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Maria Menounos Said Bullying in the TV Industry Made Her Health Worse

TV personality Maria Menounos recently underwent surgery to get a “golf-ball-sized” brain tumor removed. She told Access Hollywood that she partially blames the toxicity and bullying in the entertainment industry for her poor health. When asked what her chronic stress stemmed from, she said “the industry.”

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Mario Batali’s Apology for Sexual Harassment Contains a Literal Recipe for Disaster

This week, numerous women have accused celebrity chef Mario Batali of sexual-harassment — the most disturbing account perhaps being the alleged presence of a restaurant “rape room” in Manhattan that Batali took advantage of — allegations of which Batali said “match up with ways I have acted.” He has since been fired from his popular ABC series The Chew as a result, and he’s also stepping away from his $250 million restaurant empire. However, before he secedes from public life, Batali decided to send one last e-letter to his fans and subscribers about how he’s planning to move forward. It starts off … fine: “I have made many mistakes and I am so very sorry that I have disappointed my friends, my family, my fans and my team. My behavior was wrong and there are no excuses. I take full responsibility,” he wrote. “I will work every day to regain and respect your trust.” But then he had to throw in a recipe. A holiday recipe.

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This Is Not A Drill: Anastasia Is Technically Now A Disney Princess

Literally once upon a December: Today — a day, indeed, in December — Anastasia has technically become a Disney princess. On Thursday, Disney announced it will acquire Fox in a $52.4 billion deal (a move that gets us one step closer to total corporate hegemony, or just a merger that puts all of Marvel’s supers in one shop). But a development that flew under the radar, as pointed out by Entertainment Weekly, is that Anastasia, the cinematic It-girl princess of the ’90s, is now a Disney princess. This is not just a rumor in St. Petersburg. It’s what she deserves!

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  • Posted 12/14/17 at 4:32 PM

6 Things We Know (and Don’t Know) About the Disney-Fox Merger

With the Walt Disney Company’s announcement Thursday that it had reached a megadeal to buy most of the assets of 21st Century Fox for $52.4 billion (plus another $13.7 billion in assumed debt), Hollywood watchers have been working overtime trying to parse the merger’s overall entertainment-industry impact. Will it yield a Reese’s “Your chocolate’s in my peanut butter” corporate synergy between two behemoth TV-movie-internet companies — or mark the birth of a terrifying new media monopoly? And will the FCC, which under the Trump administration has turned a surprisingly cold shoulder to mergers, put a stop to the whole thing? There are plenty of unanswered questions, but there are few broad areas where certain outcomes seem more likely. Let’s break down what we (think) we know so far:

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Why a Murdoch Sale Could Spell Doom for the Fox Network

Editor’s note: On Thursday, the Walt Disney Co. announced it will acquire most of 21st Century Fox in a $52.4 billion deal. In the story below, which was published last month, Josef Adalian spoke with TV insiders about the potential outcomes of a Fox sale.

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Here’s Why Lil Rel Howery Is Not Part of Get Out’s SAG Nomination for Outstanding Cast

Jordan Peele’s Get Out is having an interesting awards season. It’s critically acclaimed, but mixed recognition from major bodies like the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and now SAG-AFTRA have left onlookers confused. First it was submitted by its production studio and accepted by Golden Globes voters as a Comedy or Musical contender, and now the movie is nominated for a SAG Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture but that nod exlcudes recognition for cast members Lil Rel Howery, Erika Alexander, Marcus Henderson, and Betty Gabriel. Howery gave a breakout turn as the movie’s comic relief and unlikely hero, while Gabriel became one of the faces of the film when she defended the honor of the Armitage family to Chris with her haunting, strained, “No no no no no no.” But if Get Out wins Outstanding Cast, none of those four will receive a trophy if they storm the stage. And here’s why.

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  • Posted 12/12/17 at 5:40 PM

Jada Pinkett Smith Accuses Golden Globes of Ignoring Girls Trip

Actress Tiffany Haddish broke out this year with her rambunctious role in the summer hit Girls Trip. There’s been a social-media wave of support for her, and the New York Film Critics Circle named her Best Supporting Actress this year. The Hollywood Foreign Press, however, was not as taken by Haddish’s performance, and left her out of the 2018 Golden Globe nominations. Her co-star Jada Pinkett Smith expressed her frustration with Haddish’s snub, and took to Twitter this afternoon to critique what she sees as an unfair nominations process that kept Girls Trip from being a contender at all. It started last night when Pinkett Smith tried not to tweet about the Globes.

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The 2017 Script Black List Has Been Revealed

Each year, nearly 300 movie-industry executives vote to determine the most buzz-worthy scripts that have yet to be made into films, or at least have not started principal photography. The finalists become the Black List, which, if you’re a screenwriter, is a distinction you definitely want to achieve. The Post was near the top of last year’s Black List, and is now a Steven Spielberg movie in the hunt for Oscar gold. Previous listed scripts that have hit it big include Juno, Looper, The Wolf of Wall Street, The Wrestler, and The Social Network, but because the scales of Hollywood must be balanced, misfires like ATM, Lions for Lambs, and the Taylor Lautner vehicle Abduction were also touted Black List projects. So here are this year’s standout screenplays in no particular order, ranked in descending order based on how many mentions each one received from voters. The minimum number of mentions to be included in this year’s list was six.

