Showbiz Sandbox 37: Conan and Leno’s Late Shift Shrift

January 11, 2010

It’s official: Simon Cowell will be leaving “American Idol” this season and NBC (finally!) admits that airing “The Jay Leno Show” in primetime five nights a week was a mistake. Cowell is headed off to start a new reality talent show, “X Factor”, while Jay Leno is headed back to his old late night time slot, at least for a half-hour. But where will Conan O’Brien’s tonight show end up? Right now NBC wants to push him back a half hour.

In theaters, “Avatar” just will not go away. It stays firm at the top of the box office again this week. “Daybreakers” staring Ethan Hawke, also did well in its debut, but the Amy Adams vehicle “Leap Year” didn’t leap anywhere.

Meanwhile, the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) tries to sell us on 3D television and video rental service Netflix reaches an important agreement with Warner Bros.

David Colker, a business reporter covering technology for the Los Angeles Times gives us the low down on CES, espcially all the 3D televisions announced at the show (which aren’t even available for sale yet). Do consumers even want 3D television? More importantly, how are we prepared to wear those funny 3D glasses at home? Read more


Showbiz Sandbox 13: Hooliganism At Comic-Con (Or Lack Thereof)

July 28, 2009

We had a plethora of panelists this week, all of whom were in San Diego over the weekend to experience Comic-Con first hand. KPBS’ Cinema Junkie blogger Beth Accomando covered the event for National Public Radio, Todd Gilchrist was there for Cinematical, SciFi Wire‘s news editor Patrick Lee made the trip, as did Phillip Nakov from and Harry Medved, who helped out with Fandango’s coverage of the event as their director of public relations.  Also joining in on this week’s fun is New York Daily News writer and Huffington Post blogger, Michael Giltz.

If you weren’t one of the 126,000 people attending Comic-Con, this episode will fill you in on what you missed.  There was whole day devoted to 3D movies, which apparently isn’t just a gimmick anymore.  The big hits of Comic-Con were “District 9”, “Avatar”, “Kick Ass” and “Iron Man 2” and the biggest miss was Roland Emerich’s next movie “2012” which is either so bad it’s good, or so bad it’s just plain bad.  Irrelevant whether it wowed people at the convention or not was “Twilight: New Moon”, because fans just wanted to see Robert Pattinson .  Hundreds of young girls, their moms and a bunch of sensitive men camped out overnight to get into a jam packed “Twilight” panel. The festival was “the redemption of “New Moon” director Chris Weitz, who was clearly adored by his cast. It was definitely the panel with the most security.

This year marked the first appearance by Tim Burton (as a presenter), Peter Jackson and Terry Gilliam. Johnny Depp stopped by to say two words (literally) in promotion of Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland.”  Read more


Showbiz Sandbox 4: Yes We Cannes!

May 18, 2009

Entertainment journalist Michael Giltz joins the conversation to discuss everything from the Cannes Film Festival to who might win American Idol (he’s voting for Kris Allen).

Many members of the press, as well as festival-goers, took a pass on Cannes this year, but we recap some of the films that have screened thus far. Mariah Carey showed up in Cannes with a body double to confuse the paparazzi. Carey and Lenny Kravitz personally tell us about their festival film “Precious”. Meanwhile Lars Von Trier shocks the festival with his misogynistic “Antichrist”. The good news is Roger Ebert is back in Cannes.

“Angels & Demons” makes $48 million domestically and $104 million internationally in it’s first weekend. MGM is fighting for it’s life, but the remake of “Fame” may just save it. This week in New York the television networks hold their upfront and we take a quick look at what is rumored to be on the fall TV schedule. ABC has already announced they have picked up another season of “Scrubs” though Zach Braff will only show up for six episodes. Fox has said yes to another season of “Bones”. It also looks like the “Gossip Girl” spinoff may be picked up. The New York Times throws a few punches at NBC programming head Ben Silverman and but in the end it may not matter since the website Hulu is making most networks question their business model.

Speaking of Hulu, they’re going to start showing Bollywood films. Elizabeth Edwards writes a tell all book about her breast cancer and her husband Senator John Edwards’ romantic affair. Farah Fawcett discusses her own bout with cancer s well as fighting the tabloids in a stark interview which appeared in the Los Angeles Times. Finally, Jerry Lewis is planning a comeback. . . at 83-years old!

Trade Journos No Shows At Cannes

MGM Fights To Survive

A Lot At Stake At TV Upfronts

ABC Renews Scrubs

Bones Renewed For Fall

Is the Gossip Girl spin off back on?

NBC Hired A Hitmaker. It’s Still Waiting

Hulu’s Tug of War With TV,0,5771665.story

Bollywood Goes Hulu

Elizabeth Edwards: John “Made One Mistake”

Farah Fawcett: “Under A Microscope” And Holding Onto Hope,0,5790379.story

Jerry Lewis To Announce Comeback