Friday, July 27, 2012

Modern Family Money

In the news all over Hollywood, everyone’s debating the recent suit spat at 20th TV by the ENTIRE cast of Modern Family. Well, I’m not sure that Manny is involved, but you know he knows more about it than anyone else, technically speaking. Despite what Manny does or does not know, the cast is asking for more money. Plain and simple, they are getting paid much less than much lesser stars on much lesser networks on much lesser shows. However, that is still more than anyone should ever get paid for what they do, and that’s strictly speaking like someone in the real world, even though I am not. What happens whenever someone makes a lot of money and then asks for more, the debate immediately shifts focus to how dumb these people are for asking for money. It reminds me of when a basketball or football or baseball player asks for more money. People hate when they do that, but what happens so quickly that it boggles the mind – people forget. Sooner or later, they just want to see the guy on the damn field.

So who is really at fault for all this, and who is really being dumb? The average person would answer quite simply…everyone. Honestly, the average person would be flat out right. However, since Hollywood is a make believe world making make believe things and selling them to people who they’ve made believe the product is believable, in Hollywoodland this is an inevitable battle that will always delay the inevitable. Egos, is the short answer. The long answer is, just like in sports, the players (in this case being actors) believe their peers are making more money despite being of lesser actual value. The studio, (and yes it’s the studio not the network which I will cover in a minute) is holding onto the smallest thread hoping that people will take sympathy with the studio just long enough to gain some high ground. They never will win, but they hope to come out looking like the good guy with their hands tied behind their backs.

In reality, ABC will get the blame, which is interesting since they had nothing to do with it. However, when the average person hears “studio” they assume it’s the studio that is associated with network. Again, the average person would be right in the sense that this is what makes sense, but the truth is, ABC does not pay the salaries of the actors, but will likely somehow be seen as the bad guys, EPSECIALLY and UNDOUBTEDLY if Modern Family ends up not coming back on TV Shows as it was scheduled. Therefore, ABC is the next party who must act, because ultimately it is their heads that will role both by way of losing money and ratings with MF not running, and by way of being declared the network that let the best comedy on TV get away. In brief, pay them.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Could a Gumby Movie be in the Works?

Gumby
Gumby (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
If you were a fan of the old TV show “Gumby,” you might be excited to know that a Gumby movie could be coming to the big screen in the not-so-distant future. 

In fact, many of your favorite old TV shows could be getting big screen remakes if Dreamworks has its way with a potential deal to acquire Classic Media, the company that owns a wide range of recognizable and classic characters that many of us know and love. According to a recent report in the New York Times, bidding for Classic Media has reached $150 million with Dreamworks having the highest bid at the time of the report. 

Since the stock for Dreamworks has dropped about 8 percent in the last year, they are looking for ways to increase profits and shareholder confidence. If they acquired Classic Media, they could bring some of the biggest characters in TV history back to the American consciousness for a whole new generation and their parents and grandparents. And if Dreamworks began making movies with some of these beloved characters, there’s no limit to what they could do with them. Each of these characters could present opportunities for multiple sequels with today’s culture of wanting to see the classics brought back to the screen. 

Some of the characters owned by Classic Media that could be revived by Dreamworks include The Lone Ranger, Richie Rich, Casper the Friendly Ghost, Lassie and several others. Dreamworks could save money in many aspects by acquiring the rights to these characters. For one thing, the company wouldn’t have to pay for developing new characters like they have had to do in the past. Although those characters have come to be pop culture icons, including films like Antz, Shark Tale and even Kung Fu Panda. However, they have not received the same recognition as franchises like Disney Pixar’s Cars, Toy Story or even Monster’s Inc. The biggest franchises put forth by Dreamworks are Shrek and Madagascar, two franchises which have outlived their popularity with numerous sequels that seem to putter out soon after their release.

