The Morning Fix: ‘Snow White’ scores! GM draws line in sand.
After the coffee. Before waiting for the sun to come out.
The Skinny: I was not in love with HBO’s “Girls” when I saw the first three episodes but now I find it pretty amusing. Monday’s headlines include the surprising success of “Snow White and the Huntsman” and General Motors’ decision to draw a line in the sand on what it will pay for television ads.
Daily Dose: AMC has launched its campaign against Dish Network, the satellite operator that said it will stop carrying the cable channel at the end of the month. AMC ran ads encouraging viewers to call Dish to complain about the decision. In its ad, AMC tells subscribers they will lose “Mad Men.” That’s not exactly true as “Mad Men’s” season will end before Dish drops the network and odds are a new deal will be reached before the show comes back.
Box office blizzard. “Snow White and the Huntsman” was the fairest of them all at the box office this weekend, taking in $56.3 million in its debut. That far exceeded even the most optimistic of projections. The strong performance may help Universal, the studio behind the movie, forget the not so great performance of its “Battleship.” Coming in second was “Men in Black 3,” which made $29.3 million. Box office recaps from the Los Angeles Times and Movie City News.
Staying in neutral. While other advertisers are starting to buy commercial time from the networks for the fall TV season, in what is known as the upfront market, General Motors is sitting on the sidelines. According to Advertising Age, General Motors is looking for cheaper prices from the networks. Naturally, the networks don’t want to play ball. GM has been taking a hard look at its media strategy lately. It said it was not buying commercials in next year’s Super Bowl and it also stopped buying spots on Facebook.
Lost and found. “Lost” co-creator Damon Lindelof, who has kept a low profile in television since the cult hit ended its run at ABC two years ago, is near a producing deal with Warner Bros. Television, according to Deadline Hollywood. Lindelof told Deadline he’s not not interested in another show with a “wackadoo mythology.”
What’s next? Business media giant Bloomberg LP is described by New York magazine as the Google of business news. That sounds good until the article notes that like Google, Bloomberg struggles at times to expand beyond its core business, which in its case are those terminals in banks and Wall Street firms around the globe. Bloomberg’s business channel is still not a serious threat to CNBC and its Business Week magazine remains challenged.
See ya, “Spartacus.” Pay cable channel Starz announced that its high-profile drama “Spartacus,” which got record ratings for the channel when it premiered, will end after its third season. The show got off to a strong start only to see its star Andy Whitfield succumb to non-Hodgkins lymphoma after the first season. Coverage from Variety.
Getting the vote out. Joe Escalante, a former CBS lawyer and bass player for the punk band The Vandals, is running for a seat as a judge in Los Angeles Superior Court. Escalante told the Hollywood Reporter that he has not been embraced by the Los Angeles legal community, saying the response from the L.A. County Bar Assn. and Mexican American Bar Assn. was cold. They told him to “drop dead.”
Is the commission still 10%? Some of late pioneering agent Sue Mengers’ belongings are being put up for auction as part of an estate sale. One classic item is a copy of the soundtrack to notorious flop “Heaven’s Gate” signed by director Michael Cimino (who also directed one of Morning Fix’s all time favorites, the under-appreciated Clint Eastwood gem “Thunderbolt and “Lightfoot”). There’s also a few items from her old client Barbra Streisand. More from the New York Times.
-- Joe Flint
Follow me on Twitter. It will be worth it in the end. Twitter.com/JBFlint
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