Week in Review: No glitz for Globes, other strike fallout
EmptyYou might not have heard this yet but ... the Golden Globes have been canceled. Well, the traditional ceremony has, anyway. Unable to strike an interim agreement, the Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. and NBC pulled the plug on the annual ballroom extravaganza, opting for a "news" conference Sunday in which winners will be announced. Originally, winners were intended to have the option of appearing on camera from the various Globes parties around town, but -- you guessed it -- most of them have been canceled as well. Remember when all we had to worry about was Christine Lahti getting out of the ladies room?
Meanwhile, Oscar is holding his breath. With no writers hired yet -- 14 toiled on last year's telecast -- the show's already behind schedule, but at this point, AMPAS is proceeding under the assumption that the show will go on. "Our hope is we can work something out or that the strike is resolved in time," AMPAS exec director Bruce Davis said. If they can't work out a deal a la the one inked for the SAG nods, word is they'll limp through the show sans writers as they did in '88. Somewhere, Bruce Vilanch (pictured above) is walking a picket line.
The DGA six: Six. It's the number of years since 1948 in which the DGA's pick for best feature helmer didn't also take the nod Oscar night. And thanks to the tandem of Joel and Ethan Coen, it's the number of nominees this year. If things hold true to form, your Oscar winner is among the following: Paul Thomas Anderson ("There Will Be Blood"), the Coens ("No Country for Old Men"), Tony Gilroy ("Michael Clayton"), Sean Penn ("Into the Wild") and Julian Schnabel ("The Diving Bell and the Butterfly").
Storm WARN-ing: For some, the strike's effect on the awards season is the least of their concerns, like in Burbank, where the strike has put 1,000 Warner Bros. employees on the chopping block. Although Warners isn't saying how many of those who received the federally mandated WARN notice will be let go, it seems certain that some will receive pink slips, and people are beginning to wonder if this could be the first shoe to drop before massive layoffs around town. Those receiving the letter are primarily production workers and those involved in lot maintenance and facility management. ... On Wednesday, ICM became the first major talent agency to invoke the force majeure clauses in its agents' contracts. Agents including Renee Tab, Eva Lontscharitsch, Jenny Fritz and BrianLevy of the motion picture lit department have been suspended but will receive "strike pay" and benefits during the stoppage.
Going their own way: Scribes are going back to work on United Artists projects, but parent MGM isn't happy about it. The indie run by Tom Cruise and Paula Wagner struck an interim bargaining agreement with the WGA in a move that Wagner heralded as "good business sense." But MGM released a statement of its own Monday, expressing its disappointment and reaffirming its commitment to the AMPTP negotiations. UA's Oliver Stone drama "Pinkville," shelved in November over script problems, will remain in turnaround.
Double trouble: If you're feeling a little deflated by all that strike news, maybe this will cheer you up: A&E is bringing back "The Two Coreys" for a second season! According to the cable network, Coreys Haim and Feldman will pick up where they left off and decide whether to work through their differences or part ways. And what about that "License to Drive" remake? Will that finally get the green light?
Changing channels: With a string of hit movies including last summer's "Knocked Up" and "Superbad" under his belt now, Judd Apatow is stepping back into the TV arena. The "Freaks and Geeks" creator has inked a first-look deal with 20th TV and tapped 20th Century Fox Television comedy exec Nicholas Weinstock to head up development at his Apatow Prods.
That's all, folks: The ascension of Jeff Robinov to head of the newly formed Warner Bros. Pictures Group spelled the end of marketing chief Dawn Taubin's career at Warners. Despite three studio pics in the current top 10, Taubin's cool relationship with the new boss reportedly made the move an inevitability. The ongoing restructuring also saw Kevin McCormick promoted to president of production this week.
End credits: "High School Musical" star Ashley Tisdale is graduating to features. She'll make her big-screen debut in Fox adventure comedy "They Came From Upstairs." ... With a pregnant Nicole Kidman bowing out, Kate Winslet is stepping up to take the lead in Stephen Daldry's World War II drama "The Reader" for the Weinstein Co. ... Jessica Biel is getting romantic in Ealing Studios' adaptation of the Noel Coward play "Easy Virtue." ... Ukrainian model-actress Olga Kurylenko and Brit newcomer Gemma Arterton have signed on for Bond girl duty.