Monday, October 31, 2011


The area just recovered from Hurricane Irene and now this happens.
People driven out of their homes by power outages huddled together in warming centers Monday and commuters struggled to find open gas stations while navigating the mess of downed power lines and tree branches left by a rare October snow storm.

More than 750,000 customers in the state were without power from the storm, which set Connecticut records for outages and snowfall so early in the season. The storm has been blamed for two deaths in the state and at least 12 across the Northeast.

In Hartford, commuters hunted for gas stations that were not closed because of the outages. At a 7-Eleven, two dozen cars waited early Monday in a line that stretched into the street and disrupted traffic.

"I'm sitting here thinking I'm going to run out of gas," said Mitchell Celella, 45, of Canaan, Conn., who was trying to make it to his job as an ice cream maker in West Hartford.

Debra Palmisano said everything was closed in her hometown of Plainville and she spent most of the morning looking for gas.=

"There's no gas anywhere. It's like we're in a war zone. It's pretty scary, actually," she said.

Connecticut Light and Power reported Monday that about 750,000 customers were without power, down from more than 830,000. The utility says it has more than 300 crews working to restore power and plans to add 450 crews from out of state. But Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said tree damage was five times worse than the state experienced when the remnants of Hurricane Irene hit in August, and it could take a week or longer to restore all power.
When Irene hit in August the weather was warm and it did not get too cold. Now you have much colder weather and if you are without power for a week it could get very ugly.

Friday, October 28, 2011


With a pretty strong NorEaster planning on hitting CT this up to 10 inches of snow this weekend I want to point out that its happened before.


The battleship USS Iowa is pushed by tugboats stern first under the Benicia-Martinez bridge on Suisun Bay Thursday, Oct. 27, 2011, in Benicia, Calif. After resting in the Suisun Bay Reserve "mothball fleet" for a decade, the famous battleship is taking the first leg of its journey to southern California, where the Pacific Battleship Center intends to transform the vessel into an interactive museum permanently based at Berth 87 in Los Angeles. The Iowa will be towed to Richmond, Calif., on Friday for significant refurbishment until at least the end of the year and possibly through the first part of 2012 before the move south. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)

From USAToday.

The Iowa, which represents the peak of naval military power in an era from Franklin Roosevelt to George H.W. Bush, was nudged by tugs from its decade-long spot amid the Navy's fleet of retired ships.
In a carefully timed maneuver, the ship towed at a seasonal extreme high tide, the only way short of dredging that would allow the ship to pass beneath three bridges, one of which didn't exist when it was sent to storage in 2001.
The Iowa, the lead ship of its class of the biggest, fastest and most powerful battleships ever to sail, is also the last battleship to find a permanent spot for retirement. Its sister ships are museums: the Missouri, at Pearl Harbor; the Wisconsin, in Norfolk, Va., and the New Jersey, in Camden. The Navy no longer has battleships in its fleet.
"This is the world's last battleship's final voyage," said Robert Kent, president of the Pacific Battleship Center, after signing papers allowing the group to take custody of the ship from the U.S. government early Thursday, just hours before the scheduled noon departure.
"There are no more," said Kent, standing on the ship's warped wooden main deck. "This is the close of a chapter, the chapter of battleships."

Thursday, October 27, 2011


If you thought it was going to better....

The industry’s rapid transition away from physical products such as film prints and DVDs and toward digital distribution is allowing studios to get by with leaner workforces -- a shift that has been both exacerbated and exposed by the recession.
Experts say that the thousands of jobs that have disappeared as the result of the digital revolution and the economic crisis are unlikely to completely return.
"Five years from now, there will not be as much pressure on studios to have as many titles as possible. That will mean fewer people employed in Hollywood, more of whom work in CGI or who are employed on the technical side," Edward Jay Epstein, author of "The Hollywood Economist," told TheWrap.
Fewer jobs, leaner workforces and less money to throw around over the next five years?  This is not going to end well.

