Open Mic

It’s Movie Time! This Year Marks the 50th Anniversary of An Astonishingly First-Rate Screenplay. And Even Though the Resulting Movie Won the Oscar for Best Picture of the Year, No One Else Will Be Writing About This Until 2020. Why We are Jumping the Gun

David Lean, often the most dazzling of directors, was once asked about the main characters in his two war epics, “Lawrence of Arabia” and “The Bridge on the River Kwai. “Characters like T.E. Lawrence or Colonel Nicholson seem to be…

Mar 28, 2015

Was It the Most Politically Incorrect Comedy Central Roast Yet?

Out of all the people that Comedy Central has ever roasted — and we’re talking about everyone from Joan Rivers to Pamela Anderson to William Shatner to Charlie Sheen, James Franco and Donald Trump — Justin Bieber could be the…

Mar 26, 2015

Bombshell: Former Major Media Agency CEO Says Kickbacks Totaling At Least $100 Million Are Pervasive Among U.S. Media Agencies. How This Became a Top Priority for the Association of National Advertisers. We Talk to a Source Who Says Yes, the Allegations Are True. And We Interview Jon Mandel, Who Gave the Blistering Presentation Last Week That Set Off this Bombshell. It’s a TVWeek Media Investigation

If the courting of controversy got Ted Turner dubbed the Mouth of the South, Jon Mandel is easily the Mouth of Madison Avenue. For more than 30 years Jon was at Grey Advertising and then its media agency, MediaCom, where…

Mar 13, 2015

Questions Finally Answered About the Bizarre Finale of ‘Ellen’s Design Challenge,’ and What Ellen Needs to Do if the Series Is Renewed

You’ve gotta love Ellen. In a country obsessed with winning and losing, she can’t bring herself to use the word “loser.” It’s just not a DeGeneres word. So when she was about to announce the winner of “Ellen’s [Furniture] Design…

Mar 6, 2015

At the Writers Guild Awards Last Weekend the Word of the Day May Have Been Self-deprecation

Nic Pizzolatto made something very clear during his two trips to the podium at the WGA Awards. The writer of HBO’s “True Detective ”– honored for both outstanding drama series and new series – is still worried about keeping his job. Both of Pizzolatto’s acceptance speeches were…

Feb 20, 2015

Murphy’s Law: Because as Journalists We All Live in Glass Houses. Check Out This Series of Real Events That Left Former ABC News President David Westin Thinking That Tom Brokaw Said — On-the-Record — That Brian Williams ‘Always feels the need to embellish’ and ‘he’s known for making any story about him.’

Cue Jon Stewart. Even he might not believe this one, but it’s absolutely true. Mike Allen is the chief White House correspondent for Politico. He’s got a resume a mile long as a very credible journalist, formerly at Time magazine…

Feb 10, 2015

Brian Williams: It’s Simple. It’s About Being Truthful

While at first it seemed as if the big question about Brian Williams was why his first person story changed over the years about his being on a helicopter that had been fired upon in Iraq, it seems to me…

Feb 9, 2015

When Zombie Marketing Is Not a Good Thing: You are Fit, Active, and Have Been Able to Save a Few Bucks By the Time You’re in Your Mid-50s. So Why Is It that in the World of Television You Are Considered the Walking Dead?

A Guest Commentary by Chris Dorsey Ad agencies and media buyers so covet the 25-54 age demo that network executives are forced to program for that group of TV viewers or risk watching their ad dollars drift to those networks who do….

Feb 3, 2015

Confronting the Unimaginable: ‘Night Will Fall’ on HBO

It was the movie from 1945 that had barely seen the light of day —until earlier this week. Reels upon reels of raw footage recorded by military and newsreel cinematographers after the liberation of Nazi concentration camps by Allied forces…

Jan 30, 2015

‘Voices of Aushwitz,’ Powerful Documentary, Tonight on CNN

They were just children. Four of them, three girls and a boy, growing up more than seven decades ago in upper or middle-class families, surrounded by arts and culture, without many cares in the world. And then, unspeakable horror. Uprooted…

Jan 28, 2015