please mention to your readers that while Oprah’s gift basket (The United Artists 90th Anniversary Prestige Collection) contains some incredibly wonderful classic films on DVD, the writers of those historic movies will make only four cents out of the $869.00 that the basket costs. Ninety DVDs times four cents would come out to $3.60. That is the writers’ share of the Presige Collection. Hold on, I have to amend that. Only the writers of the movies AFTER 1960 will be eligible for the four cents. Billy Wilder and I.A.L. Diamond had the misfortune of writing Some Like It Hot in 1959, so their estates will receive NOTHING.”
Oprah had the holiday version of her “Favorite Things” TV show yesterday where greedy audiences go embarrassingly wild because they’ve been gifted with big- and small-ticket consumer goods personally endorsed by the talk show queen. (Seriously, I don’t get why over-priced soap makes these women weepy!) Well, 17th on Oprah’s shopping list turned out to be United Artists 90th Anniversary Prestige Collection for the whopping price of $869.98. What the hell — those DVDs made out of gold? Here’s the flackery: “In honor of the studio’s 90th birthday, United Artists has created a gift for the ultimate movie buff. A whopping 90 DVDs of their best and most popular films have been compiled into one book. The set includes 8 Academy Award winners like In the Heat of the Night, Annie Hall, Some Like It Hot, Rocky, West Side Story and Midnight Cowboy. Each DVD is packaged with liner notes about the movie and never-before-seen photos and original movie posters.”
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