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Posts Tagged ‘Brian Grazer’

Morning Media Newsfeed: Letterman to Retire | Mozilla’s Eich Resigns | Fusion’s TV First

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David Letterman to Leave Late Show (TVNewser)
During the taping of Thursday’s Late Show, David Letterman announced next year will be his last on the show he’s hosted for more than two decades. The news was first reported on Twitter by R.E.M. bassist Mike Mills, a guest on the show, just after 4 p.m. ET. Letterman, who turns 67 next week, signed a contract extension in October. Adweek The duration of the new deal seemed a sure sign that the clock was ticking on Letterman’s late night tenure. Two years prior to signing the extension, the host had agreed to a two-year deal. NYT Letterman said he had informed CBS president Leslie Moonves of his intention to step down from The Late Show at the end of his current contract, which has about 16 months left. A specific end date has not yet been set. Letterman is considered by many to be the most original voice in the late-night format, and Moonves has been steadfast in his assurances in recent years that he would never ask Letterman to retire, saying at one point, “You don’t do that to a television legend.” Mashable Letterman hosted Late Night on NBC from 1982 to 1993 before starting Late Show on CBS in 1993. In 2013, he surpassed Johnny Carson as the longest-running late night talk show host in television history. He has been part of more than 6,000 late-night broadcasts. USA Today It’s unclear how CBS will replace Letterman, and when, precisely. Craig Ferguson, who hosts the Letterman-produced Late Late Show, is not being considered as a replacement, insiders say, even though his contract technically promises it. Moonves is known to have been interested in The Daily Show‘s Jon Stewart over the years, but in the past Stewart has said he is not interested in a network talk show. Stewart’s Comedy Central partner Stephen Colbert is seen as a more likely candidate, and is available sooner: His contract with Comedy Central expires in December, though Stewart is free in 2015. Chelsea Handler also announced plans to leave her late-night E! show this year.

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Screenwriter Recalls the Day He Joked About CAA

When Michael Ovitz departed CAA in the mid-1990s, screenwriter-novelist Doug Richardson found himself unexpectedly caught up in a blaze of media coverage.

In a blog post titled “Spiking the Football,” he recalls that because he happened to leave the agency for William Morris right before Ovitz’s exit, he was lumped together somewhat hilariously with David E. Kelley in LA Times and New York Times coverage. Separately, when Richardson’s new agents packaged his first nove Dark Horse for mid-six figures, he did an interview with Variety’s Mike Fleming. Which got him into a lot of trouble:

“So,” said Fleming. “John Travolta as star. Brian Grazer and Ron Howard as producers. How’s that feel?”

“Great,” I answered, then added something I thought was funny. “Who knew I’d have to leave CAA to get packaged.”

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Moguls on the Menu: Brian Grazer, Tom Freston and Isaac Mizrahi

1003_mockup.gifWe missed LL Cool J by a day. Oh, well. That’s the great thing about Michael’s: If it’s Wednesday, you can pretty much count on an interesting scene.

Today, there was plenty of tasty people watching. On the menu: Brian Grazer and Tom Preston (together!), one of our favorite designers (Isaac Mizrahi, who, we’re happy to report, wasn’t wearing those unfortunate sandals he chose for a recent appearance on QVC) and, just for good measure, a random reality star (Ramona Singer who, was no doubt dishing the dirt on the newest Housewives to join the New York City catfight. This season’s previews look downright scary!)

I was joined today by EIC Dara Caponigro and publisher Jennifer Levene Bruno, the dynamic duo at the helm of  Veranda, a magazine devoted to showcasing the homes, gardens and passions (by which we mean plenty of jewelry) of the moneyed but genteel set. The typical reader’s median household income is $149,000. Veranda isn’t a magazine to flip through while you’re in the elevator on the way to your apartment, but is best enjoyed sitting in your living room sipping a glass of wine. Get the picture?

