44: ED BRADLEY
While the temperatures may be dropping, we just keep getting hotter, y'all. It's Issue 44!
OVERSEEN & OVERHEARD
STOP SNITCHIN'...The book, SnitchCraft (www.snitchcraft.com), a fictional tale about "the corrupt environment created by the use of informants" just came out on Dogon Village Books but author, Edrea Davis, tells is a script for a film version is ready to shop around. With the "No Snitch" movement in the Urban and Hip Hop worlds growing Davis might just get a production deal before the SnitchCraft book tour.
RETURN OF THE MAC...He's back. After being dumped three and half years ago from "The Bernie Mac Show," which he created, Larry Wilmore is returning to FOX. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Wilmore, who won an Emmy for his Bernie Mac work, has a new untitled series to be distributed by Regency TV. Word is the show will give viewers a look at the inner workings at a government agency. Let's see if Wilmore's switch from comedy to drama will also be Emmy worthy.
URBAN INDUSTRY BIBLE...Our friends over at Black Talent News have announced the latest edition of their URBAN HOLLYWOOD RESOURCE DIRECTORY. The Fall 2006 edition is loaded with thousands of industry contacts and services. For more info, visit http://www.tanyakersey.com/store.php.
COMPOSERS ALERT...The folks over at the BMI Foundation wanted us to pass on word that it's time for the 19th Annual Pete Carpenter Fellowship for aspiring film composers under the age of 35. The successful candidate will have an opportunity to work for 4-5 weeks with BMI composer Mike Post, Carpenter’s partner and writer of such TV themes as "NYPD Blue," "Hill Street Blues," "L.A. Law" and "Law and Order." In addition, the winner will receive a $3,000 stipend for travel and expenses. Applications are available online at www.bmifoundation.org. The postmark deadline for entries is Jan. 26, 2007.
SHADES OF MOTOWN...Speaking of soundtracks, the CD for the film Bobby (The Weinstein Company/MGM) is getting a great soul punch with “Never Gonna Break My Faith,” a newly recorded single by Aretha Franklin and Mary J. Blige, co-written and co-produced by Bryan Adams. Island Def Jam will release the soundtrack album that also showcases music by the premiere artists of the 1960s. It drops Nov. 21, four days after the film opens in limited release. The movie will go into wide release on 1,500-plus screens on Thanksgiving, Nov. 23rd. The Franklin/Blige track is on the film trailer (http://movies.yahoo.com/feature/bobby.html). Written/directed by Emilio Estevez, the film follows 22 people who were at the Ambassador Hotel when Bobby Kennedy was assassinated.
BOBBY NO SHOWS...On another Bobby note, African-American VIPs were left to wonder what happened to the rest of the cast of the soon-to-be-released film during a recent Image Award screening in Los Angeles. Although film stars Freddie Rodriquez Nick Canon, and Harry Belafonte as well as director Emilio Estevez had been promised, they actually attended a similar screening event being held in town for the British Academy of Film and Television Arts leaving only actress Joy Bryant as participant in the post screening Q&A for the Image screening. If folks are ducking NAACP members, then let's see just how much ad push there is in the black media for the film. Or maybe they think British filmlovers will rush to see a film about an American political icon, one who was beloved in many a black household. Go figure.
ART OF RHYME...In what has to be one for the books, The Louvre is inviting slam poets to rap about paintings, according to CNN.com. This months guest curator Nobel laureate Toni Morrison, 75, has help come up with new ways to lure visitors to the legendary Louvre galleries. There'll be a series of lectures, readings, films, concerts, debates and slam poetry through November 29. All center around Morrison's theme: "The Foreigner's Home," addressing national identity, exile and the sense of belonging. The slam poets will perform on Friday nights, when the Louvre is open late. Now this is stretching the canvas. Bravo, Louvre and Morrison. Have the literal flames of unrest finally starting to make the French open up.
COUPLES CALL...The team over at TLC have put the call out for couples who are in the process of divorce but want to separate on good terms. Couples will receive seven days of in-home intensive workshops as part of the program. The couple must also have at least one child and live on the East Coast. This episode is scheduled to shoot in Jan. 07. For more information, contact: Kim Saunders, Casting Department, BBC Production at (212) 974-9050 x118.
DREAM MARKETING...The folks over at DreamWorks, it seems are really behind the upcoming X-Mas release Dreamgirls, with publicity campaign after campaign. Now, they've come up with another idea: a Dreamgirls road show, which will launch in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco all on Dec. 15. The film will screen at one theater per city once a day. For the exclusive screening, moviegoers will have to cough up $25. And, each theater will have Dreamgirls product for sale: posters, soundtracks, programs. Now that's what we call dreaming big.
CALL FOR ENTRIES...The Independent Black Film Festival (IBFF) has announced its call for entries for films and screenplays. IBFF '07 will return to Atlanta, from March 15 -18. IBFF’s film competitions are devoted to showcasing the works of independent filmmakers within the U.S. and across the world. Entry fee ranges from $45-65 depending on length and deadline. Applications are available at www.indieblackfest.org.
