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The Newsdesk 03.23.09 – Knowing Nabs First Place at Box Office; Coens to Tackle True Grit

• The Coen Bros. will direct a new version of the John Wayne classic True Grit. The filmmakers plan on sticking closely to the 1968 novel by Charles Portis that served as the basis for the film.

• Screenwriter Jesse Wigutow is penning a biopic about tough guy actor Steve McQueen. At last, we’ll get to see Steve stealing Ali McGraw away from Robert Evans on the set of The Getaway!

Knowing took the top spot at the box office this weekend with $24.8 million. I Love You, Man came in second, scoring $18 million.

• New images and plot details from Spike Jonze’s Where The Wild Things Are have been released. Great, just when we’ve finally stopped having nightmares about that book.

• Tribune Media Services filed a lawsuit against Warren Beatty in
an effort to win back the rights to the Dick Tracy comic strip.

Twilight scored $3 million in DVD sales on the first day of release. So that explains the high-pitched screams we heard coming from Best Buy.

• The Vatican is planning to boycott Tom Hanks’ Angels and Demons. If Tom sports that DaVinci Code haircut again, we’re boycotting it too.


Omnicom to Partner With Reality TV Producer RDF

from Advertising Age – Madison+Vine

LOS ANGELES ( — In a venture that reflects
advertisers’ increasing reliance on Hollywood’s reality-programming tsunami and
their desire to catch its waves far earlier, Omnicom Media Group has formed a
first-of-its-kind strategic venture with a major production company, RDF Media

Future May Be Brighter, but It’s Apocalypse Now

from Advertising Age – MediaWorks

NEW YORK ( — The New York Times. TV Guide. Clear
Channel. NBC, Boxee, Yahoo. They tell the story. There is no longer a need to
warn of a gathering Chaos Scenario, in which the yin of media and yang of
marketing fly apart, symbiotic no more. Nudged by recession, doom has arrived.

Media Giants Want to Top Google Results

from Advertising Age – MediaWorks

NEW YORK ( — Major media companies are
increasingly lobbying Google to elevate their expensive professional content
within the search engine’s undifferentiated slush of results.

Jonathan Handel: Hollywood Crew Deal Ratified

from Entertainment on by Jonathan Handel

As expected, the membership of IATSE, the union representing
Hollywood crew members, ratified that organization’s proposed
with the studios yesterday, although not without significant
opposition. The new contract takes effect August 1 and runs for three years, as
is usual with Hollywood labor agreements. It includes 3% annual wage increases.


Big Media Cartel About To Punish Netflix?

from Nikki Finke’s Deadline Hollywood Daily by Nikki Finke

The Wall Street Journal’s astute Martin Peers warns tonight
that Netflix “stock-price bubble may be close to bursting”
because Hollywood studios and networks don’t like the competition.

Union of film, TV workers approve new contract

from Life – Top Stories

A union that represents more than 35,000 film and television
workers has approved a three-year contract with Hollywood producers.


Economy shakes up film fests execs

from – Film Festivals

Film Festivals: Chiefs exit as events realign focus — With
the economy in the tank and corporate sponsors in retreat, it’s not easy
running a film festival these days.

What’s next for the film festival world? – Los Angeles Times


“There’s been more news in the independent film
festival world in the last three weeks than I can recall ever happening in my
life,” says Nancy Schafer, executive director of the increasingly
prominent Tribeca Film Festival


The indieWIRE Guide to Film Festivals Monthly Calendar

from indieWIRE News

The following is a monthly calendar of upcoming 2009-2010
film festivals, with links to past iW coverage. These pages will be updated
throughout the year so check back here for updated links and coverage.

South By Kanye West? Rapper plays SXSW

from Music – Top Stories

For a night, it was South By Kanye West.The rapper performed
twice Saturday at the annual South By Southwest music conference

Metallica invades SXSW as ‘young band from Norway’

from Music – Top Stories

Invading South By Southwest, Metallica attempted to pose as
one of the hundreds of smaller bands there.

SXSW bestows audience awards as Texas festival ends

from L.A. Times – Movie News

In the 24 Beats Per Second category, the champ was
“Iron Maiden: Flight 666.”

Acts twitter at SXSW, in interviews and on stage

from AP Top Entertainment News At 11:05 … by By JAKE COYLE

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — It wasn’t just the legions of
concertgoers wandering the streets who were twittering at South By Southwest.
Many of the acts were posting tweets throughout the music conference and
festival, sometimes even on stage or during interviews.

