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China headaches! Katie's coming back. Disney on a roll.

The Morning Fix

August 28, 2012|By Joe Flint
  • In China, Batman may be looking out for Spider-Man.
In China, Batman may be looking out for Spider-Man. (Warner Bros. )

After the coffee. Before the fantasy football draft.

The Skinny: I've become addicted to the pink grapefruit-flavored Sparkling Ice. Every time I go to Ralph's I buy out the stock. Try it! Tuesday's headlines include a look at how China is infuriating Hollywood, Katie Couric gets ready for daytime and Walt Disney Co. is on a roll.

Daily Dose: The Saturday night before the Emmy Awards just got a little more crowded. For years, NBC and Showtime have had big parties that night. Now the History channel is throwing its hat in the ring. Perhaps just like the channel's surprise miniseries hit, "Hatfields & McCoys," their party will also ride off into the sunset with a big win. You can tell a network feels it has arrived when it throws its first big Hollywood bash.

Superhero showdown! It wasn't too long ago that Hollywood executives were stoked that China was going to allow more U.S. movies there. The only problem is China keeps scheduling the big films against one another, much to Hollywood's chagrin, as was the case last month when "The Lorax" and Ice Age: Continental Drift" went toe-to-toe. The latest example is the government's decision to have "The Dark Knight Rises" and "The Amazing Spider-Man" open at the same time. The fear is that these scheduling moves hurt the box office for U.S. product and only serve to boost China's homegrown fare. There's a shocker. Analysis from the Los Angeles Times.

Here comes Katie. It seems like it was only yesterday we woke up with her. OK, that seems like a lifetime ago, but nonetheless Katie Couric is coming back with her own afternoon talk show that debuts in less than two weeks. Couric will look to take on Ellen DeGeneres and try to bring back the daytime audience that left when Oprah Winfrey decided to start her own cable network. Walt Disney Co. spent a lot of money landing syndication rights for Couric, and former NBC Chairman and "Today" show producer Jeff Zucker is calling the shots behind the scenes. But will Disney marketing dollars and Zucker's producing smarts be enough for Couric to break through? Get ready for a slew of Couric stories, including this sneak peek from Newsweek.

Storm brewing. Half the nation's journalists are in Florida for the Republican Convention and the other half are flocking to New Orleans in case Hurricane Isaac touches down there. Hopefully Isaac won't do any serious damage, but he's already creating headaches for news outlets that were planning to pump all their resources into convention coverage. More from Variety and the New York Times.

Riding high. Walt Disney Co.'s stock hit a new high earlier this month and it's not just the strength of ESPN and other cable networks driving the company. Its theme parks and cruise ships are also cruising. The Wall Street Journal talks with Disney CEO Bob Iger about the company's performance. But while there is lots of good news at Disney, ABC could use a few more hits.

Stop smoking in bed! For the second time in four months there was a fire at entertainment mogul Tyler Perry's Atlanta studio. In May, there was a lot of damage to a building on the property. Perry, who produces and directs his own movies and also produces TV shows for TBS, built the studio in 2008. Details from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Should they or shouldn't they? The cable networks will fill their schedules with convention coverage while the broadcast channels will offer up only a few hours over the next few days. Should broadcast networks do more even though conventions have become scripted fare with no real drama or news? Differing views from the Los Angeles Times and Hollywood Reporter.

Inside the Los Angeles Times: YouTube is finding that humor may be the key to its future

Follow me on Twitter and learn what makes me tick. @JBFlint.

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