Logo

TVBizWire

TVBIZWIRE
May 25, 2018
3:51 pm
Comment

High-Ranking Showtime Exec Dead at 55 (TVWeek)

A top executive at Showtime has died, with the pay-cable channel announcing the death of Gary Garfinkel in a statement. Garfinkel was co-head of content acquisition for Showtime Networks.

He died from an illness early this morning, Showtime said. Garfinkel, 55, reportedly died at his home, surrounded by his family.

David Nevins, president and CEO of Showtime Networks Inc., said in the statement: “Gary was one of the most warm and welcoming people I’ve known, and was beloved by everyone who worked with him at Showtime over the past 25 years. He was a great warrior and advocate for our company and worked hard to bring the best content to our service. In particular, many stand-up comedians credit Gary for giving them the early exposure that made their careers. He played a key role in cementing Showtime as a major premium network, and all of us who worked with him valued his taste, his counsel and his integrity. We will miss him terribly.”

TVBIZWIRE
May 25, 2018
3:44 pm
Comment

Drama Series Adds Showrunner (Variety)

An upcoming drama series has just brought aboard a new executive producer and showrunner. The series, Syfy’s adaptation of the graphic novel “Deadly Class,” added Mick Betancourt to the lineup, Variety reports.

“He will share showrunning duties with fellow executive producers Rick Remender and Miles Orion Feldsott,” Variety reports. “Remender wrote the original graphic novel and worked with Feldsott to adapt it for TV. The trio takes over from Adam Targum, who served as showrunner on the pilot.”

Variety adds: “Betancourt was most recently a co-executive producer and writer on Fox’s limited series ‘Shots Fired.’ His other credits include ‘Chicago PD’ and ‘Chicago Fire,’ ‘Necessary Roughness’ and ‘Law & Order: SVU.’”

TVBIZWIRE
May 25, 2018
3:31 pm
Comment

Weinstein Out on Bail (NY Times)

Following his arraignment today on rape charges in New York City, disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein posted $1 million bail and slipped out the back of the courthouse, The New York Times reports.

Weinstein was charged with three counts: first-degree rape and third-degree rape in one case, and first-degree criminal sex act in another. He appeared in court with his lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, described by The Times as one of the city’s top defense lawyers.

“As the hearing neared an end, Mr. Brafman … handed Mr. Weinstein’s passport to [lead prosecutor Joan Illuzzi] and paid his bail with a $1 million cashier’s check,” The Times reports. “As part of his bail package, he has agreed to wear a monitoring device and restrict his travel to New York and Connecticut. When the proceeding was over, Mr. Weinstein was allowed to slip out of an employee door at the back of the courthouse, where he climbed into a waiting Toyota.”

The Times report adds: “Mr. Weinstein’s appearance in Manhattan Criminal Court lasted barely 10 minutes, but stood not only as a breakthrough in the investigation into sex-crime claims against him but as a watershed in the larger #MeToo movement. After decades of harnessing his wealth and power to silence women — and after weathering an earlier criminal inquiry into groping allegations — his reign as a film-industry titan suffered a decisive blow in, of all places, the shopworn arraignment courtroom, where he was among the morning cattle call of defendants.”

Brafman told reporters outside the courthouse that he would “move quickly” to dismiss the charges, calling them “constitutionally flawed and factually unsubstantiated,” the report adds.

TVBIZWIRE
May 25, 2018
3:17 pm
Comment

High-Profile Drama Series in the Works Inspired by Longtime U.S. Senator (Deadline)

Former CBS Entertainment boss Nina Tassler is one of the heavy hitters behind a new TV series in development at FX that’s inspired by the political career of retired U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer, Nellie Andreeva reports on Deadline.

The female-driven drama, “Run,” comes from Boxer and her daughter, documentary producer Nicole Boxer; Royal Pains co-creator Andrew Lenchewski; and Tassler and Denise DeNovi’s recently launched PatMa Productions, Andreeva reports.

“Written by Lenchewski, ‘Run’ centers on a woman launching a highly improbable bid for Congress,” Andreeva notes. “Lenchewski executive produces with Barbara Boxer and Nicole Boxer, along with Tassler and DiNovi via PatMa and Chuck Ortner.”

Boxer served 34 years in Congress — 10 years in the House and 24 years in the Senate.

TVBIZWIRE
May 25, 2018
12:09 pm
Comment

Trump’s Surprising Response to the Arrest of Harvey Weinstein (Deadline)

Donald Trump provided a response that many readers may find surprising when he was asked about the arrest and arraignment of former movie mogul Harvey Weinstein on the day of Weinstein’s handcuffed “perp walk.”

Deadline quotes Trump saying: “I don’t know anything about it,” in response to a question from a reporter during an impromptu press conference today on the White House lawn.

“The president surprisingly said he was not familiar with charges against Hollywood mega-producer Harvey Weinstein, whose self-turning-in blanketed the morning  TV news landscape,” Deadline notes, adding that when he was pressed on the subject, Trump said: “I’m not familiar with the case, but it’s really too bad, it’s really too bad.”

Deadline adds: “Trump’ election, despite Washington Post‘s October 2016 release of [a] 2005 ‘Access Hollywood’ tape in which he boasted of his ability to grab women by the crotch with impunity because he is so famous is credited with motivating some women to come forward to NYT and New Yorker with reports of sexual abuse at the hands of other powerful media figures.”