An old way of doing business is vanishing just as rapidly as Hollywood is moving its films and television shows into the digital cloud and streaming.
"Everybody is revising their business model right now ... film, TV, advertising," Chris McGurk, CEO and chairman of the digital cinema company Cinedigm told TheWrap.
Indeed, despite sturdy box office performance -- especially internationally -- and robust television ads sales, the economic downturn of the past three years has caused real economic pain throughout the industry. From the executive suite to the makeup tent, thousands of people lost their jobs. Some have found new positions (frequently for less pay); others have left the business entirely.
Does anyone want to guess why the people who work in the business are saying things far different from the people who "know this business"?

 All are grappling with a radically altered industry -- fewer films are being produced, movies and miniseries on the broadcast networks are something of an endangered species, and studios are slashing their production budgets. Generous back-end deals and multi-year production pacts are rapidly disappearing.

As I said previously those who can adapt will survive and prosper those who remain stuck in a 2006 mindset  will find themselves dead.

As for the once thriving home entertainment sector, the rapidly declining DVD market means that the layoffs in that sector aren’t likely to stop anytime soon.

Studios such as Paramount have already begun to merge their home entertainment, digital operations and licensing divisions, and executives tell TheWrap that they expect many of the other major studios to follow suit.
The jobs that remain will require a skill set that is uniquely different from the one offered by many industry veterans. Older forms of exhibition such as movie theaters aren’t ready to shuffle off this mortal coil, but to survive and thrive today, studio executives must have a firm understanding of everything from tablets to UltraViolet, qualities more likely to be found in Silicon Valley than in Hollywood.
Content, IP and brand management are key to surviving the downturn we are all facing. .If you do not have a plan that works with those three elements you are going to be in deep trouble. 

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


Tough times indeed for those in the film and television industry.

But compounding that problem is the state of the economy, which has constricted the number of available jobs.
Fineburg started by approaching as many camera houses as possible, hoping to get a lower-level job working with the equipment and learning the day to day operations.
“Generally there wasn’t very much response at all,” Fineburg said.
At the same time, he reached out to friends, friends of friends and acquaintances, pursuing every possible way in. While he met some interesting people, it didn’t help him pay the bills.
He did have a third option, and here he got a bit of luck. Fineburg heard about an internship program with Panavision that often resulted in gainful employment.
Interns spend one year familiarizing themselves with the equipment, and the second year they get opportunities working with assistant cameramen, gaining experience and making connections at the same time.
Fineburg missed out on the internship -- he can apply again in January -- but he did get three days of work on a Radio Shack advertisement out of it.
The problem? That’s all the work he’s gotten so far.
That means he’s headed behind the counter at Trader Joe’s, or, embracing the go-to for the unemployed in Hollywood, looking for work at bars and restaurants. Then again, he has never worked at a restaurant and even those jobs are being filled with more experienced employees.
And there’s the rub for young people in the modern job market.
Every industry is teeming with over-qualified applicants willing to take low wages to get off the unemployment rolls.
If you’re a kid just out of college, good luck. To get a job in any industry, Hollywood included, you need more experience.
“When I look for general production jobs or even just jobs as an assistant to somebody, it’s no longer an entry-level position, it says we want three years experience, or two years,” Fineburg explained.
 Even if you have a good pedigree its still a steep uphill climb.

That means trouble for someone like recent USC graduate Ben Cohen, who has the kind of pedigree most young writers would dream of.
Cohen, who hails from the suburbs of Minneapolis-St. Paul, studied in the exclusive USC screenwriting program. That gave him not just the luster of a reputable film school but also a bevy of connections.
It also helped land him internships while he was in school, one with Laura Ziskin Productions, and another with creative agency DDO.
Selling a script right out of college has always been a tall task, but even finding a job in the industry to make connections and sustain a living has proven almost impossible.

