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Posts Tagged ‘Cynthia Littleton’

Morning Media Newsfeed: Kal Penn Joins Fusion for Midterms | SoftBank, DWA Talks Cool

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Kal Penn Named Special Correspondent of Fusion’s Midterm Mayhem (TVNewser)
Actor Kal Penn is joining Fusion as a special correspondent for its midterm election coverage. Fusion’s election coverage plans include a nightly primetime program Midterm Mayhem: The Ultimate Political Smackdown hosted by Fusion’s Nando Vila. FishbowlDC In addition to its television broadcast, the program will be livestreamed. Midterm Mayhem will be hosted by Vila with contributions from anchors Jorge Ramos and Alicia Menendez and Fusion’s Alice Brennan and Romina Puga. Capital New York Fusion is still modestly distributed, with Comcast, Time Warner Cable and DirecTV among the major distributors that don’t yet carry the channel. The livestream — which will only apply to the month-long midterm election series — is a chance for viewers who don’t get Fusion to sample its programming, with the goal of getting them to lobby their pay-TV provider to carry the channel. The channel held a similar stunt tied to its coverage of the 2014 World Cup from Brazil. THR Penn is known for his roles in the Harold And Kumar trilogy, The Namesake, House and How I Met Your Mother. In 2009, he took a break from acting to work as an associate director of the White House’s Office of Public Engagement, serving as the Obama administration’s liaison to young Americans. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media The show aims to “bring viewers all the essential political news of the day and answer questions of fundamental importance to Fusion’s audience,” the network said in a release. It premieres Sunday, Oct. 5, at 9:30 p.m. and runs until Election Day.

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Variety Shuffles Its EICs

Moving from editor-in-chief, television to managing editor, television is not exactly a promotion. So, reading between the lines of today’s Variety announcement, we’re assuming this shift was something Cynthia Littleton was willing to accept in exchange for relocating (earlier this year) from LA to New York.

EllerWallensteinPic

The PMC publication is still very much a west coast-driven concern. The move means Variety now has two rather than three EICs – Claudia Eller and Andrew Wallenstein.(pictured). A couple of other portions of today’s announcement caught our eye.

1) The PMC PR folks might have been a tad too effusive when they dropped this sentence in:

Variety continues to be the leading provider of entertainment news around the world.

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Variety Adds TV, Real Estate Editors

DebraBirnbaumPicThere’s a fair bit going on these days at Jay Penske‘s Deadline and Variety twin trades.

On the Deadline side, Dominic Patten recently started anchoring daily video reports under the rubicon DeadlineNow. From PMC’s new westside Los Angeles digs, he has been chatting with reporter Jen Yamato, film editor Anita Busch, east coast-based chief theater columnist Jeremy Gerard and others about the latest developments on each journalist’s beat.

Meanwhile, Variety has been staffing up. This morning, TV EIC Cynthia Littleton announced that Debra Birnbaum (pictured) has joined the publication as executive editor, television:

Birnbaum came to Variety in April to help spearhead the eight Extra Edition special issues published this month in conjunction with Emmy season. She will be at the helm of Variety’s expansive TV awards season coverage leading up to the July 10 nominations announcement through the 66th annual Primetime Emmy Awards ceremony on August 25.

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Two Trade Publication Staffs Walk Into a Westwood Office Building…

Among the various Twitter wise-cracks posted in response to the news that Variety, Deadline (and other PMC Web publications) will soon be sharing the same LA westside digs was this one:

More like reality TV show. Especially since one of the floors being leased at the Westwood high rise will feature “a full video production studio and three green-screen rooms.”

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Variety Makes Steven Gaydos a VP

Last week, Variety announced the appointment of three new editors-in-chief – Andrew Wallenstein, Cynthia Littleton and Claudia Eller. Today, the trade has made another big move on the “advertorial” side, promoting executive editor Steven Gaydos to the additional role of VP.

