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NATPE Briefs: Sinclair Launches Action Net, Burnett Alums Set Banner

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Sinclair Broadcast Group and MGM have teamed again to launch a digital multicast network, this time devoted to action-adventure programming. The ad-supported channel dubbed Charge is slated to launch by the end of the quarter. It will draw on MGM’s vast library of movies and TV shows, including the James Bond and “Rocky” film franchises…. Read more »

Indie Cinemas Face Challenging Future Together

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Begun as a small exhibitor gathering at the Sundance Film Festival, the Art House Convergence has long since come into its own as a mecca for indie cinema operators. Some 620 delegates are expected Jan. 16-19 at the 10th annual Art House Convergence in Midway, Utah, for panel sessions, networking, and film screenings before the… Read more »

ASCAP Chief Paul Williams on Songwriting, Scoring and ‘Phantom of the Paradise’

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MIAMI — Writing music for a film or TV show is a deeply emotional and visceral process, Paul Williams, famed songwriter and ASCAP president, said Tuesday during a Q&A at the NATPE conference. Williams’ formative years as an actor gave him with a love of working with visual media. The in-depth interview conducted by songwriter… Read more »

Trump Inauguration: TV Readies Hours of Coverage from ‘New Day’ to ‘Nightline’

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How newsworthy is Donald Trump’s inauguration? The nation’s TV-news outlets are throwing two episodes of “20/20,” a CBS primetime special, two live episodes of “Hannity,” a four-hour broadcast of “Morning Joe” and an early start to “New Day” at 5 a.m. CNN at it. And these efforts still won’t be enough. TV news will go… Read more »

ABC Orders Shondaland Legal Drama Pilot From ‘Scandal’ Scribe

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ABC has ordered up a pilot for a Shondaland legal drama from “Scandal” scribe Paul Davies, Variety has learned. The untitled project is set in the Southern District of New York (SDNY) Federal Court, a.k.a. “The Mother Court,” and follows brand new lawyers working on opposite sides — both defense and the prosecution — as… Read more »

How Michael Lynton Could Boost Snap’s (Wall) Street Cred

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To understand what Michael Lynton brings to the table at Snap, think about what executives like Sheryl Sandberg have meant to Facebook or Eric Schmidt to Google. When the former Sony Pictures Entertainment CEO takes his place next month as chairman of the board at Snapchat’s parent company, alongside CEO Evan Spiegel, the pairing will… Read more »

Legendary Entertainment CEO Thomas Tull Exiting

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UPDATED: Legendary Entertainment chairman and CEO Thomas Tull has announced his departure from the  company he founded in 2005, then sold to Chinese conglomerate Dalian Wanda last year. Tull will take the title of founding chairman of the company, with Wanda executive Jack Gao assuming the CEO post while the company conducts a search for… Read more »

Jessica Biel’s ‘The Sinner’ Anthology Series Picked Up by USA

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USA Network has picked up Jessica Biel’s “The Sinner” anthology drama to series, Variety has learned. “The Sinner,” for which Biel serves as both star and executive producer, is a crime thriller that follows Biel’s young mother after she commits a horrific act of violence she can’t explain. She and an investigator (Bill Pullman) take… Read more »

‘White Men Can’t Jump’ Remake in the Works With Blake Griffin, Ryan Kalil

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“White Men Still Can’t Jump”? The 1992 basketball comedy “White Men Can’t Jump” is getting a remake from “Black-ish” creator Kenya Barris, Los Angeles Clippers power forward Blake Griffin, and Ryan Kalil of the NFL’s Carolina Panthers. Barris is producing and writing the script for the revamped “White Men Can’t Jump” under the overall film… Read more »