“The catch 22 at this point is every job posting says, ‘minimum two years desk experience preferred,'” Cohen said. “They can say that because so many people are looking for jobs now, and they can easily pull from the group of people that does have that experience.”
While that may be rational in the minds of agencies and production companies, that does little to help Cohen. He said that he has applied to more than 100 different places and only been called back for a handful of interviews.
None of those worked out.
“Because all those jobs require that experience, how are people with zero experience supposed to get to that level?” he asked.
That means that Cohen, who needs work to finance his life while he shops his scripts, has taken up not one job, but two part-time gigs and an internship.
Come Monday and Tuesday, Cohen interns for an online-only show called “The Morning After,” where he conducts research for the show’s pop-culture-focused discussion.
On top of that, he works in sales at Best Buy and as a proctor for the Princeton Review.
These stories are not unique in fact its the norm. Something the article touches on is how people with years of experience are fighting for entry level potions in the industry. This is making it extremely difficult for those with little experience to break in.

Right now its a buyers market and it looks like its going to get alot worse before it gets better.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


One entrepreneur from Mexico thinks so.

Carlos Wellman is hoping to bring a Mexican revolution to the sluggish U.S. cinema industry.

Wellman is the U.S. point man for Mexico City-based Cinepolis, the world's fourth-largest theater chain and Latin America's top circuit that has ambitious plans to extend its brand of luxury cinemas to Southern California.

Cinepolis recently opened its first U.S. venue in Del Mar, Calif., investing $8 million to create San Diego County's first luxury theater, where patrons can kick back in a leather recliner and press a button to order teriyaki beef skewers, sushi rolls or a glass of Thomas Hyland Chardonnay.

The eight-screen Del Mar theater is modeled after similar high-end movie houses that Cinepolis operates in wealthy areas of Mexico, Brazil, Colombia and other Latin American countries, and is the first of several that the chain intends to open in Southern California.

Three additional theaters are planned for next year, one currently under construction in Carlsbad, and two others in Orange County, in Laguna Niguel and Rancho Santa Margarita. Cinepolis also is negotiating deals to open theaters in at least two Los Angeles County locations: in Westlake and in the Westwood area, Wellman said.
The article brings up a interesting fact of why people stay away from the multiplex.

The expansion also comes at a time when theatrical attendance in the U.S. and Canada has been stagnant the last seven years. So far in 2011, the number of tickets sold has fallen nearly 6% and revenue is off 4%, [The people who "know this business" have yet to comment on this fact - Kev] despite higher ticket prices. Analysts have pointed to several factors, including a weaker crop of movies, fewer studio releases, higher ticket prices and longer-term challenges, such as consumers spending more time playing video games and watching movies in their homes.

"It sounds like a risky endeavor to me, given the current economic climate and the fact that there are more [entertainment] choices available to consumers," said Bruce Austin, a communications professor at the Rochester Institute of Technology. "Movie theaters with an $8 ticket are finding it difficult to entice people. If it's $19, the food better be good."

But Wellman contends many American consumers have stopped going to theaters because they are "run down" and "dated," and that they would be willing to pay a premium for something far better than what they would experience at the local multiplex.

"We're setting a new standard," he said, munching on a chicken Caesar salad wrap in a cafe at the Del Mar theater. "It's more like first-class entertainment."

Theaters have been experimenting with new ways to lure customers by offering VIP services, such as reserved seating and in-theater dining. ArcLight Cinemas, a subsidiary of Los Angeles-based Pacific Theatres, has been expanding its premium cinemas, most recently to San Diego. Australian luxury theater operator Gold Class Cinemas brought its high-end brand to Pasadena nearly two years ago, serving gourmet food and drinks to patrons watching movies in plush recliners.

