Dec 2, 2016
1:49 pm

Amazon Pulls the Plug on Series — Was It Related to the Election? (TVWeek, Twitter, Deadline, THR)

A series that got off to a promising start has been given the ax by Amazon, and the show’s creator sparked chatter about a possible connection to the recent presidential election with a comment about the cancellation on social media.

The show is “Good Girls Revolt,” a reality-based story tracking young women trying to overcome gender barriers in the publishing world of the 1960s. The show’s real-life characters include Nora Ephron, played by Grace Gummer, Eleanor Holmes Norton (Joy Bryant) and Wick McFadden (Jim Belushi).

Amazon pulled the plug after releasing the show’s 10-episode freshman season, with producer Sony Pictures Television indicating it will reacquire the rights to the show from Amazon with the intent to keep it alive by shopping it to other distributors.

Dana Calvo, the show’s creator, tweeted this morning: “Amazon passing on S2 of Good Girls Revolt. But so grateful we got to tell the story. We won the popular vote. Thank u”

The tweet appeared to connect the show’s demise with the defeat of Hillary Clinton in the presidential election. That connection became stronger a few minutes later when “Good Girls Revolt” cast member Genevieve Angelson made another political reference.

Angelson tweeted: “Amazon decided to cancel GGR. Your roars of support elevated me from the darkest election in history & I’ll never stop fighting back for us.”

A report by Deadline.com notes: “The cancellation of ‘Good Girls Revolt’ is somewhat surprising as it launched to solid reviews and ranked as one of Amazon’s biggest series ever among female viewers. For streaming services, which depend on attracting subscribers, over-indexing in key demographics, like women, is important. (About 67% of ‘Good Girls Revolt‘s’ viewers are said to be female.)”

The Hollywood Reporter’s Live Feed cites metrics from streaming monitor Symphony Advanced Media indicating that “Good Girls Revolt” was delivering more viewers than many of Amazon’s other originals.

“Sources say Amazon Studios head Roy Price was not a fan of the series and didn’t deem it to be an awards season player in opting to pass on ordering a second season after hearing Sony’s season two pitch this week,” THR notes, adding: “The studio had hoped to file on time for a California tax credit.”


Dec 2, 2016
1:27 pm

Walk of Shame? Hollywood Stars in Disrepair on Walk of Fame (THR)

Some of the most famous stars honored on the Hollywood Walk of Fame have monuments that are in desperate need of repair, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

“Stars in the worst condition include those honoring Cecil B. DeMille, Ginger Rogers, Neil Diamond, Lucille Ball and Billy Wilder,” the publication reports, estimating that about one-fifth of the more than 2,500 stars on the Walk are in some state of disrepair.

“Touching every era and genre of entertainment, the damage ranges from minor cracks (Charlie Chaplin, Aaron Spelling, Aretha Franklin) and broken brass inlays (Al Jolson, Chris Rock, Edith Head) to large gouges (Irving Thalberg, Myrna Loy, Paul Rudd),” THR reports.

THR talked with longtime Hollywood Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Leron Gubler, who did not dispute THR’s findings.

The report adds that “the disrepair is hard to reconcile with the roughly $1 million in annual revenue that the chamber — which selects honorees and stages the ceremonies at which stars are bestowed — appears to generate from the Walk. Along with the two dozen or so new stars added annually, each of which comes with a $30,000 ‘donation,’ licensing fees — from key chains, shot glasses and T-shirts sold in local tchotchke shops — amount to ‘six figures’ annually, says Gubler.”

Dec 2, 2016
12:44 pm

CBS Lands a Major Viewership Draw for Its All Access Service (TVWeek)

CBS will have one of the biggest viewer magnets in all of television as a part of its CBS All Access streaming service. Starting this Sunday, the service will feature live NFL games.

CBS and the NFL announced a multiyear deal Thursday that will bring live “NFL on CBS” games to the All Access platform. The deal includes “Thursday Night Football” along with pregame and halftime coverage.

