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September 2008 Archive

DOW CRASHES: Closes Down 777 Monday; Worst Single Day Point Drop In History

1 PM UPDATE: Because it took everyone by surprise that the financial bailout bill failed in the House Of Representatives. This is terrible news for media stocks, Wall Street, and Main Street as the credit markets literally start to shut down. The S&P alone has lost 8% of its value. Today’s market plunge was the biggest single day drop, even worse than post-9/11. Though the 1987 crash was worse proportionately. Can the bailout be salvaged? MONDAY, September 29, 2008 GE… Read

PARAMOUNT-MARVEL DEAL: Paramount To Distribute Next Five Marvel Films

2ND UPDATE: I’m told that Marvel received from Paramount a so-called volume discount with regard to distibution fees under this new deal. For Iron Man, Paramount was paid 10% distribution fees by Marvel. Now that figure goes to down to near the 8% Paramount is paid by DreamWorks Animation. EXCLUSIVE: I know that Paramount was thrilled with picking up those fat distribution fees during the enormous $574 million global success of Iron Man this past summer. Now it’s got a… Read

Hollywood Wonders Why 'Fireproof' Did So Well When Other Christian Pics Don't

A big surprise at the box office this weekend was the 4th place opening of Provident/Samuel Goldwyn’s Fireproof, the small budget and limited release pic about a firefighter who recommits to his marriage and his faith. The movie is the latest from Sherwood Pictures, a nonprofit ministry of Sherwood Baptist Church in Albany, Georgia, that previously put out the popular Facing the Giants and the lesser-known Flywheel. Samuel Goldwyn Films is the theatrical distributor… Read

R.I.P. Paul Newman

His death at age 83 following a long battle with cancer was described as just as private and discreet like the way he had lived — surrounded by family and friends at his farmhouse home near Westport, Conn. I had the opportunity to interview him for the cover of the old Los Angeles Times magazine during that most elegant of moments when every Oscar contender is bound equally by hope. Back then seven times a contender, never a champion, Paul Newman was still waiting for his… Read

Box Office

Shia's Political Thriller 'Eagle Eye' No. 1: 'Nights In Rodanthe' #2; U.S. Presidential Debate Dampened Weekend Box Office

SUNDAY AM: Even though they’re getting a divorce after two dysfunctional years, Steven Spielberg and Paramount have still had a successful marriage with films starring Shia LaBoeuf, including Disturbia, Transformers and Indiana Jones And The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull. (I suspect DreamWorks and Paramount will work out joint custody of the 22-year-old action star…) Now Shia is in another of their joint PG-13 thrillers, newcomer Eagle Eye, which wound up the #1 pic in… Read

Judge Blocks Weinstein Co From Taking 'Project Runway' From Bravo To Lifetime

When it rains, it pours for Harvey Weinstein who should should really be producing “The Biggest Loser”. In NYC, Judge Richard B. Lowe III ordered that The Weinstein Co could not go through with its agreement with Lifetime and promote, market or show Project Runway or any spin-off in advance of an October 15th hearing. Under The Weinstein Co’s deal with Lifetime, the 6th season of Project Runway was supposed to premiere on that cable channel instead of NBC Uni’s Bravo as… Read

William Morris Agency Sells Beverly Hills Buildings For Big Bucks; Stays Until 2010

I’m told the deal has just gone down for WMA’s much prized real estate holdings in prime Beverly Hills territory — two on El Camino Drive, and one on Rodeo Drive. They’d been for sale for months but only for the right price. I understand that a single consortium of buyers formed to scoop up all the property at a premium pricetag. In 2010, WMA moves to a green building currently under construction on North Beverly Drive also in Beverly Hills. So the agency will rent back… Read

Letterman vs McCain, Round 2

After busting the GOP president candidate for lying last night, David Letterman opened The Late Show tonight saying this about John McCain (video here): “I don't know if you know about this or not, but last night….Here's the deal – we do this little TV show every night right here on CBS.  And what we do – you see these chairs right here?  That's because we like to have folks come out and visit.  And one of the people who was going to visit with us last night was Senator… Read

Columbia Pics Names New SVP Biz Affairs

Michael Marshall is Columbia Pictures’ new SVP, Business Affairs, to negotiate development and production related deals for feature projects, including rights acquisition and personal services deals for writers, directors, producers and actors.  Read

Hollywood Gentiles Have A Lot To Learn

This email circulating around Hollywood was sent by a DreamWorks floater. Last names have been deleted to protect the Semitic-challenged: Sent: Wednesday, September 24, 2008 5:09 PM Subject: RE: SWP Mtg. Kristi w/ Kristin and Matthew Hey Ryan- I'm sorry, b/c I'm covering for Lindsey's usual asst., could you tell me, who's Rosh Hashanah and why would he/she affect Kristi's meeting with K and M? Thanks! I really appreciate… Read