CBS re-branding CBS THIS MORNING for Times Square move
SHANE SMITH gives up VICE voting control / PEACOCK casts FRESH PRINCE reboot lead / AMAZON adds CLUBHOUSE-ish ripoff
Mornin! This is Sean McNulty and here’s the Hollywood + Media news to know on Wednesday September 1, 2021.
Where the VENICE FILM FEST begins today so expect a lot of stories about long Italian ovations this weekend. And a lotta “Dune” talk…. The film screens Friday and should be over by around 5p NYC time.
PLUS: Legendary middle-of-nowhere Tennessee music festival BONNAROO has been cancelled this weekend - but not due to Covid… which I guess is refreshing? Basically - Ida made the place a mudbath. So no FOO FIGHTERS, MEGAN THEE STALLION or LIZZO this weekend.
AND: Let’s send the “Ferris Bueller” Get-Well-Soon nurse to Gene Simmons’s house, as he came down with Covid and has “mild symptoms”, a week after Paul Stanley caught it (both were vaccinated). Which I’m rather confident is not the first time Gene came down with something a week after Paul did.
📽 THE SILVER SCREEN
Quiet day, although there’s this:
NETFLIX signs Vanessa Kirby (“The Crown”, “Pieces Of a Woman”) to a first-look film deal. Will focus on movies exploring “the spectrum of the female experience”. No projects announced, she’s currently shooting the follow up to “The Father” with Hugh Jackman & Laura Dern. /THR
📺 THE TV SET
A move that… seemed inevitable really. He was also fired from his Exec Producer role on “Wheel of Fortune”, but he still has a “rich” overall production deal at SONY PICTURES TV. For now. /Variety
Mike’s 5 episodes as host will still kick off the season on Monday Sept 13, before Mayim Bialik’s 3 week run begins on Sept 20.
A guy named Jabari Banks. It’ll be his first credit - just graduated from Philly’s UNIVERSITY OF THE ARTS a year ago. /THR
And here’s a surprise ZOOM that Will Smith did to tell Jabari the news, if inclined. Hopefully you you can follow along - beyond the resemblence, their houses are pretty similar.
ALSO IN TV
Former TEEN VOGUE editor Elaine Welteroth leaves CBS’s “The Talk” after one season. So the show currently has 3 cast panel members left for the new season starting in a few weeks: Sheryl Underwood, Amanda Kloots and Jerry O’Connell. /THR
Elliot Page (“Juno”, “The Umbrella Academy”) signs first-look TV deal at UNIVERSAL CONTENT PRODUCTIONS (UCP) for scripted and unscripted genres. No projects announced with the deal. /THR
NETFLIX gives Ms. Pat an hour-long comedy special. Shooting in late Sept. /Variety
💻 THE MEDIA BIZ
So - “CBS This Morning” no more… once they move to their new Times Square studio this Tues Sept 7. Get a preview of the set in the Tweet video above if ya like. But you have to drink each time someone talks about “the emphasis on storytelling”.
They’re also gonna add some more “CBS Sunday Morning”-style longform (ish) pieces in the 8-9p hour. Not sure if some of them will be actual re-purposed “Sunday Morning” pieces… (the announcement coulda been a bit clearer on this).
But essentially - just as NBC has built “The Today Show” into a 💰💰 juggernaut brand across mornings 7 days a week, CBS is looking to bring more cohesiveness to their “Mornings” and hopefully 💰💰 as well.
They’re also changing the theme music to use the famous “Sunday Morning” Horn anthem for the weekday “CBS Mornings” show, and there’s plenty of the iconic “sun logo” to go around. They’re also bringing back a secondary couch set, which definitely gives me some “The Early Show” vibes 🤔 . /Variety
Now - Which anchor is the smart money on to call it “CBS This Morning” by mistake first?
Essentially, VICE had hoped to go public ever since the mid-late 2010’s, when Shane Smith talked a lot of equity firms & media moguls into investing hundreds of millions each in VICE (including DISNEY, which eventually wrote off their $400 Million investment at $0 value).
