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Morning Media Newsfeed: NBC Cancels Cosby Project | Today Firings Rumor ‘Wrong — Period’

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Cosby’s New NBC Show Is No Longer in Development (HuffPost)
NBC has confirmed to HuffPost Entertainment that a planned sitcom project with Bill Cosby is no longer in development. The network had no further comment on the matter. THR / The Live Feed NBC handed out a script plus significant penalty for the comedy earlier this year, tapping Rules of Engagement alum Mike Sikowitz and Mike O’Malley (Shameless) to write and produce the comedy. O’Malley was eyed for a co-starring role on the comedy, which NBC Entertainment topper Bob Greenblatt envisioned for a summer or fall 2015 debut. Deadline The Cosby NBC multi-camera comedy project, executive produced by The Cosby Show’s Tom Werner, would’ve had Cosby starring as Jonathan Franklin, a patriarch of a multigenerational family who shares his many years of wit, wisdom and experience to help his daughters, sons-in-law and grandchildren navigate their complicated modern lives. In light of the slew of rape accusations, it would’ve probably been hard for viewers to accept Cosby as a lovable family man and for NBC to sell the project to advertisers. The Associated Press / The Big Story A TV Land spokesperson said reruns of The Cosby Show will stop airing immediately for an indefinite time. The Cosby Show also was to have been part of a Thanksgiving sitcom marathon. PRNewser Both NBC and Netflix, who decided that it would be best to postpone the planned launch of its comedy special Bill Cosby 77, which had been planned to go live the day after Thanksgiving, have clearly made their respective decisions with their brands in mind. The allegations show no sign of going away anytime soon. In fact, the talk about them seems to be escalating the more we hear from the alleged victims and others surrounding the issue. FishbowlNY It started this week with a Vice article by Tracie Egan Morrissey, who excerpted passages about Cosby from former supermodel Janice Dickinson’s 2002 autobiography No Lifeguard on Duty. It quickly escalated with Dickinson shockingly filling in the blanks in an exclusive interview with Entertainment Tonight co-host Kevin Frazier. While the additional, shared details were immediately dismissed by Cosby attorney Marty Singer as “a defamatory fabrication,” some earlier legal wrangling with Cosby apparently kept these allegations from surfacing well before 2004 accuser Andrea Constand filed suit. TVNewser CNN’s Don Lemon has issued an on-air apology for remarks he made during Tuesday night’s interview with Cosby accuser Joan Tarshis. Lemon, who is a victim of sexual abuse himself, caused a social media uproar by telling Tarshis, “there are ways not to perform oral sex if you didn’t want to do it.”

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Emmys Post Strong Ratings | Pew Reports on ‘Spiral of Silence’

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NBC’s Emmys Drop From Last Year But Dominate on New Night (LA Times / Company Town)
Held on a Monday for the first time since 1976, the 66th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards won the night in viewers, according to Nielsen ratings. Down in total viewership from last year, the three-hour ceremony drew in 15.6 million viewers. Deadline Hollywood It was behind only last year’s 17.8 million, which had benefited from a Sunday scheduling, a September airdate and a high-rated NFL lead-in. On the other hand, that CBS Emmycast had to compete against a highly rated NBC Sunday Night Football game (Chicago/Pittsburgh), which averaged 20.5 million viewers and a 7.7 rating in the demo. AllFacebook Roughly 6.2 million Facebook users weighed in on the Emmy Awards Monday night, leading to 10.9 million interactions on the social network, according to Facebook data analyst Betsy Williams. Lost Remote For the past week, the social conversation has centered on the VMAs and Emmys, which aired on back-to-back nights. But which awards show captured the attention (and engagement) of Facebook users? Sunday night’s VMAs saw 13 million people with more than 30 million interactions; 6.2 million people had 10.9 million interactions related to the Emmy Awards Monday night. GalleyCat Grammy Award winner Weird Al Yankovic requested that author George R.R. Martin “type as fast as you can.” Yankovic reasoned that “we need more script.” Yankovic performed a medley of TV theme music at the Emmy Awards. As he was singing the Game of Thrones portion, comedian Andy Samberg (donning a costume of character Joffrey Baratheon) handed Martin a typewriter.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Al Jazeera Journos Sentenced | Post-Dispatch Defends Decision

