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Jonas Mekas Dies: Avant-Garde Filmmaker And Champion Was 96

Jonas Mekas, a towering figure in New York’s avant-garde film scene and a pioneering force for film preservation, died today at age 96. His death was announced by Anthology Film Archives, the still-active archive and theater he cofounded in Manhattan’s East Village 48 years ago. "Jonas passed away quietly and peacefully early this morning," Anthology Film Archives wrote in a statement posted on Instagram today. "He was at home with family. He will be greatly missed but… Read


eOne Ups Tara Long To President Global Unscripted TV

Tara Long, who launched Entertainment One’s U.S. unscripted TV business in 2012, has been promoted to President, Global Unscripted, Television for the studio. The move comes after Long's continued success at eOne in the U.S. with key broadcast partners including E!, BET, WE tv, A&E, MTV, Lifetime, VH1, Discovery Channel, and History, as well as growth in the UK following the acquisition of unscripted leaders Whizz Kid Entertainment. Since joining eOne in 2012, Long has… Read


Verizon Shedding 800 Jobs In Media Unit Once Known As Oath

The contraction continues in Verizon’s media operations. The telecom giant informed employees that it planned to cut about 800 jobs, or 7% of the workforce, in the media and advertising unit formerly branded Oath. The division, which houses such Web 1.0 names as AOL, Yahoo and HuffPost, once had grand ambitions of keeping pace with digital giants. Last December, the company conceded the strategy of buying up distressed digital properties had not borne fruit, taking a $4.6… Read


Anna Karenina YA TV Series With Korean-American Lead In Works From Jenny Lee, eOne, Drew Comins & Scooter Braun

Jenny Lee

EXCLUSIVE: In a competitive situation with several companies pursuing, Entertainment One has acquired the TV rights to Jenny Lee’s upcoming YA novel Anna K, a modern-day, multicultural retelling of Leo Tolstoy’s classic Anna Karenina, to adapt as a TV series with Drew Comings’ Creative Engine Entertainment and Scooter Braun’s SB Projects. Described as Gossip Girl and 13 Reasons Why meets Crazy Rich AsiansAnna K is set between Manhattan and Greenwich, CT. It follows a… Read


Plaintiff In $100M Lawsuit Against Brad Grey & Brian Graden Wants Case Dismissed – Update


2ND UPDATE, 2:20 PM: The man who sued ex-MTV exec Brian Graden and the late Brad Grey for $100 million in May alleging sexual assault has asked the court to ax the lawsuit. Rovier Carrington petitioned a federal court last week to drop the suit, but Judge Katherine Polk Failla instead ruled Tuesday that the plaintiff must file an official motion to dismiss the case. Read details about the lawsuit below. UPDATED 4:06 PM with statement from Brian Graden’s attorney: "We take… Read


Lorraine Toussaint To Portray Activist Flo Kennedy In Gloria Steinem Biopic

EXCLUSIVE: Lorraine Toussaint, who currently stars in AMC’s Into the Badlands, has been cast as the feminist, civil rights advocate and activist Flo Kennedy in the upcoming biopic on iconic women’s rights leader Gloria Steinem which is being directed by Julie Taymor. The Glorias stars Julianne Moore and Alicia Vikander who are both playing Steinem at various stages of her life. The film is based on Steinem's memoir. Flo Kennedy was a powerhouse and somewhat flamboyant… Read


Audra McDonald, Michael Shannon Set For Broadway Revival Of Terrence McNally’s ‘Frankie And Johnny In The Clair De Lune’

Audra McDonald and Michael Shannon will star in a Broadway revival this May of Terrence McNally's Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune, producers announced today. The production will be directed by Obie Award winner Arin Arbus in her Broadway debut. The 16-week revival, described as a strictly limited engagement, will begin previews in May at a Shubert Organization theater to be announced. The engagement will be produced by Hunter Arnold, Debbie Bisno and Tom Kirdahy… Read


Mike Colter, Nafessa Williams Join Sony’s ‘Black And Blue’ Thriller Starring Naomie Harris

EXCLUSIVE: Luke Cage star Mike Colter and Nafessa Williams, who plays Thunder in the DC Comics-based CW series Black Lightning, have joined star Naomie Harris in the cop thriller, Black And Blue, which hails from Sony’s Screen Gems. Deon Taylor is directing the film from a script by Peter A. Dowling. It centers on a rookie New Orleans cop (Harris) who rounds the corner just as corrupt narc officers are murdering a drug dealer, an event captured by her body cam. When they… Read


Alexandre O. Philippe Signs With WME Ahead Of Sundance Bow Of ‘Memory: The Origins Of Alien’

Alexandre O Philippe WME

EXCLUSIVE: Alexandre O. Philippe, whose latest documentary Memory: The Origins of Alien about the untold story behind Ridley Scott's Alien is having its world premiere Thursday at the Sundance Film Festival, has signed with WME. The deal, which includes Philippe’s company Exhibit A Pictures and partners Kerry Deignan Roy and Robert Muratore, is for representation in all areas. Philippe’s credits include 78/52: Hitchcock's Shower Scene, the 2017 documentary dissecting the… Read


SAG Awards Reveals First List Of Presenters: The Stars Of The Films Up For Best Ensemble Cast

The first group of presenters for Sunday’s 25th annual SAG Awards is out, and it’s a doozy of a list. The top stars from five of this awards season’s biggest movies will be on hand at Sunday at the Shrine Auditorium to introduce clips from their films that are nominated for the marquee Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture trophy. Here they are: A Star Is Born Bradley Cooper Sam Elliott Lady Gaga Black Panther Angela Bassett Chadwick Boseman BlackKklansman… Read


Sue Naegle Upped To Chief Content Officer At Annapurna

Sue Naegle Annapurna

Annapurna has promoted Sue Naegle to chief content officer of Annapurna, where she will expand her role as president of the Megan Ellison company’s television division to oversee development and production the film slate. She will also have the company's Theatre division in here purview and will manage the cross-platform pollination of Annapurna Interactive's IP. Naegle will report to Ellison. Annapurna said it plans to produce and acquire between 3-5 features a year for… Read


Charles Burnett To Direct Slavery-Escape Pic ‘Steal Away’ For Amazon

EXCLUSIVE: Amazon Studios is developing the film Steal Away about the daring theft and escape of Robert Smalls, a slave in 1862 Charleston, SC. To Sleep With Anger filmmaker Charles Burnett is attached to direct with Cotty Chubb and George Plamondon producing. Andy Froemke wrote the script. With a crew of fellow slaves, their families and Smalls’ own wife and children on board, the young boatman risks his and their lives to steal a paddlewheel steamer. Smalls was assigned… Read