Cinepolis is hoping to capitalize on the trend that has worked well for the circuit in other countries. The theater chain pioneered its luxury cinema concept in Mexico City in 1999 and has since expanded to about 150 screens across Latin America.
I think movie going is going to morph into something like what happened to legit theater where its more of a premium experience. You still have theatres in major cities but they cater to more of a high end clientele. While I feel there will still be standard movie theatres for many years to come you will start seeing more and more of these premium experiences popping up as the economy improves.


A interesting article from

For one thing, audiences tend to lean toward escapist fare in uncertain times -- which might go a long way in explaining the recent popularity of reality fare such as "Keeping Up With the Kardashians," with the oh-so-glamorous-but-why-are they-famous adventures of Kim Kardashian and her siblings, and the striving opulence of the "Real Housewives" franchise.

Of course, there have been a number of reality series that broach the topic of poverty and the challenges facing the lower-income spectrum -- hard luck stories on "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" spring to mind.
Even Bravo's "Million Dollar Listing" morphed from a series about real-estate agents raking in big bucks from selling extravagant Malibu and Hollywood homes to a reflection on the lousy housing market; sellers are cautioned that they should expect to get a lot less than they were hoping for.
Cable outlets appear to be ahead of the networks in acknowledging the economic downturn -- perhaps ironically, since cable TV is one of the luxuries that people are increasingly finding themselves unable to afford.


We all know that most media avoids politics...right?

By far the biggest surprise is how much politics and pop culture have fused, for better or worse, in ways that would be difficult to predict even in 2006. Candidates run for office with winning in mind or the prospect of a lucrative TV gig. Talk hosts are powerful enough to summon a quarter-million people to a rally, or the president to the sofa on their set. Actors return from world hot spots and are summoned to the White House as if they were diplomats. Entertainment activists spearhead a legal effort that marks a turning point in a civil rights movement.
I could go on and on, but you get the idea that as frivolous as celebrity has become, and as haughty as Hollywood can be, the industry does have a powerful impact on politics and the perceptions of it. This union of Hollywood and D.C., of attention getters and attention grabbers, is still more than a mere curiosity but a matter-of-fact part of the culture, and I hope that through the years I have been able to cover at least some of this with creativity and context.
For 5 years Variety has had a outstanding blog devoted to intersection of media and politics, hey I read it every day to know whats going on. Ted is one of the few people (the other being John Nolte of Big Hollywood) who has put things into context in regards to this issue.

If you havent bookmarked Ted Johnson's page yet you should.

Monday, October 24, 2011


Breaking news from 

Mattel announced Monday that it is shelling out $680 million in cash to acquire HIT Entertainment from a consortium led by Apax Partners funds.
Mattel, the world's largest toymaker and the force behind not just Barbie, but also American Girl and Hot Wheels, will greatly expand its portfolio of brands with the purchase. 
HIT Entertainment has a strong presence among children with its Thomas & Friends, Barney, Bob the Builder, Fireman Sam and Angelina Ballerina brands.
Of particular interest is the success that HIT has had in launching hit television shows around its Barney and Thomas brands.
Barney The Dinosaur maybe purple but in the end he is all about the green! 


Part 3 of the series from explains the human cost of the Great Recession on the film and TV world.


Though she's only in her early 30s, Christine Lakin has already spent two decades as an actor, from a run as a series regular on "Step by Step" while in her early teens to more than two dozen other series and 17 movies, including "You Again" and the upcoming "New Year's Day."
But a life of constant auditions, callbacks, readings and offers has changed dramatically over the past few years, Lakin told TheWrap -- to the point where her current career path has nothing to do with waiting for the next plum role and everything to do with doing anything she can.
Which means writing a web series for herself, doing voiceovers, becoming a choreographer.

"If I just waited by the phone for the kind of offers I used to get to come in, I'd never work," said Lakin, who also serves as a member of the Hollywood Screen Actors Guild board. "What I'm doing now isn't what I ever imagined myself doing, but you have to use the skill set you have if you want to work."
While she said that part of the slowdown may be due to outside factors, including a fickle Hollywood that finds "a new hot age" for actresses every year, she has no doubt that much of it is due to the slowdown in film and television production -- and the effect that has all the way up and down the Hollywood food chain.

