Frank Sinatra Feted At Los Angeles Italia Fest; ‘Mockingjay’ Gets New China Release Date: Global Showbiz Briefs

Ol’ Blue Eyes is back – in spirit at least. The 2015 Los Angeles Italia Film, Fashion and Art Fest will honor the centennial of Frank Sinatra’s birth with a series of initiatives between Italy and the U.S. The 10th edition of the event runs from February 15-21 at LA’s Hollywood & Highland Center and will feature a film retrospective and several musical performances dedicated to “the greatest Italian-American star of all times.” Included will be Fred Zinnemann’s 1953 classic From Here To Eternity, for which Sinatra won the Best Supporting Actor Oscar. Also expected in the homage are Some Came Running, The Man With The Golden Arm, Guys And Dolls, On The Town, The Manchurian Candidate and Ocean’s 11, among others. Sinatra died in 1998.

Hunger Games Mockingjay Part 1After moving out of its November 2014 slot, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 now has a confirmed February 8 China release date. The film — imported by China Film Group and jointly distributed by CFG, Huaxia and Lionsgate’s Beijing-based promotional partner, Talent International Film Co — will debut in more than 4,000 theaters. That’s the biggest Hunger Games rollout to date in China and the first of the franchise to be released in 3D. As of last weekend, Mockingjay had taken $696.2M at the worldwide box office. To go with the China launch, star Jennifer Lawrence has recorded a special greeting for local fans. Catching Fire made about $28M last year in the Middle Kingdom.

The Sherlock special episode that’s due to air this year has begun filming. BBC One tweeted the news last night along with a photo of a mustachioed clap board and the exclamation: “Element-hairy, my dear Watson!” The special for the sleuthing drama will be followed by a series of three new episodes that will shoot later this year. Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman are reprising their roles.

Martin Metzger has joined Red Arrow Entertainment Group’s management board as Managing Director, Business Affairs. In the newly created position, he will be responsible for legal and business affairs oversight throughout the Red Arrow portfolio. Metzger joined the ProSiebenSat.1 Group in 2000 and first worked as legal counsel for various departments. He later assumed various positions in ProSiebenSat.1’s legal unit. Since 2006, he also has been Managing Director of the Artist Management Agency of the Group.

Universal Networks International has tapped Nicoletta Gelli as SVP Marketing. The role is newly created at the international channels’ division of NBCUniversal International Television. Based in London, Gelli will lead marketing and digital activity for UNI’s portfolio of pay-TV channels around the world, including key brands Universal Channel, Syfy, 13th Street, Studio Universal, E! Entertainment Television, DIVA and Telemundo. Prior to joining UNI, the exec headed up brand consultancy business Brand Compass which she founded in 2011. She also spent 13 years with Disney Channels, most recently as VP Brand Marketing, Disney Channels EMEA.

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