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The Newsdesk 02.23.09 – Oscar Previews ’09 Blockbusters; The Dark Knight Joins Billionaires Club

• Best Picture winner Slumdog Millionaire will open in an additional 2,500-plus theaters this Friday. Now you’ll know why everyone in your office is shouting “Jai Ho.”

Tyler Perry’s Madea Goes To Jail topped the box office with $41 million. Look for the franchise to continue with Madea Goes to Camp, Madea Meets Dracula, and Madea Takes out a Small Business Loan at a High Interest Rate.

• The end credits of last night’s Oscars gave viewers a peek at clips from Sherlock Holmes, Angels & Demons, Public Enemies and a bevy of other ’09 movies. You’re excused if you didn’t make it all the way to the end of the show.

• Mike Meyer’s The Love Guru won The Razzie for worst picture of the year. Paris Hilton was a double acting winner, scoring for The Hottie and the Nottie and Repo: The Genetic Opera. She really is the Kate Winslet of The Razzies.

The Dark Knight broke $1 billion in worldwide ticket sales. The blockbuster has prestigious company — only Titanic, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest share this honor.

Heath Ledger’s family accepted the late actor’s posthumous award during last night’s Oscar ceremony.

• While actors were honored by the Academy, their guild rejected the “last, best, final offer” from the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers.

• Mickey Rourke gave a memorable (and obscenity-laden, NSFW) speech
at the Independent Spirit Awards, where he implored the audience to
hire his pal Eric Roberts. If only he’d won the Oscar, maybe C. Thomas
Howell would’ve gotten a shout out.

• A release date has been set for Eclipse, the third installment in the Twilight saga. Look for it in 2010, around the time you are officially sick of this franchise.

• The new trailer for Judd Apatow’s Funny People has been released. Ironically, it’s mostly a drama.




Radio revenue declines in ’08

from The Hollywood Reporter – Music by By Katy Bachman,

Radio ended 2008 with a 10% revenue decline to $16.5
billion. Factoring in off-air and network revenue, the medium was down 9% to
$19.5 billion, according to figures released by the Radio Advertising Bureau.

Disney’s ESPN faces rising rights fees: report (Reuters)

from Yahoo! News: Entertainment News

Reuters – Walt Disney Co’s ESPN cable sports network, which
has broadcasting deals for events ranging from the National Football League to
Nascar, is facing higher costs while renewing some of the contracts amid
falling advertising revenue, the Wall Street Journal said on Monday.


Big studios complain of favoritism

from Entertainment News –
LOS ANGELES, Feb. 22 (UPI) — Expectations that “Slumdog Millionaire”
will win a best picture Oscar Sunday reflect a growing favoritism toward
independent movies, U.S. film executives say.

SAG rejects producers’ proposal

from Entertainment News –

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 22 (UPI) — The U.S. Screen Actors Guild
says it has rejected the “last, best and final offer” the Alliance of
Motion Picture and Television Producers made last week.

Will CEOs chime in on SAG impasse?


Business News: SAG board rejects offer from studios — Will
the CEOs parachute in, again? That’s the question being pondered over Oscar
weekend after SAG negotiations with the majors hit yet another impasse, leaving
the guild with few options and killing industry hopes that the new regime would
bring a swift end to the guild’s 8-month-old contract drama.

SAG-AFTRA commercials talks starting up

from Hollywood Reporter by By Jay A. Fernandez

Fresh from addressing the AMPTP’s “last, best and final
offer” on its TV-theatrical contract at a national board meeting Saturday,
SAG will join with AFTRA in starting negotiations with the advertising industry
for a new broadcast commercials contract.

Opening for ‘Madea’ Lifts a Struggling Studio

from NYT > Movies by By BROOKS BARNES

Lionsgate opened “Tyler Perry’s Madea Goes to
Jail” to a record-setting $41.1 million in sales at domestic theaters.

No sign of recession at pre-Oscar gift suites

from Reuters: Entertainment News

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Not everyone nominated for an
Academy Award will take home an Oscar on Sunday, but even the losers don’t have
to go home empty handed.


Springsteen to headline UK’s Glastonbury festival

from AP Top Entertainment News At 11:05 …

LONDON (AP) — Organizers say Bruce Springsteen will
headline Glastonbury, Britain’s leading summer music festival….


Oscar ratings on the rise

from – TV Ratings

TV Ratings: Telecast improved from last year’s record low —
Powered by strong showings in the country’s biggest markets, the 81st annual
Academy Awards telecast on ABC produced improved ratings Sunday night — rising
by about 6% in Nielsen’s metered-market overnights vs. last year’s record low.


