The Morning Fix: Comcast finishes strong. Apple irks big media. Billy Ray Cyrus has the blues.
After the coffee. Before I analyze my bizarre dreams.
The Skinny: Apple wants a big cut from content providers, and that's not playing well with media companies. Was Chris Nolan snubbed by Oscar voters?
There's an app for that. Apple unveiled its subscription service for content providers and said it would take a 30% cut of any app for a newspaper, magazine or video. In other words, if you were to subcribe to a newspaper through an app, only 70% of the subscription fees would make it back to the paper. Seems steep. More on that from the Wall Street Journal. As for Hollywood, well, if you are traveling abroad to a world without iTunes, Warner Bros. is there for you. The movie studio has created an app for Apple devices to download director Christopher Nolan's "Inception" and "The Dark Knight." The app can be used in 23 countries, and the movies cost from $10 to $12. More on how it works from the Los Angeles Times.
Denied! Lots of folks are wondering why Nolan's "Inception" was overlooked for all the big Oscar categories. Daily Beast writer Chris Lee (formerly of the Los Angeles Times) looks at why the academy snubbed him. There has been some talk that Warner Bros., which made the movie, could have been more aggressive in its campaign efforts.
How to make a flop. Mitch Hurwitz, creator of the critical favorite "Arrested Development" and the not-so-critical favorite "Running Wilde" has written the rules for how to make sure your TV show bombs. It reminds me of what Pete Townshend cracked when asked how to succeed. "If you steer clear of quality, you're alright." Hurwitz's memo courtesy of the Guardian.
Comcast finishes strong. Cable giant Comcast Corp., the nation's biggest cable and broadband distributor, issued its fourth-quarter results early Wednesday morning and reported a 6.6% gain in net income to $1.02 billion. The company also said it would buy back $2.1 billion of its shares this year. Comcast added almost 700,000 subscribers and lost 135,000. Next report will be interesting because it will include two months of results for NBC Universal, which the company acquired a controlling stake in last month. Details from Bloomberg.
Billy Ray's blues. Sometimes, being an aging country-music star and father to a hugely successful performer isn't all it's cracked up to be. Billy Ray Cyrus sits down with GQ to talk about the dark side of being Miley's dad.
Inside the Los Angeles Times: The Lakers big cable move is still the talk of the town. Veteran entertainment executives Jeff Sagansky and Harry Sloan are on the hunt for media companies.
-- Joe Flint
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