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The Morning Fix: Disney eats healthier. Baseball makes pitch.

June 05, 2012|By Joe Flint
  • Major League Baseball is pitching new TV deals. Above, Dodgers starter Clayton Kershaw.
Major League Baseball is pitching new TV deals. Above, Dodgers starter… (Tom Mihalek / EPA )

After the coffee. Before helping the dentist put his kid through college.

The Skinny: Am I the only one who hasn't gotten his California tax refund yet? Just wondering. Tuesday's headlines include how Microsoft and Sony want to make their game consoles into cable boxes, Walt Disney Co.'s tough new guidelines on food and beverage advertising, and how Major League Baseball's talks for new TV deals are starting to heat up.

Daily Dose: Now that Netflix is getting into the original production business, it is starting to beef up its publicity efforts. Netflix has tapped well-regarded Sony vice president Karen Barragan to oversee promotion for its original content, which will include the political drama "House of Cards" starring Kevin Spacey and new episodes of the cult comedy classic "Arrested Development."

The future is now. The annual video game conference E3 is in full swing this week at the Los Angeles convention center. Besides the usual displays of new gadgets and games, video game console makers including Microsoft (Xbox) and Sony (PlayStation) are taking further steps to become content distribution systems to rival cable and satellite operators. Microsoft used the convention Monday to announce a slew of new content deals with Nickelodeon, ESPN and Univision. A look at how the gamers want a piece of cable's action from the Los Angeles Times. Additional coverage from CNet.

Eat your veggies! Walt Disney Co. is announcing tougher guidelines on the kinds of food and beverages for which it will accept advertising on shows aimed at kids on ABC and its cable networks including Disney Channel and ABC Family. According to the New York Times, "under the new rules, products like Capri Sun drinks and Kraft Lunchables meals — both current Disney advertisers — along with a wide range of candy, sugared cereal and fast food, will no longer be acceptable advertising material."

Play ball. Major League Baseball's television agreements with Fox, ESPN and Turner don't expire until after next season but talks are already underway for new deals. According to Sports Business Journal (subscription required), not only are the current rights holders interested in holding on to baseball, NBC is also looking to score some games for its NBC Sports cable channel, which is trying to compete with ESPN.

If the price is right. Once again tires are being kicked at CBS' outdoor advertising unit, which is one of the largest in the world and had almost $2 billion in revenues in 2011. The Wall Street Journal says investment banks are reaching out to private equity in search of buyers. However, CBS has made clear that it thinks the unit is worth at least $6 billion and that may prove to be a difficult hurdle for many suitors.

Get me rewrite. Horror master Clive Barker has been hired to do a script overhaul on "Zombies vs. Gladiators," a big movie from Amazon Studios. The movie is important part of Amazon's push into original content. Details from the Hollywood Reporter.

Inside the Los Angeles Times: Fox has locked up TV rights for Los Angeles Kings games through 2024 in a deal valued at $250 million. 

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