Oscar doesn’t carry the same weight

from – Peter Bart

Peter Bart: Winning an award no longer cements career —
Nothing we own today is worth what it was a year ago — not our houses, our
401Ks, not even our careers. So with the Oscar noise at last dying down, it’s
worth asking whether even an Oscar is worth what it used to be.


‘Slumdog’ claims historic Oscar night success

from – Entertainment

“Slumdog Millionaire” won best picture Sunday
night, earning a total of eight Oscars at the 81st annual Academy Awards. Sean
Penn won best actor, Kate Winslet won best actress and the late Heath Ledger
won best supporting actor.

Dev Patel & Freida Pinto On ‘Slumdog’s’ Big Oscar Night,
Meeting Brad, Angelina & Will Smith

from Access Hollywood – Movies

“Slumdog Millionaire” took home eight Oscars
Sunday night, including Best Picture and Best Director, and when Access
caught up with stars Dev Patel and Freida Pinto after the show,
the magnitude of their big night was still sinking in.


Watching The Oscars From The Slums of Mumbai

from /Film by (

The Huffington Post has some photos from the slums outside
of Mumbai showing neighbors of some of the child actors from Slumdog
watch the Oscar telecast live.

From slums of Mumbai to the Academy Awards

from AP Top Entertainment News At 11:05 … by By BETH HARRIS

LOS ANGELES (AP) — There was 9-year-old Rubina Ali, beaming
proudly from a huddle with her “Slumdog Millionaire” co-stars on the
world’s most glamorous stage, not three days removed from the deplorable
conditions that have defined her young life.

‘Slumdog Millionaire’ kids will hit the books after the Oscars

from Entertainment Weekly’s Hollywood Insider by Hollywood

Quick reality check: The Slumdog Millionaire kids just swung
by, and when I asked what they were working on next, they said
“exams,” which start as soon as they get back.

Red carpet no-shows irk photogs

from – Award Central News

Award Central News: Some stars entered Oscars off-camera —
Among those less than enthused with the changes to this year’s Oscarcast were
the red carpet photographers.


Oscars host Hugh Jackman gave the job his all

from AP Top Entertainment News At 11:05 … by By FRAZIER MOORE

NEW YORK (AP) — Don’t blame Hugh Jackman….


Spain full of pride at Penelope Cruz’s Oscar

from AP Top Entertainment News At 11:05 … by By JORGE SAINZ

MADRID (AP) — Spain gushed with pride Monday over Penelope
Cruz’s Oscar for best supporting actress….

Oscar speeches served up emotion and a whistle

from AP Top Entertainment News At 11:05 … by By ERIN CARLSON

Sunday’s Oscar speeches were a balancing act, walking the
line between the playful and emotional. Here are some notable moments:…

Oscar red carpet fashion

from – Entertainment

While the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has
been celebrating film’s best and brightest for more than 80 years, the glamour
we associate with the Oscars truly started in the 1950s, when stars such as
Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelly and Janet Leigh brought high style to the ceremony.


Oscars backstage: Kate Winslet hugs, Sean Penn on Mickey
Rourke, more!

from Entertainment Weekly’s Hollywood Insider by Adam B. Vary

While the Academy Awards ceremony was full of musical
numbers, visual innovations, and new ways of presenting old categories, the
backstage press room was the regular mix of foreign tongues, tears, awkward
moments and long-winded behind-the-scenes winners.

Opening-number prop fetches $20,000 at Elton John party auction

from Entertainment Weekly’s Hollywood Insider by Hollywood

That box that Academy Awards host Hugh Jackman sang on
during the Milk portion of his opening number? It just sold for a whopping
$20,000 at Elton John’s exclusive Oscar party. Someone also paid $60,000 to be
Sir Elton’s date.

Spirit Awards for Cruz, Rourke, Leo

from Today’s Latest Headlines by Sean Smith

Three Oscar nominees take acting prizes at ceremony honoring
indie film; ”The Wrestler” named best feature


Spirit Awards: The stars let their indie flags (and profanity)

from Entertainment Weekly’s Hollywood Insider by Josh Rottenberg

“Hooray, independents!” This final line of Melissa
Leo’s Best Actress acceptance speech summed up the overall feeling inside the
tent on Santa Monica Beach, where Saturday’s Independent Spirit Awards were

‘Guru’ gets three Razzies

from Entertainment News –

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 21 (UPI) — “The Love Guru” won
three Razzie Awards, including for worst picture of 2008, at a ceremony in Los
Angeles Saturday.


