The Morning Fix: Conan and Fox inch closer! Windows cloud ShoWest. Make it a VOD night. I’m moving to Goldsboro, N.C.!
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After the coffee. Before finishing up your March Madness office pool picks.
Keeping up with Conan. Former ‘Tonight Show’ host Conan O’Brien is back in the news today, and it’s not for his tweets. The Los Angeles Times’ Meg James updates us on his talks to take his late-night act to Fox. The two sides are inching closer to an agreement, although nothing is guaranteed. Sticking points remain, including the fact that the Fox-owned TV stations and Fox affiliates already have deals for sitcom reruns in the 11 p.m. hour. If O’Brien does go to Fox either in the fall or January, he might not have a uniform start time across the country for at least a year. The Wrap, meanwhile, weighs in with a piece about whether O’Brien might go the syndication route in late night. It is, the story acknowledges, a long shot, but his camp has met with some syndicators. Finally, Deadline New York’s Mike Fleming reports that O’Brien’s upcoming comedy tour may end up becoming a movie as well.
Windows debate clouds ShoWest. Usually, the movie industry’s annual Las Vegas gathering is little more than a cheerleading festival for the industry. Stars are paraded out, and executives say how great everything is going. But this year’s ShoWest has a different tone as movie-theater owners gripe about the push by studios to shorten the window between when a movie ends its theatrical run and comes out on DVD. The Associated Press with an overview.
Forget the Blockbuster-night thing. One-time video giant Blockbuster warned shareholders it might have to file for bankruptcy. It also said Hollywood studios might tighten their credit deals with the chain. Details from the Wall Street Journal.
Make it a VOD night. While Blockbuster struggles and DVD sales decline, the cable industry and Hollywood are teaming up on a $30-million push to promote video on demand. More from the Los Angeles Times.
Stop the presses! President Obama must really want that health bill passed. He’s going on Fox News to make his case, reports the New York Times. Fox News has been trying to land Obama, but their opinion shows have, uh, made that difficult, and the network has been criticized in the past by the administration for not being so fair or balanced. Nice to see them all get along.
Yes, they really are watching you. This has nothing to do with show biz, but since we all goof off at work sometimes and look at YouTube or Facebook, here’s a USA Today piece on how employers are getting more sophisticated in tracking what their people are doing during the workday. Keep it in mind as you go to check out the NCAA tournament on Thursday and Friday.
I’m moving to Goldsboro, N.C.! Time Warner Cable goofed the other day and ran a video promoting the Playboy Channel on two cable networks aimed at kids, according to the Triangle Business Journal. Time Warner Cable apologized for the incident that caused a huge ratings spike for the two channels (kidding on the ratings spike).
Inside the Los Angeles Times: Producer Scott Rudin is in talks to leave Walt Disney Co. Katherine Heigl looks at life after ‘Grey’s Anatomy.’ The premiere of HBO’s World War II epic miniseries ‘The Pacific’ gets 3.1-million viewers.
-- Joe Flint