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Monday, July 02, 2012

A Little of the Old In And Out

In: Mark Wahlberg. Say what you will about Mark Wahlberg, the man's career arc is utterly unpredictable. He has followed, in many ways, a career path opposite that of Tom Cruise, who is predictable even in his (contrived) unpredictability. And Wahlberg has, with the ascent of Ted to the top of the charts, finally snatched his rightful spot on the A-List. "Family Guy fans came out in droves for creator Seth MacFarlane's directorial debut Ted which debuted at number one with an estimated $54.1M from 3,239 theaters for a sizzling $16,705 average," writes BoxOfficeGuru. Mark Wahlberg is the star.

We frankly expected Marky Mark -- former underwear model, funky buncher, one time racist and executive producer of fratty HBO shows -- to continue riding the "working class hero" shtick until it collapsed. But Mark swerved when we all expected him to sway; he married when we all expected him to stay single. While Cruise, in marriage and in box office certaintly, wanes: Wahlberg, we cannot fail to note with icy objectivity, rises.

Out: Romney on Immigration. Who knew that Rupert Murdoch was so, well, positively Centrist on the subject of immigration. Then again, Rupert is something of an opportunistic organism with an international outlook -- sort of like the zebra mussel, an invasive media species. This, from Politico, explains volumes about Rupert Murdoch's very critical Tweets this weekend regarding Romney:

Mitt Romney last week told a private group of potential supporters and business and media elites, including Rupert Murdoch, that he was treading carefully around the issue of immigration to avoid looking like a "flip-flopper."

The moment, the subject of the media mogul's now-famous tweet, took place at a private fundraiser/meet-and-greet put together and hosted by Ken Langone at the Union League Club in Manhattan late Thursday afternoon, several hours after the Supreme Court decision on health care came down, multiple sources told POLITICO. 
The event was attended by between 40 and 50 people, sources said, including some major names in fundraising, finance and media. They included Murdoch and his top adviser Joel Klein, Randy Falco, the CEO of Univision, Goldman Sachs head Lloyd Blankfein, real estate scion Bill Rudin, hedge fund executives Stanley Druckenmiller and Julian Robertson, Jets owner Woody Johnson, former Rudy Giuliani adviser Anthony Carbonetti, and pollster and strategist Kellyanne Conway, according to sources familiar with the list of attendees.

Romney was there with a small coterie of his own, including top adviser Russ Schriefer, the sources said. And it was there that Murdoch raised the issue of immigration with him, the sources said.

Romney is in quite a bind. In order to get the Republican nomination he had to sound like Pat Buchanan on immigration. And in sounding like the "Buchanan Brigades," it is unlikely -- with all those sound bytes floating around -- to restart the Etch-aSketch. Especially when Obama is making an extra effort. Now centrists on immigration -- like Rupert Murdoch -- are hitting Romney.  Mitt Romney has the backing of 26% of registered Hispanic voters, compared to 67% who back President Barack Obama. And that gap in the fastest rising minority in the country is not a good look for the GOP.

In: Good Morning America. Has the Ann Curry Army spoken? Is NBC to fear the Ann Curry Army? Paula Froelich makes the interesting point on Twitter that GMA beat Today on Friday. Further, with a new host -- Savannah Guthrie -- Today will probably see some more beatings before, if ever, it pulls away. Advantage -- at least for the moment -- ABC.

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