Thursday, February 22, 2018

News Briefs

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  • Thursday, Feb. 1, 2018
NY Festivals International Advertising Awards adds 14 members to executive jury
Michael Demetriades, president and executive director, New York Festivals

New York Festivals® International Advertising Awards® has added 14 members to the 2018 executive jury, bringing the panel up to 35 members from 17 countries. The executive jury, an elite panel of global and regional chief creative officers, will meet in New York City from April 20-23 to select the World’s Best Advertising®.

“Never before has New York Festivals assembled an executive jury of this magnitude and executive leadership level,” said Michael Demetriades, president and executive director, New York Festivals. “NYF’s world-class executive jury has a 360-view of global creativity and through four rounds of judging they will determine the 2018 World’s Best Advertising award-winners.” 

Additions to the 2018 Executive Jury:

  • Cam Blackley, chief creative officer, M&C Saatchi, Australia
  • Cosmo Campbell, chief creative officer, Canada, DDB, Canada
  • Javier Campopiano, chief creative officer, Saatchi & Saatchi NY, USA
  • Cindy Yan Chan, partner/chief strategy officer, Focus Media Group, China
  • Andy DiLallo, chief creative officer, TBWA Sydney, Australia
  • Ralf Heuel, chief creative officer/partner, Grabarz & Partner, Germany
  • Maxi Itzkoff, chief creative officer, Santo Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • Armin Jochum, chief creative officer/co-founder, thjnk, Germany
  • Eduardo Maruri, president/CEO, LATAM, Grey, Ecuador
  • Farid Mokart, creative CEO/ chief creative officer, Fred & Farid, France
  • Britt Nolan, chief creative officer USA, Leo Burnett, USA
  • Sunmi Park, chief creative officer, Daehong Communications, South Korea
  • Hugo Rodrigues, chairman & CEO, WMcCann, Brazil
  • Taras Wayner, EVP/ chief creative officer, R/GA, USA

Since 2011, all entries into NYF’s Advertising Awards competition are viewed by 400+ members of NYF’s executive and grand juries, a brain trust of global creative minds, who collectively cast over 300,000 votes during the two-tiered judging process. Utilizing New York Festivals patented Matrix Judging System, the executive jury scores each entry on its own merits with 50% of the vote based upon its concept/idea, 25% stemming from its brand and market relevance, and 25% pulled from its production execution.

All Shortlisted entries will be selected by the grand jury. Shortlisted (finalist) entries, in all competitions, except Public & Media Relations, Marketing Effectiveness, Film Craft and Package Design, will be reviewed by the executive jury through four rounds of judging, to determine the World’s Best Advertising Award-Winners.

The 2018 New York Show awards ceremony and gala will take place the evening of Thursday, May 17, 2018 at the world-class performance space, Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Frederick P. Rose Hall, Broadway at 60th Street, New York City.

The 2018 competition entry deadline is February 28.

  • Thursday, Feb. 1, 2018
Dan Fogelman to receive ICG Publicists' TV Showman of the Year honor
Dan Fogelman (photo by Tyler Golden/NBC)

Dan Fogelman, creator and executive producer of the NBC drama This Is Us, one of the most lauded television shows of the past two years, will be named Television Showman of the Year at the 55th Annual International Cinematographers Guild (ICG, IATSE Local 600) Publicists Awards honoring excellence in publicity and promotion for motion pictures and television programs, to be held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on Friday, March 2.

In making the announcement, ICG National President, Steven Poster, ASC, noted, “Even with the multitude of television programming currently available, This Is Us is the show that everyone wants to talk about the next day. That is due in great part to the creative genius of Dan Fogelman.”

This Is Us was nominated for 10 Emmys as well as a Golden Globe for Best Drama for its first two seasons. The series also recently won the SAG Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series.
Fogelman also co-created and executive produced Fox’s drama Pitch. His ABC period musical comedy series Galavant featured the music of award-winning composer Alan Menken. Fogelman also created and executive produced the ABC comedy The Neighbors, starring Jami Gertz, and Like Family for the WB. 
Fogelman’s upcoming film Life Itself, which he directed, starring Oscar Isaac, Olivia Wilde, Annette Bening and Antonio Banderas, will be released theatrically by Amazon in fall 2018. His directorial debut, Danny Collins, starred Al Pacino, who was nominated for a Golden Globe.
Fogelman’s first feature film was the Pixar film Cars. He also wrote the animation screenplays for the Disney features Bolt and Tangled. His live-action films include Las Vegas, starring Robert De Niro, Michael Douglas, Morgan Freeman and Kevin Kline; Crazy Stupid Love, starring Steve Carell and Ryan Gosling; and the semi-autobiographical The Guilt Trip, starring Barbra Streisand and Seth Rogen.
Fogelman was the recipient of the 2016 Humanitas Prize for the This is Us pilot script. He began his career in Hollywood working on The Howie Mandel Show, The Man Show and TV Guide Channel, where he wrote the 60-second celebrity bios.  
As previously announced, the Publicists Awards Luncheon will also honor actor, director Andy Serkis with the Motion Picture Showmanship Award, Betty White, with a Lifetime Achievement Award and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), celebrating the 75th anniversary of the Golden Globes. The ICG Publicists Directory, to be distributed at the luncheon, will be dedicated to the late journalist Liz Smith.

