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ENTERTAINMENT
July 12, 2013 | By Meredith Blake
“Sharknado,” Syfy's latest shlocky made-for-TV guilty pleasure, hit social media Thursday night like, well, a swirling cyclone of bloodthirsty fish. Yet another offering from the minds who brought us “Dinoshark,” “Sharktopus” and “Mega Shark Versus Crocosaurus,”  “Sharknado” also benefited from the presence of at least two past-their-prime actors, starlet-turned-party-girl Tara Reid and “Beverly Hills 90210's” resident bro, Ian Zeiring. And, well, it's the summer and there isn't much else on. The combination of an absurd yet self-evident premise, a clumsy portmanteau title, visual effects that would leave Ed Wood embarrassed, and D-list stars proved to be the perfect storm for Twitter snarking, with seemingly everyone -- or at least seemingly everyone related somehow to the media industry -- weighing in on the campy spectacle.
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ENTERTAINMENT
January 11, 2013 | By Joe Flint
Sen. Jay Rockefeller's announcement that he won't seek reelection in 2014 may not upset too many folks in the entertainment business. The Democrat from West Virginia and chairman of the powerful Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee has never been shy about bashing the media industry. Last fall at a confirmation hearing for two nominees for the Federal Communications Commission, Rockefeller said that television news has been "dumbed down" and that entertainment programming was too too "obscene" and "promiscuous.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 15, 2012 | By Joe Flint
Lions Gate Chief Executive Jon Feltheimer is urging people in the media industry to play nice with each other. In a speech Monday to cable industry executives in Orlando, Fla., Feltheimeier warned that while "the marriage of content, technology and choice offers an unprecedented experience of our consumers," all that will be wasted if big media companies can't get along. "We can screw it up when all the constituents in our business are so focused on their narrow agendas that they can't work together to look at the big picture," Feltheimer said at the Cable & Telecommunications Assn.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 27, 2013 | By Joe Flint
One of the longest-serving chief executives in the media industry is stepping down. Frank A. Bennack Jr., chief executive of Hearst Corp. since 1979, will give up that title in June. Steven Swartz, currently president and chief operating officer, will become CEO. Bennack will remain vice chairman of the Hearst Board. Although best known for its magazine unit, which includes Cosmopolitan and Esquire, Hearst also has a major presence in the TV industry. It owns stakes in several powerful cable networks including ESPN, A&E, History and Lifetime.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 10, 2013 | By Gary Goldstein
The nimbly conceived and constructed documentary "Sellebrity" takes a vivid look at the megabucks industry of celebrity photography through a cogent variety of lenses. It's an enjoyable snapshot that effectively explores the colliding - often complicit - worlds of fame, entertainment publicity, the public's infatuation with gossip and the dogged paparazzi at the epicenter of it all. Sadly, the recent death of L.A. photographer Chris Guerra, who was hit by an SUV after taking pictures of Justin Bieber's Ferrari, makes this exposé seem especially timely.
BUSINESS
November 19, 2003 | Edmund Sanders, Times Staff Writer
As Congress winds down for the year, time is running short for efforts to roll back media ownership rules that were relaxed this summer by the Federal Communications Commission. Opponents of increased media consolidation, including some influential Republican lawmakers, are vowing to repeal one of the most controversial new FCC rules as part of a massive appropriations bill expected to be passed later this week.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 16, 2012 | By Joe Flint
The main problem with owning a network that specializes in 3D is that there isn't a ton of 3D programming around to fill the schedule. With that in mind, 3Net -- the 3D cable channel owned by Sony, Discovery and IMAX -- have created an in-house production company to make original 3D content. “With the industry now struggling to keep pace with the rapidly accelerating consumer demand for 3D programming across multiple platforms...the formation of a world-class production studio to help fill both the 3D and ultra-high-definition content voids became a logical next step in our evolution as a global player in the entertainment arena,” said Tom Cosgrove, president of 3Net.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 31, 2013 | By Joe Flint
Steve Bornstein, the top media executive at the National Football League and president of its cable channel, will exit his position when his contract expires in May, the NFL confirmed. A former president of ESPN and ABC, Bornstein played a key role in getting the NFL Network off the ground and in negotiating the lucrative television rights deals that the league has with CBS, Fox, ESPN, NBC and DirecTV. Bornstein was also an innovator both at ESPN and the NFL. At ESPN, he helped build the network into a sports juggernaut.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 4, 2013 | By Joe Flint
New Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler has tapped one of the media industry's fiercest watchdogs for a senior role on his team. Gigi Sohn, who has headed the nonprofit advocacy group Public Knowledge for 12 years, is joining Wheeler's staff as special counsel for external affairs. The appointment of Sohn is sure to raise eyebrows in some circles. She has been a critic of media consolidation, and her views on copyright protection are often at odds with those of the entertainment industry.
BUSINESS
December 10, 2005 | Joseph Menn, Times Staff Writer
At least two potential buyers made preliminary bids Friday to acquire Knight Ridder Inc., the country's second-largest newspaper chain, according to three people familiar with the discussions. Among those submitting offers by the first-round deadline were investment firm Texas Pacific Group and an alliance of private equity investors Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co., Blackstone Group and Providence Equity Partners, the people said.
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