Ashley Tisdale Broadway-Bound As Sharpay In ‘High School Musical’ Spinoff

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 11:28pm PDT

ashley-tisdale-alright-prevI’m surprised that Ashley Tisdale is coming back to The Disney Channel in a High School Musical spinoff when all the news reports about her kept saying she was done playing Sharpay Evans and looking to go edgy as a pop star. But … Read More »

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Assoc Of Media Composers & Lyricists Exit

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 9:19pm PDT

I just received official notification that, on April 1st, Alan Elliott is resigning from the Organizing Committee of the Association of Media Composers and Lyricists “after four years of dedicated service in advancing our unionization efforts” with Teamsters Local 399. “The Organizing Committee, in recognition of his many contributions in … Read More »

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Stone, DiCaprio on ‘Deep Blue Goodbye’?

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 4:28pm PDT
Mike Fleming

0449223833.01.LZZZZZZZWhile Leonardo DiCaprio is likely to next star in the Clint Eastwood’-directed Hoover, he’s also eyeing another A-list filmmaker for a different screen vehicle. DiCaprio’s having early talks with Oliver Stone to direct The Deep Blue Good-By, an adaptation of the … Read More »

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Miramax Bids Deadline Delayed To April 5; But Who’s Out, Still In, And Why…

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 2:57pm PDT

miramax_logo_blackUPDATED: The deadline had been March 31st and then April 1st and now April 5th. So here’s the latest: Disney just a few months ago may have hoped for $700+ million, but it’s not going to happen after the past few weeks of due diligence by potential bidders. Fact is that sources tell me the Miramax auction process is turning into a bust.  People who initially looked at the asset (among them Lionsgate, Summit, Qualia, and Media Rights Capital) came to the conclusion that the specialty division was not worth more than $375M-$500M. So Disney is now asking $650 million cash. Everybody was told there would be firm deadlines for submitting bids and then closing. Well, all that has fallen by the wayside. As people have dropped out, Disney has opted to let stragglers opt in. Sources tell me that, when new parties inquire as to the availability of the library, they are told that they’re welcome to the due diligence information but ”you have to act quickly”. This has been going on for over 5 weeks.

The Mouse House is hoping that somebody will chase the cheese and write a check. But, right now, the auction is going about as well as the MGM auction — which is badly with the same delays and lowball offers. But, while MGM needs money for its survival, Disney doesn’t have to sell.

So who’s left in it? Tire kicker Tom Gores’ Platinum Equity historically looks at everything and then does nothing. I know Harvey and Bob Weinstein claim they’re still in it, but my sources don’t believe they have the capital to support a bid without a lot of well-heeled partners they’ll have to answer to (and whose names they’re keeping secret, for now).

Speaking of the Weinsteins, it’s unbelievable how much bullshit that one Weinstein Co exec in particular is feeding to gullible media about this sale and Harv’s and Bob’s chances. Look at this ridiculousness which one website just wrote: “Some observers believe that Weinstein will be able to offer more money for the company, because Miramax founders Harvey and Bob know the library well, and have the ability to exploit the assets in it better than just about anyone.” Jeez, that doesn’t even make sense — and it shouldn’t to the Weinstein’s partners on the bid.

The exec even used the auction as leverage during the Oscars, making unholy deals to deliver insider news on the bidding process if the media agreed to run stories about how TWC’s Inglourious Bastards could win Best Picture — a mathematical impossibility since IB clearly ran behind Avatar and The Hurt Locker. I, for one, said no thanks. But a lot of news outlets agreed. Read More »

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THUMBS DOWN: CBS Affiliates Chairman Circulates Anti-Comcast/NBCU Letter

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 2:56pm PDT

UPDATES: ABC/CBS/Fox Affiliates Demand Meeting With Comcast About NBCU Deal

CBS eyeWith the deadline looming for the FCC to receive comments by May 3rd and reply comments by … Read More »

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ABC/CBS/Fox Affiliates Demand Meeting With Comcast About NBCU Deal; Letter Worries About “Competitive Disadvantage”

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 2:19pm PDT


ComcastNBC

CNBC’s Julia Boorstin, whose media outlet is privy to private info surrounding the deal, breaks the news today that independent affiliates of ABC, CBS, and Fox ”are raising concerns” about Comcast’s acquisition of rival network NBC Universal. They’re looking to ensure that the Comcast … Read More »

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Brillstein Adds Stern In Gotham Expansion

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 2:18pm PDT
Mike Fleming

get-attachment.aspxBrillstein Entertainment Partners has hired former New York-based William Morris agent Brian Stern to become a manager in the company’s Gotham headquarters in Tribeca. BEP opened its New York outpost last fall, setting veteran manager Stacy O’Neil to head it. Stern’s … Read More »

