Dan Brown's Ideal Reading Experience Is Not Having to Read

Hamilton Nolan · 06/20/13 01:25PM

How did Dan Brown, the immensely popular and successful bad writer behind such hits as The Da Vinci Code and Hey, There's a Treasure Map Under This Painting!, get to be such an immensely popular and successful bad writer? He just loves "reading," meaning "listening to stuff."

Vatican Documents Leak: The Butler Did It

Louis Peitzman · 05/26/12 09:37AM

OK, it's not quite The Da Vinci Code or even The Godfather: Part III, but a scandal rocking the Vatican is aways better than no scandal rocking the Vatican.

Leno's Fall, Bloomberg's Bid, Dan Brown's Big Day

cityfile · 09/16/09 01:36PM

• As expected, ratings for Jay Leno's new show are falling fast. [THR]
• Bloomberg LP appears to now be in the lead to buy BusinessWeek. [NYP]
• Dan Brown's The Lost Symbol sold 1 million copies its first day. [NYT]
• Don't try to talk to Vogue publisher Tom Florio about what changes are in store for the mag now that those McKinsey consultants have finished their review. (He's not talking about it.) Meantime, McKinsey's final report will be handed over to Condé Nast's management next week. [NYO, WWD]
• Fox News boss Roger Ailes collected $24 million in compensation last year, which is $2 million more than his boss, Rupert Murdoch, took home. [BW]
Jay-Z has his 11th No. 1 album. That puts him ahead of Elvis Presley as the solo artist with the most chart-toppers. But he's still behind the Beatles. [LAT]

Leno's Debut, The Sale of BW, Harvey's Latest Loss

cityfile · 09/15/09 01:26PM

• So how did Jay Leno's new show do? He hit it out of the park ratings-wise, roping in an estimated 18 million viewers. The reviews were all pretty lousy, though, so don't be surprised if it's all downhill from here. [AdAge, LAT, THR]
• The sale of BusinessWeek: Bruce Wasserstein has dropped out as a potential acquirer of the struggling mag. And it's cutting 20% of its staff. [BW, NYT]
• ABC News has apologized to the White House for Nightline anchor Terry Moran's tweet about Obama calling Kanye West a "jackass." [LAT]
• Speaking of the White House, Barack Obama will be David Letterman's guest on Monday night; it's the first time a sitting president has done the show. [NYT]
• Oprah's season premiere scored big thanks to Whitney Houston. [Wrap]
• The House of Harvey has sustained another blow: Harvey Weinstein's 70 percent stake in the home-video distributor Genius Products, once worth as much as $400 million, is now pretty much worthless. [NYP]
• Speaking of the film mogul, The Weinstein Co. picked up the rights to A Single Man, designer Tom Ford's debut film, at the Toronto Film Festival. [THR]

Happy Dan Brown Day

Pareene · 09/15/09 12:01PM

Hooray! Today you can finally buy Dan Brown's The Lost Symbol, a new interactive novel about a heroic professor with a mullet who fights Catholics and Masons. It will save publishing, and ruin Washington DC.

Condé Cuts, Leno's Debut & Falling Ratings

cityfile · 09/14/09 01:30PM

• The bad news for Condé Nast now that McKinsey has finished up its summer-long review: Editors and publishers at the company may be asked to trim their budgets by as much as 25 percent. The good news, according to one Condé insider: "This doesn't mean Anna Wintour is going to start taking the bus," nor is the company going to get all cheap "like Hachette." [Crain's]
• Jay Leno's new show debuts tonight on NBC. Will it be a success? A massive failure? Only time will tell, but the stakes "couldn't be higher." [LAT]
• Oprah's ratings are down. And Barack Obama is to blame, apparently. [AP]
• Ratings are down for Project Runway, too. Barack is not to blame. [WWD]
• According to a poll of newspaper publishers, 51 percent think they can successfully get their readers to pay for content online. Optimistic! [PC]
• As if newspapers and magazines don't have enough to worry about these days, a new survey finds that the percentage of people who think journalists are increasingly "inaccurate and biased" is on the rise. [AP]

Happy Birthday

cityfile · 06/22/09 06:32AM

Meryl Streep celebrates her 60th birthday today. Cyndi Lauper is turning 56. Rob Wiesenthal, Sony's No. 2 exec, is 43. Legendary M&A attorney Marty Lipton is turning 78. Kathryn Wylde, president of the Partnership for NYC, is 63. Senator Dianne Feinstein of California turns 76. Carson Daly is turning 36. Author Dan Brown is 45. Tracy Pollan, the actress and wife of Michael J. Fox, is turning 49. Actress Amy Brenneman is 45. TV personality Jai Rodriguez turns 30. Erin Brockovich is 49. Donald Faison of Scrubs is 35. Kurt Warner, the former Giants quarterback, is turning 38. Singer and drag queen Kevin Aviance is 41. And Lindsay Wagner of Bionic Woman fame is 60 today.

Pulitzer Winners, New Books & New Talk Shows

cityfile · 04/20/09 11:27AM

• The 2009 Pulitzer Prize winners were announced today. [Pulitzer.org]
• It's been six years since the release of The Da Vinci Code, but Knopf says Dan Brown's latest, The Lost Symbol, will hit stores in September. [AP]
• Hollywood agencies Endeavor and William Morris appear to have cemented a merger, although an official announcement is still forthcoming. [THR]
• With the radio business struggling, some commercial stations are now following the lead of public radio and asking for donations. [WSJ]
17 Again was No. 1 at the box office with a gross of $24.1 million. [THR]
• Fran Drescher says she's in talks to host a cable TV talk show. The program would cover politics, culture, and health issues, and she claims she's in discussions with MSNBC, PBS, and Oprah Winfrey's OWN. God help us. [USN]

Fate of Publishing Industry Depends on Dan Brown's Next Book

Sheila · 01/28/08 11:33AM

It's a sad state of affairs when the entire book industry, plus major retailers like Barnes & Noble, can see only one ray of hope for the future: the next novel from Da Vinci Code author Dan Brown. Apparently, they don't have anything else going on (no one else writes books, obviously), because they are slavering like dogs in heat for the next sure-to-(possibly)-be bestseller. Just one big title can jolt the entire industry, the WSJ reports, "as customers pour into the stores and walk out with a bagful of titles." Since the fate of the world is clearly resting on Mr. Brown, he's receded into New Hampshire and refused to comment. His agent isn't speaking, either. Good for them!