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Jailed Al Jazeera Journalists Convicted in Egypt (CNN)
Three Al Jazeera English journalists were convicted Monday of aiding the Muslim Brotherhood in a ruling that immediately outraged journalists and activists around the world. The Guardian Former BBC correspondent Peter Greste, from Australia, ex-CNN journalist Mohamed Fahmy and local producer Baher Mohammed were jailed for seven, seven and 10 years, respectively. Four students and activists indicted in the case were sentenced to seven years. NYT Prosecutors accused the three journalists of conspiring with the Muslim Brotherhood to broadcast false reports of civil strife in order to bring down Egypt’s military-backed government. But the prosecutors have not publicly disclosed any evidence that the journalists either conspired with the Brotherhood or broadcast false news. HuffPost / AP “I swear they will pay for this,” Fahmy, who was Al Jazeera English’s acting Cairo bureau chief, shouted angrily from the defendants’ cage after the sentences were announced in the Cairo court Monday. Greste, a correspondent, raised his fists in the air. “They just ruined a family,” said Fahmy’s brother Adel, who was attending the session. He said they would appeal the verdict but added that he had little faith in the system. “Everything is corrupt,” he said. Al Jazeera Al Jazeera English managing director Al Anstey said the verdicts defied “logic, sense and any semblance of justice,” adding, “[Monday] three colleagues and friends were sentenced, and will continue to be kept behind bars for doing a brilliant job of being great journalists. ‘Guilty’ of covering stories with great skill and integrity. ‘Guilty’ of defending people’s right to know what is going on in their world.” The Washington Post The verdict was delivered in a brief session at a courtroom in the Tora prison complex, where the detainees have been imprisoned for nearly six months.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Handler to Host Netflix Show | NYT, WaPo, Mozilla Team Up

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Chelsea Handler to Host Talk Show on Netflix (LostRemote)
Late-night comedian Chelsea Handler is moving from TV to Netflix, announcing Thursday she’ll host a talk show on the streaming service in 2016. NYT The idea could appear counterintuitive because Netflix, the subscription streaming video service, has thus far only posted original series in their entirety, not day by day or even week by week. But this apparent incongruity may be what appealed to Handler, a comic who has been public about seeking a new and different landing place after declaring that she was planning to leave E!, where for seven years she has hosted Chelsea Lately, a daily late-night show. WSJ Netflix will likely release the talk show episodes in a different way than it has debuted its other original series, where it is released all the episodes at once to encourage “binge viewing.” THR / The Live Feed “If I was going to continue working in this industry, I knew I had to do something outside the box to keep myself interested. I wanted to sit with the cool kids at lunch so I approached Netflix to make sure they were as cool as I thought they were, and when I confirmed my suspicions, like with any other future lover, I made my move,” said Handler in a statement. The Washington Post / Style Blog Before this, Handler made no secret that she despised the E! network — and her manager told the media she was actively looking for another gig. When E! announced the series finale of her talk show this summer, she offered the most lukewarm departure statement ever: “I will always look back at my time on E! as most people look back at their time in college. I’m glad I went.” HuffPost In addition to the talk show, Handler will also be collaborating with Netflix on five comedy specials into next year, including stand-up and docu-comedy specials.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Amazon Unveils Fire Phone | Carney’s Final Briefing

