September 14, 2012 |
Is the man who directed an anti-Islam film that sparked riots in Egypt and Libya the same person who directed soft-core porn movies with titles such as "Young Lady Chatterley," "The Sexpert" and "The Happy Hooker Goes Hollywood"? And might he be using an alias? Casting notices for the movie under the name "Desert Warrior" listed Alan Roberts as the director for the film, which was shot in Los Angeles County in the summer of 2011. The producer was listed as Sam Bacile, which is believed to be an alias for Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, a Los Angeles-based, 55-year-old Coptic Christian and a felon.
November 29, 2012 |
CNN has tapped Jeff Zucker as its new leader. Zucker, the former chief executive of NBCUniversal, will succeed Jim Walton as president of CNN Worldwide. Walton announced in July he would leave at the end of this year and Zucker will take over starting in January. A former producer of NBC's highly successful morning news program "Today," Zucker was the front runner to succeed Walton as head of the cable news channel. He will report to Phil Kent, the president of Turner Broadcasting, the Time Warner unit that houses CNN. "Jeff's experience as a news executive is unmatched for its breadth and success," said Kent in a prepared statement. "He built and sustained the No. 1 brand in morning news, and under his watch NBC's signature news programming set a standard for quality and professionalism.
November 27, 2012 |
Discovery Communciations has developed a taste for Middle Eastern food. The cable programming giant whose holdings include Discovery Channel and TLC has struck a deal to acquire Dubai-based Takhayal Entertainment, the parent company of Fatafeat, a popular food network in the region. "The acquisition of Takhayal, the premier company for cuisine and culinary programming in the Middle East, significantly strengthens our portfolio in this important region and adds content in a genre that has proved popular with our viewers around the globe," said Mark Hollinger, chief executive of Discovery Networks International. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed, but people with knowledge of the transaction put the price at less than $10 million.
February 19, 2013 |
Many actors are finding easy money in doing voice-over work for radio and television commercials. But it is very unlikely that anyone landed an easier gig than Al Pacino, who didn't lift a finger to get a plum voice-over spot with Chrysler Jeep. The unmistakable voice of Pacino can be heard in the new television commercial touting the Jeep Grand Cherokee. In the spot, Pacino is giving an inspired speech about how life is a "game of inches. " If it sounds familiar, it is. The speech comes from a pivotal scene from the 1999 Oliver Stone movie "Any Given Sunday," which stars Pacino as an aging football coach.
December 5, 2012
Dame Elisabeth Murdoch, mother of News Corp. Chairman Rupert Murdoch, has died at her home in Australia at the age of 103. Murdoch was well known for her philanthropy and remained active late into her life. "Throughout her life, our mother demonstrated the very best qualities of true public service," Rupert Murdoch said in a statement published in the News Corp.-owned Wall Street Journal. "Her energy and personal commitment made our country a more hopeful place and she will be missed by many.
December 11, 2012 |
The three public television stations that serve the New York-New Jersey region got the greenlight from the Federal Communications Commission to broadcast Wednesday's "12-12-12," which is the concert that Cablevision President Jim Dolan, the Weinstein Co. chief Harvey Weinstein and Clear Channel executive John Sykes are putting together to raise funds for victims of Hurricane Sandy. Because this is a fundraising event, the noncommercial stations needed permission from the government to telecast it as public TV stations are prohibited from raising funds for organizations other than themselves.