The Morning Fix: Oprah will grace her cable network with her presence! Decision time for Disney on Miramax. FX wants to be less like FX.
Who's offering what for Miramax. Details are trickling in on the bids for Walt Disney Co.'s Miramax (yes, we'll be glad when this is all over). The biggest bid, per the Los Angeles Times, is from Pangea Media Group, but it wants Disney to throw in an animated movie. Ron Burkle, who is looking to buy it and have the Weinstein Co. run it, is in second place, while the brothers Gores are in third. Our hunch: whoever has the most cash -- and not necessarily the best offer -- will get Disney's attention.
It's all relative. Speaking of movie companies on the block (and stories we're bored by), Ryan Kavanaugh's Relativity Media is offering MGM a $500-million fund to finance some of its movie franchises such as James Bond and the hobbit. MGM's lenders have hit the brakes on an auction process because the bids they got were not what they were looking for, and management is apparently trying to make the case to continue as a stand-alone. More from the Wrap.
Oprah after dark. Today Discovery Communications makes a big presentation about its cable networks to advertisers, and right on schedule is the leak to scoop by the Wall Street Journal with details about its plans for the soon-to-be-launched Oprah Winfrey Network. Guess what, Oprah will have a show on the network! It will be in the evening and run a couple of times a week and be about her global travels.
Guess that sounds better than "Dates with Kate." Not wanting to get lost in all the Oprah-WSJ love, Discovery Communications' TLC network details its programming plans to USA Today, including the name of the new Kate Gosselin show, which will be ... "Twist of Kate."
It's been working so let's change it. FX, which made a name for itself with dark shows such as "The Shield" and "Rescue Me," wants to go a little lighter. According to Broadcasting & Cable, the News Corp.-owned network wants to borrow a page from USA and TNT and offer some more mainstream comedies and dramas to widen its audience. Well, considering that the numbers for "Justified," the network's first such effort at going in a different direction, have been dropping since its premiere, maybe FX should embrace the dark instead of running to the light.
Luxury problems. There is debate going on at ABC's sitcom "Modern Family" over what Emmy categories the cast should be nominated in. Since the show is an ensemble with everyone getting pretty much equal air time, it needs to be resolved as to who will go for supporting actor vs. best actor. The Hollywood Reporter looks at a situation which, if nothing else, could mean lots of trade ads.
Inside the Los Angeles Times: A Q & A with Joan Graves, the most powerful movie critic you've never heard of. The auction for Nicholas Cage's bizarre mansion came and went with no takers. Patrick Goldstein on Nicollette Sheridan's use of the "gay card" in her lawsuit against "Desperate Housewives" creator Marc Cherry.
-- Joe Flint