Henri Bollinger and Tim Menke return as chairs for this year’s ICG Publicists Awards, which traditionally occur the week leading up to the Academy Awards®. Final online balloting will close on Feb. 9, and winners will be announced at the lunch ceremony on March 2.

  • Thursday, Feb. 1, 2018
Mario and Minions? Illumination to co-produce Nintendo film
Japanese video game maker Nintendo Co. President Tatsumi Kimishima speaks in front of picture of the Nintendo Switch gaming console during a news conference during in Tokyo Thursday, Feb. 1, 2018. Japanese video-game company Nintendo Co. says a movie starring the plumber in the Super Mario franchise is in the works, being co-produced with Chris Meledandri, the chief executive of Illumination Entertainment, the U.S. animation studio behind the popular "Despicable Me" series. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko)
TOKYO (AP) -- 

Mario is getting together with the Minions.

Japanese video-game company Nintendo Co. says a movie starring the plumber in the Super Mario franchise is in the works, co-produced with Chris Meledandri, the chief executive of Illumination Entertainment, the U.S. animation studio behind the popular "Despicable Me" series.

Nintendo's star game designer Shigeru Miyamoto told reporters Thursday the script is mostly finished. He's promising a "fun" movie, since Meledandri shares his thinking on creative projects.

The movie, two years in the making after a meeting between Meledandri and Miyamoto, is set for global distribution through Universal, which co-owns Illumination, according to the Kyoto-based maker of Pokemon games and the popular Switch machine.

They did not give other details, including the release date.

Miyamoto said some people mistakenly think that making games is similar to making movies.

"Creating in an interactive medium is totally different from doing that in a passive medium," he said, saying he'd wanted to make such a film for years.

Meledandri and he hit it right off: "We want to make something great," he said.

Nintendo reported Wednesday an October-December profit of 83.66 billion yen ($768 million), up 29 percent from the previous fiscal third quarter.

Quarterly sales ballooned to nearly 483 billion yen, up from 174 billion yen the previous year, on the success of its Switch, a hybrid game machine that can be played both as a home console as well as a handheld.

Nintendo now expects to sell 15 million Switch consoles in this fiscal year, which ends in March. That's up from its initial projection to sell 10 million Switch machines, which was raised last year to 14 million.

Nintendo brought the world the FamiCom game machine in the 1980s and has had its up and downs as people's entertainment tastes changed.

In recent years, Nintendo did an about-face to its past policy of shunning smartphone games, and has scored success in that sector as well. It has brought back a revamped version of the FamiCom, which proved so popular it will go on sale again later this year.

Nintendo executives also expressed hopes for its upcoming Nintendo Labo , whose trailer shows the Switch being played with cardboard concoctions, resembling a piano, fishing rod, robot and other items.

Nintendo Labo, set to go on sale April 20, is based on the idea that the Switch, which is a controller packed with sensors, can be used with different attachments for many kinds of play. Executives joked that they initially thought cardboard would be cheap but it turned out to be more expensive than they thought.

  • Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2018
Diane Lane, Greg Kinnear join "House of Cards" final season
This combination photo shows Greg Kinnear, left, and Diane Lane, who will star as siblings in the final season of "House of Cards," on Netflix. (AP Photo/Files)

Diane Lane and Greg Kinnear are joining "House of Cards" for the political thriller's final season.

Netflix said they'll play siblings in the show's sixth season, which resumed production Wednesday.

"House of Cards," Netflix's first original series, halted production last October amid sexual misconduct allegations against star Kevin Spacey.

Spacey was suspended from the show by producer Media Rights Capital after Netflix said it wouldn't continue with it if he remained. A representative for the actor said previously that he was seeking unspecified treatment.

Robin Wright, who co-starred as wife to Spacey's Francis Underwood, will be the focus of the final season. A debut date has yet to be announced.

Further details on the new characters played by Lane and Kinnear weren't available.

  • Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2018
Journalist says BBC treating women as "enemy" over pay gap
In this image made from screengrab, journalist Carrie Gracie gives evidence to the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee in Portcullis House, London, Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2018. (PA via AP)

A senior BBC journalist who quit her post to protest the media company's gender pay gap argued Wednesday that management is hurting the corporation's credibility by failing to address the issue.