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Alec Baldwin Thinks the Post-Harvey Weinstein Movement Might Be ‘In Jeopardy of Derailing’

It’s been a bit of a weird week for Alec Baldwin and his Twitter account. Seemingly prompted by John Oliver, host of HBO’s popular Last Week Tonight, grilling Dustin Hoffman about his alleged history of sexual harassment at a Wag the Dog anniversary screening, Baldwin took to his foundation’s account to express his displeasure at how late-night programs are evolving. “Talk shows were once promotional pit stops for some blithe chit chat about movies, etc,” he wrote at the time. “Now the likes of @iamjohnoliver and @StephenAtHome have flipped that and they are beginning to resemble grand juries.” He echoed that sentiment while swinging by Megyn Kelly Today, and he’s now offering further clarification about his views.

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Rose McGowan ‘Want to Vomit’ After Hearing Alyssa Milano Is Supporting Harvey Weinstein’s Ex-Wife

If 2017 taught us anything, it’s that hell hath no fury like Rose McGowan — and she’s now set a new mark on her former Charmed co-star Alyssa Milano. Taking to Twitter to call out Milano for sharing a close friendship with Harvey Weinstein’s ex-wife, Georgina Chapman, McGowan summoned her #RoseArmy to sharply criticize Milano’s priorities. “You make me want to vomit. You actually gave me a body flashback. Well done, fake one,” she wrote in one damning tweet. The next: “Alyssa, maybe you and Georgina can call up Camille Cosby.”

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Katie Couric Is ‘Incredibly’ Upset Over the Allegations Against Matt Lauer

Katie Couric and Matt Lauer spent 15 years breaking news and palling around together as co-hosts of NBC’s Today. And although she’s not ready to talk in-depth about the disturbing sexual-misconduct allegations currently lodged against Lauer, she wants everyone to know that she’s not handling it well … at all. Taking to Instagram to reply to a commenter who expressed annoyance that Couric has yet to say anything about her former colleague (“y’all would have been all over the story years ago”), Couric decided to leave a short message in response for all of her followers to see. “It’s incredibly upsetting and I will say something when I’m ready to,” she wrote. “Thanks for your interest.” Couric’s concise tone echoed Ann Curry’s response when she was asked about Lauer’s firing last month as well: “I’m still really processing it.”

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Louis C.K. Is Buying Back I Love You, Daddy From Its Distributor

The New York Times published its damning report about Louis C.K. sexually harassing several fellow comedians right before his movie I Love You, Daddy was supposed to premiere. The red carpet was canceled. He backed out of a scheduled late-night appearance, and the movie’s distributor, the Orchard, shelved the project indefinitely. The company paid $5 million for I Love You when it debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival, and now C.K. is buying it back. For the sticker price plus the modest marketing expenses — Deadline estimates them to be between $500,000 and $1 million — C.K. will get back the worldwide rights to his movie. The comedian has self-released a lot of his projects over the years, including the series Horace and Pete, which was made available through his website. There’s no word on C.K.’s plans for I Love You, Daddy. After the Times published the accounts of five women accusing C.K. of sexual misconduct, he confirmed them in a statement saying, “These stories are true.”

Death of a Salesman Actress Accuses Dustin Hoffman of Sexual Harassment

An actress from the 1984 Dustin Hoffman–starring Broadway revival of Death of a Salesman has accused Hoffman of sexual harassment. In a first-person essay for The Hollywood Reporter, Kathryn Rossetter alleges that Hoffman groped her, slipped his hands under her costume to touch her inner thighs, and asked for foot massages throughout the show’s run. Hoffman was a mentor and advocate for Rossetter’s career, she recalls, but would allegedly harass her in the wings or in his dressing room. “One night in Chicago, I felt his hand up under my slip on the inside of my thighs. I was completely surprised and tried to bat him away while watching the stage for my cues. After the show he was busy with the producer and director so I had no access to him to address it,” Rossetter wrote. “It then happened almost every show. Six to eight shows a week. I couldn’t speak to him in the moment because I was on a live mic. He kept it up and got more and more aggressive. One night he actually started to stick his fingers inside me. Night after night I went home and cried.”

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Bryan Singer Denies That The Usual Suspects Was Shut Down Due to Kevin Spacey’s Misconduct

Earlier this week Gabriel Byrne said production on The Usual Suspects was briefly suspended because of Kevin Spacey’s misconduct. Not true, director Bryan Singer told TMZ Thursday. Singer said the whole movie was shot in 35 days, and he’s not sure why Byrne would say otherwise. “I don’t know. It baffles me. I’ll ask him when I see him, and I do run into him quite often,” Singer said. “Kevin was a real good support system.” When TMZ asked if Singer would work with him again, he hedged: “These are loaded questions. These questions … people want to hear one answer or the other. He’s a guy that I helped launch his career. He’s an acquaintance of mine, and it depends on the project I guess.”

