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Posts Tagged ‘Norman Mailer’

A Conversation with Robert De Niro’s Film Archivist | New Dish on Gone With The Wind

LunchAtMichaelsI was joined today by my good friend ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong who I first met (where else?) in this very dining room seven years ago. Joe has introduced me to countless interesting folks over the years including Carl Bernstein, Elton John and the late Elizabeth Edwards. He’s had a long and storied career in journalism having been at the top of the masthead of Rolling Stone and New York Magazine as publisher and has served as a trusted advisor to ABC News. These days when he’s not holding court here at Michael’s or dispensing invaluable advice to his faithful friends in the media biz, he’s a tireless champion of many worthwhile causes and institutions including the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin where he sits of the board of directors. Back in the day, Joe was editor in chief of the Texas Law Forum at the University of Texas School of Law. (Harry Ransom was his beloved mother’s English teacher — “Everything comes full circle!”) Today, he invited me to join the Center’s film curator Steve Wilson,  Alicia Dietrich, public affairs representative and  Jennifer Tisdale director of public affairs who dazzled me with fascinating stories about the Center’s extensive collection of Hollywood memorabilia among many other types of cultural and literary artifacts — just in time for the upcoming Oscars.

At Table One: Front (from left) Steve Wilson, Diane Clehane, Jennifer Tisdale; Back: Alicia Dietrich and Joe Armstrong

At Table 1: Front (from left) Steve Wilson, Diane Clehane and Jennifer Tisdale; Back: Alicia Dietrich and Joe Armstrong

The gang was in town to meet with various news outlets to discuss the Center’s upcoming ’The Making of Gone With the Wind” exhibition, timed to coincide with the 75th anniversary of one of the most iconic movies of all time. The exhibition will run from Sept. 9 through Jan. 4, 2015 and is a must-see for film buffs. Gone With the Wind was the most nominated film of 1939, scoring 13 Academy Award nominations, including a nod for Hattie McDaniel, the first African-American to be nominated and win for Best Supporting Actress. No small feat since that year was truly one of Hollywood’s best with Wuthering Heights and The Wizard of Oz also competing for little gold men that year. Among the 300 items drawn from the Center’s collection from David O. Selznick‘s archives that will be on view: rare audition footage, storyboards from the film and three original gowns worn by Vivien Leigh as Scarlett O’Hara, including the famous “green curtain” dress, marking the first time these costumes were on view together in 25 years. A gloriously illustrated exhibition catalog of the same title was published by the Center and University of Texas Press last fall with a foreword written by Turner Classic Movie host and film historian Robert Osborne.

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Mediabistro Course

Children's Picture Book Writing

Children's Picture Book WritingStarting September 15, this part lecture, part workshop course will take you through the process of outlining, writing, editing, and submitting a children's picture book. Taught by a published children's book author, Dashka Slater will teach you how to write in pictures, hook readers and editors with your story, apply the nuts and bolts of marketing, and more. Register now! 

NY Times Journalist Takes LA Weekly Parent Company to Task for Aiding Sex Traffickers

Nicholas Kristof is something of an expert on sex trafficking. The Pulitzer Prize journalist has covered the issue extensively in both his reporting and his book Half the Sky: From Oppression to Opportunity for Women Worldwide. So his criticism of Village Voice Media for aiding human traffickers through their Backpage.com sex ads has a special resonance.

In his latest column for the New York Times, Kristof writes of the Backpage.com sex ads:

It is a godsend to pimps, allowing customers to order a girl online as if she were a pizza.

Lauren Hersh, the ace prosecutor in Brooklyn who leads the sex-trafficking unit there, says that of the 32 people she and her team have prosecuted in the last year and a half — typically involving victims aged 12 to 25 — a vast majority of the cases included girls marketed through Backpage ads.

“Pimps are turning to the Internet,” said Hersh. “They’re not putting the girls on the street so much. Backpage is a great vehicle for pimps trying to sell girls.”

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Son of Village Voice Founder Criticizes Company for Ads that Have Been Used for Sex Trafficking

John Mailer, son of writer and Village Voice co-founder Norman Mailer, has joined the campaign on Change.org calling on Village Voice Media to shut down the adult section of  its Backpage.com classifieds site where individuals have advertised children and teens for sex.

According to the petition, started by Groundswell, a “multifaith social action initiative”:

A Georgia man was arrested for pimping two 17-year-old girls around the Nashville area. Detectives responded to a suspicious ad on Backpage.com and drove to a motel. There, they found the teens and their 37-year-old pimp, as well as a laptop computer, likely used for the online advertising. Just four days prior to that, four people in Denver were arrested for forcing a teen girl into prostitution. They also advertised her sexual services, including semi-nude pictures, on Backpage. And last year, a South Dakota couple was arrested for selling underage girls for sex on …. wait for it … Backpage.com yet again.

Here’s what Mailer, just one of the petition’s 80,000 supporters, had to say:

The Village Voice was born out of the desire for an independent media voice for the people, a voice that had the freedom and authority to hold those who abuse power accountable for their actions. While I understand firsthand the financial difficulties facing all print publications today, the fact of the matter is that Village Voice is making money from selling advertisements that others have used to buy and sell minors for sex.”

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Son of Village Voice Founder Condemns Company for Aiding Child Sex Traffickers

John Buffalo Mailer, son of Norman Mailer, who co-founded the Village Voice in 1955, has joined the campaign calling for Village Voice Media to shutter its adult ad section because it can, and has, served as a tool for child sex trafficking. He writes:

While I understand firsthand the financial difficulties facing all print publications today, the fact of the matter is that Village Voice is making money from selling advertisements that others have used to buy and sell minors for sex.