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Amazon Launches Smartphone (GalleyCat)
Amazon has gotten into the smartphone business with the launch of the Fire, Amazon’s first smartphone. NYT Though the device is called the Fire phone, Amazon’s new gadget is less a phone than a pocketable cash register hooked directly into the retailer’s intelligent warehouses. And it’s not cheap. The Fire phone sells for $199 with a two-year AT&T contract. Although it also comes with a free one-year subscription to Amazon’s Prime membership, the Fire phone is essentially the same price as high-end phones made by Apple and Samsung. For Amazon, a company whose previous devices have had innovative pricing plans that often involved selling devices at cost, the Fire phone’s uninspired price tag is a surprising disappointment. The Washington Post / The Switch The phone lets you scan products in stores, so that you can buy things directly from Amazon, using a new service called “Firefly.” Users can even use the phone to “listen” to songs or videos, and link users to places to buy them. It can also recognize art, and scan text such as phone numbers and then immediately place a call. The Verge There’s one big difference here: the Fire phone’s interface changes based on how you’re looking at it and how you orient the device. Amazon calls the feature “Dynamic Perspective,” which basically means that some apps on the phone will have a three-dimensional depth to them, and tilting the phone will let you peer around edges, just as you can with real objects. Mashable The history of 3D-type screens in mobile suggests consumers aren’t interested in the feature. The two most notable devices, the HTC Evo 3D and the LG Optimus 3D, both flopped. The only real 3D success in mobile so far has been the Nintendo 3DS, which is explicitly a game console.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Risen Appeal Rejected | Top Social TV Shows

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Supreme Court Will Not Review Risen Case (The Guardian)
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to review a lower court’s order requiring a New York Times reporter to testify in a criminal case against a former source, deepening the court’s silence on the question of protections for journalists and confidential sources. FishbowlDC The issue dates back to a May 2011 subpoena received by James Risen to identify a source for his 2006 book State of War: The Secret History of The CIA and the Bush Administration. NYT The court’s one-line order gave no reasons but effectively sided with the government in a confrontation between what prosecutors said was an imperative to secure evidence in a national security prosecution and what journalists said was an intolerable infringement of press freedom. NPR / The Two-Way Risen has said he would refuse to testify in order to protect the identity of his source. Federal prosecutors argued that they need him to testify to pursue their criminal case against Jeffrey Sterling, a former CIA officer. WSJ A divided U.S. appeals court based in Richmond, Va., sided with the government last year, ruling that Risen didn’t have a reporter’s privilege allowing him to refuse to testify about the source and scope of classified information allegedly disclosed to him. The court said there is no privilege in criminal cases that protects a reporter from testifying about conduct the reporter allegedly witnessed or participated in. USA Today Since Obama took office, federal authorities have filed at least seven leak-related criminal cases, including against former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden for leaks about government surveillance programs and Army Pfc. Bradley Manning for giving classified information to the website Wikileaks.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Lewis Katz Dies | Carney Steps Down | Zuckerberg Donates

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Co-Owner of Philadelphia Inquirer Dies in Plane Crash (Philly.com)
Lewis Katz, 72, co-owner of The Philadelphia Inquirer, the Philadelphia Daily News and Philly.com, died Saturday night in the crash of a private jet at a Massachusetts airfield. All seven people aboard were killed when the Gulfstream IV crashed about 9:40 p.m. as it was departing Hanscom Field in Bedford for Atlantic City International Airport, said a Massachusetts Port Authority spokesman. Boston Globe The plane exploded in a blast that sent a fireball and a large plume of black smoke into the air, said Bedford resident Jeff Patterson, 43, who lives beside the runway. The flames rose 60 feet in the air, he said. His 14-year-old son, Jared, said the explosion rattled the house. Bloomberg Katz and H.F. “Gerry” Lenfest won control of the Inquirer and its sister publication at a court-ordered auction four days earlier. A native of Camden, N.J., Katz was increasingly involved with his philanthropic giving. In May, Temple University announced it would name its medical school after Katz, who told the Inquirer that while his mother wanted him to be a doctor, he couldn’t stand the sight of blood. CNN Katz was formerly the principal owner of the NBA’s New Jersey Nets and the NHL’s New Jersey Devils. He was a shareholder of the Nets, the New York Yankees and the YES Network at the time of his death. New York Daily News The Yankees honored long-time minority owner Katz in the Bronx with a moment of silence before the national anthem on Sunday at the Stadium. Katz will be remembered for his hot-and-cold relationship with George Steinbrenner. NPR / The Two-Way Drew Katz, Lewis’ son, said in a statement that his father’s sudden death has brought “an incomprehensible amount of grief.” He added: “My father was my best friend. He taught me everything. He never forgot where and how he grew up, and he worked tirelessly to support his community in countless ways that were seen and unseen. He loved his native city of Camden and his adopted home of Philadelphia.” Read more