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Posts Tagged ‘David Edelstein’

Stephanie Zacharek Dismissal a Sad, Familiar Plotline

How perilous have things become for journalists paid handsomely to review movies?

Put it this way. The ongoing dismissal of full-time film critics, to which the name of Movieline’s Stephanie Zacharek can be officially added July 13, grew into such a somber death march that Movie City News’ David Poland stopped formally tracking the print side of the trend a year and a half ago. “It was so depressing,” he tells FishbowlLA, “but my guess is that we’re down to around 80 full-time print film critics in the U.S.”

Indiewire’s Matt Singer first broke the news of Zacharek’s tweeted dismissal, eliciting comments of condolence from such notables as Roger Ebert and David Edelstein. Poland says people typically skip over a critical big picture element when discussing the dumping of marquee critics. Namely, that daily newspapers never took them that seriously in the first place.

“I think the most overlooked element in all these conversations is how abusive print was to criticism,” Poland says. “That the attitude about film criticism from traditional media – for decades – was that they could move someone from the city or obits desk, anywhere, and make them a film critic.”

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New York Magazine Hires Abebe as Pop Music Critic

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New York magazine has named Nitsuh Abebe as popular music critic. Abebe will write reviews for both the print magazine and the new Vulture entertainment site. He’ll review live shows as well as albums across a wide spectrum of musical genres. Abebe will also establish a dialogue with the growing community of people that leave comments on Vulture’s site.

He starts on October 11.

“I’m excited to have Nitsuh contributing to both the magazine and the website,” says editor-in-chief Adam Moss. “He’s an incredibly smart, engaging writer who completes our roster of critics and will help us create authoritative, well-rounded music coverage.”

Abebe has written for Pitchfork since 2003, and was a contributing editor for their book The Pitchfork 500. He has twice been featured in Da Capo’s Best Music Writing book series, and has contributed to publications including the Guardian, eMusic, and the Seattle Weekly.

He joins the formidable roster of culture critics that includes David Edelstein on movies, Emily Nussbaum on TV, Jerry Saltz on art, Scott Brown on theater, and Sam Anderson on books.

Lunch: Tina Brown & Barbara Walters Break Bread; Jonathan Wald Works The Room

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— DIANE CLEHANE

It’s a little disconcerting these days when no matter where you go in the city, the streets seem quieter than usual, and there are 10 cabs lined up outside Grand Central any time we need one. But we’ve observed an interesting phenomenon: The worse the economic news, the busier the scene at Michael’s during our weekly Wednesday visits. The dining room was abuzz with plenty of glad handing and table-hopping, and the mood, despite all the gloom and doom out there, was downright jovial. “It’s a bit of escapism,” one regular confided to me. “There’s no doubt things are bad, but people have to be out there now more than ever, so you might as well enjoy yourself for a couple of hours.” I certainly did today as I was joined at the bay by my friend and former boss Susan Malinowski, brand ‘incubator’ and licensing/marketing guru who has some big deals brewing. (I’m sworn to secrecy.) We practically got whiplash keeping track of all the goings-on. So come out from under your desk and get out there and network. You never know who you’re going to meet over a Cobb salad.

Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:

1. Bonnie Timmerman presiding over a full table of guests including Claudia Peltz

2. Peter Brown and Shirley Lord

3. ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong and Quest‘s Chris Meigher

4. Michael J. Wolfe

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Breaking: Someone In the Country Expresses Surprise By Oscar Noms List

oscarproduction.jpgNew Yorkers are so damn cute, what with their crappy weather and lack of decent grocery stores and genuine surprise that Dreamgirls got “shut out.” (Nevermind that nobody in L.A. thinks it was “shut out.” The only noms they were ever going to get were for the supporting categories. Duh.)

Here’s a little taste (from the NY Daily Intelligencer) of the breathless e-mail exchanges between New York film critic David Edelstein and Hollywood producer Lynda Obst about the Oscar nominations by e-mail each year.

Unbelievable! Incredible! Astonishing! The absolute shoo-in, Dreamgirls, has been dealt a devastating blow. Nothing for Best Picture, nothing for Best Director (Bill Condon) — not even that consolation nom, Adapted Screenplay! (The unkindest cut?) I thought Dreamgirls was thoroughly mediocre (with one song, “We Are Family,” among the most eardrum-lacerating things I’ve ever heard), but the dis is stunning. Did anyone see this coming?

Whew. Deep breath.

Either Edelstein is adorablely easy to astonish or he deserves an Oscar nom.