Miramax's Exciting New Business Plan: Sequels!

Richard Lawson · 12/16/10 11:01AM

Indie film hut Miramax has partnered with its old owners, the Weinstein Brothers, with plans to produce sequels of Weinstein-era Miramax's hits from the '90s and early '00s, including Rounders, Bad Santa, and most improbably, Shakespeare in Love.

Weinstein Brothers Win Back Miramax

Adrian Chen · 04/15/10 09:14PM

It's like the last decade-and-a-half didn't happen! After a fierce back-and-forth between people with lots of money, The Brothers Weinstein—financed by Billionaire Ron Burkle—have bought back the storied Miramax name and catalog.

cityfile · 01/28/10 05:20PM

• It's the end of the line for Miramax. The studio that Harvey and Bob Weinstein founded in 1979, sold to Disney in 1993, and departed in 2005, was officially shuttered today, and 80 people were let go. [Wrap, NYT, Guardian]
• Jay Leno went on Oprah today to try and redeem himself. He acted like a cry-baby and flat-out lied (and may have gotten away with it anyway). In related news, Conan's final week on the air turned out to be his biggest, not surprisingly. And there are some signs the late-night debacle may have Comcast's bosses thinking about showing NBC chief Jeff Zucker the door.
• 48 million people tuned in to the State of the Union address last night. [NYT]
• Only 35 people have signed up for a subscription to since the paper set up a pay wall a few months back. But it's all going according to plan and Newsday management couldn't be happier, the paper claims. [Crain's]
• This is a bit awkward: The Wall Street Journal is rolling out a local edition this spring that it hopes will compete with the New York Times. But it may actually need the Times' help printing the papers to make it happen. [NYT]
• A growing number of Time Inc. staffers are defecting to Bloomberg. [NYP]
• Samantha Harris is bidding goodbye to Dancing with the Stars. [People]
• Is Fox News reporter Major Garrett a fan of hookers? Maybe! [Gawker]

cityfile · 01/27/10 05:00PM

• The iPad may be cool and all. But don't expect it to revolutionize newspapers. Or magazines. Or even book publishing. [AdAge, NYT, Reuters, NYT]
• The WSJ is getting ready to take on the Times. Three dozen staffers (and $15 mil.) will go into creating its new NYC edition, which debuts in April. [NYO]
• NBC and Conan O'Brien are back in business (sort of): The network is picking up a pilot from Conaco, O'Brien's production company. In less surprising news, Jay Leno says he hasn't spoken to Conan since the late-night drama unfolded; and Comcast's chief says he's behind NBC CEO Jeff Zucker (officially-speaking).
• ABC has decided to bring Ugly Betty to an end after this season. [LAT]
• MSNBC wasn't planning to air last Friday's Haiti telethon. But then Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow got involved and things changed. [NYO]
Harvey and Bob Weinstein are looking to buy back the Miramax name. [DH]
• Louis Auchincloss, chronicler of WASP culture, is dead at 92. [NYT]

cityfile · 12/30/09 03:26PM

• You may not be able to tune into Fox as of tomorrow. The feud between News Corp. and Time Warner Cable has yet to be resolved, and if a deal isn't reached in the next day, you'll have to go elsewhere for your Simpsons reruns. [THR]
• There was no Christmas miracle for Harvey and Bob Weinstein this year. With Nine underperforming at the box office since its release two weeks ago, the brothers are now on the hunt for more cash to stay solvent. [Reuters, NYP]
• Condé Nast's war on the mystery hackers who managed to infiltrate the company's computer system in recent months is intensifying. [NYP]
• Remember when magazine readers would write letters to the editor? It turns out it isn't the most popular communication channel these days. [WWD]
• Susan Boyle is still No. 1 on the music charts. Well done, America. [EW]
• Sex doesn't sell when it comes to marketing movies. Allegedly. [CNN]

cityfile · 11/03/09 04:00PM

• The Wall Street Journal has the Times in its sights. The paper is hiring a dozen reporters to cover local news and will launch a NYC edition next year. [NYT]
• As expected, a big round of layoffs at Time Inc. is underway. [Gawker, NYT]
Harvey and Bob Weinstein may be looking to buy back the Miramax name from Disney now that it's being disbanded. That's the rumor anyway. [Wrap]
• Bloomberg plans to make BusinessWeek "bigger, glossier, and more international." Oh, and it may start charging for access to the BW site. [MW]
• The Oscars will have two hosts: Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin. [LAT]

Happy Birthday

cityfile · 10/16/09 07:07AM

Andre Leon Talley, Vogue's inimitable editor-at-large, turns 60 today. Actor Tim Robbins is turning 51. John Mayer is 32. Angela Lansbury is 84. Sports commentator Tim McCarver turns 68. JetBlue founder David Neeleman is turning 50. David Zucker, the man who directed Airplane! and The Naked Gun, is 62. Broadway producer Jeffrey Seller is 45. Flea from the Red Hot Chili Peppers is turning 47. Bob Weir from the Grateful Dead turns 62. Mega-art collector Donald Jonas is 80. And Suzanne Somers turns 63 today. Below: A list of people celebrating their birthdays this weekend.