"The economy is the most significant factor in what I've seen," she said. "In the past five or six years, studios are not doing as many films. And that means that you have more movie stars going into television -- not just to star in series, but also to do three-or-four-episode guest roles.
"And that trickles down to people like me, and pushes a lot of us into the category where we're just trying to make a living."

Note how she says the studios are not making as many films as they used to.  That takes its toll as we find out in this article from TheWrap.

"All the business models that we grew up with? They went out the window."

The speaker is a veteran of more than three decades in various facets of the entertainment industry, much of that time as an independent vendor for post-production services. The industry vet, who is in his 50s, didn’t want his name used, or even the specific nature of his business identified; we'll call him Larry, and say that he has carved out a niche providing a post-production service that readies film and television productions for overseas distribution and video release,.
For Larry, the crash of 2008 did not have an immediate affect on his business. The company he owned continued to do steady work both for major studios and smaller indie clients.
"We got through a couple of years, and then it hit," he said. "Fewer films were being made, and that ended up meaning less business across-the-board to a lot of different people."
An additional impact for his Southern California-based business, he said, came with the migration of a good chunk of production to right-to-work states like Texas, Michigan and North Carolina.
In the multi-faceted world of post-production, technological changes have also led to a shift in business. A good amount of post work used to be based around film processing and shipping -- but as work migrated to digital, large companies whose business came out of film processing aggressively entered the digital arena.
If you think this is impacting only actors and post-production people then you need to read this.

His first movie had grossed more than $80 million, and he had sold another. Want a Hollywood dream? He had it.
At least, that's what he figured.

Today, the 40-year-old screen scribe -- who fears notoriety from this article will exacerbate his employment situation should he be identified -- is working a two-week temporary job in sales.
"I didn’t have any backend points and I knew that the residuals wouldn’t last forever," he told TheWrap. "But you assume that once you have a hit movie out, more work will fall into place."

The economy changed that.
"I was doing fine for a while, and then it seemed like after the writers strike, studios and production companies used that as an excuse to cut in-house deals and use that as an excuse not to pay writers for anything."

He suddenly found himself competing with A-list writers for B-list jobs.
"A lot of the jobs I used to go up for, A-list, like super A-list writers are going for those jobs right now," he said. "In the past, they wouldn't have. There was enough of every level to go around."
Now, he said, with studios cutting back on the number of movies they make, it's a tougher world.
"They used to make films in the 5-to-10 million dollar range," he said. "Now everybody wants to do either the super micro-budget stuff, they want to make remakes or sequels, or they want to make tentpoles. A lot of those middle-ground movies that filled the marketplace, those assignments are gone now."
The studios are making fewer films and less hour-long TV Dramas so that means alot of people have been thrown out of work. With the industry becoming far more competitive and many of the free spending business models of 5 years ago being tossed out the window those who will survive will be the ones who know how to get the most bang for the buck. Not emulating failed business plans.

“From my perspective,” he says over breakfast at his favorite deli, “The effect of the down economy on the actual production of motion pictures is very different than the effect on other corporations and businesses. Everybody’s freelance. Almost everybody below the line on most crews is hired on a daily or a weekly
Nothing is longer than that.  
"Union contracts are structured so that people are hired on a daily basis so that you have the ability to fire them anytime you want to during the day before 4 o’clock in the afternoon. That gives them enough to time to get another job the next day. That’s how contracts are written.
"And that’s why their rates are a few bucks more than those people who work for corporations."
As now what happens frequently -- most conspicuously as producer Jerry Bruckheimer went shopping for a state with the most generous givebacks so he could remount “The Lone Ranger”  -- part of our UPM's job is finding the best deal.
Much as it goes against his grain, that’s not going to be in California:
Various states that have put together programs to lure production money from motion pictures to union production centers, and the state governments have invested in their labor force the same way Canada did," he told TheWrap. "The entire nation of Canada would not have an entertainment industry without its government; it wouldn’t exist.

