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Sogetel inks indies

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Sogetel, the largest film production house in the Spanish-speaking world, has inked co-financing pacts with three hot Spanish indie producers: Fernando Colomo, Fernando de Garcillan and Jose Luis Cuerda.

Fox vid, Saban play

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Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment has inked a multiyear deal to market, sell and distribute Saban Entertainment’s extensive library of titles.

Stockbuster video

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Highlighting Wall Street’s lack of faith in entertainment, investors have sold down stock in Viacom Inc. over the past week on signs that the company’s Blockbuster video chain had a disappointing fourth quarter – despite other signs indicating that the shortfall was offset by improvement elsewhere in Viacom’s businesses.

DGA noms in 1st-timers club

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The Directors Guild of America chose five first-time nominees for DGA’s feature film honors Tuesday, another indication of the wide-open nature of this year’s awards derby, as well as the strong presence of independents in the field of contenders.

Review: ‘Del Mccoury Band’

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Del McCoury Band (Ash Grove; 270 seats; $ 15) Promoted inhouse. Band: McCoury , Jason Carter, Rob McCoury, Ronnie McCoury, Mike Bub. Reviewed Jan. 19, 1997. Grammy-nominated bluegrass star Del McCoury, who’d sung and last appeared at the old Ash Grove with Bill Monroe in the ’60s, delivered a nearly two-hour set Sunday packed with instrumentals and well-chosen country revivals. The group’s instrumental work is quite strong, particularly dazzling mandolin work from Rob McCoury fast, clean and imaginative and Jason Carter’s bluesy fiddle. Pretty much everybody sang lead on at least one number, though of course McCoury’s widely hailed vocals got the most attention. Aside from strong musicianship and McCoury’s distinctive tenor voice, the group is distinguished by a repertoire that draws from obscure country hits almost as much as the bluegrass catalog. Reaching even further, their current Grammy-nominated Rounder album “The Cold Hard Facts” includes a strong version of bluesman Robert Cray’s “Smoking Gun” that’s even funkier in its way than Cray’s original. Todd Everett

SAG voting closes Wed.

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Polls will close Wednesday in nomination balloting for the Screen Actors Guild Awards. A nominating committee of 4,200 randomly selected members of SAG is making its selections.

Long live rock, TCI told

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The subscriber backlash against Tele-Communications Inc. and its recent policy of dropping established networks from its cable systems and replacing them with newer services resulted last week in TCI announcing it would reinstate A&E and the Nashville Network in Houston, and MTV on its Grand Junction, Colo., system.

Sounding off

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Audio luminaries may not have the panache of a Tom Cruise or the sex appeal of a Demi Moore, but, as for importance to a movie, try turning the sound off in a theater, and you’ll be listening to the audience howl.