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Posts Tagged ‘Steve Pond’

From Projectionist to President of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association

As first reported by Steve Pond of TheWrap, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association on Monday elected a much younger new president. Theo Kingma, who started out as a projectionist and later became a photographer, is just 46. The two previous heads of the HFPA were both in their seventies when they took office.

Kingma has indicated he plans to improve the reputation of the HFPA, which has been further targeted in recent weeks via a pair of TheWrap stories by site founder Sharon Waxman. From Pond’s earlier op-ed piece:

In recent months, TheWrap has been contacted repeatedly by members of the HFPA and by studio reps who deal with the group. None wished to be identified, but all complained in increasingly strong terms about HFPA policies and practices and described the upcoming election as pivotal… Kingma originally agreed to speak for this story, but cancelled when he did not receive permission from HFPA leadership to do so.

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Awards Pundits Cast Their Votes for Most Egregious Golden Globe Snub

There was no HFPA silver lining this morning for Robert De Niro. Deadline Hollywood awards expert Pete Hammond thinks he knows why:

The omission of Silver Linings Playbook’s Robert De Niro [from Best Supporting Actor] was among the most surprising snubs to me but clearly those two Django co-stars DiCaprio and Waltz rode in and stole his thunder (he also was too busy working to do the all-important – in terms of nominations – HFPA press conference).

Over at TheWrap, Steve Pond leads off his analysis with a look at how the lack of a Beasts of the Southern Wild Best Drama nod underscores the starry-eyed HFPA ballot view:

How else to explain the way the Globes voters ignored Beasts but nominated Nicole Kidman for the laughably trashy The Paperboy? And not only did they go for Kidman in that potboiler, but they gave her a second nomination for her performance in the TV movie Hemingway & Gellhorn.

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For THR Awards Blogger, It’s Telluride – Take Two

A year ago at this time, Scott Feinberg (pictured) had just signed a contract with The Hollywood Reporter to join the publication as lead awards blogger and tumbled into his first-ever trip to Telluride. This weekend, he’s back in the picturesque Colorado mountains, ready to handicap 2012 Oscar hopefuls alongside a small group of LA journo regulars that includes Anne Thompson (Indiewire), Gregory Ellwood (Hit Fix), Steve Pond (TheWrap) and Pete Hammond (Deadline).

“It’s funny, the one place where we all end up is the Santa Barbara Film Festival,” Feinberg told FishbowlLA via telephone yesterday shortly after arriving in the rain. “It’s weird. Some of us can’t make it to Telluride, some of us can’t make it to Toronto. But the one that it just seems, year after year, all the usual LA Oscar beat writers end up at is Santa Barbara.”

Everything is walking distance in Telluride. It’s also a place where, with a very few exceptions, outlets pay the same hefty price for journalist passes as attendees. And because locals are used to living next to the likes of Ralph Lauren, Oprah Winfrey and Tom Cruise, the already secluded event has a welcome, casual feel for A-list attendees. Starting with today’s traditional kick-off picnic.

“At the end of last year’s awards season, George Clooney told me Telluride had been one of the highlights of the circuit, which he was on for a whole six months,” Feinberg recalled. “He felt that he could walk around here with no bodyguards, no entourage… Of course, one or two people might still ask him for photos. But it’s nothing like LA or Toronto.”

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Michael Moore Comments on Colorado Shootings

In a brief email to TheWrap’s Steve Pond, Bowling for Columbine Oscar winner Michael Moore commented with a heavy heart but still some level of hope about this morning’s horrific events in Aurora, CO:

I believe anthropologists and historians will look back on us and simply conclude that we were a violent nation, at home and abroad, but in due time human decency won out and the violence ceased, but not before many, many more had died and the world had had its fill of us.

The first reader to react to Moore’s take vehemently disagrees.
Writes dinosferrari:

Listen Michael – I respect your right to say what you want but I must stop you when you assert that my country is a violent county. These awful tragedies happen. Not long ago a deranged man went crazy and started shooting people on an island in Norway. He killed 80 people! Violence is not confined to America or Colorado nor is it confined to the 21st Century. Earlier civilizations were routinely far more violent than anything we see revolving today…

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A Picture Worth a Thousand Bylines

Since launch in 2009, TheWrap has proven to be a fertile training ground for entertainment journalists. Among the earliest examples of reporters who worked under Sharon Waxman before moving on to other outlets are Amy Kaufman (now with the LA Times), Josef Adalian (Vulture), Hunter Walker (New York Observer), Josh Dickey (Variety), Jeff Sneider (Variety) and Dominic Patten (Deadline).

