All of this season’s judges on The Voice are coming back but not until next spring. NBC is close to finalizing deals that will see Shakira and Usher returning to the singing competition show for Season 6 in the spring of 2014, insiders say. The return of the duo will see the departure again of original judges Christina Aguilera and Cee Lo Green. After taking a cycle off, the two are themselves coming back for season 5 of The Voice, which is set to premiere in the fall. Adam Levine and Blake Shelton will continue their bromance and stay on the show for both of the next two seasons. “It is almost all done and the network is looking to make the official announcements in the next few days,” a source told me. Details of the alternating judges plan was first reported by EW. In many ways this isn’t much of a surprise. Executive Producer Mark Burnett has long said that the show could see members of the judging panel coming and going over different seasons depending on their availability. The fifth season of the show has already been fully cast and filming on the Blind Auditions portion of the season is set to begin on July 8. The Voice ends its current season on June 18.
Cee Lo Green a sitcom star? The Voice mentor is expanding his relationship with the network to the scripted side with a comedy project loosely based on his real-life relationship with his ex-wife and children. He also has signed a first-look deal with NBC.
Green is set to star and executive produce the multi-camera comedy, from Sony TV and studio-based Happy Madison. Comedy veteran Ali Leroi, co-creator of Everybody Hates Chris and developer of Are We There Yet?, will write the comedy, starring Green as a version of himself as he tries to balance his career as a top recording artist and his frenetic home life. A deal for the project at NBC is now in final negotiations.
Cee Lo Green has joined the cast of “Can A Song Save Your Life?”, the romantic drama written and being directed by …
Warner Music Group continues to sing a sad tune when it comes to its financial performance. It reported today that it had a net loss of $103M in the quarter that ended in September, 124% bigger than its loss in the same period last year, on revenues of $707M, down 6%. The financial report is mostly for bondholders; Russian-born billionaire Len Blavatnik’s Access Industries bought the company in July for $3.3B. Still, it’s a dreary filing for the company, whose roster of hitmakers includes Bruno Mars, Cee Lo Green, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Jill Scott. Warner says that its recorded music revenues fell 8% to $571M. Although sales from digital distribution were up 6% to $194M, that was “more than offset by contracting demand” for CDs. Meanwhile, revenues at the music publishing operation fell 1% to $141M. Warner says that the quarter’s disappointing results were due to “a light release schedule”; weak sales in the U.S., Japan, and most of Europe; and rising interest payments on the debt Access took on to buy the music company.
Like other parts of the music business, there’s a lot of consolidation taking place in talent management — including this announcement today from feisty independent firms Primary Wave and Violator Management. They’ve chosen the unfortunate name of Primary Violator Management for the 50/50 joint venture. Primary Wave’s client list includes CeeLo Green, Ginuwine, Goodie Mob, Eric Benet, Cody Simpson, Case and GMD3. Violator adds Curtis “50 Cent’ Jackson, LL Cool J, Mariah Carey, Busta Rhymes, Q-Tip, Soulja Boy, and Diggy Simmons. Primary Wave CEO Larry Mestel will be in charge. Competition is intensifying: Yesterday, Live Nation Chairman Irving Azoff said he plans to announce a big music management acquisition soon. Here’s today’s release:
New York, N.Y. (September 16th, 2011) – Music industry veteran, Larry Mestel, CEO of Primary Wave Music, one of the largest independent music publishing, marketing, branding and talent management companies in the United States, announces a unique partnership with legendary music manager, Chris Lighty, Founder and CEO of Violator Management to create Primary Violator, a new powerhouse talent management firm. The new business venture will bring together Lighty and elite music manager Michael “Blue” Williams, uniting two of today’s most influential and successful talent managers in urban and pop music.