The expanded, double title would seem to reflect that Gaydos has the full confidence of new owner Jay Penske, running a features department where most of the money will be. From this afternoon’s announcement:

Gaydos will oversee all editorial for features, events, creative partnerships, custom publishing and other special projects…

Gaydos has been responsible for nearly 200 reports and related events each year, directing the multi-platform production of territorial surveys, film, TV, digital and music reports, business-oriented personality and corporate profiles. In addition, he created and directed the “10 to Watch” program and oversees various initiatives such as brand’s Impact Lists, Hollywood’s New Leaders, Dealmakers and the Billion Dollar series.

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Variety Gets Three New Editors-in-Chief

They are Andrew Wallenstein, (digital), Claudia Eller (film) and Cynthia Littleton (TV). Colleague Tim Gray is not going away but rather will remain in a “leadership role.”

What’s most intriguing here is that Jay Penske is continuing a pattern of promoting female staffers (Littleton) to heretofore male-dominated editorial roles. Last fall, he appointed Michelle Sobrino-Stearns associate publisher. From this morning’s announcement:

The installation of Eller and Littleton as two of the three editors-in-chief marks the first time in the brand’s storied history that women have served in the top editorial role.

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Suspicious, Beeping Package Forces Evacuation of KNX, KFWB and K-Earth

It was anything but a typical Tuesday morning at the Wilshire Blvd. headquarters of KNX 1070 Newsradio and friends. Per a dispatch by LA Times reporters Kate Mather and Richard Winton:

The office was cleared after a beeping package was dropped off at a second-floor lobby about 8:20 a.m., according to Los Angeles police. A bomb squad is en route.

KNX’s Randy Kerdoon (pictured) tweeted that two packages were discovered and confirmed one was beeping. “Ive never been part of BREAKING NEWS before, COVERING it yes, part of it no,” Kerdoon tweeted. “Just another surreal day in LA.”

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Variety’s Boffo Internship Program Mints Another Full-Timer

Today is the first day on the TV beat job at Variety for AJ Marechal (pictured). She was an intern last year with the Hollywood trade from March through November.

Marechal’s salaried return continues a rather remarkable string of success for the program instituted in 1995 by current managing editor Kirstin Wilder. “During my college days, I interned at the St. Petersburg Times in South Florida and the News & Observer in Raleigh,” Wilder tells FishbowlLA. “I learned first-hand how important these opportunities can be and was determined when I came to Variety to put an internship program in place.”

From the get-go, Wilder insisted that the trade’s internship program be a paid one. The list of people who’ve jumped from intern to staffer at Variety over the years is long and impressive. Marechal joins a current group of internship-program grads that consists of chief film critic Justin Chang, music editor Andrew Barker, senior writer Marc Graser, graphic designer Dan Doperalski and film reporters Andrew Stewart, Jeff Sneider, Justin Kroll and Rachel Abrams.

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Warner Bros. Making Merry with A Christmas Story

Cynthia Littleton at Variety breaks down the astonishing popularity of A Christmas Story, the 1983 movie made by the late Bob Clark.

First off, we have to applaud San Diego entrepreneur Brian Jones. His purchase in 2004 (via eBay!) of the Cleveland home where the beloved movie was shot and subsequent renovation of the duplex into a memorabilia and annual convention shrine is a stroke of opportunistic genius.

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THR Loses Another Staffer to Variety: Tatiana Siegel

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The Hollywood Reporter recently recruited Elizabeth Guider from Daily Variety to be the trade paper’s new editor-in-chief, but this week Variety struck back and snagged yet another of THR‘s staffers. This time, it’s film reporter Tatiana Siegel who is making the move down Wilshire Boulevard to join Var’s team.

On staff, she joins her former THR colleagues Cynthia Littleton and Anne Thompson who left earlier this year to take senior posts at Variety. She’ll likely work closely with vet film writer Thompson as well as Dana Harris , another former THR staffer who left for Variety years ago, who is editor of Variety.com and has a larger role in film coverage working under paper topper Peter Bart.

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