The Morning Fix: 'Project Runway' stumbles! Sony loses clash with theaters. Jackman passes on Oscars. Another grim week for journalism.
No MJ for Christmas. Sony wanted to rush the Michael Jackson movie "This Is It" onto DVD in time for the holidays. However movie theaters, already concerned about the shrinking windows between the theatrical and DVD releases, got tough and Sony backed off. Since this film would seem to have a shorter life at the cinema than most movies, Sony's push made sense but theater owners also had some legitimate concerns; the back-and-forth from the Los Angeles Times. Sony announced its quarterly earnings early this morning and endured its fourth straight quarter of losses, this time losing $287.5 million; details in the Wall Street Journal.
"Project Runway" not so fierce. Lifetime's bold move to snag "Project Runway" from Bravo has not exactly been the ratings bonanza the cable network was expecting. The costly acquisition started off strong but has since taken a big tumble on the catwalk. Meanwhile, Bravo has managed to get over losing one of its big guns. The Wrap takes a look at the not-so-pretty picture for Lifetime.
Stop the presses, literally. In another blow for the magazine business, Time Warner's Time Inc., home of People, Sports Illustrated, Fortune and Entertainment Weekly, is expected to make $100 million in cuts next week. Layoffs are going to be felt across the unit and speculation continues to swirl that EW will ultimately become a Web-only publication. The grim report in today's New York Times. Separately, News Corp. said it was closing the Wall Street Journal's Boston bureau, once a powerhouse of investigative reporting for the paper. There could be more cuts and exits coming at the WSJ, per Business Week. Oh, and Forbes is making big cuts too, details on that from the New York Post. Happy weekend, journalists.
Thanks, but no thanks. Hugh Jackman isn't interested in an encore as host of the Oscars. According to Variety, the movie star, who got mostly good notes last year, said no when approached about doing it again. Oscar producers are no doubt feeling a little heat to make a splashy choice after the Golden Globes snagged Ricky Gervais as host.
Going fishing. Disney Channel, which still hasn't named a successor to Rich Ross, who now runs the company's movie studio, has ordered its first animated series in three years, says the Hollywood Reporter. "Fish Hooks" follows the high school years of three fish (it's a cartoon, so go with it) as they deal with adolescence and the occasional lobster.
Remember when your car was just for driving? In the latest move to keep drivers distracted (as if cellphones and texting weren't enough), Chrysler is going to start offering cars with live TV. We assume it'll only be for passengers, but even if it is, it's still one more thing standing in the way of focusing on the road. The update from the Detroit Free Press.
-- Joe Flint