Metallica invades SXSW as `young band from Norway’

from AP Top Entertainment News At 11:05 … by By JAKE COYLE

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Invading South By Southwest, Metallica
attempted to pose as one of the hundreds of smaller bands there just hoping to
get a record deal.

New York City Shakeup? Variety Speculates On Tribeca’s Future

from indieWIRE News

Variety’s Dade Hayes is reporting that there might be a
monumental shakeup in the works for the New York City film festival schedule
due to potential changes with the Tribeca Film Festival and the Film Society of
Lincoln Center.

27 projects chosen for Tribeca All Access

from Hollywood Reporter by Staff report

The Tribeca Film Festival has selected 27 projects for its
Tribeca All Access, program which is designed to nurture relationships between
film industry executives and filmmakers from traditionally underrepresented

Native American Film and Video Fest Turns 30

from indieWIRE News

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian has
announced the complete lineup for its 2009 Native American Film and Video
Festival. Fourteen features and 43 shorts representing 10 countries were chosen
from more than 350 submissions.

M.I.A. joins Coachella lineup

from The Hollywood Reporter – Music by By David J. Prince,

Sri Lankan pop sensation M.I.A. has been added to the
Coachella festival’s Saturday night lineup, the event’s producers announced


Weekend Box Office: March 20-22, 2009

from Box Office Mojo – Current Box Office Results

Knowing tops the box office with an estimated $24.8 million

‘Torino,’ ‘Marley’ tie at overseas boxoffice

from Hollywood Reporter by By Frank Segers

In generally mild boxoffice action across most overseas
markets, “Gran Torino” and “Marley & Me” tied on the
weekend for the No. 1 spot on the international circuit.

Weekend Estimates: “Valentino” Leads Openers; “Cleaning” Keeps

from indieWIRE News

According to estimates provided by Rentrak this afternoon,
Matt Tyrnauer’s “Valentino: The Last Emperor,” a doc on legendary designer
Valentino Garavani, led a surge of specialty openers this weekend.

Paul Rudd: We love you, man!

from Movies

By Annie Barrett
Annie Barrett comes to a realization as she reads this week’s EW feature on the
actor: He’s impossible to dislike


How does Nicolas Cage choose roles?

from Movies

Newsvine: Is it money, insane scripts, art or something a
little more sinister?

Coen brothers to adapt ‘True Grit’

from – Film News

Film News: New version will stay faithful to Portis’ novel
— As their next film, Joel and Ethan Coen will put their spin on “True
Grit,” the iconic Western that won John Wayne an Oscar.


on Web, a Film Stays Fresh

from NYT > Movies by By BRIAN STELTER

Robert Greenwald is showing “Rethink Afghanistan,” a
skeptical view of America’s war strategies, in five parts on the Internet, with
the implied hope that it will contribute to the foreign policy debate.

Steve McQueen biopic in the works

from Hollywood Reporter by By Jay A. Fernandez

Jesse Wigutow has been hired to pen the screenplay for a
biographical treatment of Steve McQueen, making it one of two McQueen-centered
projects in the works.


Warner Bros To Release Over 5,000 Never Before Available Movies
on DVD

from /Film by (
Warner Bros has produced over 6,800 theatrical films, but only 1,200 or so
titles are available on DVD today. But tonight the studio has announced that
they are opening their movie vault, through a new website —

Fred Durst Tries To Avoid ‘Curse’ With ‘The Education of
Charlie Banks’

from MTV Movies Blog by Eric Ditzian

Fred Durst, the Limp Bizkit frontman and occasional pop
culture punching bag, staged something of a career reinvention a few years ago,
leaving music behind to chase his dream of making movies. His first effort, the
coming-of-age tale “The
Education of Charlie Banks,”
premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in
2007. Now, two years later, it’s finally getting a theatrical release–at the
same as Durst’s life has come full circle, with Bizkit getting set to reunite
for a new album and a European tour.


“Slumdog Millionaire” Kids Walk In Fashion Show

from Entertainment on by The Huffington Post
News Team
Two of the “Slumdog Millionaire” child actors walked the catwalk
during Delhi’s Fashion Week on Thursday.

‘Twilight’ sells more than 3 million DVDs in first day of sales

from Entertainment Weekly’s Hollywood Insider by Jennifer

No surprises here: Teen girls lined up en masse to take
Robert Pattinson home with them when the Twilight DVD went on sale Saturday,
complete with midnight release parties.

