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Monday, August 13, 2012

'Bourne' again! NBC ruins closing cerimony finale to push "pet" show. CBS eying DCP. FOX Spanish News in English begins today. Starz for sale. CNN to get real?

Jeremy Renner
Matt who? Jeremy Renner has kept the Bourne franchise alive. (Universal Pictures)

After the coffee. Before going through week-old emails. 

'Bourne' winner. Forget Matt Damon. Jeremy Renner is the new face of the Jason Bourne franchise. Universal Pictures' "The Bourne Legacy" dethroned "The Dark Knight Rises" for the top spot at the box office with a take of $40.3 million. Also picking up a lot of votes from moviegoers was the Will FerrellZach Galifianakis political comedy "The Candidate," which took in just over $27 million. "Hope Springs," the romantic comedy starring Meryl Streep and Tommy Lee Jones is also off to a solid start. Box-office coverage from the Los Angeles Times and Movie City News.

The Skinny: A week spent visiting family in hot and humid Washington, D.C., is not a vacation. It's more of an oblication. That needs to become a word. Anyway, thanks for the fine folks who filled in while I was off. I'm a little disappointed I won't be the next Wally Pipp (look it up). Monday's headlines include a recap of the weekend box office, a look at who is eyeing Dick Clark Productions, the launch of Mundo Fox and analysis of NBC's Olympic coverage.

Daily Dose: As if NBC's decision to interrupt its coverage of the closing ceremony of the Olympics with an episode of its new sitcom "Animal Practice" wasn't annoying enough, DirecTV subscribers in Los Angeles lost the network's high-definition signal for part of the coverage. A DirecTV spokesman said a technical issue caused the disruption. Well, I didn't think it was an editorial decision made by someone annoyed at the Spice Girls for getting back together. NBC cut off the finale with "The Who" which turned out to be short, and time shifted it until after "Animal Practice" and local news...putting the finale after midnight on the west coast. Add that to many reasons NBC should never again cover an Olympics (unfortunately they have the contract).

Seann William Scott in "American Reunion."

'American Reunion' finishing strong international run

Turns out it was foreigners and not Americans who wanted to check out an "American Reunion."
Despite a soft domestic box office take of $56.8 million, significantly lower than the prior three "American Pie" films, April's "American Reunion" has been the most successful of them all overseas.
After opening in its final overseas territory, South Korea, this weekend, Universal Pictures' comedy brought its international total up to $178 million.

That's a phenomenal figure for an R-rated American comedy, a genre that tends to perform poorly overseas, with rare exceptions such as "The Hangover."

To continue reading click More...

Jeremy Renner, left, and Rachel Weisz star in "The Bourne Legacy."

'Bourne Legacy,' 'Campaign,' 'Hope Springs' all enjoy solid starts

It was a weekend without disappointments or thrills in Hollywood, as "The Bourne Legacy," "The Campaign" and "Hope Springs" all enjoyed solid but far from spectacular debuts.

The biggest risk going into the weekend was "Bourne," a fresh take on the franchise -- with a new star -- on which Universal Pictures and Relativity Media spent about $130 million. The movie, which stars Jeremy Renner is his first role topping a franchise picture, opened to $40.3 million, a debut healthy enough to have Universal executives breathing a sigh of relief. To continue reading click on
"The Campaign" stars comedians Zach Galifianakis and Will Ferrell, but are they enough to get large audiences into theaters?

Are audiences playing a joke on Hollywood's biggest comedy stars?

As Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis open their new movie,"The Campaign," this weekend, they're trying to woo a filmgoing audience that has been voting — with its feet — against comedies this season.

Nearly all of their fellow big-name comedians have struggled at the box office recently. Vince Vaughn and Ben Stiller bombed with "The Watch" two weeks ago. Adam Sandler, as close to a golden boy this comedic century has seen, flopped in June with the gross-out father-son pic "That's My Boy," his second consecutive disappointment after last year's "Jack & Jill."To continue reading click on More...
GLAAD organized a protest outside Liberman Broadcasting headquarters in June against the talk show "Jose Luis Sin Censura." Liberman said this week that it canceled the talk show

Controversial talk show dumped following GLAAD protests

After years of protests by the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, Spanish-language broadcaster Liberman Broadcasting has pulled the plug on the controversial television talk show “Jose Luis Sin Censura.”

GLAAD in 2005 launched a battle against the raunchy, hair-pulling and insult-hurling show, which ran on Liberman's Estrella TV network. Audience members sometimes chanted anti-gay slurs at show participants. To continue reading click More..

But can you dance to it? The list of potential buyers for Dick Clark Productions is starting to take shape. According to Reuters, CBS is the latest to throw its hat in the ring and kick the tires of DCP. Other suitors include Core Media, Colony Capital and TV personality Ryan Seacrest. That CBS is interested is something of a surprise given that DCP's biggest property is the Golden Globes, which NBC has the rights to for the next several years. One person with knowledge of the talks said bids for DCP are north of $350 million.

Riesgo grande. Making its debut Monday is Mundo Fox, a new Spanish-language broadcast network from News Corp. and Colombian giant RCN Television Group. With the Spanish population on the rise, Fox thinks it can grab some eyeballs from Univision and Telemundo. A look at the programming and business strategy of Mundo Fox from the Los Angeles Times, New York Times and Wall Street Journal.

Seeing Starz. While I was on vacation (phew), Liberty Media announced plans for a spinoff of its pay cable channel Starz, which many think will lead to an acquisition by another media giant. Often seen as an also-ran to HBO and Showtime, Starz has made some gains thanks to new original shows including "Boss." There are lots of media companies lacking a premium pay TV channel including Comcast and News Corp. Advertising Age with analysis.

Getting real. In a move that could either be brilliant or desperate (my money is on the latter), CNN is reaching out to Hollywood for potential programming ideas to revitalize the struggling news channel. The New York Post reports that CNN has been putting out feelers to talent agencies and reality show producers for ideas. CNN will have to be careful that it doesn't damage its brand as a news channel (yes, that was said with a straight face) in an effort to get some ratings.

Inside the Los Angeles Times: Mary McNamara on the good and bad of NBC's Olympics coverage and Robert Lloyd on the closing ceremony.

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