After the coffee. Before running for sheriff of Los Angeles County.
The Skinny: I successfully renewed my driver’s license, which required taking the written test again. I only got two wrong and one was about rules for smoking in a car and I quit smoking almost seven years ago. Anyway, they also said they were hiring at the DMV, so if things go wrong here it’s good to know I have options. Wednesday headlines include the DGA and BAFTA nominations. Also a sneak peak of a new biography of Fox News chief Roger Ailes.
Daily Dose: Gordy Crawford, who spent more than four decades overseeing media investments for Capital Research Management before retiring in 2012 and was often seen as something of a consigliare to the leaders of the industry, may raise a few eyebrows with his latest move. Crawford has invested in Aereo, the start-up service that distributes broadcast television signals via the Internet. Big media companies including Fox and CBS are trying to shut Aereo down on grounds of copyright theft. But Crawford has never shied away from new technologies and is close with mogul Barry Diller, who is also a backer of Aereo.
Oscar preview? The Directors Guild of America released its nominations for best director in 2013 and the list may prove to be a good predictor for who will be getting Oscar love. Nominees include Alfonso Cuarón (“Gravity”), Paul Greengrass (“Captain Phillips”), Steve McQueen (“12 Years a Slave”), David O. Russell (“American Hustle”) and Martin Scorsese (“The Wolf of Wall Street”). Analysis from the Los Angeles Times and Deadline Hollywood.
And the BAFTA goes too. Admittedly that doesn’t have the same ring as the Oscar goes to, but the British Academy of Film and Television Arts awards are their version of the Oscars. Among the nominees unveiled Wednesday morning were “Gravity,” “12 Years a Slave” and “American Hustle.” Coverage from the Hollywood Reporter.
Sounds like a page-turner. The much anticipated no-holds-barred biography of Fox News Chairman Roger Ailes by Gabriel Sherman will be released later this month, and judging from a sneak peek in the New York Times it won’t disappoint. Besides poking fun at some of his own talent, the book also describes some ugly feuds Ailes has had over the years in the industry and his push to make Fox News a force in American politics. Fox News has been slamming the unauthorized book for months, charging it is full of lies.
Who needs cable, we’ve got a cloud! Sony Corp. finally officially unveiled its plans to launch its own pay-TV service that would seek to distribute broadcast and cable networks via the Internet, a method known in the industry as over-the-top or OTT. Sony already has an entry to consumers through its Playstation video game console, which can also be used as a cable box of sorts. However, signing programmers could prove to be a challenge and was what ultimately led Intel to shelve its own plans for an OTT service. More on Sony’s plans from the Los Angeles Times and Bloomberg.
Still eating duck. The controversial remarks about gays and blacks by Phil Robertson, patriarch of the family portrayed on A&E’s “Duck Dynasty,” hasn’t deterred advertisers from shelling out big bucks for the show, which returns with a new season next week. Variety says no one appears to be abandoning the show.
Inside the Los Angeles Times: Mary McNamara on NBC’s “Chicago P.D.”
Follow me on Twitter. Who else can quote “Seinfeld” and “The Odd Couple” all day long. @JBFlint.