First look: ‘Where the Wild Things Are’ gets Maxed out

from Movies – Top Stories

Max Records, 11, is the boy with anger issues who escapes to
a land where giant beasts roam in Where the Wild Things Are

Move over, ‘Twilight’ hunks! ‘The Lost Boys’ are back!

from Los Angeles Times – Celebrity News

Vampire hunter Corey Feldman is back! “The Lost
Boys” are returning, and they’re gonna be real thirsty for fresh blood.


`Hillary: The Movie,’ now showing at Supreme Court

from AP Top Entertainment News At 11:05 … by By JESSE J.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Months after its debut, “Hillary:
The Movie” faces nine of the nation’s toughest critics: the Supreme Court.

Rainn Wilson and James Gunn Hawking New Superhero Script

from /Film by (

little bird
tells me that PG Pornocrat and Slither-meister James
is going out to “indie producers” with the script for a new superhero
project. The same little bird also reveals that Rainn Wilson is attached
to the script, and that the premise is something like an “f’ed up low rent Watchmen“.

Bryan Singer eyeing hot revenge thriller project starring Mark

from Entertainment Weekly’s Hollywood Insider by Christine

After the success of Taken and Gran Torino, Hollywood has
been on a vigilante kick. And right now, Bryan Singer (along with studio execs
all over town) has been seriously considering getting his revenge on with The

Horror film draws unwanted visitors to Conn. house

from AP Top Entertainment News At 11:05 … by By PAT EATON-ROBB

SOUTHINGTON, Conn. (AP) — A Hollywood horror film that
depicts the alleged haunting of a former funeral parlor in central Connecticut
is turning into a nightmare for the home’s current owners and their neighbors.

‘Angels & Demons’ May Face Vatican Boycott

from Entertainment on by The Huffington Post
News Team
The Vatican could be gearing up for an official call for a boycott of
“Angels & Demons,” Ron Howard’s big-budget follow-up to “The
Da Vinci Code.”


What to Watch for week of March 23 to 29, 2009

from TV

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


Problems With NBC’s ‘Parks & Recreation’

from Nikki Finke’s Deadline Hollywood Daily by Nikki Finke

There’s more trouble for Jeff Zucker and Ben Silverman.
NBC’s upcoming Reveille/Universal Media Studios sitcom Parks And Recreation was
supposed to be a real winner since the mockumentary comes from Greg
Daniels and Michael Schur of The Office and stars Amy Poehler.

Broadcast TV or Cable, It’s All the Same to Consumers

from Advertising Age – MediaWorks

NEW YORK ( — Most TV viewers see less and less of
a distinction between boob-tube giants such as NBC, ABC and CBS and cable
cousins such as USA, TNT and MTV. And neither, it seems, do the networks.

Sci Fi orders ‘Phantom,’ ‘Riverworld,’ ‘Alice’

from The Live Feed by hollywoodreporter

So what’s going to take the place of “Battlestar
Galactica”? Sci Fi Channel has few ideas.

Fox wants more of Gordon Ramsay

from Hollywood Reporter by By James Hibberd

Good news for Gordon Ramsay fans: Fox has ordered another
season of the internationally known chef’s reality series “Kitchen

‘Sophie’ on ABC Family

from L.A. Times – TV News

The sitcom is ‘Will and Grace’ meets ‘Two and a Half Men’
and a whole lot of clichés.

Matthews Re-Ups With MSNBC

from TVNewser

The New York Times’ Bill Carter reports MSNBC anchor Chris
Matthews is staying with the network, in a deal set to last “at least four


Obama on Leno: Ratings Three Times More Than Usual

from Advertising Age – MediaWorks

NEW YORK ( — President Barack Obama’s appearance
on Thursday night’s “Tonight Show With Jay Leno” generated the program’s
best ratings since 2005, according to both NBC and preliminary figures from
Nielsen Media Research.

Lifetime rushes trio for ‘Sorority’ movie

from Hollywood Reporter by By Nellie Andreeva

Lifetime is engaging in “Sorority Wars.” Courtney
Thorne-Smith and Lucy Hale are set and Faith Ford is in negotiations to star in
a new Lifetime original movie set in the cut-throat world of college

Roseanne Barr eyes return to primetime

from Hollywood Reporter by By Nellie Andreeva

The star of ABC’s long-running sitcom “Roseanne”
has teamed with series producer Caryn Mandabach for a family comedy in which
she would play the matriarch.

