By Joe Flint
7:05 AM PDT, October 17, 2013
After the coffee. Before the eggs. (How'd I never think of that before?)
The Skinny: The Dodgers are still alive! I'm actually not some big Dodger fan but I love playoff baseball and want the series to go seven. It's a nice distraction. Thursday's roundup includes a look at what shows attract the wealthiest viewers. Also, Oren Aviv exits 20th Century Fox as marketing chief and a new movie has a less-than-saintly portrayal of Walt Disney.
Daily Dose: There have been a few stories lately that Katie Couric's daytime TV show, which is distributed by Disney and carried on lots of ABC shows, may not make it to a third season. The show, which is averaging 2.3 million viewers this season, is very expensive. Not only are the numbers a little disappointing, despite all the hype and promotion, Couric's show is drawing fewer viewers than the two soaps -- "All My Children" and "One Life to Live -- ABC canceled to make room for the talker. That probably has fans of those two soaps steaming.
Spare a dollar? If your neighbor watches lots of ABC, then he might have some cash to blow. According to Nielsen data that the network is touting, ABC leads in ratings among viewers who make more than $150,000 a year. Overall, ABC has five of the top 10 shows among the well-to-do, including "Modern Family," "Scandal" and "Grey's Anatomy." Now at least when someone from the network asks if I've watched one of their shows, I can reply that I don't make enough money for it. More on the numbers from the Los Angeles Times.
Warts and all? The movie "Saving Mr. Banks," about the making of the movie "Mary Poppins" (yes, it's a movie about making a movie), includes Tom Hanks playing a chain-smoking and scotch-loving Walt Disney. So did the filmmakers have to pull their punches in portraying the legend because the movie is being made by Disney too? Not according to John Lee Hancock, who tells the New York Times that "to their credit, they were smart enough and brave enough to realize that a human Walt was not only a better character, but was easier to love.”
Early exit. Oren Aviv, the chief marketing officer at 20th Century Fox, is out at the movie studio with a year-and-a-half left to go on his contract. According to Deadline Hollywood, Aviv clashed with Tony Sella, the chief creative officer at the studio. Sounds like there were are too many chiefs in the kitchen (see what I did there?).
Where have all the good men gone? Is there a leading-man shortage in Hollywood? Variety notes there are no men under 40 who have really broken out if you discount the stars of franchise films such as "Harry Potter" and "Twilight." Said Variety: "Hollywood is a now a town with angst-ridden actors jittery about their own fame. A big part of this change comes from the new reality of stardom, if such a thing even exists anymore. In the era of TMZ, celebrity is a bad word, and the instantaneous news cycle has led to high burnout."
Bay attacked. Director Michael Bay was attacked on the set of "Transformers 4" in Hong Kong, according to Reuters, which said two brothers approached him seeking money. An argument then broke out and Bay "sustained injuries to the right side of his face." However, he did not seek treatment and shooting went on as scheduled.
Are the benefits good? Pierre Omidyar, the founder of EBay, is starting his own online news operation and his first big hire is Glenn Greenwald, the journalist who broke much of the Edward Snowden whistle-blowing story. Omidyar, who is still chairman of EBay, is going to invest at least $250 million of his own money into the venture. More on Omidyar's plans from the Wall Street Journal and ThinkPress, a blog by New York University journalism professor Jay Rosen who spoke with and consulted for Omidyar on the effort.
Inside the Los Angeles Times: Mary McNamara on the CW's racy drama "Reign." Veteran character actor Ed Lauter, perhaps best known for his portrayal of a sadistic guard in "The Longest Yard," died at the age of 74.
Follow me on Twitter. Unlike Damon Lindelof, I won't quit you. @JBFlint.
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