BLACK AIDS BENEFIT...If you're thinking of lending support to the Black AIDS Institute (http://www.blackaids.org/) by attending the "Heroes in the Struggle" event honoring Dionne Warwick and Friends on Nov. 16 at the Directors Guild of America in L.A. at 6pm, contact event producer Kenneth R. Reynolds @ (323)766 5551 or email@example.com and you can help a worthy cause while hanging out with T.C. Carson, Rocky Carroll, Loretta Devine, Dorien Wilson, Debi Morgan, Jimmy Jean Louis,Vanessa Williams and Hill Harper. Tickets are $250/$150. The money will go to help the Institute in its grassroots fights against HIV & AIDS.
AD UPDATE...In order to get a better grasp on ratings in the African-American community, Nielsen has finally formed an African-American council to advise them on issues concerning Blacks and sampling for measurement. And, the networks have agreed to fund a new stream of data to provide average ratings for commercials airing in each network program on a live plus seven days of playback basis in response to a similar move made earlier by Nielsen. We may recalled The A-List pondered these concepts in a previous issue ("Mining for Urban Ad Dollars," Issue 35, http://thealistmagzine.blogspot.com/2006/09/35-mining-for-urban-ad-dollars.html). This is yet another event that is indicative of the old guard changing and networks maybe not even deciding to be beholden to organizations like Nielsen and just basically, welcome to the wild, wild west of digital entertainment convergence ladies and gentlemen. We'll keep you posted.
LEAP WIRELESS ANNOUNCES GROWTH
Leap Wireless International, Inc. has announced that it has hit the two million-customer mark. The milestone comes on the heels of the company’s recent announcement that it gained approximately 161,000 net new customer additions during the third quarter of 2006. That brings total net additions for the first three quarters of 2006 to approximately 329,000 or approximately 180% greater than net customer growth for all of 2005. “This is another exciting accomplishment in Leap’s history. We believe that reaching the two million-customer mark is a testament to the attractiveness of our Cricket and Jump wireless services and their overall popularity in the markets where we offer service,” said Doug Hutcheson, president and chief executive officer at Leap. In 2006, Cricket service has been launched in ten new markets including Las Cruces, N.M.; Colorado Springs, Colo.; El Paso, San Antonio, Houston, Bryan, College Station, Austin, Temple and Killeen, Texas; Cincinnati, Ohio; Lexington and Louisville, Ky. and Kansas City, Mo. Leap now offers its Cricket service in 22 states across the country, stretching from California to New York.
THUMBPLAY CEO WINS AWARD
It just announced that Founder and CEO, Are Traasdahl, has been named a winner of the New York Ten Awards, an annual selection of ten individuals and companies in the greater New York business community that display extraordinary innovation and leadership in their industry and beyond. Traasdahl has been honored with the "Best New Product or Service" award. Founded in late 2004, Thumbplay is one of the fastest-growing sites on the Web. In the past two months, Thumbplay has announced content partnerships with the Walt Disney Internet Group and Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Recently, the company announced it raised $15 million in new funding.
For the 2006 Ten Awards hundreds of nominations were screened and evaluated by a panel of judges comprised of prominent journalists from New York-based local and national business media outlets, and evaluated based on the individual's contributions to his or her organization's objectives and leadership; the organization's impact on business innovation, both in New York and nationally; and the individual's industry leadership beyond his or her organization.
We Remember...ED BRADLEY (1941-2006)
We were deeply sadden by the death of Ed Bradley, the award-winning CBS newsman who has been a correspondent for "60 Minutes" since 1981. He died Thursday of leukemia in NY at age 65. But what a 65 years it was.The consummate journalist, he earned 19 Emmys for his in-depth, intriguing coverage of topics many in mass media would overlook. Hailing from Philadelphia, after college he went on to become a DJ and news reporter for a Philadelphia radio station in 1963 before heading to New York's WCBS radio in 1967. From there, he joined CBS News as a stringer in the Paris bureau in 1971, then transferring a to the Saigon bureau during the Vietnam War. He was wounded while on assignment. Next, Bradley moved to the Washington bureau in 1974 and shortly afterward was named a CBS News correspondent. He joined "60 Minutes" during the 1981 season.
Throughout his career, he didn't want to be know as a great black journalist--he wanted to be a great journalist. As he told Global Communicator about his career, "I did not come here to be a Black reporter...I don't want to be relegated to one thing...There are some people who choose to do that and if that had been my choice I don't think I would have ever gone to Paris to work. I would never have gone to Vietnam. I would have never been at 'CBS Reports' or '60 Minutes.' I had to take a stand and say hey, I want to be treated like every reporter here...But I also saw stories that involved people of color where I said hey, I want cover that story because I knew it wouldn't get covered if I didn't."
The passing of Bradley is indicative of the old guard and old media transforming and passing away and a new era truly arriving in terms of who and what controls information reporting and how it is distributed.
Robi Reed, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Lola Blank, PR man Chris Cathcart, Iona Morris joined The A-list contributor Gil Robertson for a pre-release signing for his new book Not in My Family AIDS in the African American Community at Eso Won bookstore in Los Angeles.
SHOUT OUT TO THE A-LIST CONTRIBUTOR GIL ROBERTSON OF THE ROBERTSON TREATMENT (www.robertsontreatment.com).