Leslie Moonves, Chairman and CEO of CBS Corp., said in the announcement: “We are very pleased that our partnership with the NFL has been expanded to include CBS All Access. Adding the most watched programming on television, to the most watched network on television, will be a powerful combination as we continue to grow CBS All Access into the future.”

Please click here to read additional details on the deal.

nfl on cbs 2014

Dec 2, 2016
12:01 pm

Monster Cup? NASCAR’s Premier Series Makes a Big Change (Autoweek, TVWeek)

The stock car racing series that has been known for years as Sprint Cup will be getting a new name. NASCAR announced Thursday that it has signed Monster Energy as the racing circuit’s new title sponsor.

The agreement makes Monster Energy only the third title sponsor in the history of NASCAR’s top division, following R.J. Reynolds’ Winston brand and Sprint-Nextel.

“The length and terms of the agreement were not immediately disclosed, but the corporate leaders of both entities praised the partnership as an ideal fit for their respective brands,” Autoweek reports. “NASCAR CEO Brian France hailed the process as the most important one he’s presided over, while Monster chief marketing officer Mark Hall believed his team would provide new ideas for stock-car racing.”

Said France: “This is one of the few sales calls that I actually personally made because of how important it was to align ourselves with a dynamic brand that reaches different places and different audiences, and they made us feel very comfortable. Motorsports is in their DNA. When you walk through their lobby in California, you see that. You see the motorcycles and NASCAR memorabilia, and that’s who they are.”

Monster Energy’s Hall declined to make the company’s marketing plans public, meaning that, among other things, we can only guess what the series will be called starting next year.

NASCAR’s premier series was known as the Strictly Stock Series in 1949, its first year of competition, then quickly settled into the title Grand National Series for the next two decades. Winston became the series’ first title sponsor in 1971, and the circuit ran under the name Winston Cup from 1971-2003.

Nextel came aboard at the end of Winston’s run, and the circuit became the Nextel Cup Series from 2004-2007. Following Sprint’s acquisition of Nextel in 2005, the Sprint Cup Series was born and NASCAR ran the circuit under that title from 2008 through this year.


Dec 2, 2016
11:07 am

TV Star in Talks to Play Title Role in ‘Barbie’ — We’re Pretty Sure You Won’t Guess Who It Is (Variety)

You may have a hard time picturing her playing the role of Barbie in Sony’s new live-action film based on the iconic doll, but Variety reports that Amy Schumer is in talks to star in “Barbie.”

“The original idea and screenplay is by Hilary Winston, although it is expected that Schumer and her sister, Kim Caramele, will rewrite,” Variety reports. “The story is in the vein of ‘Splash,’ ‘Enchanted’ and ‘Big.’ In it, the main character gets kicked out of Barbieland for not being perfect enough and lands in a real-world adventure.”

The movie is targeted for a summer 2018 opening, with Lauren Abrahams overseeing the project for Sony Pictures, Variety notes.

“Walter F. Parkes, Laurie MacDonald and Amy Pascal will produce. Parkes and MacDonald initiated the original deal with Mattel in 2014,” the report adds.

Dec 2, 2016
9:59 am

New Program Reconstructs a Day That Has Lived in Infamy (TVWeek)

A key turning point in the history of the United States and the world is the focus of a new program that premieres this weekend on Smithsonian Channel.

“The Lost Tapes: Pearl Harbor” reconstructs the events surrounding the Dec. 7, 1941, attack on Pearl Harbor that brought the U.S. into World War II.

The documentary premieres Sunday, Dec. 4, at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Smithsonian Channel, with additional airings next week.

TVWeek Open Mic writer Hillary Atkin interviewed producer Tom Jennings and got the story behind the project. Please click here to read her report.

the-lost-tapes-pearl-harbor-smithsonian-channel“The Lost Tapes: Pearl Harbor”

Dec 2, 2016
9:47 am

‘Full House’ Creator Buys the House Where the Tanners Lived on the Show (THR, NY Post, TVWeek, Instagram)

The creator of the comedy series “Full House” and its recent Netflix reboot “Fuller House” has bought the house where the Tanner family lived on the show. Jeff Franklin posted a picture of himself on Instagram standing in front of his new house, along with the caption: “My new house in San Francisco. Look familiar?!”