Weekend Box Office: February 20-22, 2009

from Box Office Mojo – Current Box Office Results

Tyler Perry’s Madea Goes to Jail tops the box office with an
estimated $41.1 million

‘Button’ wins int’l b.o. crown for third weekend

from Hollywood Reporter by By Frank Segers

With its 13 Academy Award nominations, Warners’ “The
Curious Case of Benjamin Button” remained atop the international boxoffice
for a third straight weekend.

Dollar Batman

from Box Office Mojo – Top Stories by by Brandon Gray

The Dark Knight finally hit the $1 billion mark worldwide.

Video: Re-Creating the Comic Book World of ‘Watchmen’

from Wired: Entertainment by John Scott Lewinski

From making Rorschach’s mask to building the Owl Ship,
behind-the-scenes clips detail the enormous effort put into bringing Zack
Snyder’s faithful adaptation to the movie screen.


Schwarzenegger planning a cameo in Stallone film

from AP Top Entertainment News At 11:05 …

WASHINGTON (AP) — He said he’d be back – and soon he will
be. California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger says he’ll be shooting a cameo
appearance soon for a new movie by friend Sylvester Stallone.

‘Twilight’ Dawns Summer 2010

from Box Office Mojo – Top Stories by by Brandon Gray

The Twilight Saga’s Eclipse is set to open only seven months
after New Moon…

‘Twilight’ exclusive: Chris Weitz will not direct third film,

from Entertainment Weekly’s Hollywood Insider by Joshua Rich

Chris Weitz will not direct the third film in the Twilight
series, Eclipse, a source close to the production tells exclusively.

‘Twilight’ star Robert Pattinson talks ‘New Moon’ at the Oscars

from Entertainment Weekly’s Hollywood Insider by Hollywood

EW caught up with Twilight star — and Oscar presenter —
Robert Pattinson at the Academy Awards’ Governors Ball on Sunday night.

Ghostbusters 3 To Begin Shooting Fall 2009?

from /Film by (

It appears that the project is still moving forward and
according to Dan Aykroyd, who appeared in Boston this weekend for the opening
of a new House of Blues, they “hope to be in production by late fall 2009.

Iron Man 2: Emily Blunt Officially Out? American Gladiator/Pro
Wrestler Matt Mogan as a Villain?

from /Film by (

While Iron Man director Jon Favreau was walking the red
carpet at the Oscars, the director apparently revealed to E! that Emily Blunt
is officially out as Black Widow in Iron Man 2.

Superman Returns Sequel To Be Titled Superman Unleashed?

from /Film by (

/Film reader Alex Litel just sent me a link to a password
protected page from the official Legendary Pictures website that lists “Superman
” as one of their upcoming films in development.

1978 Battlestar Galactica Big Screen Movie?

from /Film by (

IGN is reporting a rumor that Universal Pictures is planning
to turn the old Battlestar Galactica television series (1978-80) into a
feature film. Series creator Glen A. Larson will be working on the script and
is also expected the produce.

The Wonderous World of Laundry


Film Reviews: Bleak present-day realities clash with dreams
of a brighter future in docu “The Wondrous World of Laundry,” which
examines the drab but dignified lives of several femme workers at an industrial
laundry in Poland.


What to Watch for week of February 23 to March 1, 2009

from TV

By Jessica Shaw
A day-to-day guide to notable programs*

Dying star’s TV marriage grips Britain

from Reality TV

The marriage of a dying reality television star has gripped
Britain, but as of Saturday night it was not completely clear that Jade Goody,
who is suffering from terminal cancer, would be well enough to make the


Sayles red hot for HBO’s ‘Scar’

from – Music News

Music News: Multihyphenate to write Kiedis series —
Multihyphenate John Sayles has been tapped to write HBO’s series project based
on the childhood of Red Hot Chili Peppers frontman Anthony Kiedis.

Klum’s Curious Catwalk

from Media News by Lacey Rose

Thanks to an ongoing legal dispute, ”Project Runway” tapes
its finale without a premiere date or network home.

Slew of pilots flesh out casts

from Hollywood Reporter by By Nellie Andreeva

Jimmy Wolk has landed the lead in ABC’s untitled Daniel
Cerone pilot, and Joel McHale has been cast as the lead on NBC’s comedy pilot
“Community,” which Anthony and Joe Russo have signed on to direct.

