The Morning Fix: Which Hollywood stars are overpaid? New DirecTV CEO is part of Pepsi Generation. NFL to limit tailgating. 'Parks & Recreation' is getting hot
After the coffee. Before deciding whether to buy a big-screen TV now or wait for those sexy energy-efficient models coming out in 2011.
Overpaid? Me? How dare they! Don't look for Will Ferrell or Ewan McGregor to do any sit-down interviews with Forbes anytime soon. The magazine has put those two on the top of their Hollywood's 10 Most Overpaid Stars list. Also making the cut were Tom Cruise and Eddie Murphy. Of course, whether one big bomb for Ferrell ("Land of the Lost") really merits that sort of stigma is open for debate. Regardless, this is one list that agents and publicists aren't fighting to get their talent on!
Does this mean free Pepsi for signing up? Satellite broadcaster DirecTV Group Inc. finally hired a new chief executive to replace Chase Carey, who bolted earlier this year to go back to Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. It's Michael White, a senior executive at PepsiCo whose main focus has been in the international markets. The move to go with someone whose experience is in retail highlights DirecTV's desire to beef up its marketing efforts. Analysis from the Wall Street Journal and Los Angeles Times.
It's like "The Wrestler," just only about country music. "Crazy Heart," starring Jeff Bridges as a down-and-out country singer that looked like it might end up sitting on the shelf, is now getting Oscar buzz, according to the New York Times. The paper says some awards watchers are already calling Bridges a candidate for best actor. Notably, the people quoted in the article saying that seemed to be tied to the movie, which Fox Searchlight picked up after MTV Films sat on it. But I guess if they watch awards shows and the writer of the article watches awards shows too, that counts.
Hope this doesn't mean Kanye West will get center stage. Hamish Hamilton, whose previous awards show credits include this year's MTV Awards and a Victoria's Secret Fashion Show or two, has been tapped to direct the Oscars. Details on the choice from Deadline Hollywood and Variety.
NFL to put time limit on tailgating. The National Football League wants to limit pre-game tailgating by fans (otherwise known as the how much beer can I drink before opening kickoff festival) to only 3 1/2 hours. Some fans are outraged, but families probably won't like not having to step over vomit or be heckled on their way into the stadium. If you're wondering why we're including this story from USA Today in a roundup of entertainment news it's because the NFL's marketing and image machine is something to behold.
Inside the Los Angeles Times: New TV sets have to meet energy-efficient standards starting in 2011. NBC's "Parks and Recreation" is turning into one of NBC's few bright spots. Kenneth Turan on whether "New Moon" has bite.
-- Joe Flint