The New York Post reports that the three-bedroom house, built in 1883, is located at 1709 Broderick St. in the Lower Pacific Heights neighborhood, and originally went up for sale back in May for $4.15 million. Franklin bought it in August for $4 million and has already painted the door red to get it back to looking the way it did as the Tanners’ home.

Franklin told The Hollywood Reporter this week: “I’m so sentimental about the house. It’s great to have the house in our ‘Full House’ family and be able to preserve it for the fans. … Seriously, I love owning this house.”

Franklin also said: “There are probably 250 fans per day that show up and take a picture in front of it. It will be a lot more fun for the fans because now the house will look like the Tanners really live there.”

jeff-franklin-new-house-in-sf-full-houseJeff Franklin and his new house (Instagram)

Dec 2, 2016
9:21 am

After 38 Years, a Familiar Magazine Is Shutting Down Its Print Edition (NY Post)

A magazine that has been a fixture in the supermarket checkout aisle during its 38-year run is pulling the plug on its monthly print edition. Conde Nast is moving Self magazine to a digital-only model, with the February 2017 edition to be the final hardcopy issue on store shelves, The New York Post reports.

The publication will reportedly lay off fewer than 20 staffers.

“Joyce Chang, who had been Self’s editor-in-chief since replacing Lucy Danziger in April 2014, is out,” The Post adds. “Carloyn Kylstra, a veteran of BuzzFeed, where she directed its health vertical before being named Self’s executive digital director, will become the title’s editor-in-chief.”

Danziger, who ran Self for 13 years, is quoted in the story saying: “Self was an iconic brand. But eventually bloggers, fitness gurus, nutritionists and other healthy living advocates all adapted the approach, telling women how to better themselves. Suddenly, a magazine that came out once a month seemed dated because the message was everywhere digitally.”


Dec 2, 2016
9:01 am

Kimmel Books a Big ‘Star Wars’ Night for His ABC Show (TVWeek, Lucasfilm)

An upcoming installment of “Jimmy Kimmel Live” could create a disturbance in the Force, or not, with the director and key cast members from “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” set to convene on the show Dec. 9.

ABC announced that director Gareth Edwards will be on hand, along with most of the key cast members: Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Donnie Yen, Riz Ahmed, Alan Tudyk, Mads Mikkelsen and Ben Mendelsohn.

The movie opens in theaters one week later, on Friday, Dec. 16.

The film is being billed as the first installment in what is planned as the “Star Wars Anthology” series. The series is generally described as consisting of origin stories.

Kimmel would appear to have a leg up on his late-night competition in gaining access to any key players in the “Star Wars” universe, as Disney owns both Lucasfilm and ABC.

Dec 2, 2016
8:44 am

Auto Sales Poised to Break Record (MediaPost)

With auto advertising a key component of the television ad revenue picture, TV outlets will be cheered by the news that automakers are on track to break the all-time record for annual sales.

“November U.S. auto sales were up 3.7% compared with a year ago, according to Autodata,” MediaPost reports. “General Motors and Ford both exceeded analysts’ expectations. Even Volkswagen Group had its first good month since the emissions scandal broke a year ago.”

The sector still needs a strong December to push the needle past the record, and experts say the market, which has surged in recent years, appears to be plateauing.

GM’s overall sales were up 10.2% in November, as each of the company’s four U.S. brands recorded increases. Chevrolet was up 8.1%, GMC up 14.1%, Cadillac up 14.5% and Buick up 16.1%. Ford’s sales rose 5.1% overall, highlighted by a 19.1% spike for Lincoln.

Defying  the trend was Fiat Chrysler, where sales fell 14.3%.


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