The Morning Fix: Barry Diller done as CEO of IAC! Bewkes not scared of Netflix. Eminem cleans up at Grammy nominations. Shakeup at CBS Films.
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After the coffee. Before figuring out what Barry Diller will do next. Sorry, they can’t all be gems.
The Skinny: Going to see Louis C.K. on Thursday night. Hope I hear something I haven’t already laughed at on YouTube. Barry Diller is quitting another job. This time it’s his CEO gig at IAC/InterActive Corp. Sundance announced its lineup, and Grammy nominations also were unveiled.
Start packing! The Sundance Film Festival announced who will be competing at next year’s festival, but you might need to Google some of the names. There are lots of unknowns both in front of and behind the camera. Of course, isn’t discovering new talent and taking chances kind of the fun of Sundance? Analysis of the lineup from the Los Angeles Times and Variety.
Yeah, well, I wouldn’t short Netflix stock just yet. Time Warner Chief Executive Jeff Bewkes has a lot of skepticism about Netflix’s push onto the Internet and streaming movies and TV shows at a low price. ‘It’s hard to see how that kind of economics can fit into a service that charges $8 or $10 a month because the math doesn’t work,’ Bewkes said at a conference sponsored by Reuters. Meanwhile, the New York Post reports that Netflix is offering $100,000 per episode to studios of hit shows. Considering the billion-dollar rerun model that Netflix could put in jeopardy, that’s not a lot of money.
Merry Christmas. CBS has gotten rid of Bruce Tobey, the chief operating officer of its film unit, which has yet to set the world on fire as its latest release -- the Dwayne Johnson action flick ‘Faster’ -- fizzled. Coming in is Wolfgang Hammer, who most recently had been an executive vice president of production. Vulture has the details.
He’s done. Barry Diller the former Hollywood mogul turned digital baron is stepping down as chief executive of IAC/InterActive Corp. At the same time, Liberty Media Chairman John Malone is swapping his big stake in IAC/InterActive Corp. for cash and a couple of its units, including Evite. ‘It’s been clear to me for some time that this company needs a full-time, aggressive and aspirational executive in the CEO role,’ Reuters quoted Diller, who is pushing 70, as saying. Earlier this year, Diller also resigned as chairman of Live Nation after bumping up against its board members, including Malone. Guess it’s too late to ask Diller for a refund of my Match.com membership.
A lesson in today’s media. A top programming executive at CBS -- Terry Wood -- leaves. Since she used to work for Oprah Winfrey, whispers start that maybe she’s headed back. It’s fun to whisper, and we’re sometimes guilty of it ourselves. After all, there’s all this pressure to fill blogs. But then the New York Post takes the whispers a step further and reports it as a done deal. Then the company -- in this case, Winfrey and Discovery Communications’ soon-to-be-launched Oprah Winfrey Network -- officially says it is not true, and the New York Times does that story. Yes, a story about an out-of-work executive not going to a cable channel that isn’t on television yet. Personally, I’m more curious about the circumstances surrounding Wood’s departure from CBS, where -- to borrow a phrase from another blog -- I hear she clashed with her colleagues. Interesting to note that in the story in which the Hollywood Reporter broke her departure, no executive from CBS Television Distribution was quoted by name praising her; instead, the nice quote about Wood is attributed to the company itself. That is telling.
Inside the Los Angeles Times: Eminem and Bruno Mars clean up at the Grammy nominations. The Ronni Chasen murder mystery takes another twist with an apparent suspect in her shooting killing himself in front of police at a Hollywood apartment house.
-- Joe Flint
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