China tries to foil James Bond. MTV’s new tune. Tumult at ‘Today.’

James Bond (Daniel Craig in "Skyfall") may have met his match in China.
(Sony Pictures)

After the coffee. Before seeing if Phil Jackson will coach the Morning Fix.

The Skinny: Starbucks is already selling the Christmas Blend. I better stock up! Tuesday’s headlines include a new head of programming at MTV, China tries to foil James Bond, and a big change is coming to NBC’s “Today.”

Daily Dose: Eagle-eyed DirecTV subscribers might have been given false hope Monday if they visited the satellite broadcaster’s “Promise to You” page. That’s where DirecTV provides its view and updates on programming disputes. On Monday, the section for Time Warner Cable’s SportsNet channel, which carries the Lakers, went missing, leading some to think perhaps a deal had finally been reached for DirecTV to carry the channel. Alas, a few hours later it was back and DirecTV subscribers still don’t have the Lakers.

‘Dawson’s Shore’? MTV has shaken up its programming ranks in the wake of a ratings decline. Exiting is David Janollari, who had been head of programming for two years. Coming in is Susanne Daniels with a loftier title of president of MTV programming. Daniels is best known for her days as a programmer at the WB, where she championed such teen hits as “Dawson’s Creek,” “Seventh Heaven” and “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.” MTV has some big shoes to fill with “Jersey Shore” retiring after this season. It has tried to create successful comedies and dramas to match its reality product, with mixed results. Coverage from the Los Angeles Times and Deadline Hollywood.


Late delivery. The new James Bond movie “Skyfall” is doing big business all over the world. But in China, fans will have to wait a little longer. According to the Hollywood Reporter, the Chinese government won’t let the movie be released there until January or February at the earliest. China often either delays the debut of U.S. movies or pits big U.S. movies opposite one another to limit the impact on its homegrown product.

Here today, gone tomorrow. A long anticipated shake-up in the production ranks at NBC’s struggling morning program “Today” is finally starting to take shape. Last August, Reuters reported that executive producer Jim Bell was transitioning to a bigger job, most likely at the network’s sports unit, which NBC dismissed at the time. Now the New York Times says Bell will become the network’s full-time Olympics executive producer. Taking over “Today” is NBC News Senior Vice President Alexandra Wallace, who most recently was producing “Rock Center,” the Brian Williams news magazine.

An offer you can’t refuse. One way the cable industry is fighting cord-cutting is by making it more expensive to drop cable in favor of just having Internet service. The Wall Street Journal looks at how Comcast, Time Warner Cable and other pay-TV distributors are packing their products to ensure consumers stick with video. Gee, this sounds a lot like how programmers bundle their channels together when they sell to distributors.

A bigger window. With more people recording shows on their DVR and watching them later, the TV industry wants to change the way it does business with advertisers. Currently, advertisers won’t pay for viewers who watch a show more than three days after it has been recorded. TV executives are lobbying to extend that to seven days, unless the advertising is time sensitive like a movie premiere or holiday sale. Variety looks at the issue.


A mess on “Sesame Street.” Kevin Clash, puppeteer behind the “Sesame Street” character Elmo, has been forced into a leave of absence after accusations that he had an improper relationship with a teenage boy. He has denied the accusation. Coverage from USA Today.

Inside the Los Angeles Times: Mary McNamara on History’s “Mankind: The Story of All of Us.” NBCUniversal cut about 500 staffers across the entire company.
Follow me on Twitter. Often imitated, never duplicated. @JBFlint.


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