“Virtually no motion pictures, other than tentpoles and the like, are made in California anymore. As a result, a tremendous amount of the labor force has left California for the states that have the tax incentives.
He says his favorite special effects guy has moved his entire operation to Shreveport and New Orleans. "He moved himself and his whole family. You would be amazed at how many technicians have left this area because they’re not TV guys.”
The 2006 mindset wasn't sustainable and you needed to be able to adapt when the easy money dried up. It did in 2008 and you can tell who adapted by those who are still standing and those who are not.

Friday, October 21, 2011

HOLLYWOOD AND THE JOB CRISIS - PART 2: TV IS BOOMING UNLESS YOU WORK IN L.A. has posted part 2 of its series Hollywood & The Job Crisis. This time the focus in on the booming TV market...that is passing Los Angeles right on by. 

If your search for television jobs is looking bleak, it may not be your industry's fault.
The problem might be your state's economy.

A record number of TV pilots were made last year, thanks to an increasing number of cable stations getting into original programming. This has been a windfall year for cable and network ad spending. But the money isn't necessarily trickling down to rank-and-file actors, writers and other professionals in Los Angeles, the heart of the industry.

Just as television has splintered from three major networks into hundreds of stations, shows and jobs are branching out to more and more cities.
A record-setting 169 pilots were shot last year, according to Film L.A. The increase was fueled by a cable boom: For the first time, more than half the pilots were for cable networks.
That's good news for the industry overall, and for stars and showrunners pulling big salaries. But in Los Angeles, some struggling actors and writers are still having a tough time finding work. Or making less money. Or both.
The aticle has a good point about how runaway production has affected the television industry here in LA.

What Los Angeles needs are more dramas, which have lost airtime in the last decade to cheaper -- and often more popular -- comedy and reality shows. Dramas employ people by the hundreds, far more than other types of shows. But many of them shoot outside the city that is home to the major studios.

"From an economic standpoint, TV dramas are a golden goose that is not nesting in Los Angeles this season," said Todd Lindren, vice president of Film L.A. The private, not-for-profit group processes permits for on-location shoots in the Los Angeles area.

In the 2010-11 season, Los Angeles produced only 10 hour-long drama pilots for networks and 13 for cable, according to Film L.A.
New York, meanwhile, hosted 10 for networks and five for cable. Canada was home to eight for networks and 10 for cable, and other locations hosted 16 and 19, respectively.
The drama situation doesn't seem to be improving for the shooting capitol: Los Angeles' scripted dramas actually had 20 percent fewer permitted production days in the third quarter of this year than it did in the same period in 2010, according to Film L.A.
The problem is going to get much worse before it gets better.

But the jobs numbers hide the fact that many in the TV industry are doing less work, getting paid less, or both.
From 2009 to 2010, the Writers Guild of America reports a 1.1 percent decrease in the number of its members reporting earnings from television. But those that did report earnings scored a record $532.1 million – a 2.9 percent increase.
That means a slightly bigger pie, and slightly fewer people sharing in it. Not the kind of economic injustice that will make anyone Occupy Hollywood, but still a case of more money in fewer hands.
Part 3 is tomorrow.

Thursday, October 20, 2011


HOLLYWOOD AND THE JOBS CRISIS - PART 1 is launching a very good series on how the Great Recession has impacted and continues to impact the entertainment industry.

Here is an excerpt
In the wake of the financial downturn, the major studios slashed the number of films they were producing in 2010 by nearly 20 percent, according to the Motion Picture Association of America.
Throughout the industry, companies went into cutback mode. Studios shut down or auctioned off speciality arms such as Miramax and Paramount Vantage, eliminating scores of jobs in the process.

