September 4, 1996 |
Former TriStar Pictures President Marc Platt has landed a job as the head of production at MCA Inc.'s Universal Pictures unit. Platt had been considered the preferred candidate to replace Hal Lieberman, who last month left his post as the studio's production chief to set up shop as an independent producer at MCA.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 14, 1996 |
A plastic surgeon from Irvine is suing some of Hollywood's biggest outfits, including Steven Spielberg's company, asserting that a melody he wrote to get over the death of his baby daughter was used as the theme music for "Jurassic Park." Dr. Donald I. Altman says film composer John Williams ("Star Wars," "Indiana Jones") "intentionally or unintentionally" copied the melody that Altman composed in 1990, five years after his daughter drowned in a neighbor's pool.
May 22, 1996 |
In the latest attempt to bolster its ailing television business, MCA Inc. has bought a substantial interest in Brillstein-Grey Entertainment, a production company whose shows include "NewsRadio" and "The Jeff Foxworthy Show" on the NBC network and "The Naked Truth," which aired last season on ABC. Under the deal, MCA will also buy half interest in Brillstein-Grey's fledgling movie operation, which next month will release "The Cable Guy," starring Jim Carrey.
May 19, 1996 |
On a shelf in Yoji Yamamoto's office sits a binder with the instructions for reproducing Woody Woodpecker, right down to the correct shade of Dai Nippon paint used to color his bright red topknot. That binder is one piece of MCA Inc.'s strategy as it moves into Japan--true Mickey Mouse territory and the most lucrative foreign market of the powerful Walt Disney Co.
May 16, 1996 |
Biondi Could Get as Much as $15.5 Million From Viacom: Frank Biondi Jr., who was fired as chief executive of Viacom in January and just hired as CEO of rival MCA Inc., will be paid as part of his employment agreement calling for $2.97 million in salary and as much as $10.7 million in bonuses. He will also get options for 1 million Class B Viacom shares and $1.8 million in deferred compensation. Details were filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
May 15, 1996
Entertainment giant MCA Inc. said it has increased its investment in Interplay Productions, an Irvine-based manufacturer and distributor of computer games. Though both companies declined to offer details on the investment, a spokesman for Interplay said MCA's stake remains below 50%. In 1994, MCA purchased a minority interest in Interplay reportedly between 20% and 30%, with an option to acquire nearly 50% of the company.
April 30, 1996 |
Cable television partners Viacom Inc. and MCA Inc. went to war Monday over a new channel that shows reruns of "Hogan's Heroes," "The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour" and "Green Acres." MCA fired the first shot, filing suit against Viacom in Delaware Chancery Court over Nick at Nite's TV Land, a 24-hour channel of classic reruns that Viacom launched Monday night with a flick of the switch at a star-studded party on the Paramount Pictures lot.
April 24, 1996 |
New MCA Chief Executive Frank J. Biondi Jr. said the entertainment company will explore cable and network opportunities but that a plunge into TV distribution isn't inevitable. "I'm not coming in with a point of view that you need a franchise in cable networking or a franchise in broadcasting to be complete or to be competitive. Those are issues, but they aren't the only way to look at those issues," Biondi said in an interview. Some analysts have suggested that MCA Inc.
April 23, 1996 |
MCA Inc. is expected to name former Viacom Inc. Chief Executive Frank J. Biondi Jr. today as its chairman and chief executive, filling the last major gap in the entertainment company's management ranks following its acquisition last year by spirits giant Seagram Co., industry sources said. Biondi, 51, will fill the position left vacant by Hollywood legend Lew Wasserman, who became chairman emeritus after Seagram paid $5.7 billion for 80% of MCA in June.