Potemkin Village, anyone? Joe Scarborough has offered a scathing simile for the new-’n-improved Obamacare website. On today’s Morning Joe, he likened the site to the set of a Hollywood Western–pushing back the facade reveals that there’s nothing behind it.
Even former Obama spox Robert Gibbs—proudly sporting an Auburn jersey—acknowledged that big chunks of the system, including the payment mechanism for subsidies, haven’t even been built. So people can go to the site, receive the illusion that they have obtained coverage, only to find that there is no follow-through. View the video after the jump.
Consider what kind of nightmarish scenario we have entered, in which President Obama engineered the government takeover of 1/6th of the our economy, only to inflict a dysfunctional Fantasy Land.
ROBERT GIBBS: There’s no doubt, those that the back-end systems will continue to be a great concern. There’s payment mechanisms for subsidies that I think the technical guys have said at HHS haven’t even been built yet.
JOE SCARBOROUGH: It’s a Hollywood – he said the same thing that you [Nicolle Wallace] did. I mean, it’s a Hollywood facade. It’s a Western. You get everybody shooting, but you know, you just push, you push the wall over and there’s not actually a saloon behind it.
NICOLLE WALLACE: A fake town.
SCARBOROUGH: But we made it took good.
John Nolte writes: Business Insider reports that the television industry is “having its worst year ever.” Ratings have plummeted, and so have subscribers to bundled cable television — which is the Golden Cash Cow of Hollywood. Since 2010, cable providers have lost 5 million subscribers. During the last quarter alone 113,000 cable customers said goodbye.
For decades, cable providers gained a lot more customers than they ever lost, but those days are long over. For the first time in the industry’s history, there are fewer than 40 million customers paying for cable from America’s major providers. People are obviously moving online, choosing to stream the television shows and films they want to watch, and doing so when they choose to. Appointment television is as dead as Barack Obama’s credibility.
Streaming is a much better deal for consumers. Instead of facing punishing prices for a bundled cable package that makes you pay for dozens of channels you never watch, streaming offers choice and value and convenience. Some programming is still exclusively available via bundled cable or satellite only. Eventually, though, that will have to change. Entertainment providers will have to go to where the people are. Read the rest of this entry »
Arnon Milchan’s double life as a Hollywood producer and Israeli spy reads like a script for a film he produced.
After years of speculation about his past, Milchan admitted he had worked as an Israeli spy and arms dealer, even after coming to Hollywood, in a report on Israel’s investigative TV show “Uvda.” The Israeli businessman-turned-Hollywood producer behind “Fight Club,” “Pretty Woman” and “L.A. Confidential” admitted to buying arms that were going to be used by Israel to build nuclear bombs.
“I should have been aware of that, of what I’ll go through, and said, ‘F**k you. You know what? I did it for my country, and I’m proud of it,’” Milchan said about the industry’s disapproval about his sordid past.
Milchan’s company New Regency has produced more than 120 films since the 1970s. He has worked closely with Martin Scorsese, Roman Polanski and Oliver Stone, as well as Robert De Niro, Russell Crowe and Ben Affleck, who appeared in the special that aired Monday.
Known as the Hollywood of the North, Vancouver is one of the few destinations where one can ski and golf on the same day. These are just two of the many wonderful things to know about Vancouver. Here’s another one: incidents of public masturbation are on the rise.
Vancouver Police are telling residents to call 911 immediately if they see sexually motivated offences. Since the beginning of October, Police say they have received numerous calls about prowlers and incidents involving men masturbating and exposing themselves in public. Most of the incidents reportedly occur between the hours of 5 p.m and 7 a.m. but police are not hearing about them until later.
“…that’s also the essence of drama to follow the truth of human interaction where it leads. You can’t do that while you’re also trying to promote a political agenda…”
Mamet’s appearance was brief, I happened to catch the segment, which was only a few moments. (artists and authors are rarely the lead guest on news programs, even dramatists of Mamet’s stature) Mamet’s comments, summarized here in this RealClearPolitics item, appear to focus on one minor comment, that Hollywood conservatives are “legitimately frightened for their jobs“, but that’s just a provocative headline, not a reflection of his commentary. After the jump is a transcript of the Mamet interview. Mamet’s new book, “Three War Stories“, is available in paperback, and also as a Kindle edition.
Screenwriter and playwright David Mamet tells FOX News’ Megyn Kelly why there seems to be so few conservatives in Hollywood. Mamet said that people in Hollywood who fake being liberal do so because they’re “legitimately frightened for their jobs.” [VIDEO]
Mamet explained why he believes there are few open conservatives in Hollywood. “Conservatives believe in smaller government and in the power of the electorate. So I think that we’re less likely to try to use a dramatic forum to warp people’s political views.” –RealClearPolitics
Investment capital? They’re loaded.