Post-production houses such as Deluxe and Technicolor merged while smaller shops like CFI and Pacific folded, displacing hundreds of workers.
On studio lots, nearly every major studio shed jobs, particularly in their home entertainment divisions, with the likes of Sony and Warner Bros. letting hundreds of employees go in order to stay in the black. They also slashed away at producer deals and movie budgets, adding more people to the unemployment rolls.
And the butcher’s cleaver hasn’t gone back on the shelf just yet. Last month, Paramount announced that it is merging its home entertainment, licensing and digital operations, and Disney consolidated its toys arm and home entertainment into a single division, which will almost certainly lead to more staff cuts.
Studio executives tell TheWrap that more companies are likely to follow Paramount and Disney’s lead.
Yesterday Jerry Bruckheimer talked about the decline of DVD revenue has killed the studios. Here is an example of how that decline has impacted the major studios and mid-size production companies.

Yet it is not limited to the major studios, it only takes a quick google search to see same thing happening in the anime world. ADV, Central Park Media, Tokyopop are gone, other companies have cut back and it looks like it might get worse.

Though California hasn’t abandoned its status as the movie industry’s base, the state was particularly hard hit by the downturn. Runaway production exacerbated the problem. All told it has cost the state $2.4 billion in wages and $4.2 billion in total economic output since 1997, according to the Milken Institute, as more and more films fled the golden state for the generous  tax incentives being doled out by Michigan, Louisiana and other states
Go read the whole thing...

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


              Jerry Bruckheimer

A very revealing article (HT: Big Hollywood) from The Hollywood Reporter on what is going on with the Lone Ranger from producer Jerry Bruckheimer.

THR: How did negotiations get to the point where Disney shut down the movie?

Bruckheimer: We had a script that we kept working on. It was evolving. You start looking at locations, you look at the menu and say: "I like all these desserts. I want 'em all." And you hit a number and they say, "We can't afford that." Then you start cutting it back. Disney wanted to stop the spending unless they felt the budget corresponded to the number that the boss [Iger] wanted. They had set a deadline [Aug. 12] for us to submit a budget, and we didn't hit their number. They said, "Can you hit it?" We didn't have enough time to really vet the budget, and we said we couldn't hit it right away. And they said, "We have to stop the bleeding." We understood what they were doing, but we wanted to keep working.

THR: Were you shocked that they shut it down?

Bruckheimer: It's always a shock when they actually do it. But I was still very confident that we could get the picture made. It took us about four to six weeks to figure out how to make the movie more economically.
Then there is this key quote on something that is impacting the entire industry.

THR: Was this your most difficult negotiation ever?

Bruckheimer: It's been very hard. It's just the times. It's tough out there. The studios lost a real source of revenue in DVDs. It's much tougher, much harder. The studios are making fewer movies. In the past, there's always been something else [to make up lost revenue] that's jumped in there. There will be something, but it hasn't happened yet.

Go read the whole thing.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


From the

“Right now, it’ll probably be 30 to 40 minutes longer than the first movie. The first one was about an hour and a half and a lot of those faithful to the book said they really wished we would have given them more out of the book. … We’re going to slow things down a little bit and let people enjoy what they experienced in the book, in the theater.”

Then, there’s the new cast. Part 1’s journey to the screen included a long history of production changes that at various points included talk of casting A-listers such as Angelina Jolie, Charlize Theron and Brad Pitt, but the final product featured a more modest cast (Taylor Schilling, Grant Bowler, Matthew Marsden, Graham Beckel and Rebecca Wisocky). Kaslow is realistic about what he can afford, but said, “We’re going to aspire to get the biggest names that we possibly can” while also being faithful to the book’s characters and who’s best for those roles. Some of the new actors will step into roles played by others in Part 1.

One of the things I'm constantly asked is what is going on with Atlas Shrugged Part II. Well here is the latest and fans should go read the whole thing.

Monday, October 10, 2011