The Morning Fix: Steven Tyler to scream for 'American Idol'! Spyglass chiefs near deal to run MGM. HBO might add an X.
Walk this way! Looks like Steven Tyler, the lead singer for Aerosmith (they were a big band in the 1970s and then made Alicia Silverstone's career, for you kids who don't know), has sealed his deal to be a judge on Fox's "American Idol" next season. The show, which lost Simon Cowell and Ellen DeGeneres, still has to find at least one more judge and talks with Jennifer Lopez have hit a standstill. Although "American Idol" has definitely lost some power over the last few years, it remains the most-watched television show in the industry and a cash cow. One trusts that even if ratings take a bigger than usual slide without Cowell, the cost savings from his exit will balance out with any advertising decline. In other words, hope Fox and the producers, 19 Entertainment and Fremantle, are not breaking the bank on unproven judges who happen to have once been big names. The latest from Ted Casablanca and Taryn Rider at E! Online.
Spyglass brass gets closer to taking reigns of MGM. Gary Barber and Roger Birnbaum, the chiefs of Spyglass Entertainment, are putting the final touches on a deal to run the troubled MGM studio. Earlier this week, MGM's debtors and Barber and Birnbaum reached an agreement that would have the two Spyglass toppers take over a shrunken MGM. Details from the Los Angeles Times and Variety.
But I already saw "Boogie Nights." HBO is working on a series about the adult entertainment business. Makes sense -- after all, they already have porn star Sasha Grey on the payroll for "Entourage" and maybe she's up for double duty. The show is from Dirk Diggler himself -- Mark Wahlberg. He's already in bed with HBO, as his production company makes "Entourage" and "How to Make It in America" for the pay cable channel. Just to make sure everyone knows it's a fictional show, author James Frey has been tapped to write the pilot. More from the New York Post.
Stop calling me Shirley! This week, "Vampires Suck," the latest spoof movie of a popular genre opened, but are these joke flicks getting tired? The Hollywood Reporter looks at whether "Vampires Suck" will draw blood at the box office.
Location, location, location. Facebook has unveiled its location service, which will allow its users to let people know where they are at. Of course, most Facebook users already take glee in telling their friends when they are at the gym, hiking, on vacation or just sitting around in the backyard. I've never quite understood why one would never put a sign on their door saying, "going away, feel free to ran shackle" yet people have no problem telling Facebook where they are at all times. What, none of my friends are thieves? I'm not taking that chance. Oh, and there will be the usual griping from privacy advocates about what Facebook is doing; although I'm as pro-privacy as anyone, if you truly want privacy, don't put your life online. Oh, and if you are curious, Thursday morning's roundup is being done from a Starbucks on Broadway and 103rd Street. Details on Facebook's latest move from the Wall Street Journal.
"Business Report" sold. "Nightly Business Report, a stable of public broadcasting that for years has been owned and produced by WPBT-TV, a public television station in Miami, has been sold to a private company. According to the New York Times, Mykalai Kontilai, who distributes television programs and used to manage mixed martial artists, has acquired the show. No terms were disclosed. The show, which is over 3 decades old, will continue to be produced out of WPBT.
Guess Betty White wasn't available. Chelsea Handler, host of E!'s late-night talk show "Chelsea Lately," will be the host of MTV's Music Video Awards, which return to Los Angeles next month. Handler, best known for her love of vodka and single men, is something of an unusual choice for the show. Get ready for lots of Snooki jokes. More on Chelsea's big gig from MTV News.
-- Joe Flint
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