The Morning Fix: Figuring out summer box office; Time Warner's next move; ESPN wants the gold; Stone talks 'Wall Street'
After the coffee. Before making your bet on which new show will be canceled first.
Was it a summer to remember or not? Now that we're past Labor Day, the box office analysis can begin. Yes, there was big money this summer, but the season was longer and attendance was actually down from last year. Analysis from the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, Variety, The Hollywood Reporter and The Wrap.
What's Time Warner up to? Business Week speculates that now that Disney has done a big deal (buying Marvel last week if you were on vacation), the pressure is on Time Warner and its CEO Jeff Bewkes to buy something. Among the potential targets the magazine suggests are DreamWorks Animation, Scripps' cable networks or MGM. Bewkes says he doesn't feel any heat to do a deal. Business Week, which is also for sale, didn't ask if perhaps Time Warner wanted to buy it.
This is your wake-up call. Director Oliver Stone takes a tour of Lower Manhattan with the New York Times' Tim Arango and discusses the sequel to his 1987 hit "Wall Street." Some plot disclosures, but not a ton. Shia LeBeouf's character is with Gordon Gekko's daughter (hmmm, we seem to recall Gekko having a son in the first movie, not a daughter, and then he went to jail, which means he presumably had this new kid when he got paroled; LeBeouf is dating a teenager, but anyway). Yes, Charlie Sheen will have a cameo.
ESPN wants the gold! Walt Disney Co.'s cable sports juggernaut ESPN is talking tough to USA Today about snagging the Olympic rights away from NBC. But this isn't the first time ESPN has gone for the gold, and NBC has big pockets of its own and deep relationships with the International Olympic Committee on its side.
Leno's close-up. If NBC's Jay Leno washes out in prime time, it won't be from a lack of media exposure. After Leno landed on the cover of Time, USA Today weighs in with its look at the challenges the comedian will face in his new 10 p.m. slot. Meanwhile, Deadline Hollywood (it's not Deadline Hollywood Daily anymore) apologizes (yes, you read that right) for its coverage of Leno's battle with the WGA West and calls for the Guild to release all its information on what led it to say Leno had done no wrong during the writers strike.
Dave's turn. Not everyone is obsessing over Jay Leno. New York puts David Letterman on its cover and waxes on about his renaissance.
The presidents speak. Broadcasting & Cable offers up its fall preview with a look at what's on the line for the five broadcast networks (sorry ION, we still don't count you) and has interviews with all five presidents who are nervous, hopeful, cautious and confident all at the same time.
-- Joe Flint