VIDEO: Nielsen casting showbiz group

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The Nielsen Co. has established the Entertainment Council, an invitation-only member organization whose mission is to serve as an industry resource and forum for best practices, research and executive education to support the development and marketing of entertainment products worldwide.

Media industry veteran Gerry Byrne, the new senior vp of the entertainment group at Nielsen Business Media -- which includes The Hollywood Reporter, Billboard, Back Stage, Adweek and Mediaweek -- will spearhead the effort. (See video of Gerry Byrne at ShoWest)

The Entertainment Council aims to have about 50 members. Research programs will be at the core of its membership services and provide information on the full spectrum of marketing disciplines. Each year, a research agenda will be formally established by the council's executive board that includes best practices, benchmarking reports and industry sector reports.

Other programs will include breakfast forums and trend summits where industry leaders exchange ideas, opinions and viewpoints. Council members also will have access to exclusive databases including a speakers' bureau to find qualified panelists and keynote speakers and an intern database providing a source of emerging talent for the community.

"The creation, financing, production, marketing and distribution of entertainment content -- in all its forms, across all platforms, on a global basis -- is what defines the business of entertainment," Byrne said.
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