Mary McDonnell joins ‘The Closer’

from Today’s Latest Headlines by Michael Ausiello

Michael Ausiello confirms exclusively ”Galactica” star is
in as police captain who tangles with Kyra Sedgwick

‘Rock of Love Bus’: All aboard!

from Today’s Latest Headlines by Diablo Cody

Diablo Cody falls for the unlikely charms of Bret Michaels;
why she can’t get enough of his dating show

‘United States of Tara’ showrunner departs

from Hollywood Reporter by ‘Tara’ showrunner departs

Alexa Junge, the executive producer/showrunner of Showtime’s
“United States of Tara,” has decided not to continue on the series,
which recently was renewed for a second season.


John Mellencamp: On My Mind: The State of the Music Business

from Entertainment on by John Mellencamp

Over the last few years, we have all witnessed the decline
of the music business, highlighted by finger-pointing and blame directed
against record companies, artists, internet file sharing and any other theories
for which a case could be made.

As Rights Clash on YouTube, Some Music Vanishes

from NYT > Television by By TIM ARANGO

Some videos on YouTube are disappearing in a disagreement
over fees for Warner Music’s copyrighted works.

YouTube sensation aims higher

from – Entertainment

The members of the band Naturally 7 are experts at blowing
their own horns — and they do it without a trumpet or trombone in sight. In
fact, you won’t see a single instrument when they hit the stage. They are the

Source says Jackson wants BBC apology

from Entertainment News –

LONDON, March 23 (UPI) — U.S. pop star Michael Jackson
wants the BBC to apologize for a comment tied to two of its comedians comparing
him to the IRA, a source says.

Discovered Opry tapes being restored

from Entertainment News –

BOSTON, March 22 (UPI) — A Boston audio engineer says he is
attempting to restore hundreds of recently found tapes featuring some of Grand
Ole Opry’s biggest country music stars.

Jimmy Chamberlin Leaves Smashing Pumpkins, Corgan Hits the

from Rolling Stone : Rock and Roll Daily by Daniel Kreps

There was good news and bad news for Smashing
fans this weekend: Billy Corgan is back in the studio working on
the band’s new album, but he’ll be doing so without drummer Jimmy Chamberlin,
who has left the group for an unspecified reason.

Guns n’ Roses Add Guitarist DJ Ashba For “Upcoming Tour”

from Rolling Stone : Rock and Roll Daily by Daniel Kreps

Axl Rose and Guns n’
have recruited Sixx:A.M. guitarist DJ Ashba for their “upcoming
tour,” the band announced in a press release issued Saturday, March 21st.

Devo Hint at New Album’s Sound, Debut Songs During SXSW Set

from Rolling Stone : Rock and Roll Daily by Christopher R.

A much-hyped show at Austin Music Hall was the second
performance from recently reinvigorated new-wavers Devo since
plans to release their first studio album in 19 years.

Tinted Windows Promises Pure Power Pop on Debut Album

from Rolling Stone: Features

Supergroup includes members of Hanson, Smashing Pumpkins,
Cheap Trick and Fountains of Wayne.

Eminem, Jimmy Page to present at Rock Hall

from The Hollywood Reporter – Music by Associated Press

Rapper Eminem, guitar legend Jimmy Page and Ron Wood of the
Rolling Stones are among the presenters for this year’s Rock and Roll Hall of
Fame induction ceremony in Cleveland.


Hollywood’s blog smog

from – Peter Bart

Peter Bart: New idiom presents conflict of interest —
Andrew Sullivan observed recently that “blogging is writing out
loud.” He continued: “A blog is not so much daily writing as hourly
writing. Blogging is therefore to writing what extreme sports is to athletics;
more free-form, more accident-prone, more alive.”


Natasha Richardson buried near upstate NY home

from AP Top Entertainment News At 11:05 … by By MICHAEL HILL

LITHGOW, N.Y. (AP) — A somber group of friends and family
gathered in a small Hudson Valley town Sunday to say a final farewell to Tony
Award-winning actress Natasha Richardson.

Bruce Willis says ‘I do’ in island ceremony

from – Entertainment

Actor Bruce Willis married model-actress Emma Heming over
the weekend in the Turks and Caicos Islands, the actor’s publicists announced.

Reality TV star Jade Goody loses cancer fight

from – Entertainment

British reality TV celebrity Jade Goody died early Sunday
morning following a public battle with cancer, her publicist has announced.

The Wonder Years’s Danica McKellar Gets Married

from Entertainment on by The Huffington Post
News Team

The Wonder Years’s Winnie Cooper is all grown up.


“Sopranos” star Gandolfini a hit on Broadway

from Reuters: Entertainment News

NEW YORK (Reuters) – “Sopranos” star James
Gandolfini won rave reviews on Monday in “God of Carnage,” a Broadway
play about two couples whose attempt to deal amicably with their sons’ playground
fight descends into mayhem.

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