Showbiz Sandbox 156: Olympic Telecasts Turn Everyone Into A Sports Expert

The 2012 Summer Olympics got off to an auspicious start last week with coverage of the opening ceremonies earning record ratings. With broadcasters presenting events live on multiple channels, as well as streaming online, it’s never been easier to keep up with the games. We review how broadcasters are covering the Summer Olympics, not to mention explain why there always seem to be empty seats at sold-out events.

Meanwhile, the aftershock of the “Dark Knight Rises” theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado continue to ripple through Hollywood. Box office grosses were down significantly over the past weekend, though it is hard to know if moviegoers are staying away out of fear, or if something else is deterring them from theatres … like coverage of the Olympics.

Maybe cinema patrons are simply staying home to watch Netflix. Despite turning a profit and increasing their subscriber base, the company’s stock price declined. This didn’t stop Netflix from announcing they would soon be launching their movie rental service in Western Europe.

We also cover the week’s top entertainment headlines including a third “Hobbit” movie, what caused Warner Bros. to sue Amazon users and why the FCC fined Comcast.

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Showbiz Sandbox 59: Movie Piracy Becomes Unthinkable

On the weekend of June 11th the film “Unthinkable” starring Samuel L. Jackson and Michael Sheen rocketed up the Internet Movie Database’s MovieMeter. It wound up at number three beating out such new releases as “Get Him To The Greek” and “Shrek Forever After”. The funny thing is, this film wasn’t playing in theaters and at the time hadn’t even been released on DVD. A pristine pirated version however did leak online.

Cotty Chubb, the producer of “Unthinkable”, joins us to discuss the film, whether the illegal version helped its recent release and ultimately how movie piracy is affecting the entertainment industry.

“Toy Story 3” didn’t have to worry about being pirated when it opened this weekend since most theaters were showing it in 3D. The film earned debuted in first place with a whopping $109 million. That makes it the most successful Pixar opening ever.

Piracy doesn’t seem to be affecting Michael Jackson’s estate either. In the year since the performer’s death his music and film work has earned nearly a billion dollars according to Billboard magazine.

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Showbiz Sandbox 8: Everybody’s A Critic On The Internet

This week “The Hangover” hung around, and “The Taking of Pelham 123” opened at lower numbers than expected. Was the film miscast?

James Cameron proves he’s King of the World, or at least of the digital age, by pushing game publisher Ubisoft to create the videogame industry’s first stereoscopic title. What does this mean for future relationships between films and videogames? In other film news, “Slumdog Millionaire” director Danny Boyle signed a three year deal with Fox Searchlight; the quasi-classic “Conan The Barbarian” will be remade; and rumors abound that the director of the summer action film “G.I. Joe” was fired. Plus, DVD fans may have to wait a little longer until movies they didn’t bother seeing in the theaters are available for viewing on the couch.

Despite repeated warnings, chaos still ensued when the switch to digital TV finally happened in the United States. And though there were obvious clues about his sexual orientation, “American Idol” runner up Adam Lambert finally came out to Rolling Stone magazine. Plus, the debate rages on: Can Jay Leno survive at 10pm? Advertisers sure aren’t happy about his new time slot. Continue reading Showbiz Sandbox 8: Everybody’s A Critic On The Internet

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