Still, with the recent departure of Jason Scoggins, Cindy Kaplan and Joshua L. Weinstein for Film Funds LLC, the following photo now stands as a rather graphic representation of the kind of turnover Waxman (and others in the space like The Hollywood Reporter and the LA Times) must sometimes deal with. Of the ten people flanking Waxman in this April 1, 2011 birthday celebration snapshot obtained by FishbowlLA, only one person remains employed with the start-up company today.

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Media Still Getting Elvis Presley First-Kiss Facts Wrong

If this year’s Oscars are anywhere near as entertaining as a piece on TheWrap today about Documentary Short Subject category attendee Mother Prioress, we’ll be happy campers around about 8:24 p.m. PT Sunday.

Awards season expert Steve Pond fact-checks the topic of Prioress’s oft-repeated Hollywood PR. As actress Dolores Hart, it is said that she previously presented at the 1959 Oscars and was responsible for Elvis Presley‘s first on-screen kiss. Wrong, and… not quite right. Pond notes that the bit about the Elvis kiss was put forth about a decade ago by ABC News’ 20/20 and has been lazily repeated ever since:

It’s uncertain the order in which the kisses were filmed [for 1957's Loving You], but Elvis kisses Jana Lund about 50 minutes into the film, and Lizabeth Scott half an hour later; it isn’t until the movie’s final scene that he finally locks lips with Hart.

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TheWrap Stirs Tempest in a Meryl Streep Teapot

In the arcane, moneyed world of “For Your Consideration” ads, there are each year a number of pitches that rub Academy members the wrong way. But after a paid email blast was sent out this week by both The Hollywood Reporter and Variety, TheWrap reporter Steve Pond is getting some blowback for suggesting that the transmission was only borderline AMPAS-legal:

Weinstein Company COO David Glasser responded: “We are surprised that a media outlet like TheWrap, which normally has journalistic integrity, would print the strange accusation of an anonymous competitor and use this as a direct broadside against Variety and The Hollywood Reporter.”

Can you guess who the anonymous competitor is? The email in question, paid for by Weinstein Co., featured the subject line “Meryl Streep Exclusive Video” and linked to a screening Q&A conversation between the actress and Deadline.com’s Pete Hammond. During the clip, Hammond exclaims that the 29-year gap in Streep winning an Oscar really needs to be rectified.

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Polish Brothers Laughing All the Way to iTunes

TheWrap’s Steve Pond had a great look yesterday at the phenomenal success of For Lovers Only, the latest (black and white) feature film offering from brothers Michael and Mark Polish.

If Pond’s figures are correct, the siblings have cleared in the neighborhood of $200,000 for their latest effort, thanks to a SAG experimental no-budget shoot and the movie’s VOD popularity. So forget about all that Harry Potter advance ticket sales and Transformers 3 box office mumbo jumbo; the real summer box office scoop involves an unheralded indie featuring Canadian born actress Stana Katic (pictured):

The film came from a script that Mark wrote more than a decade ago, about an American photographer who runs into an old flame while on assignment in Paris. Inspired by the French New Wave and the likes of Richard Lester’s A Hard Day’s Night, it follows the rekindled lovers around France in a series of quiet vignettes that gradually reveal more about the complications in their lives.

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Harvey Levin Now Officially the King of All Media

Thanks to a new deal with Premiere Networks that went live June 20, Harvey Levin has crossed over into the final, retro media frontier: radio.

TMZ Radio airs Monday through Friday as two separate one-minute installments, with Levin touching on the day’s latest celebrity news headlines. It can be heard locally on KBIG-FM and via some 50 other stations around the country. Befitting TMZ’s status as a one-man brand, the “About Harvey Levin” section in today’s press release clocks in at 345 words, longer than the body-text portion of the release.

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2nd Annual Streamys: Twice the Size, Half the Heart

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Last year the first annual Streamy Awards was the little show that could. This year it was the big show that didn’t.

The first year the show was at the Wadsworth Theater in Westwood. The red carpet was a whopping ten feet long and most of the outlets were unknown bloggers and obscure people with Internet shows. There was no press room. The media watched the show from the mostly empty mezzanine. The show was quick and quirky, just like, well, Internet TV. It was glitch-free and well organized. It was adorably earnest, sweetly trying to legitimize the medium.

This year the red carpet was three times the size packed with journalist and outlets world wide. Rogers & Cowen did publicity. It was big. So full in fact that they ran out of press badges. Completely out. Steve Pond from TheWrap (who we mistakenly called “James” all night and he was stunningly nice about it) said he was walked into the filing room with no badge at all.

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