The Morning Fix: NBC’s big hire. Relativity’s next phase. War at ICM.


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After the coffee. Before deciding whether it’s time to find a new football team.

The Skinny: I have a cat who likes to chew through power cords, so if anyone has any ideas how to curb this behavior, send them my way. Monday headlines include the box-office recaps, a war at ICM and NBC’s big hire of Chelsea Clinton.


Immortal performance. The action flick ‘Immortals’ proved to be just that, taking in $32 million and the top spot at the box office. Still, my early favorite for best picture -- Adam Sandler’s ‘Jack and Jill’ -- also delivered a solid $26 million. Box office coverage from the Los Angeles Times, Wall Street Journal and Movie City News.

Work hard and you too can get ahead. NBC News has tapped Chelsea Clinton as a full-time ‘special correspondent.’ Surely everyone knows her fine work at such other media outlets as ... oh wait, she’s never been a journalist before in her life. At a time when real journalists are struggling to find work, this kind of vanity hire feels like a slap in the face to the profession. More on how NBC landed this scoop-generating machine from the New York Times. Maybe Kim Kardashian can be groomed for Matt Lauer’s job.

Agents of change or change of agents? There is rancor at ICM, one of the largest Hollywood talent agencies. Jeff Berg, one of the biggest big shots in town, is clashing with his number two, Chris Silbermann, who Deadline Hollywood says has been threatening to leave and take a bunch of TV agents with him. Apparently the bad blood between Berg and Silbermann has been brewing for some time, but Deadline said it sat on the story because ‘it’s so damaging to a Hollywood agency.’ I didn’t know reporters were supposed to consider such things when pursuing stories about a major power struggle at a company that has lots of influence in the business. Must be in the new rules of journalism that I haven’t gotten yet.

Neville comes through for James Murdoch. Neville Thurlbeck -- the former News of the World reporter who is right in the middle of the ethics scandal at the News Corp.-owned tabloid -- said James Murdoch was kept ‘in the dark’ on the extent of hacking at the paper. More from Reuters.

Changing online options. Warner Bros. Television is starting to loosen its restrictions on when the studio allows its television shows to appear online. A new deal with ABC reflects a new approach. In return for showing ABC some flexibility, Warner Bros. can take its shows into syndication after three years, instead of the traditional four years. There are other caveats as well that are far too complicated to go into, but you can you read about it until your eyes glaze over in Variety.

Another chance. Ted Williams, the homeless man with the golden voice who squandered his first opportunity at a comeback, is getting another shot as the voice of New England Cable News channel, a regional network owned by Comcast. Interestingly, it was NBC’s ‘Today’ (owned by Comcast) that gave Williams huge media coverage when his down-on-his-luck story first surfaced. Williams told the Boston Herald he has been sober since May. That’s hardly a lot of time, and last time Williams got a taste of money he went on a run. Hopefully he can keep it together this time. More from the Boston Herald (courtesy of I Want Media).


Inside the Los Angeles Times: Relativity Media is at a crossroads but its founder Ryan Kavanaugh is not lacking for confidence. John Horn on Alexander Payne.

-- Joe Flint

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