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Quick Takes

December 11, 2012

5,000 'Shades' of green

Thanks to "Fifty Shades of Grey," employees at Random House Inc. are seeing green.

Every worker, from sales to editorial to distribution, will receive a $5,000 bonus, prorated for those who joined Random House during the year.

In a companywide letter sent Monday, chief executive officer Markus Dohle noted the publisher's "unprecedented success" in 2012. E.L. James' erotic trilogy has sold more than 35 million copies and Random Houser also released such bestsellers as Gillian Flynn's "Gone Girl" and Robert Caro's "The Passage of Power."

Random House spokesman Stuart Applebaum said Monday that while some employees have existing bonus plans, the across-the-board payment was "unique" for the company.

—Associated Press

Pepsi partners with Beyoncé

When Beyoncé makes her return to music next month, she'll be armed with a major backer: Pepsi.

PepsiCo, the conglomerate best known for its soft drinks, announced it has inked a deal with the multi-platinum singer.

Fans can expect Beyoncé, who has already appeared in five Pepsi campaigns since 2002, to be featured in a new TV spot for the soft drink. Her face will also be plastered on a limited-edition line of soda cans and bottles and her likeness will also be visible on in-store displays, promotions and advertising at Pepsi retailers.

And, as previously reported, the singer will headline the Pepsi-sponsored halftime show at Super Bowl XLVII in February.

—Gerrick D. Kennedy

'Deep Throat' set for L.A. stage

The theatrical telling of the back story of "Deep Throat" is on its way to Los Angeles.

Delving into the tale of the most famous adult film ever made, "The Deep Throat Sex Scandal" is set to open Jan. 31 at the Zephyr Theatre in West Hollywood, with previews beginning Jan. 24.

The play, written by David Bertolino, will feature porn veterans Veronica Hart and Herschel Savage as part of the ensemble cast and Ron Jeremy as one of the guest stars.

"The Deep Throat Sex Scandal" opened in New York in 2010 at the 45 Bleecker Theatre. The play tells the story of the making of "Deep Throat" and the controversy that surrounded the film after its release.

—David Ng

Large Broadway payday for star

Scarlett Johansson is guaranteed a minimum of $40,000 a week to add a dose of sex and glamour to the battered Broadway season in "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof," according to offering papers distributed to investors.

The base weekly pay for Broadway actors is $1,754. The offering papers illustrate how celebrities are rewarded and still have an incentive to fill seats.

The Tennessee Williams revival begins previews on Dec. 18.

The 28-year-old movie star, playing the seductive and neglected wife Maggie, can earn more should "Cat" sell. She won't match Al Pacino's $125,000 salary for "Glengarry Glen Ross" unless "Cat" becomes a "Glengarry"-scale hit, according to "Roof Theatricals L.P." papers.

In addition to her $40,000 guarantee, Johansson collects 7.5% of ticket sales above $530,000 (after deducting for commissions and averaged over four weeks). Once investors are paid 10% beyond their initial outlay, her take rises to 10% of grosses plus 5% of profit.

Johansson won a Tony Award for her 2010 Broadway debut, a revival of Arthur Miller's "A View from the Bridge" directed by Gregory Mosher, in which she costarred with Liev Schreiber.

—Bloomberg News

Chinese opera house in works

Bing Thom Architects of Vancouver, Canada, and the Hong Kong-based firm Ronald Lu have beaten out rivals to build a $348-million Chinese opera house in Hong Kong.

Known as the Xiqu Centre, it's scheduled for completion in 2016 and will be the first of 17 cultural and entertainment venues to open at the West Kowloon Cultural District.

The preliminary design features a spherical theater that appears to float above an atrium. The exterior covering of the structure appears to undulate as if it were a theater curtain.

"We wanted to use contemporary architecture to display a very traditional art form," Thom said at a West Kowloon Cultural District Authority press conference Monday.

—Bloomberg News

Big finale for the Rolling Stones

Bruce Springsteen, Lady Gaga and the Black Keys will join the Rolling Stones on Saturday for the final concert marking the band's 50th anniversary.

The concert will be held at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J.

The band said Monday that the concert will be telecast live on pay-per-view.

—Associated Press

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