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Richard Horgan

[Email contact: rhorgan@gmail.com; personal Twitter account: @hollywoodspin] I have worked as a journalist and editor for several decades, beginning in Canada at age 17 with a full-time job at the Ottawa bureau of Associated Press Canada (Canadian Press).

Kansas iHeart Contest Winner Not Flying Coach Anymore

ShutterstockPrivateJetWhen Wichita, Kansas radio host Elvis Duran ran through the gargantuan list of prizes with iHeartRadio contest winner Kelli Pankratz, he made two major observations.

The first was that she should not wear heels when introducing, alongside iHeartRadio Music Festival MC Ryan Seacrest, one of the many performers at the September 19-20 Las Vegas event. “He’s very short,” Duran joked.

The other was to prepare for the life-changing impact of flying round-trip from Kansas to Sin City (with three lucky friends) aboard the iHeartRadio private jet. “You’ll never want to get on a commercial jet ever again,” Duran warned.

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Leslie Bennetts Inks Deal for Joan Rivers Biography

LeslieBennettsPicThe Little, Brown tome won’t be out until 2016. But that’s a sign that the publisher and Vanity Fair contributor Leslie Bennetts (pictured) are serious about doing their subject justice.

From Alexandra Alter‘s New York Times item:

In a statement announcing the acquisition, Judy Clain, editor-in-chief of Little, Brown, called Ms. Rivers “an icon and a role model to millions.”

Ms. Bennetts, who met Ms. Rivers several times but never interviewed her, said in a statement that she was drawn to the biography because “Rivers’ career was also enormously significant in American cultural history, breaking down barriers for women in television and comedy and continually redefining the acceptable boundaries of truth-telling for women in public life.”

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Gawker Media Moving to Flatiron District

GawkerOn the heels of Nick Denton scoring the #7 spot on Joe Pompeo‘s list for The Advocate of “The 50 Most Influential People in LGBT Media,” there is a larger and much more significant multiple-of-seven Gawker number: 114.

That’s the address on Fifth Avenue where the company will soon relocate. From Kara Bloomgarden-Smoke‘s report:

“We will be moving out of the walk-up Nolita loft space that has been our home since 2008. Earlier today, we signed a lease for three floors of 114 Fifth Avenue,” Denton wrote in a staff memo that will go out this afternoon. Gawker Media signed a 15-year lease on three floors of the building, with plans to sublet one floor for the time being.

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Mark Ruffalo Embeds at the Boston Globe

ShutterstockMarkRuffaloHa ha. Check out the tail end of the first few sentences of this Boston Globe item written by the tandem of Mark Shanahan and Meredith Goldstein:

Actor Mark Ruffalo was at the Globe on Monday to do research for his new movie Spotlight, in which he’ll play Globe investigative reporter Michael Rezendes, a member of the Pulitzer-winning team that broke the Catholic sex abuse scandal. Ruffalo was seen in the newsroom, the cafeteria and the library — not that we were following him.

There’s also a nice shot of Ruffalo and Rezendes, powwowing in front of a computer.

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New York Film Festival Adds Edward Snowden Doc

It’s never happened before. But to understand why the New York Film Festival has for the first time in its 52-year history added a movie to its main slate after that main slate was officially announced, one need turn only to the reaction of the event’s chief executive.

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From Scott Feinberg‘s Hollywood Reporter item:

New York Film Festival director Kent Jones said in a statement, “Seeing CITIZENFOUR for the first time is an experience I’ll never forget. The film operates on multiple levels at the same time: a character study (of Edward Snowden)… A real-life suspense story… And a chilling exposé. When the lights came up, everyone in the room was alternately stunned, excited and deeply troubled. A brave documentary, but also a powerful work from a master storyteller.”