Film studios? They are promising to build the world’s fanciest.
As for movie stars, few are more dazzling than Li Bingbing, who was an honored guest here on Tuesday at the annual U.S.- China Film Summit.
But China’s ambitious new film entrepreneurs, dozens of whom gathered in the Los Angeles area this week for the summit meeting, the American Film Market and other events, are still searching for something that has largely eluded them: a homemade global hit.
“We have 5,000 years of history. We have lots of stories,” said Yang Buting, the chairman of the China Film Distribution and Exhibition Association, who spoke on a panel at the gathering on Tuesday. Read the rest of this entry »
John Baichtal reports: Michael of Nootropic Design built the excellent Defusable Clock, which is an Arduino-compatible digital clock that just happens to look like a Hollywood bomb. Not exactly a surprise: the clock is so awesomely Hollywood that Hollyood came calling. The clock was featured as a bomb prop in the CW’s The Tomorrow People, with the expected factual errors pointed out in the video clip above. The Defusable Clock is available from the Maker Shed.
Will the New Trumbo Movie Rehash Old Myths?
NRO‘s Ronald Radosh writes: A few weeks ago, Deadline Hollywood announced that Bryan Cranston, straight from his starring role in TV’s Breaking Bad, will play the Communist screenwriter Dalton Trumbo in the movie Trumbo, directed by Jay Roach, which will start filming next year. The film is based on a 1977 biography by Bruce Cook, who based his account on Trumbo’s own flawed narrative.
So Hollywood will be producing yet another movie about how the courageous and freedom-loving Communists fought the blacklist in the film industry and, led by Trumbo, finally broke it when he was hired under his own name to write the movieSpartacus.
The truth was that Dalton Trumbo, undoubtedly a top-notch screenwriter, was no friend of free speech and the First Amendment, which he purported to defend when the House Committee on Un-American Activities (HUAC) investigated Communism in Hollywood in 1947. Along with the nine other writers, directors, and actors who were subpoenaed, Trumbo took the Fifth Amendment and declined to answer the committee’s questions, presenting himself as a defender of basic civil liberties.
A 14-year-old Danvers High School freshman ducked into a darkened movie theater for a matinee of the new Woody Allen movie after authorities say he murdered his popular math teacher and dumped her body in the woods, a law-enforcement source said.
Authorities did not say specifically when they believe Philip D. Chism “assaulted and subsequently murdered” 24-year-old Colleen Ritzer. But the source said it was before he bought a ticket to the 4:30 p.m. Tuesday screening of “Blue Jasmine” at the Hollywood Hits theater in Danvers. Police reported Chism left the theater about an hour and a half later.
The theater manager said Chism “blended right in.”
It has been decided. China has named Nicolas Cage the Best Global Actor in Motion Pictures at the Huading Awards.
Cage did win an Oscar for Leaving Loss Vegas in 1995, but more recently he’s been known for his roles in the Ghost Rider series and flubs like The Wicker Man. He’s also one of the busiest actors in Hollywood at the moment, ever since filing for bankruptcy in 2009 and began paying the government $6 million in tax debt.
With more and more foreign films now being allowed into China, and potential revenues that can be earned having risen to 25% (from as little as 13%), one might think that doing business in China is getting easier for Hollywood.
But that’s simply not the case. Read the rest of this entry »
With their hard-partying image, college fraternities are a strange place for Muslim men, yet the first all-Muslim frat – Alif Laam Meem – opened at the University of Texas early this year
When someone mentions college fraternities, a group of devout, celibate young men is not the first image that springs to mind. Thanks to endless gross-out Hollywood comedies, people are bombarded by images of privileged men drinking away their degrees at parties with the ubiquitous red and blue Solo cups, but something different is happening.
In February this year, America’s first Muslim Fraternity was established at the University of Texas; Ali Mahmoud is the President of Alpha Lambda Mu (or Alif Laam Meem) and its founder.
Mayor Garcetti does not know how to save the L.A. economy
I was recently told a wonderful story about a professional sports franchise in a low-tax state that distributes to its recruitment candidates a pamphlet describing in the most vulgar terms — X number of Rolexes, Y number of Bentleys — how much farther a $10 million contract goes there than in New York, California, or New Jersey. (Because it is unbelievably crass, it seems to me likely to be true.) Therein may be found an important lesson for new Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti, who is climbing the walls over the decline of Hollywood.
China has yet to establish much of a visual effects industry built on quality of work. Indeed most Chinese filmmakers tend to use Thai or Korean shops, as their graphics are better than those from China’s vfx companies but not as pricey as the top-end effects from the U.S., Europe or Australia/New Zealand.
One notable exception to the mediocrity of Chinese vfx has been Base FX, a Beijing-based digital effects house set up in 2006 with the aim of serving both Hollywood and the local Chinese and Asian industries.