What would be some of the characters you would like to see revived on the big screen? Could you imagine something like The Lone Ranger starring Johnny Depp? Or what if they did another Richie Rich movie that showcased some of today’s latest gadgets and technologies that they didn’t have when they did the movie before? We could be in for some exciting remakes…or possibly just a few more flops.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Seth Meyers Juggling Live Shows

Seth Meyers

As the long-running, well-rated show “Live! with Kelly”, continues to look for the proper replacement to take over for the loveable Regis Philbin, Seth Meyers provides a couple days of solid relief next to the ripped Kelly Ripa. With his steady work on the show, and minor changing of the guard taking place on Seth Meyers’ current show Saturday Night Live, the rumor mill started churning at break neck speeds, sifting out the concept of “Live! with Seth and Kelly”. With Seth Meyers anchoring the anchor position on the long-running and long favorite segment Weekend Update on Saturday Night Live, plus his work hosting shows like the ESPY’s and the Webby Awards, and taking on prestigious roles such as performing as the Keynote Speaker at the White House Correspondent Dinner, there’s no question he would be a good fit. The question is, does he want to do it?

As far as we know, he likes the opportunity, but likes the opportunity he has with Saturday Night Live much more.  He responded to the Orlando Sun Sentinel before his standup event at the Seminole Casino Coconut Creek with an emphatic “No, no, no, no, no.” Understanding the level of the opportunity, Seth Meyers still loves his job as the head writer of what is still considered the gold standard of live sketch shows. With people like Kristen Wiig and Andy Samberg leaving Saturday Night Live, and possibly Jason Sudekis, folks wondered if Seth Meyers would be up for coming back with this new opportunity in front of him, but he mentioned passionately that he is looking forward to working on Saturday Night Live during the election year, which is always a very big year for the show, and usually translates into some of the best material and best ratings. (See Tina Fey coming back on as Sarah Palin)

However, his statement did not include any plans after the election year. There was no indication of long term involvement on Saturday Night Live, he just simply stated he was looking forward to election season on the show. My best guess, with this being an election year, and those folks having left, and the buzz around the “Live!” opportunity, that this will be Seth Meyers’ last year on Saturday Night Live. Where he goes from there is anyone’s guess, but given his abilities on Weekend Update, and his head writer status, I see a lot of awards shows and possibly his own “Daily Show” type show in the future. I wish him the best either way, as he’s always been one of my favorites.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Beavis and Butthead Spinoff Returning to MTV’s Summer Schedule

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Recently, MTV announced a return of some of our favorite shows from the last decade or so in a promotion that the network is calling Retro Mania. One of those shows – Daria – was a cult classic in the mid 90s as a spinoff of Beavis and Butthead. Now, Daria will be entertaining an entirely new generation with her deadpan humor, sarcastic remarks and loathsome attitude to anything that is normal or popular in the world.

One of the things that MTV is doing to get people to watch, however, is to have celebrities comment on the episodes. It will be in much the same way that Beavis and Butthead commented on music videos as they watched them. But instead of showcasing these shows during the evening hours when fans who were influenced by Daria during their high school and early college years watched enjoyed her quips, MTV is going to be showing reruns of Daria during the hours between 9 am and noon during the weekdays. Most of the fans of this show have probably secured daytime jobs by now so they will only be able to DVR the episodes (something that did not exist when the initial run of the series was on.) So a younger generation of kids who have nothing to do during the school hours will be exposed to the quips and apathy that only Daria can provide.

For those hardcore Daria fans who will be catching up with their late teenage years, here are some quick facts that may make you appreciate the reruns even more.
  • Currently, Daria is being broadcasted in 32 countries throughout the world, including Israel, New Zealand, Poland, Romania, Sweden and even South Korea. How’s that for a wide-spanning audience?
  • The song played during the opening credits of Daria (La la la la la….) is titled “Turn the Sun Down” and it is done by a band named Splendora. It’s probably the most relevant and fitting song that could be chosen when you compare the lyrics to the plot of the show.
  • The official finale of the show was a 90 minute movie entitled “Is it College Yet?” It was created instead of doing a final half season and it was aired in 2002.
  • The actual Daris series ran on MTV from March 3, 1997 to January 20, 2002. Daria’s first appearance, however, was in 1993 in an episode of Beavis and Butthead, where she had a recurring role.
Are you excited about watching reruns of Daria on MTV this summer? If you are, Daria would be very disappointed in you and our t-shirts will keep you excited.