TVBIZWIRE
May 25, 2018
12:07 pm
Comment

Chairman and CEO of BET Steps Down as Turnover Continues at Viacom Networks (Deadline)

In the latest leadership change at Viacom-owned networks, where reorganizations have been going on since Bob Bakish became Viacom CEO in early 2017, Deadline reports that longtime BET exec Debra Lee is stepping down from her post as chairman and CEO of BET Networks.

Lee’s exit after more than three decades with the company is effective Monday, May 28, 2018.

“Lee, who began her career with the company as its first VP and General Counsel in 1986, was elevated to President and COO in 1996 and became Chairman and CEO in 2005,” Deadline notes.

The report adds: “Lee’s exit is not completely surprising. Viacom laid the groundwork for the move in December when Scott M. Mills was named  BET president, a role in which he would oversee overall strategy and day-to-day operations of BET Networks including oversight of the brand’s programming, ad sales and digital teams. At the time, Lee was set to continue in her chairman and CEO role but was going to step back from running the network, and was to serve as an advisor to Mills.”

TVBIZWIRE
May 25, 2018
12:01 pm
Comment

Get Used to Seeing More of Keith Olbermann on ESPN (TVWeek)

ESPN is giving polarizing commentator Keith Olbermann a broader role at the network, including a combination of studio assignments and on-site appearances. The network announced its new expanded deal with Olbermann today.

Olbermann, who has been contributing pieces to “SportsCenter” since January, will continue to develop regular features for the program along with guest anchoring about 20 special editions of the 11 p.m. ET “SportsCenter” throughout the year.

He will also take on selected studio and game assignments, including play-by-play for a few games as well as a handful of studio hosting responsibilities on “Baseball Tonight” and cut-ins/highlights within game telecasts.

Olbermann will also be on site at the MLB All-Star Game, hosting segments for “SportsCenter.” He will also host “SportsCenter” segments during the MLB postseason, including the World Series.

Please click here for more details about Olbermann’s expanded ESPN role in today’s announcement.

 

TVBIZWIRE
May 25, 2018
9:44 am
Comment

Against a Backdrop of Impending Mergers … a Look Back at the Major Network Upfronts (TVWeek)

The dust is still settling from last week’s major network upfront presentations, and against the backdrop of uncertainty over potential mergers between CBS and Viacom, AT&T and Time Warner and even Disney and Fox with a rival Comcast bid coming into play, top executives across the board expressed optimism about the future.

TVWeek Open Mic writer Hillary Atkin was on the scene, and offers a chronological snapshot of what went down during the whirlwind week of May 14 in a number of venues across New York City, along with some upcoming programs that caught her attention from the countless clips that were presented.

Please click here to read Hillary’s in-depth recap of some of the major presentations and programs at the upfronts.

TVBIZWIRE
May 25, 2018
9:21 am
Comment

The World’s No. 1 Advertiser Explains Why It’s Not Inundating Us With Commercials the Way It Once Did (MediaPost)

The CMO of the world’s biggest advertiser offered a surprising confession about the effect of his company’s advertising on people. “We were annoying the hell out of people,” said Procter & Gamble CMO Mark Pritchard, speaking today at VivaTech18 in Paris.

“P&G’s research found that the CPG giant only needed to reach the average person three times per month, but many people received 10 to 20 ads per month,” MediaPost reports. “This unnecessary barrage (some would say harassment) helped to spark a P&G marketing transformation focused on four key action points, said Pritchard.”

The first action point was to target smaller audiences, such as first-time homeowners or new moms, MediaPost reports.

Said Pritchard: “We still need to reach a lot of people with our brands,” said Pritchard. “People still need to clean their clothes and brush their teeth, but data and analytics is ensuring our precision.”

The executive added: “This may sound like common sense, but we have now reached an inflection point where we can precision target audiences.”

Other action points concern limiting clutter and noise, dealing with issues in the marketer-agency relationship and working toward marketing that can be a force for good as well as growth. Please click on the link above to MediaPost for details.

TVBIZWIRE
May 25, 2018
9:09 am
Comment

CBS Gets Creative About Product Placement (Variety, CBS)

CBS has found a way to add a high-profile product placement to one of the network’s signature late-night segments. Variety’s Brian Steinberg reports that James Corden’s ride for last night’s “Late Late Show” installment of “Carpool Karaoke” was quietly arranged through a deal with Porsche.

The segment featured Corden tooling around L.A. with Maroon 5’s Adam Levine in a 2018 Cayenne Turbo. “The show’s Twitter feed promoted the car’s in-program appearance,” Steinberg notes.

“Under the aegis of host Corden and executive producers Ben Winston and Rob Crabbe, ‘Late Late Show’ has devised some of late-night’s most creative advertising partnerships,” the report adds. “The program features an on-set bar stocked with drinks from Heineken (in the past, the potables came from Anheuser-Busch). ‘Carpool Karaoke,’ however, has remained largely sacrosanct.”

Steinberg adds: “The only other advertisers to weave themselves into the segment were Coca-Cola and McDonald’s. In 2016, as part of an advertising agreement, Corden and guest Selena Gomez drove to a McDonald’s and sipped Coke products.”

Here’s last night’s “Carpool Karaoke” segment …

Older Articles