This year marks the magazine’s 25th anniversary, and Dara just celebrated her second year at the helm, having assumed the title from founding editor Lisa Newsom, whose new book The Houses of Veranda is a stunning coffee table tome. Dara, formerly a founding editor of Domino (another one of our favorites!) told me she had long been an  admirer of Veranda‘s “gracious tone” and wanted to continue with the magazine’s mission to “make Veranda about living well through the lens of home.” Since taking the top spot on the masthead, she’s expanded the book’s jewelry coverage (“Our readers are collectors”) and “beefed up the front of the book.” I told her I loved the “Personal Luxuries” column where style makers from around the country share their lists of must-haves from perfume to pillows. “That’s one of our most popular features,” said Dara whose love of gracious living was something she inherited from her mother who was a decorator.

Jennifer, who is only the magazine’s second publisher, is equally enthusiastic about the book. “Everything in the magazine is carefully curated,” she told me. Advertisers obviously like what they see. In Jennifer’s first full year with Veranda, ad pages were up 17% with over 95 new brands.

Michael McGraw, Dara Caponigro, Diane Clehane and Jennifer Levene Bruno
L to R: Michael McGraw, Dara Caponigro, Diane Clehane and Jennifer Levene Bruno

Dara and Jennifer have been working as a team for about 18 months. “[Hearst president of marketing & publishing director] Michael Clinton knew what he was doing,” said Dara. The duo spends a lot of time traveling around the country hosting panels with industry leaders and talking to readers.

Some of their stops this year have included Atlanta (“The women in the south love dishes!” said Dara) and Los Angeles, where they hosted a ‘Bucket List’ panel on decorating with celebrated designers, including Mary McDonald of Bravo’s Million Dollar Decorators. Their winning formula is obviously working. Published six times a year,  newsstand sales are up 7 percent and, says Jennifer, 35 percent of the ad pages year-to-date through July-August are ”new business.” See, gracious living does pay.

Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:

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Pharrell Williams Joins Oscars as Music Consultant

Can it be? Are The Oscars actually making an attempt to attract a younger, diverse audience?

Rapper/producer Pharrell Williams is joining the 84th Academy Awards as a music consultant with Oscar-winning composer Hans Zimmer.

Williams is the lead singer of the rap group N.E.R.D. and has produced the likes of Justin Timberlake, Madonna, Snoop Dogg and Jay-Z.

Zimmer needs no introduction as he’s composed music for over 100 films including The Lion King and The Dark Knight.

“I am honored to work with my mentor and teacher, Hans Zimmer, and I have wanted to collaborate with Brian Grazer on something for years,” Williams said in a statement. “I cannot believe I will be joining them and their teams on the most prestigious show of the year, the Academy Awards.”

Billy Crystal Set to Host Oscars for Ninth Time

If you’re a fan of Billy Crystal, the stars aligned perfectly this week. Crystal is back as host of the Oscars for a ninth time. The Long Beach, New York native, was moved to head of the emcee line after several dominos fell.

First, new Oscars producer Brett Ratner was forced to resign after outrage from a gay slur. Ratner was instrumental in securing Eddie Murphy as host for the 2012 awards. Murphy is currently starring in the Ratner-directed comedy Tower Heist.

However, with Ratner out, Murphy withdrew Wednesday.

Academy Award-winning producer Brian Grazer, a longtime collaborator with Ron Howard replaced Ratner.

That set the stage for Crystal to extend his second-most hosting duties at the Oscars. Crystal, famous for his opening musical number parodying that year’s best picture nominees, previously hosted 1990 to 1993, 1997 and 1998, 2000, and 2004. (An example of Crystal’s work is shown below) 

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Billy Crystal Replacing Eddie Murphy as Oscars Host

Actor Billy Crystal tweeted Thursday that he would host the 84th Academy Awards, replacing Eddie Murphy who dropped out Wednesday after producer Brett Ratner resigned.