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MPAA Organizes Entertainment Community Opposition To Movie Futures Exchange

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 1:38pm PDT
Mike Fleming

UPDATES Is Betting On Box Office Good For Films?
WORST IDEA EVER? Wall Street Plans Futures Exchange Tied To Box Office

motion-picture-association-of-americaWashington, DC (March 31, 2010)

Read More »

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Leonardo DiCaprio Eyes J. Edgar Hoover Role In Biopic For Eastwood and Grazer

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 12:06pm PDT
Mike Fleming

leonardo_aviatorEXCLUSIVE: Leonardo DiCaprio is in early talks to play FBI director J. Edgar Hoover in Hoover, an epic drama that Clint Eastwood will direct and that he and Brian Grazer will produce with Rob Lorenz through Imagine and Malpaso. Talks with … Read More »

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R.I.P. David Mills

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 11:17am PDT

david millsThe Treme staff writer and co-executive producer died of a brain aneurism yesterday. He was only 48. HBO just issued this statement: “HBO is deeply saddened by the sudden loss of our dear friend and colleague David Mills. He … Read More »

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Hot Trailer: Tom Cruise In ‘Knight And Day’

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 11:05am PDT
Mike Fleming

Before Tom Cruise chose Knight and Day as his follow-up to Valkyrie, he had every studio custom-tailoring as Cruise vehicles films that included the DreamWorks action film Motorcade, The Tourist (which rebounded as a Johnny Depp-Angelina Jolie vehicle), a teaming with Denzel Washington in the Robert Ludlum novel adaptation The Read More »

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No Sex Please, I’m Neal McDonough…

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 10:53am PDT

neal mcdonoughNeal McDonough is a marvelous actor who elevates every role he plays, whether it’s in Band of Brothers or Desperate Housewives. So when he was suddenly replaced with David James Elliott 3 days into the filming on ABC’s new … Read More »

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Kal Penn Returns From White House to Another ‘White Castle’ Stoner Sequel

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 10:43am PDT
Mike Fleming

2008_harold_and_kumar_escape_from_guantanamo_bay_wall_002New Line has set a summer start date on the third installment of the Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle franchise, with the Warner Bros-based company about to hire a director, and seriously considering doing the film in 3D. The … Read More »

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Faris In New Line ‘Private Benjamin’ Redo

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 9:20am PDT
Mike Fleming

New Line has closed a rights deal to remake the 1981 comedy Private Benjamin with Anna Faris playing the title role originated by Goldie Hawn. Amy Talkington will write the script originated by Charles Shyer, Nancy Meyers. and Harvey Miller. Mark Gordon will produce. Between the Scary Movie films and … Read More »

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Marketing Prez Bob Oswaks Exits Sony TV

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 8:45am PDT

EXCLUSIVE: I heard this late last night but confirmed it this morning. This week is his last. Several sources tell me Steve Mosko took the step because of Oswaks’ management style. He was a ”completely ineffective marketer, in addition to his constant internal struggles with key management caused the abrupt departure. Oswaks had many complaints … Read More »

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MGM GETS MORE TIME (4th Extension)

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 7:20am PDT
Mike Fleming

mgmIn a development that’s hardly surprising, MGM has received more time from its lenders to figure out its ownership and try to make the Lion roar again. This follows an auction that amounted to a bottom-feeding frenzy in which suitors looked over the studio’s assets … Read More »

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From Movies To Stage – And Back Again

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 7:06am PDT
Mike Fleming

A lot of reciprocal movement from screen to stage. Smuggler Films, the shingle formed by John N. Hart, Brian Carmody and Patrick Milling Smith, have optioned Jean Anouilh’s Tony-winning 1960 play Becket and plan to turn it into a film. They’ve hired playwright/lyricist Ranjit Bolt to write the script. The … Read More »

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‘Twilight’s Stephenie Meyer Gives Fans Novella; Makes Progress On ‘The Host’

By | Wednesday March 31, 2010 @ 5:32am PDT
Mike Fleming

stephenie-meyer2Stephenie Meyer announced that she has written the Twilight tie-in novella The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner: An Eclipse Novel. Little,Brown will release the book June 5, pledging $1 from each copy to be donated to the Red Cross for … Read More »

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Hollywood Reporter Publisher Eric Mika Officially Out: THR Turned Down By LA Times’ Lynne Segall; What’s Next?

By | Tuesday March 30, 2010 @ 6:46pm PDT

THR logo2 E5 Global Media CEO Richard Beckman just informed the staff about Eric Mika’s exit. It’s hardly unexpected. Ever since Beckman was hired in January, he has been telling people outside the trade — but, deliberately, not the staff — that he … Read More »

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