The Morning Fix: Rupert to stop the presses! Don’t cut that cord. Oprah network costs go up but so does her commitment. Battle of sexes at box office.
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After the coffee. Before deciding whether George Michael can be ruled out as a potential ‘American Idol’ judge.
Stop the presses, but don’t cut the cord! News Corp. Chief Executive Rupert Murdoch, one of the few moguls who still loves the news business, is planning a digital newspaper for Apple’s iPad and other tablet devices. The Los Angeles Times reports that News Corp., parent of several print papers including the Wall Street Journal and New York Post, could launch its digital effort by the end of the year. It would have short stories with crackling headlines (hmmm, sounds familiar) and will be overseen by Jesse Angelo, managing editor of the New York Post. Meanwhile, the Wall Street Journal reports that several cable and satellite operators are creating their own applications for the iPad and other tablets to allow their subscribers to access content on the devices. Of course, that’s not such a surprise because a) pay-TV distributors want to find ways to stop consumers from cutting the cord and b) don’t want their program suppliers to go directly to the new devices and cut them out as the middle man.
Lets go our separate ways. Has there even been a weekend where the two big movies opening are so specifically targeted to just one sex? We’ve got ‘The Expendables’ from Lionsgate, an over-the-hill gang action flick starring Sylvester Stallone, Bruce Willis and Mickey Rourke squaring off against Sony’s ‘Eat Pray Love’ starring Julia Roberts, who goes on a journey of self-discovery. Oh, and teens won’t want to see either and will likely be racing off to see Universal’s ‘Scott Pilgrim vs. the World.’ Me, I’ll probably try again to finally see ‘Cyrus.’ Box office preview from the Los Angeles Times, Variety and Hollywood Reporter.
Just say no. Google and Verizon’s net neutrality proposal on how those two would like to see traffic flow on the Internet is meeting resistance from many, including Facebook and advocacy groups. Barry Diller, whose IAC/InterActiveCorp. owns lots of websites, called the plan a sham, according to the New York Times.
Oprah’s bill goes up. In a regulatory filing Friday, Discovery Communications said the launch costs for the Oprah Winfrey Network has gone from $100 million to $189 million. This increase can’t all be related to the wardrobe requests of its newest employee Rosie O’Donnell, can it? That’s a joke, folks! The filing also says Winfrey will have a larger on-air presence than originally intended, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
#FF. Every Friday those on Twitter often recommend who others should follow. Now the Wrap tells us what stars we should follow. If you want green propaganda, follow Leonardo DiCaprio. If you want a lot of left-leaning rants, follow ... everyone. Real question is how many of these stars actually have it together enough to compose their own 140-character tweets.
Inside the Los Angeles Times: An appreciation of David Wolper. Betsy Sharkey on Eat Pray Love. We won’t offer a link to ‘The Expendables’ review because lets face it, if you are interested in seeing it, a review isn’t going to make much of a difference.
-- Joe Flint
Follow me on Twitter or this could get ugly. Twitter.com/JBFlint