Carrie Gracie, the broadcaster's former China editor, testified before a British parliamentary committee that BBC managers have treated women who speak out about pay "as some sort of enemy."

Gracie said once confronted, the corporation tried to "throw money at me to resolve the problem."

"This will not resolve my problem," she said. "My problem will be resolved by an acknowledgement my work was of equal value to the men I served alongside."

Gracie resigned in early January after learning that male colleagues in similar jobs had much higher salaries. Gracie said she told the BBC: "I demand to be paid equally."

Tensions over pay flared last summer when the BBC released a list of top earners, which showed that many high-profile female employees earned far less than their male counterparts.

Gracie said management's failure to address the problem was "damaging the credibility of the BBC in a completely unacceptable way."

"We're not in the business of producing toothpaste or tires at the BBC," she said. "Our business is truth.

"If we're not prepared to look at ourselves honestly, how can we be trusted to look at anything else in reporting honestly?"

BBC Director-General Tony Hall, who was also questioned by the Culture, Media and Sport Committee, said the BBC did not discriminate based on gender. But he said there was "a difference between the scale and scope" of jobs that meant salaries varied.

  • Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2018
Andy Serkis to receive ICG Publicists' Motion Picture Showman of the Year Award
Andy Serkis (photo by Laurie Sparham)

Andy Serkis, the master of performance capture with unforgettable roles this past year in War for the Planet of the Apes and Star Wars: The Last Jedi, will receive the Motion Picture Showman of the Year Award at the 55th Annual International Cinematographers Guild (ICG, IATSE Local 600) Publicists Awards for his unique contribution to the art of movies. The awards will be held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on Friday, March 2.

In announcing the award, Steven Poster, ASC, national president of the ICG, said, “Andy Serkis, with his unparalleled flexibility and understanding of movement, has made motion capture his own. We are delighted that he will be flying in from England to be with us.”

Serkis has appeared in almost 100 films and TV shows. He has accumulated numerous award nominations from the Golden Globes®, Primetime Emmys®, BAFTA®, and the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films.

Serkis first made a name for himself playing Gollum in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, directed by Peter Jackson. He reunited with Jackson to play the title role in the 2005 version of King Kong, which was just the start of his simian simulations. His portrayal of Caesar, leader of the apes, in the Planet of the Apes trilogy has astounded audiences. These films have a combined box-office totaling more than $1.6 billion.

Serkis gave another unforgettable performance in Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Next month he can be seen in the much-anticipated Black Panther.

He made his directorial debut last year with Breathe, starring Andrew Garfield and Claire Foy, and directed Mowgli, an adaptation of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book, set for release this year, starring Christian Bale, Cate Blanchett and Benedict Cumberbatch with Serkis playing Baloo.

As previously announced, the Publicists Awards Luncheon will also honor Betty White, with a Lifetime Achievement Award and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), celebrating the 75th anniversary of the Golden Globes. The ICG Publicists Directory, to be distributed at the luncheon, will be dedicated to the late journalist Liz Smith.

Henri Bollinger and Tim Menke return as chairs for this year’s ICG Publicists Awards, which traditionally occur the week leading up to the Academy Awards®. Final online balloting will close on Feb. 9, and winners will be announced at the lunch ceremony. 

  • Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2018
Fox gets Thursday night football for 5 years
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (7) throws a pass during the first half of an NFL football game against the Green Bay Packers in Pittsburgh, Sunday, Nov. 26, 2017. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

Fox and the NFL have agreed to a five-year deal for Thursday night football games.

Those games previously were televised by CBS and NBC, two of the league's other network partners. But Fox announced Wednesday that it will televise 11 games between Weeks 4 and 15, with simulcasts on NFL Network and Fox Deportes.

Fox, which has the Sunday afternoon NFC package, will produce all of the games.

"This is a single partner deal, we are not splitting the package," NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said. "We had tremendous amount of interest from all the broadcast partners, all of whom wanted it exclusively. We felt this was the best opportunity for the NFL to grow the Thursday night package."

Goodell added the league is exploring partnerships with digital outlets, also in conjunction with Fox.

The NFL has broadcast deals "five years out" with its other partners — ESPN has the Monday night package — so five years on this agreement made sense.

"Fundamentally, Fox was built on football," said Peter Rice, the president of 21st Century Fox, nothing that 25 years ago, the NFC package "helped launch a fledgling network into what it is today."

"These opportunities come along very, very infrequently," he added. "You either have the rights to the most-watched content in media or you don't. If you don't take the opportunity, this won't come up again for five years. We believe in buying the very best rights, and the best rights are the NFL."

CBS and NBC each paid $450 million for the previous two-year package.

  • Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2018
Director Ridley Scott to be honored by British film academy
In this Sunday, Jan. 7, 2018 file photo, film director Ridley Scott arrives at the 75th annual Golden Globe Awards at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, in Beverly Hills, Calif. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File)

"Blade Runner" director Ridley Scott is to receive the British Academy Film Awards' highest honor.

The academy announced Wednesday that the 80-year-old filmmaker will collect the BAFTA Fellowship at the British academy awards ceremony next month.

Scott's films include "Alien," ''Thelma and Louise" and "Gladiator."

His latest release is kidnap drama "All the Money in the World," which underwent last-minute reshoots to replace Kevin Spacey after allegations of sexual misconduct.

Scott said it was "very gratifying" to be honored for his body of work.

The fellowship is awarded to one person a year for "outstanding and exceptional contribution to film, games or television." Previous recipients include Charlie Chaplin, Alfred Hitchcock, Elizabeth Taylor and Judi Dench.

The awards ceremony takes place Feb. 18 at London's Royal Albert Hall.

  • Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2018
Helen Mirren talks "Winchester" film, impact of gun deaths
This image released by CBS Films shows Helen Mirren in a scene from "Winchester." (Ben King/CBS Films via AP)

Helen Mirren says her new film "Winchester " isn't a horror flick, but rather a ghost story with foreign roots and a distinct American element — the psychological impact of gun deaths.

Mirren plays the real-life Sarah Winchester, a 19th-century heiress who inherited a massive fortune from her husband's creation of the Winchester repeating rifle shortly after the Civil War. In the film, Winchester believes she is haunted by those killed by the firearm, which allowed for more rapid firing than previous rifles.

"It's a ghost story, hopefully in the tradition, the very grand tradition, of Japanese ghost stories, ghost films," Mirren said in a recent interview. "You know, the Japanese love ghost stories and have great belief in the power of the ancestor spirits, of the ancestors, as many cultures do."

Part of the film was shot at Winchester's mansion in San Jose, California, where she moved after the death of her husband in 1881. Now known as the "Winchester Mystery House," it is a popular tourist attraction and has more than 160 rooms, 10 thousand windows, two thousand doors and forty staircases.

According the lore around Winchester's life, she ordered constant construction on the home to try to confuse the ghosts she believed were haunting her.

"There are many theories why she did this," Mirren said. "And one of the theories that we explore in the film. She was trying to placate the ghosts of the people who'd been killed by the Winchester rifle. She felt their deaths very strongly. She felt responsible. She felt the weight of their deaths upon them. And she was trying, in her own way, to placate their spirits."

Despite "Winchester's" themes, Mirren, 72, said the film isn't trying to make any broad statements about gun ownership in America.

"What I like about it and I think ... about America is that it doesn't deal with whether you can carry guns or not. That's kind of not the issue," she said. "The issue is more putting the question mark or the weight of moral decision upon the people who make a fortune from making arms — whether they're guns, bombs, grenades ... or whatever it is. It puts a moral decision upon the people who make huge fortunes from making and then I would say the armaments dealers in the world I would like to see it... I see it personally in a much more global way."

  • Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2018
"Black Panther" receives high praise after first screenings
Ryan Cogler, right, director/co-writer of "Black Panther," poses with his wife Zinzi Evans at the premiere of the film at The Dolby Theatre on Monday, Jan. 29, 2018, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

"Incredible" and "kinetic" are just a few of the loving words that people are using to describe and praise Marvel's "Black Panther."

The film from director Ryan Coogler had its first screenings Monday night and a premiere in Los Angeles. Official reviews won't go out until Feb. 6, but audiences at the select screenings were able to share non-spoiler reactions on social media.

Los Angeles Times writer Jen Yamato wrote that it is the first Marvel movie about something real.

"'Black Panther' is incredible, kinetic, purposeful," Yamato wrote. "A superhero movie about why representation & identity matters, and how tragic it is when those things are denied to people."

The film features a largely black cast including Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan and Lupita Nyong'o.  It follows T'Challa (Boseman) after the death of his father, the king of the fictional African nation of Wakanda, and his ascension to the throne.

"I never wanted this movie to end, and as soon as it did I wanted to go back," tweeted Mashable critic Angie Han. "Solid action, smart story, tons of personality."

Han and Vulture editor Kyle Buchanan both singled out Letitia Wright for her character Shuri, T'Challa's inventor sister. Many spoke highly of Jordan's Erik Killmonger, a villain, and Danai Gurira's warrior character Okoye too.

A few called it Marvel's most political film to date.

Others were more tempered like writer Dave Schilling who says, "'Black Panther' is not the best Marvel movie. It's not the worst Marvel movie. It's an entertaining movie." IndieWire critic David Ehrlich wrote that it's, "Like a Marvel movie but better. The action is predictably awful, but this is the first MCU film that has an actual sense of identity & history & musicality."

"Black Panther" hits the multiplex on Feb. 16.