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Monday, June 29, 2009

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres



"NBC Universal boss Jeff Zucker is so concerned about the poor performance of Universal Studios that he is dispatching the company's chief financial officer to Hollywood for a month to observe the studio's business, The Post has learned. According to four sources inside the company, Zucker wants CFO Lynn Calpeter to 'get more educated on the studio' and have studio boss Ron Meyer explain his process for greenlighting movies and determining production and marketing budgets. 'It's really the first time [Zucker] is asking Ron to explain things,' said one source, who added that for the last decade Meyer has been essentially free to run the studio as he sees fit. But the studio's underperformance and costly misstep with 'Land of the Lost' this year has caught Zucker's attention. The Will Ferrell vehicle, which was launched June 5, cost $100 million to make but has grossed just $44 million through last Friday." (NYPost)



"Christopher Meloni and Mariska Hargitay have finally sealed a deal that will keep them on Dick Wolf's 'Law and Order: Special Victims Unit' for the next two years. Also, NBC said that Christine Lahti is set to guest star in the first four episodes next season of 'SVU,' while former series regular Stephanie March, who plays ADA Alex Cabot (and returned on a limited basis last season), will once again show up on the drama starting with episode five. Meloni and Hargitay had been asking for $400,000 an episode - a $25,000-per-seg raise from the approximately $375,000 the duo were making under their most recent deal. Meloni and Hargitay were believed to also be asking for a single point of profit participation in the show. Talks broke down in the spring over the contract, but NBC nonetheless picked up an 11th season of the hit procedural for fall. Longtime 'SVU' showrunner Neal Baer also signed on to remain in charge of the show next season." (Variety)



(image via observer)

"The president has come under intense fire from a loyal demographic that has accused his administration of dragging its feet on those two issues. Last week, some high-profile gay Democrats boycotted a fundraiser attended by Vice President Biden. Obama said Monday he is aware that many in the gay community 'don't believe progress has come fast enough,' comparing their struggles to those of blacks during the civil-rights movement. 'It is not for me to tell you to be patient any more than it was for others to counsel patience to African-Americans who were petitioning for equal rights a half century ago,' Obama said. 'But I say this, we have made progress and we will make more.' The president said that he expects and hopes 'to be judged not by words, not by promises I've made, but by the promises that my administration keeps.'" (TheHill)

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