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In The Trades

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With the exit of a number of top executives, Discovery Channel might end the trifecta of sharks, motorcycles and tattoos that have been the network’s mainstays in recent years. David Zaslav, the recently appointed CEO of Discovery Communications, announced that Jane Root will oversee the Science Channel and Discovery Channel and Marjorie Kaplan will run Animal Planet Media and Discovery Kids Media.

South by Southwest announced the film line up for Austin-based festival. Docs showing include Doubletime, an exploration of the culture of competitive jump-roping and the anti-consumerism film What Would Jesus Buy?, produced by Morgan Spurlock. Scott Frank’s bank-robbery thriller The Lookout will open the event; Miramax is releasing the movie later in the month.

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Wal-Mart launches a movie-down load service, with the full blessing of the studios. This film probably won’t be available.

MGM jumps into the direct-to-video pool, with Jason Weiss overseeing the new division. Weiss has experience with bad movies, having been at MTV Films where he worked on The Dirt, The Suffering, and so on.

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