The Morning Fix: Bow down for Apple's tablet! Warner Bros. looks to UK. CBS' Super Bowl headache. Oscar ad rates flat.
After the coffee. Before getting over Apple's tablet.
Where were you when ... Apple unveiled the tablet? We were in a hotel in Las Vegas so we missed it. But here's a roundup of stories on what's coming and what it means. A year from now we can look back and see who was right and who was wrong. More from the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Hollywood Reporter, PaidContent, TechCrunch and Reuters. Oh and the New York Times and Wall Street Journal are among the media outlets live blogging Steve Jobs' big moment.
Cheerio! Warner Bros. is looking to spend about $160 million to set up its own studio in Britain, reports the Financial Times. The move would make Warner Bros. the only Hollywood studio to have a studio abroad. The studio it is looking to buy has been used by Warner Bros. for "Harry Potter" and "The Dark Knight."
Super headaches. CBS' decision to accept a Super Bowl advertisement from the Christian group Focus on the Family, with college football star Tim Tebow and his mother talking about pregnancy has caused a firestorm. Many activist groups are anticipating that the ad is a thinly veiled attack on abortion. CBS said that it has reviewed the ad and that it has changed a policy and now accepts advocacy ads. Details on the hubbub from the Los Angeles Times.
More Oscar nominations, same ad dollars. The efforts by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences to beef up viewership of the Oscars by adding more nominations to the best picture category haven't translated into more advertising money. Advertising Age says commercial rates are about flat from the 2009 awards show.
CBS Films has tough start. With "Extraordinary Measures'" less than extraordinary performance at the box office, gossip that CBS is already rethinking its commitment to the movie business is starting. The New York Post says the company is already looking to make cuts to marketing and budget. CBS says that's bull.
Last days of NATPE. It used to be the biggest industry convention around, full of deals, debauchery and decadence. But now the National Assn. of Television Program Executives, where syndicators sell TV shows to local stations, has become a tepid affair. The big studios don't bother with dog-and-pony shows and there isn't much of a convention floor anymore. Variety's Cynthia Littleton with an overview of this year's show and what it means for the future.
This must be a coincidence. Less than a week after cutting ties to Conan O'Brien, NBC has closed a deal with the former "Tonight Show" host's production company for a new legal show. Details from Hollywood Reporter.
The New Jersey board of tourism must be thrilled. Looks like MTV is nearing a new deal with the cast of its reality hit "Jersey Shore" for a second season. The cast members, some of whom look like the kids who stole my bike back in my Garden State days, had been holding out for a big payday. That hair gel isn't cheap, ya know. Variety says the cast will get about $10,000 per episode. Can buy a lot of tank tops with that.
-- Joe Flint