Unfortunately, like those on both sides of this battle, the junior Mailer ignores the fact that adult women are sex trafficked too, making us wonder if anyone cares about sex slaves once they turn 18.

Read John Buffalo Mailer’s full statement after the jump.
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Mailer to Sulzberger: ‘Michiko Was First With the Worst’

mailer.jpgBefore the Internet was around as an tool with which to fight back, or start them in the first place, writers had to resort to, gasp, letter writing. The Beast has a collection of letters penned by the late Norman Mailer to people who took a less than favorable view of his writing. One can only imagine what Mailer could have done with Tumbler (Twitter, come to think of it, may have been a useful exercise for the loquacious writer). Anyway! Here’s part of what he once wrote to then NYT publisher Arthur Ochs Sulzberger after one-too-many nasty reviews (including one ill-researched one) from infamous critic Michiko Kakutani.

Over the last ten years, Michiko Kakutani has reviewed every one of my books published in that period. In order, they were Oswald’s Tale, Portrait of Picasso as a Young Man, The Gospel According to the Son, The Time of Our Time, and The Spooky Art. All five were given bad reviews (The Spooky Art perhaps the least awful), but three of those five could make the claim that the ugliest review all received came from Kakutani. What underlined the procedure and could give it a willful subtext was that four of those five reviews came out a week to two weeks ahead of publication. Michiko was first with the worst. One of the basic tricks in book criticism is to get out early if you really detest a book. Still, four out of five! Kakutani was abusing her privilege.

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Tina Brown Discusses The Book Beast: ‘It’s Really Important to Support Books’

070608_DianaExcerptBrownggwide.hmedium.jpgAnyone with even a passing interest in books is by now painfully aware of the struggles the publishing industry is currently undergoing. Troubles came to a head last December when widespread layoffs were announced at both Random House and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (which had already ceased accepting manuscripts). Meanwhile, book sections nation-wide have consistently been the early casualties of newspaper cutbacks — another one fell last week with the announcement that the Washington Post Book World would cease to exist as a stand-alone publication.

Enter Tina Brown, who just this week announced the addition of the Book Beast page to her recently-launched website The Daily Beast. According to Brown the page, which currently features a compendium of recommendations, new and newly relevant books (Oprah, and John Updike among them), video interviews with authors such as John Grisham, as well as book-skewed articles like a current piece on Norman Mailer‘s writing legacy, was just a natural extension of the book coverage The Daily Beast already provides. It is also a space Brown feels is very necessary at the moment.

“It’s really important to support books and I am so distressed by what is happening to the publishing world,” she told us over the phone yesterday. “Book sections are closing everywhere and as an author, and an editor, and even for a time a publisher with Talk Miramax Books, I just care very much about writers and what’s happening to them and how they spend their time writing all these fabulous books that can never even really get an airing.”

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The Jezebellion Wave

jezeg.pngWe’re not sure how many FBNY readers have been keeping up with the whole Jezebel kerfuffle — between the July 4 holiday and going Canadian we mostly missed it. However, since it continues to pop up in conversations and online we thought it was worth a mention.

Short version: Jezebel’s Moe Tkacik and Tracie “Slut Machine” Egan appeared on Lizz Winstead‘s “Shoot the Messenger: Thinking and Drinking” show a few weeks ago and proceeded to drink (to some excess). Over the course of what was supposed to be a fun(ny) hour, talk turned to rape at which point the host turned suddenly serious (earlier talk of abortion somehow did not merit a finger-waving response). At this point the crowd began to express its displeasure(?) over the fact the ladies were drunk and seemingly making light of serious subjects and/or not as articulate as their writing has lead people to believe they should be. For her part the host appeared displeased that the ladies weren’t kissing either her or Gloria Steinem‘s ass (one wonders, does she read Jezebel?). In the words of Karina Longworth “cross-generational feminist chaos” ensued. (Longworth has a great write-up here).

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Monday Morning Meta Media Mashup

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James Brady has, like, lost it, man:

“Forgotten Hemingway” | James Brady, Forbes

Forbes’ resident namedropper is at it again: “I’ve long been a contributor to Parade magazine, along with Norman Mailer, David Halberstam, Bill O’Reilly, Gail Sheehy, Jim Webb, the late Ben Hecht, Carl Sagan, Dick Schaap, Peter Maas, James Thurber. Only recently did I learn Ernest Hemingway was also on the masthead.” Oh, really? The rest of the column serves as Brady’s own meta media column on Hemingway — Ernest Fucking Hemingway! — gleaning media insights from, oh, 1941, which, like his column, are quickly forgotten. GRADE: D

  • Monday Morning Meta Media Mashup
  • ‘Look Book’ Book | Norman Mailer’s Spunk | Ex-NBCU Treasurer Arrested | CNN Execs Take To The Tropics

    look_book_book.jpg

    • New York Mag: To publish “Look Book” book. [WWD]
    • Norman Mailer: “Still has all the spunk of an angry punk.” [Rush and Molloy]
    • CNN Execs: Take tropical trip while network lags. [Page Six]
    • Was Time Inc. Deal: Done a week ago? [Folio:]
    • Bill Kristol: Media darling — why? [Nation]
    • Ex-NBC Universal Treasurer: Arrested, accused of stealing $800,000. [TV Week]