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Global Showbiz Briefs: News Corp Brussels Chief, V Network Diving Format

By | Thursday December 13, 2012 @ 10:20pm PST

Niklas Lagergren Leaves MPA For News Corp’s Brussels Office
News Corp. has named Niklas Lagergren as SVP government affairs for Europe, Middle East and Africa. Lagergren joins the company from the Motion Picture Association where he was most recently VP for EU affairs, working closely with the Hollywood majors at the European level. He will start the job on March 1, based at the company’s new Brussel’s office. Lagergren, who has been with the MPA for over 10 years, said, “I have been both professionally and personally committed to representing the public affairs interests of media companies and I am now fortunate to be able to take my efforts to a new level by joining the leader in global media.” News Corp. also appointed Benjamin King director of government affairs for Europe, Middle East and Africa, reporting to Lagergren. He was formerly public affairs manager for News International.
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Global Showbiz Briefs: Pope Benedict Biopic, Netflix Rival In Mexico And More

By | Saturday December 1, 2012 @ 4:52pm PST

German Producers Plan Pope Benedict Biopic
The Odeon Film company said German producers Marcus Mende and Peter Weckert have acquired film rights to an upcoming biography of Pope Bendict XVI by journalist Peter Seewald. The bio is to be published in early 2014, Reuters reported. Seewald, who has signed on as a consultant for the film, previously authored three book-length interviews with Benedict – two as Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger and one as pope. Benedict’s predecessor Pope John Paul was the subject of a dozen documentary films around the world and two major television movies in the United States.
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Fox Orders Celebrity Diving Reality Special

By | Thursday October 25, 2012 @ 12:51pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

EXCLUSIVE: The U.S. reality pool is getting crowded. Fox is taking a plunge into the competition celebrity diving reality arena with Stars In Danger: High Diving, a two-hour special that will air this winter. It will be produced by Bunim/Murray Prods based on a format owned by its parent company Banijay International. If successful, it could spawn a regular series.

The Stars In Danger green light comes on the heels of ABC giving a straight-to-series order earlier this month to Celebrity Splash, a competition celebrity diving reality series from Eyeworks USA, also based on an European format owned by Eyeworks. Stars In Danger: High Diving is expected to hit the water (air) first.

While Celebrity Splash only premiered in August in the Netherlands (as Sterren Springen), Stars In Danger: High Diving has long traditions. It has aired as a yearly two-night, three-hour special on ProSieben in Germany since 2004 as TV Total Turmspringen. (Watch bellow a video of a classic belly flop courtesy of an American-born member of boy band US5.) Its eighth edition is slated to start filming on November 24. In fact, there have been reports that Banijay is mulling filing a lawsuit against Eyeworks over Celebrity Splash. “We think ours of the best format because it’s the original, and with our sister company having produced the show for eight years, we will use all their experience and put it in our show,” said Bunim/Murray’s Jonathan Murray.

In Fox’s Stars In Danger: High Diving, approximately eight celebrities from different areas will first complete a crash-course in diving techniques, overseen by a renowned diving coach. After an intense training period, which will be featured in the special, they will compete in a series of Olympic-style dives, including solo high diving and synchronized diving, from a variety of heights ranging from 3, 5, 7.5 and 10 meters. An expert judging panel will award points and eventually narrow down the men, women and teams until the finalists battle it out dive-for-dive to determine the winner. Read More »

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