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Thompson on Hollywood

Fleming Steps Up to Improve Deadline, Split Year Between Two Coasts

As the negotiation for Nikki Finke's inevitable exit from her contract continues, it's significant that Deadline film editor Mike Fleming has announced, in an unusually lengthy 1583-word post, that he is stepping up to an enhanced L.A./N.Y. role as he divides his year between the two coasts, starting in November.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 9, 2013 2:18 PM
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Penske's Moves: As Daily Variety Prints Last Edition, Adds Critic Foundas, Reduces Movieline

Variety lovers are feeling mixed emotions. On the one hand, Penske Media Corp CEO Jay Penske is making changes that were long overdue. He has pulled down the firewall, modernized the website, added a troika of editors--LA Times import Claudia Eller (film), and Variety's Cynthia Littleton (TV) and Andrew Wallenstein (digital)--to run the online and print weekly trade, and ended publication of the print daily. Tuesday March 19 was the last print edition after 80 years. The revamped weekly publishes on March 27.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 18, 2013 9:36 PM
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  • 1 Comment

The Industry: Bad Habits of the Entertainment Media

A lot of loss this month. Time Warner is shedding its magazines. Variety is saying goodbye to its daily edition. And Yahoo is finally losing the jerk-off rule that allowed so many people to work from home in the first place. But the more things change, the more they stay the same.
  • By J.J. Hunsecker
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  • March 11, 2013 6:09 AM
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  • 3 Comments

Variety Drops Paywall, Kicks Gray Upstairs, Adds Eller for Editorial Troika

The Variety shoe has finally dropped as media mogul Jay Penske has tapped the L.A. Times' Claudia Eller and Variety staff editors Cynthia Littleton and Andrew Wallenstein as the new editors-in-chief of Variety, charged with leading the 100-year-old trade through its next non-print evolution.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • February 26, 2013 1:09 PM
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  • 2 Comments

Transitions in Media World, from Time Warner Mags to a Variety Reboot; Sragow Returns to L.A.

Sad but true. The march of time continues to bring inevitable shifts in the media world. Newsweek has been swallowed by The Daily Beast. And now Time Warner's publishing arm is considering creating a new joint magazine venture with broadcast giant Meredith Corporation focused on women's titles. Meanwhile Jay Penske, CEO of Variety parent Penske Media Corp, is about to reveal his reboot of Variety amid considerable anxiety at the venerable trade.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • February 19, 2013 7:12 PM
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  • 1 Comment

FilmLinc Daily Adds Contributor Brian Brooks

Indiewire cofounder Eugene Hernandez, now digital director at the Film Society of Lincoln Center, is bringing into his expanding FilmLinc Daily fold his long-time Indiewire cohort Brian Brooks, who recently emerged from a staff stint at Jay Penske's Deadline and Movieline.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • February 5, 2013 6:22 PM
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Weekend Recap: Hollywood's Most Secretive Directors, Cinema's Future, Tina Brown, AMC vs. Dish

Secretive directors: In a world where new posters, trailers, and spoilers are prized and rumors are updated minute-by-minute, remaining a "secretive" director takes willpower and determination. A select few directors manage to keep a tight lid on their projects, and Vulture's Kyle Buchanan posted a list of the most clandestine of these. Hollywood's most secretive filmmakers? Christopher Nolan, Woody Allen, and the Wachowskis...
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • October 22, 2012 2:35 PM
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Penske Promotes Variety's Sobrino-Stearns to Publisher

Jay Penske has promoted Variety's veteran ad-sales exec Michelle Sobrino-Stearns to publisher of Variety. Never in the showbiz publication's 107-year-history has it been headed by a woman.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 18, 2012 8:19 PM
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Penske Buys Variety for $25 Million UPDATED

Well, the early reports are true. After seven months of negotiations, Penske Media Corp., backed by hedge fund Third Point, has won 107-year-old trade paper Variety for $25 million. Just months ago Variety was thought to be worth $50 mlllion, which was still substantially lower than its pre-recession peak value. Jay Penske, 33, outbid New York Hedge Fund Avenue Capitol and supermarket mogul Ron Burkle.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 9, 2012 12:14 PM
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Facebook Passes One Billion Users [ZUCKERBERG VIDEO]

In an interview with Matt Lauer on NBC's Today Show, Facebook's 28-year-old CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that over a billion people are now using Facebook: "It's just this amazing honor. To be able to come into work every day and build things that help a billion people stay connected with the people they care about .... just unbelievable."
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • October 4, 2012 12:54 PM
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  • 0 Comments

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