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The Morning Fix: Netflix tries new look, Streep rips boys' club

June 14, 2012|By Joe Flint
  • Meryl Streep had some tough words for Hollywood.
Meryl Streep had some tough words for Hollywood. (Jason Merritt/Getty Images )

After the coffee. Before avoiding Kings parade traffic.

The Skinny: Did Wednesday drag or what? Thursday's headlines include analysis of the Justice Department examination of the pay-TV business; Netflix is testing a new look; and Meryl Streep has some tough words for Hollywood.

Daily Dose: As yours truly reported Wednesday, Dick Clark Productions is on the block. Now attention will turn to who may buy the production company whose biggest franchises include the Golden Globe Awards and Fox's "So You Think You Can Dance." Keep your eye on Core Media Group, the recently renamed CKX production company that is also a partner in "So You Think You Can Dance." Core is headed by former top NBC executive Marc Graboff, who is also intimately familiar with the finances of the Globes since he did NBC's deals to keep the show on its network.

And justice for all? The Justice Department's probe of the pay-TV business, first reported Wednesday by the Wall Street Journal, grew out of the government's review of Comcast's acquisition of NBC. During the investigation into the potential implications of that deal, the DOJ apparently discovered several practices in how programmers and distributors interact that raised concern. Analysis of what the DOJ is looking at and whether it will lead anywhere from the Los Angeles Times and Bloomberg.

New look. Netflix is testing a redesign of its website in an attempt to make it easier for subscribers to find content. The new look separates movies and television shows into separate tabs. Previously, the only content Netflix broke out separately was kids' programming. More on the new look from the Los Angeles Times.

King is gone. News anchor John King is the latest casualty at CNN as the cable news network is pulling the plug on his low-rated 6 p.m. show. CNN's quick fix will be to extend Wolf Blitzer's show "The Situation Room" by another hour. CNN is under pressure from its bosses at Turner Broadcasting to boost its numbers. Coverage from the New York Times.

The Iron Lady speaks. Meryl Streep took Hollywood to task by noting its obsession with big tent-pole movies that often flop ("John Carter," "Battleship"), which she said does a disservice to movies aimed at women and older viewers that often quietly make lots of money including her own "The Iron Lady" and "The Devil Wears Prada." More on Streep's remarks from the Los Angeles Times and Hollywood Reporter.

To see 3-D or not see 3-D, that is the question. There is a slew of 3-D movies coming out this summer, but are they all worth the extra money to get the glasses? The Wall Street Journal offers its thoughts on which films are glasses-worthy and which ones you can see in 2-D and not miss a thing. The WSJ said save your money with regard to"Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter."

Making History. The success of History's "Hatfields & McCoys" miniseries led the cable channel to beat the broadcast networks in total viewers for the week ending June. Believe it or not, that's the first time a cable network has pulled that off. Admittedly, it was during the summer season when the broadcasters were in rerun mode, but it is still a significant milestone for History and the cable industry. More from TV Guide.

Fight? A few weeks back, Peter Chernin's TV production company severed its ties with the WME agency. The New York Post says the reason for the split is that WME is headed by Ari Emanuel and Chernin, who are now competitors of sorts. Both have new money from private equity and are on the hunt for investments and apparently often in competition.

Inside the Los Angeles Times: "Rock of Ages"director Adam Shankman is recapturing his youth.

Follow me on Twitter and watch me battle tweeters half my age! Twitter.com/JBFlint

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