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Denver Website Rallies Broncos Fans Against Phil Simms

The handiest way to get a sense of why Denver Broncos fans have so quickly signed a petition asking CBS Sports to stop assigning former Giants QB Phil Simms to their team’s televised contests is @philsimmsquotes. The Twitter account live-tweets color commentary made by Simms during NFL broadcasts, and among the snippets highlighted during the Broncos September 14 contest vs. the Kansas City Chiefs is: “When you’re in this air, you’re lighter, you’re faster.”

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Local website The Denver City Page, sensing an opportunity, threw up a change.org petition protesting Simms’ “biased drivel” and in a matter of just a few days, the petition is closing in on 30,000 signatures. Many of the signature comments espouse the same, basic theory:

Scott Feiler: I’m signing because Phil Simms doesn’t give insight to the viewers. Instead he indirectly attacks the Broncos organization and fans. Most likely because of personal matters possibly stemming from his son [Chris] not working out when he was on the team.

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New Monthly Print Magazine Pays Its Way to 400,000+ Circulation

CaliforniaSundayLogoOn Sunday October 5, more than 400,000 subscribers to the San Francisco Chronicle, Sacramento Bee and Los Angeles Times will find something new within the bundle on their doorstep: The California Sunday Magazine, a startup devised by freelancer Douglas McGray and Federated Media co-founder Chas Ewards.

The monthly, print-side half of the pair’s business model is most intriguing. Not only does it give them instant traction at both the advertiser and circulation-base ends. But if successful, it could prove to be a model of revenue for other grouped regional newspapers. From a piece by Michael Learmonth, global tech editor of the International Business Times:

McGray and Edwards are paying the newspapers for distribution, much like Target would for an ad insert, and targeting 400,000 people who live in affluent neighborhoods. The rate card for the print edition is $40,000 a page; Edwards says the magazine will launch with 10 advertisers, including Google Play, Lexus, Converse, MailChimp and the Ace Hotel.

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Derek Curl Readies ‘The Netflix of LGBT’

DerekCurlPicSome intriguing details about Derek Curl‘s forthcoming streaming channel were revealed over the weekend in an article in Memphis’ Commercial Appeal.

The New York-based Curl (pictured) is not yet willing to reveal the name of his digital platform, set to launch in January. Rainbow TV? Equality? It’s still, at this stage, very much TBA. But Curl had no problem lavishing praise on Morgan Jon Fox, an indie filmmaker shooting for the channel the eight-episode low-budget series Feral, about a group of Memphis friends:

“He not only makes the stories real, but he stays true to his vision. He can express visually what is the Southern experience of contemporary gay youth, and the world loves Southern stories. I compare Morgan to Horton Foote and Tennessee Williams, except Tennessee Williams was a drunk and Morgan’s not.”

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NYT Columnist Defends Provocative Ray Rice Lede

Predictably, the lead sentence of New York Times “Gotham” columnist Michael Powell‘s latest item has generated an instant, massive outcry. From fellow journalists and others:

Say this for Ray Rice: His left cross was of professional quality, a short, explosive punch. And his fiancée’s head snapped back as if she’d been shot.

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Robin Thicke: ‘I Didn’t Do a Single Interview Last Year Without Being High’

ShutterstockRobinThickeJuly2013Hollywood Reporter legal eagle Eriq Gardner dubs it the “rock ‘n’ roll defense.” And certainly, the unsealed deposition obtained by the trade reporter backs up that great description.

Beating TMZ to the court docket punch, Gardner has pulled some wild quotes from Robin Thicke and “Blurred Lines” producer Pharrell Williams, as part of their ongoing legal dispute with the family of Marvin Gaye. The deposition of Thicke and Williams was taken in April:

Thicke states he hardly remembers his specific media comments [about "Blurred Lines"] because he “had a drug and alcohol problem for the year” and “didn’t do a sober interview.” In fact, when he appeared on Oprah Winfrey’s show with his young son and talked about how weird it was to be in the midst of a legal battle with the family of a legendary soul singer who “inspires almost half of my music,” Thicke admits he was drunk and taking Norco — “which is like two Vicodin in one pill,” he says.

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