Adam Carolla’s pilot picked up at CBS

from Hollywood Reporter by By Nellie Andreeva

CBS is hoping to score an “Ace in the Hole” with a
last-minute pickup to a comedy starring comedian/radio host/actor Adam Carolla.

‘Dollhouse’ drops in second week

from Hollywood Reporter

The numbers are disheartening, if not entirely surprising.
The second episodes of Fox’s “Dollhouse” and “Terminator”
failed to improve on their premieres.

Did TV news miss point in covering stimulus plan? (AP)

from Yahoo! News: Entertainment News

AP – There were plenty of familiar faces on-screen during TV
coverage of President Barack Obama’s economic stimulus plan, people like James
Carville, Laura Ingraham, Karl Rove, Sen. Lindsey Graham, Joe Trippi and Dick


San Francisco man faces fallout from `Wife Swap’

from AP Top Entertainment News At 11:05 … by By EVELYN NIEVES

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — It’s safe to say Stephen Fowler
probably wishes he never appeared on “Wife Swap.”…

ABC puts brakes on ‘Farsi,’ ‘Lucy’ pilots

from Entertainment News –
BURBANK, Calif., Feb. 21 (UPI) — The pilots “Funny in Farsi” and
“Planet Lucy” have been put on hold by ABC after production
requirements were not met, the U.S. TV network says.

‘Fringe’ moves production to Canada

from Entertainment Weekly’s Hollywood Insider by Lindsay Soll

EW has learned that Fringe, J.J. Abrams’ sci-fi series on
Fox―which is set in Boston but films in New York―is planning a move to
Vancouver, Canada in the event that it is picked up for a second season.

Old TVs never die . . .

from L.A. Times – TV News

They just go to the Radio & Television Museum in Bowie,
Md., which details the evolution of the set.


Apple blamed for leak of Clarkson album

from Entertainment News –

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 21 (UPI) — Apple Inc.’s iTunes store may
have leaked a copy of U.S. singer Kelly Clarkson’s new album, “All I Ever
Wanted,” onto the Internet, an industry source says.

Singer Aiken leaves RCA Records

from Entertainment News –

NEW YORK, Feb. 21 (UPI) — U.S. pop singer Clay Aiken, who
rode the “American Idol” TV competition to fame, has left RCA
Records, the singer’s representative says.

New Music: Yeah Yeah Yeahs: “Heads Will Roll”

from Pitchfork Media – Today by Marc Hogan

Or nod, anyway. Yeah Yeah Yeahs take over the dancefloor
with “Heads Will Roll”, the second track (um, unless you count the
full album leak, for which heads will no doubt roll) to emerge from
forthcoming third album It’s Blitz!.

Live Review: Jane’s Addiction

from Pitchfork Media – Today by Ian Cohen

Jane’s Addiction played a small club show in L.A. last week
and Pitchfork was there to see how it all went down. The band also taped the
show and provided video of six of its classic songs, including “Mountain
Song”, “Stop”, and “Ain’t No Right”, all of which can
be viewed here.


In the Studio: Green Day’s Ambitious “21st Century

from Rolling Stone : Rock and Roll Daily by Daniel Kreps

Nearly five years after their last album, Green Day will
return this May with their latest punk masterpiece, 21st Century Breakdown ―
an album Rolling Stone‘s David Fricke describes as even “more
ambitious” than their Grammy-winning concept opus American Idiot


Hollywood Struggles to Find Wealth on the Web

from Wired: Entertainment by By Alex Dobuzinskis

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – After more than a decade of hype
about the Internet being the next great stage for mass entertainment, it
remains dominated by amateurs with most Hollywood stars watching from the


Levin defends TMZ’s use of leaked Rihanna pix

from Los Angeles Times – Celebrity News

What do you think? Should TMZ have run this photo?

GOODBYE: Defamer Merging Into Gawker

from Nikki Finke’s Deadline Hollywood Daily by Nikki Finke

Coincidence that Nick Denton did this on the day of the
Oscars? Hardly. I’d been hearing for awhile that the Gawker empire
founder and chief exec was trying to sell Defamer, which accounts for only 2%
of total traffic of his network ofInternet websites and had been flat for the
past year


Clooney to discuss Darfur with Obama

from Entertainment News –

WASHINGTON, Feb. 21 (UPI) — Actor George Clooney says he
will lobby U.S. President Barack Obama to pick up the diplomatic pace to find a
solution in Darfur.


Models not immune to economic woes

from Entertainment News –

MIAMI, Feb. 22 (UPI) — Several fashion models living in
Miami say the recession has impacted their industry to the point where work has
become sparse.

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