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Posts Tagged ‘Peter Jackson’

Studio City Freelancer Among This Year’s S.I. Newhouse Finalists

Remember all that business last spring about The Hobbit’s 48-frames-per-second technology? Among the reporters covering the topic at that time was Studio City-based freelance writer Hugh Hart for Wired magazine.

While Peter Jackson’s 48-fps experiment didn’t exactly set the movie business on fire, it has paved the way for Hart to travel this summer to New York City for the S.I. Newhouse School Mirror Awards, which honor the best reporting about digital media. His Wired feature is a nominee in the Best Single Article category alongside The Huffington Post’s Michael Calderone, Media Matters’ Joe Strupp and three others.

Hart did a great job in the Wired piece of framing the historical Hollywood context, moving in his first two paragraphs from a current studio to Thomas Alva Edison circa 1890. The reporter also landed the holy grail for this sort of piece – an interview with James Cameron. (Hart also spoke with visual effects pioneer Douglas Trumbull and several others.)

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Scott Feinberg Stacks the Spielberg Deck

If you’re a fan of Steven Spielberg, do yourself a favor and bookmark this page. There you will find a video link to a recent War Horse Q&A conducted in New York by Hollywood Reporter awards season reporter Scott Feinberg.

The journalist’s seven, veteran Spielberg collaborator guests were: producer Kathleen Kennedy; production designer Rick Carter; first assistant director Adam Somner; costume designer Joanna Johnston; make-up artist Lois Burwell; cinematographer Janusz Kaminski; and editor Michael Kahn. Kennedy shared many great anecdotes, including one about how director Peter Jackson, during a pre-production session in New Zealand some years ago for Tintin, innocently tipped his collection of World War I collectibles and asked her if she wanted to see it:

“I think I’m going to see a few little trinkets,” Kennedy said. “I went into at least three warehouses bigger than this entire theater, with airplanes, tanks, trucks, guns… It was the most insane thing I’ve ever seen. So when I got back, I told Steven, ‘I don’t know how we do this [War Horse], but Peter’s got everything.’”

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Madison Avenue vs. Oscar’s Median Age

As might be expected, the Ratner-Murphy-Grazer-Crystal game of Oscar musical chairs is echoing across Madison Avenue. According to Claire Atkinson of the New York Post, brand new AMPAS marketing chief Christina Kounelias (pictured) and her colleagues are scrambling to adjust an ad sales pitch that until recent events at the Arclight and on Howard Stern airwaves, was predicated entirely on Axel Foley.

One of the problems the Oscar marketing gang faces is that the selection of a 63-year-old, traditional format replacement host leaves them challenged to explain how they will fix what happened last year. Despite the presence of a tweeting James Franco and giggling Anne Hathaway, the 2010 Oscars broadcast was a disaster:

Horizon Media researcher Brad Adgate noted that the Oscars broadcast actually aged upwards last year with the median age hitting 50.6 years — the oldest it’s ever been.

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Newsweek Celebrates The Year With Interview Issue

091219_COVER-thumb6.jpgThe last big story to come out of Newsweek was the Sarah Palin cover controversy, with a cover image that had been previously featured on an issue of Runner’s World. Not the most glorious way to end out the year.

So The Washington Post Co.-owned magazine decided to end December on a high note, combining its interviews with some of the world’s biggest names into several different segments. There’s Newsweek editor Jon Meacham talking to both Hillary Clinton and Henry Kissinger about the role of Secretary of State (or “Hey, we’re relevant too!”), Bill Maher and Joe Scarborough thinking they are witty while discussing what it is that makes someone a pompous pundit good talk show host (was Dennis Miller not available?), and director Peter Jackson talking with James Cameron about how to make billions of dollars without ever technically selling out.

It’s an interesting tactic to pit one interviewee off another, and one that’s certain to sell copies, even without all the other interviews in the issue, like Bill Clinton, Timothy Geithner and Gen. David Petraeus.

Read More: Newsweek’s Interview Issue

LAT In 90 Seconds

42447985.jpgWhat Would Allah Blog? Jeffrey Fleishman has a terrifically interesting piece about religious and secular Muslims duking it out on Facebook throughout the Middle East. We think our culture wars are hot — kids in Cairo give secular counterparts wake-up calls so they don’t miss the dawn prayers.

39076894.jpgHow Bad Is The Economy? So bad that Universal Pictures just turned town the $130 million budget proposal for Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson‘s 3-D animated movie Tintin. That’s right. Someone said no to Spielberg. If bank failures didn’t convince you to stick your money in a mattress, this ought to do it.

42452622.jpgLow Riders: Teens who were texting Metrolink engineer Robert Sanchez on the day of the crash have taken their grieving public — on the Internet.

LAT In 90 Seconds

32694568.jpgMore Sumner Madness: Getting sick of Hollywood’s least-lovable codger, David Geffen and Steven Spielberg will likely be splitting from Paramount Pictures, less than two years after selling DreamWorks SKG to the Viacom outfit.

32698392.jpgSAG Elections Results: Incumbent Alan Rosenberg narrowly won a second term as president of the Screen Actors Guild. 72-year-old actor Seymour Cassel won 44 percent of the vote, to Rosenberg’s 47 percent — with Cassel supporters saying the would serve the union better as it confronts contract negotiations with studios next year. Rosenberg countered that argument, by calling Cassel “a thug.” Seems it worked.

pjack.jpegAngry Hobbit One Step Closer To His Golden Ring: Lord of the Rings director/deity Peter Jackson had to be a happy halfling yesterday: New Line Cinema was hit with $125,000 in sanctions in its ongoing legal battle with the disgruntled director, who made the studio a mountain of cash — and will likely see a bit more of it coming his way.

Actors Sue New Line For Lord of the Rings Royalties

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Fifteen actors in New Zealand are suing New Line Cinema over $5 million in royalties due them from The Lord of the Rings merchandising. There’s gold in them thar’ lunchboxes.
(You should see this crap: air fresheners, navel rings, snowglobes, Elf ears.)

Two years ago, LOTR director Peter Jackson filed his own suit against New Line, alleging the studio committed financial fraud to cheat him out of as much as $100 million for all three movies. New Line countered by banning him from ever working for the studio again.

The litigants include Paul Norell (King of the Dead), Noel Appleby (Everard Proudfoot), Sarah McLeod (Rosie Cotton), Mark Ferguson (Gil-Galad), Nathaniel Lees (Ugluk) and Peter Tait (Shagrat.)