Over the past 12-18 months, they shifted to try to go public via a SPAC (essentially a publicly traded shell company that would buy VICE, thus taking it public on the Stock Market). But as SPAC’s have fallen out of favor fast on Wall Street this Summer… the prospects for the money-losing company to go public have dwindled - so they’re pulling the plug for the forseeable future.
So they’ve raised $85 Million from existing investors to try and get the company to profitability, which seems to mean Shane had to possibly give up some equity and definitely voting control. He remains Chairman of the VICE Board, I’m sure often making the commute from his Malibu estate to Williamsburg, Brooklyn for meetings. /The Information
Launching a Live-Audio product, or as my Grandma used to call it - Radio.
Similar to SPOTIFY’s Greenroom, TWITTER’s Spaces, and FACEBOOK’S less-catchier named “Live Audio Spaces”.
Will primarily be housed in AMAZON MUSIC, although will have some extensions in TWITCH as well.
AMAZON is gonna pay Bands, Podcasters and Celebrities to do live performances & chats using the product to try and make it a thing… at some point. Thing still needs a name. Timeline TBD. /Axios
While the streaming service will be new there, HBO & HBO GO has already long existed in these countries. HBOMAX itself is currently in about 40 countries.
But HBOMAX is still years away from entering Europe’s biggest $$ markets (UK, GERMANY, etc) due to HBO’s huge longterm output deal with COMCAST-owned SKY. /THR
Shifting the Indian sports (mainly Cricket) to ESPN+, and the Bollywood Movies and TV shows to HULU. Though the IPL Cricket season (basically the NFL of India) will shift to ESPN+ soon, as the season resumes in a couple weeks.
The HOTSTAR service costs $10 a month here and will be shut down in the US entirely by the end of next year.
If you’ve read THE WAKEUP for a while… you know HOTSTAR and DISNEY+ are combined in one service in India, which makes up 1/3 of the DISNEY+ subscriber total. For a read on why this is problematic for DISNEY revenue, and why NETFLIX is still in a very different ballpark than DISNEY+ imo, read this. /Variety
ALSO IN MEDIA
DISNEY also officially launched their STAR+ streaming service in Latin America (basically an international version of HULU combined with ESPN+). This after settling a lawsuit STARZ brought against them over the name similarity last month. /Deadline
🏦 STOCK NOTES:
ZOOM dropped nearly 17% on limited forecasted revenue growth in their earnings call.
AMC THEATERS up almost 9%, CINEMARK up almost 5%, but CINEWORLD (Regal Cinemas) can’t catch a break, down over 6%.
👩💻 NEW TO WATCH:
Nothing Today, although really - enjoy your vacations! But please still open this email each morning.
If you were sent this newsletter or… just kinda found it:
🎥 TRAILER HOUSE
MGM “No Time to Die” final trailer. And they mean final this time… as they’re now locked and loaded for a Fri Oct 8 release date in the US no matter what. (hitting some international countries on Sept 30).
PARAMOUNT+ “Mayor of Kingstown” trailer. From “Yellowstone” creator Tyler Sheridan, about a family that runs a prison… and basically the whole town it exists in. Premieres Sun Nov 14.
NAT GEO/DISNEY+ “Fauci” trailer. Docu on… well you’re up to speed here. Hits theaters on Fri Sept 10, and DISNEY+ on Fri Oct 1.
NETFLIX“You vs. Wild: Out Cold” trailer. NETFLIX giving the “interactive movie” thing a go again, this time with Bear Grylls, where you use your remote to make choices to help find his friend after a plane crash. Didn’t he also lose Zac Efron somewhere once… or am I thinking of something else? Premieres Tues Sept 14.
🎧 PLAYING ME OFF
HALSEY “I am not a woman, I’m a god” - Off her new album produced with Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross. Still HALSEY, but a cool new direction.
If you need new tunes:
And if you want to send the newsletter to someone, here’s a button:
Email me anytime - just reply to this email, or connect here on LINKED IN.
@theseanmac on TWITTER
@TheWakeupNews on INSTAGRAM
or I’m also here on CLUBHOUSE