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Matt Lauer’s Firing Gave Today Show a Rare Ratings Win Over Good Morning America 

It won’t matter much in the long-term, but Matt Lauer’s ignominious firing lifted NBC’s Today show to an increasingly rare ratings win over rival Good Morning America last week. Per Nielsen, the Peacock’s breakfast show averaged 4.9 million viewers between November 27–December 1, a five-day frame which included three days where Lauer’s exit was the big news of the day. GMA, which has been the most-watched morning show for most of 2017, notched 4.4 million viewers, while the Charlie Rose–less CBS This Morning came in third with 3.5 million. Today’s weekly average got a massive boost from the Wednesday, November 29 broadcast in which his firing was announced: That edition was seen by 5.7 million viewers, the largest audience for the NBC show since the 2012 Olympics, according to TV Newser. Rose’s firing also gave a small lift to CBS This Morning the week it happened, though the boost was temporary and not enough to push the show out of its usual third-place position.

Terry Crews Says Accused National Enquirer Editor Threatened Him With Smear Campaign After Assault Allegation

“Abusers protect abusers,” Terry Crews tweeted Tuesday afternoon. After the actor sued WME agent Adam Venit for sexual assault, Crews is now opening up about a smear campaign against him. According to Crews’s tweet, Dylan Howard, the chief content officer of American Media Inc. who just today was accused of sexual misconduct, threatened him with a false story involving a prostitute the day after Crews appeared on Good Morning America to detail Venit’s alleged sexual. According to a new Associated Press report, Howard “openly described his sexual partners in the newsroom, discussed female employees’ sex lives and forced women to watch or listen to pornographic material.” Crews’s latest accusation shows the depth of Hollywood’s culture of harassment and abuse.

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  • Posted 12/5/17 at 2:02 PM

Which TV Actors Get Paid the Most?

Each year, the number of TV shows increases and, in many cases, so does the cost of making them. The economics of Peak TV have driven a boom in TV production, and consequently something of an arms race, as networks, cable channels, and streaming services fight to draw eyes. As this happens, TV is also luring big-name talent, and especially big-name actors, with unprecedented paydays. Where actors previously had to spend years on a show before negotiating for higher salaries — like the cast of Friends, who each earned $1 million per episode during the sitcom’s last two seasons, or Ray Romano, who made a reported $1.8 million per episode in the final seasons of Everybody Loves Raymond — now many A-listers start off with per-episode deals in the six-figure range.

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  • Posted 12/5/17 at 1:27 AM

Here’s the Thing With Alec Baldwin: Here’s the Thing With Alec Baldwin Is In Development as a Talk Show at ABC

Are you imagining Alec Baldwin as a Chardonnay-sipping morning host like Kathie Lee and Hoda? Or would he pair better with a late-night Kimmel? Could he conceivably go toe-to-toe with Ellen? TV might be chockablock with talk shows, but none of them offer Alec Baldwin — at least not yet: The actor is reportedly developing his version of the genre at ABC, though the exact time slot the show would fill is as yet unknown. The series will reportedly be based on Baldwin’s WNYC radio showHere’s the Thing With Alec Baldwin.” If you’re unsure whether or not you’re ready for Baldwin to usher in your Winesday mornings or put you to sleep at night, well, here’s the thing. Take a listen and decide for yourself if it’s a deal-maker.

The Crown’s Matt Smith Has His Own Hollywood Objectification Story

Hoping to lend his voice as an ally to the countless number of women who have opened up about sexual harassment and assault at the hands of prominent industry men, The Crown’s Matt Smith has revealed he too has had unpleasant, morally demeaning interactions with men in Hollywood. “The conversation shouldn’t stop at this industry just because these are ‘celebrities’ who we know about who are involved. It has to be broader,” Smith explained to the U.K.’s Telegraph. “People in other industries have to have a platform to be heard as well. What happens to the cleaner or the lady who works in a clothes shop? That’s not to say I haven’t been objectified before by men, because I have — just like women are objectified. It is not exclusive to them. This happens to men, too.” Smith demurred from elaborating on the nature of his experiences, only stressing that both sexes deal with a great deal of objectification in the industry.

People Dislike Olaf’s Frozen Adventure So Much That Disney Is Reportedly Removing It From Theaters

Proving too much exposure to Frozen can indeed give someone hypothermia (or rather, extreme annoyance about an overly chipper snowman), Disney has reportedly decided to remove the critically loathed Olaf’s Frozen Adventure as a lead-in to its newest Pixar film, Coco. This report comes from Mashable, writing how Disney has directed theaters showing Coco to flat-out stop airing the short at all screenings beginning Friday, December 8: “The request from Disney also asks that theaters use the newly freed-up time to hold extra screenings of Coco each day.” The gripes about Olaf’s Frozen Adventure — which follows an affable chap of a snow creation as he, uh, has a holiday adventure of some kind — was steeped in the fact that the short was 21 minutes long, as opposed to other Disney shorts that usually hover around the ten-minute mark. Children would get restless! Parents would be confused! This isn’t what Josh Gad’s voice would have wanted!

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