The Academy hasn’t formally issued a statement yet, but they did retweet Crystal’s tweet. Brian Grazer was tapped as Ratner’s replacement on Wednesday.

The Academy tried to go the edgy route with the duo of Ratner and Murphy, but they are clearly playing it safe from here on out by selecting Crystal as host for a ninth time.

Brian Grazer Will Produce 2012 Academy Awards

The Academy Awards has tapped Brian Grazer to co-produce their 2012 telecast with Don Mischer after Brett Ratner resigned Tuesday.

Grazer is best known for producing A Beautiful Mind, Apollo 13 and funny enough, a trio of Eddie Murphy films in Tower Heist, The Nutty Professor and Boomerang.

That means Grazer and Murphy will be reunited once again … oh wait … Murphy decided to pull out as host when his BFF decided to quit due to his poor judgement and homophobic comments.

“Brian Grazer is a renowned filmmaker who over the past 25 years has produced a diverse and extraordinary body of work,” said Academy president Tom Sherak in a statement. “He will certainly bring his tremendous talent, creativity and relationships to the Oscars.”

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The Problem with a Hugh Hefner Biopic: Not Enough Conflict

Cleverly titled “The Playboy Interview,” this week’s Hollywood Reporter magazine cover story is a conversation with the one and only Hugh Hefner, still going semi-strong at age 85.

There’s not much new to be written about Hef at this point, especially in the wake of Brigitte Berman‘s solid 2009 documentary. However, reporter Stephen Galloway does share what FishbowlLA thought was a very interesting tidbit about that long-rumored Hollywood biopic of the Holmby Hills icon:

Brian Grazer still wants to make a biopic, but says the main problem has been locating “a central conflict in a charmed life. He’s one of the most influential people [in our society], but finding that conflict is hard.”

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Jumping The Broom Production VP Brings Spirituality to Hollywood

As VP of production for Columbia/Sony Pictures, Devon Franklin is the man responsible for the blockbusters The Pursuit of Happyness, Hancock, and The Karate Kid remake. His latest film  Jumping The Broom blends romantic comedy with spirituality, a theme Franklin says resonates now more than ever with moviegoers.

“I do think that, in general, when you look at what’s going on in the world and where kind of how things are,” he said in our @mediabeat interview, “people are looking to go to the theater and find hope, and to get inspired, and to be encouraged. And I think that when you have faith in a film, and you do it right, it can do that.”

Franklin also expressed some disappointment in Spike Lee‘s longstanding criticism of Tyler Perry. (In case you missed it, Perry recently bit back, telling Lee he can “go to hell.”)

“There is room for everyone — for Tyler, for Spike. I mean, there’s room for all different types of filmmakers and all different types of filmmakers of color. Our experience is incredibly rich and diverse, so why would we allow ourselves to be subject to a dialogue that doesn’t represent that?” he said. “Would you ever say, ‘Hey, I’m going to see the Jerry Bruckheimer movie over going to see the Brian Grazer movie’? No. It doesn’t even make sense.”

Part 2: Columbia Pictures VP Devon Franklin: ‘If You Write a Good Script, We’ll Find It’

Part 3: Columbia Pictures VP Devon Franklin Talks Netflix, Social Media

 

Andres Martinez: Lawsuits and Restraining Orders and Controversy, Oh My!

martinggez184.jpgL.A. Observed has the dirt on a series of legal maneuvers by and related to former LAT Op/Ed editor Andres Martinez.

If you’ll recall, Martinez resigned from his post last year after offering to let producer Brian Grazer guest-edit the Sunday Opinion section. Grazer was repped by Martinez’s then-girlfriend, Kelly Mullens. At the time, Martinez said there was nothing fishy about the arrangement, but now it turns out he blames his whole downfall on his former flame … and has filed a lawsuit to prove it!

Mullens, for her part, says the suit is, according to LAO “”backlash over a restraining order obtained by Mullens earlier this year.”

Classy!

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