The Weinsteins Part Ways With aSmallWorld

cityfile · 10/14/09 02:25AM

Struggling movie mogul Harvey Weinstein and his brother Bob are selling off their controlling stake in the struggling social network aSmallWorld, according to the LA Times. (The buyer is Patrick Liotard-Vogt, an heir to the family that founded Nestle.) Clearly the site and Weinstein boys have both seen better days, and with the Weinstein Co. now focused on getting out from under a mountain of debt, presumably even a hundred-dollar bill for a site that hasn't been relevant in half a decade is better than nothing. But the saddest footnote to the story? In the three years that Harv owned part of the social networking site, he never found time to set up a profile, it seems:

Tough Times For the Weinsteins; Condé Closures?

cityfile · 09/25/09 02:01PM

• More on the financial difficulty facing Harvey and Bob Weinstein: The studio has blown through $1.2 billion to date and now needs to come up with another $50 million. Or magically produce a string of hits at the box office. [WSJ, LAT]
• Despite rumors to the contrary, Condé Nast may shut down several of its magazines as part of its latest—and steepest—round of budget cuts. [WWD]
Ebony magazine is struggling and now hunting for a buyer. [Newsweek]
• NBC is "under assault from all sides," opines Jon Friedman. [Marketwatch]
• A series of cast changes are planned for the various Law & Orders. [THR]
• Is the new TV season really buzzy, or it just the Twitter effect? [NYT]
• Warner Music will be putting its music videos back on YouTube. [AdAge]
• Holly Madison of E!'s Girls Next Door is getting her own reality show. And socialite Tinsley Mortimer's CW show is moving ahead. [NYDN, THR]
Jerry Seinfeld's new reality show is casting neurotic couples in Brooklyn. [DI]
• Jenna Bush's new Today show gig is pretty cushy, apparently. [Page2Live]

The Weinsteins Dodge a Bullet

cityfile · 08/24/09 01:44PM

Harvey and Bob Weinstein are breathing a sigh of relief today. Quentin Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds did better than expected at the box office this weekend, raking in $37.6 million in sales. Not that one good weekend will be enough to lift the studio out of the financial mess it is in. [NYT, THR, WSJ]
• Related: In what may be a first for a movie opening, Inglourious Basterds seems to have benefited by a "crest of tweeting goodwill." [THR]
• Some 48 years after it was first published, Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking is now No. 1 on the New York Times' best-seller list. [NYT]
• Has the Glenn Beck brouhaha made advertisers skittish about buying commercial time during political shows in general? [AdAge, Politico]
Jared Kushner's New York Observer is launching a new paper called The Commercial Observer. It's about commercial real estate, naturally. [NYT]
• Magazine newsstand sales continue to suffer, not surprisingly. [AdAge]

Runway Debuts, Anna Gets a Pass, Harvey's Nail-Biter

cityfile · 08/21/09 02:30PM

• Last night's long-delayed premiere of the sixth season of Project Runway—on Lifetime, not Bravo—earned the show its highest ratings ever. [NYT, THR]
• Breathe easy: Anna Wintour's travel itinerary for the fall fashion shows in London, Paris and Milan will not be affected by the recent round of budget cuts at Condé Nast. She'll be staying at the Ritz in Paris, as usual. [NYP]
• The cuts have claimed Condé's supply of coffee stirrers, however. [P6]
• Another member of the Sulzberger clan is joining the New York Times. [NYO]
• News Corp. has been meeting with newspaper publishers to discuss forming some sort of "consortium" to charge people for access to news online. [LAT]
• News Corp. is also in talks to sell its Dow Jones stock market index. [NYT]
Harvey and Bob Weinstein have a lot riding on the success of Quentin Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds. How is the movie expected to perform at the box office this weekend? Not too bad, per early estimates. [THR]

An Ominous Sign For the Weinsteins

cityfile · 08/18/09 12:21PM

Reader's Digest reported yesterday that it plans to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection any day now. The firm that Reader's Digest retained back in June to try and restructure the company's debt so it could prevent a bankruptcy filing? Miller Buckfire, the same financial advisory firm now counseling Harvey and Bob Weinstein on how to prevent their media company from going under. [Forbes]

Reader's Digest Goes Ch. 11, The Weinsteins On the Brink

cityfile · 08/17/09 12:03PM

• Another media company falls: Reader's Digest Association, the publisher of Reader's Digest (duh) and a handful of other titles (like Every Day with Rachael Ray), says it will file for bankruptcy protection shortly. [Reuters]
• As you may have heard, things haven't been too well for Harvey Weinstein and his brother, Bob. So what will happen if they don't turn the mini-studio around? "I'll be... making cheap hamburgers, or selling trailers, or refrigerators, or something," says (a refreshingly honest) Harvey. [NYT]
• Fashion mags are looking a bit thin this fall, in case you haven't heard. [WSJ]
• Don't expect the feud between Bill O'Reilly and Keith Olbermann to dissipate: Ratings for both have been up since the war of words began anew. [LAT]
• Comedian Steve Harvey is joining Good Morning America. In related news, comedian Mo Rocca is hosting a web-based show for CBS News. [ABC, NYT]
District 9 was No. 1 at the box office this past weekend. [ABC News]

Masochist Wanted

cityfile · 07/20/09 01:54PM

Who said jobs in the entertainment business are scarce these days? Bob Weinstein, Harvey Weinstein's slightly less volatile brother, is hiring a new assistant. And it sounds like a total blast: "This is a 24/7 job; you will be the only assistant to this executive. You must be available on nights and weekends, and expect to spend long hours in the office." [Gawker]