Monday, April 30, 2012

Opposition Emerges to IATSE/Teamsters Deal

The Hollywood Reporter notes that opposition to the recently negotiated AMPTP-IATSE/Teamsters deal has surfaced. There is some doubt whether it will be enough to sink the deal.

U.S. hammers Canada, other countries over copyright protections

Canada may be the United States' largest trading partner, but it remains on a "priority watch list" of countries with the worst records for protecting copyrighted material, according to U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk's office
 Photo: U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk delivers a speech at Singapore Management University on April 26. Credit: Roslan Rahman / AFP/Getty Images

From the LA Times Company Town blog. Click here for the latest industry news. 

Canada may be the United States' largest trading partner, but it remains on a "priority watch list" of countries with the worst records for protecting copyrighted material.

In its 2012 annual report on trade barriers and content theft, U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk's office put Canada on a list of 13 countries -- including India, China, Pakistan and Russia -- that were singled out as the worst offenders.

The office said it was waiting to see if Canada would enact "long-awaited copyright legislation" and suggested that the country needs to take more steps to tighten border security by "providing customs officials with ex-officio authority to take action against the importation, exportation, and trans-shipment of pirated or counterfeit goods."

Under the category of "positive developments," Kirk's office removed Malaysia and Spain from the watch list, citing improvements to strengthen copyright protections in those countries.

Christopher Dodd, chairman and chief executive of the Motion Picture Assn. of America, commended the trade representative's office for its report, which he said "highlights content theft and barriers in foreign markets that pose threats to the continued growth of U.S. creative industries and the U.S. economy. Strong copyright protection and enforcement are vital to our industry's ability to create U.S. jobs, grow our own economy, and expand U.S. exports."

A copy of report can be found here.

The Internet flexes its muscles with blackout
Blackout: Sites gone dark to protest anti-piracy bills
Piracy reduces foreign box office receipts 7%, study says
-- Richard Verrier

Dark Water Productions

Is Netflix or services like it the future? "Hemlock Grove" producers say it is, and explain why on KCRW's The Buisness

Eli Roth and Brian McGreevy Talk 'Hemlock Grove'

Eli Roth and Brian McGreevy Talk 'Hemlock Grove'...and the architecture that makes Netflix and a new generation of content viewing work so well....

Horror movie maker, Eli Roth and Hemlock Grove author Brian McGreevy on turning McGreevy's Gothic novel into a Netflix original series. They say working with Netflix gives them greater freedom in terms of violence, language and sexuality. They also embrace the Netflix plan to release all 13 episodes at once (due in January, 2013) which enables them to conceive of the series as a 13-hour movie and do long-form storytelling.

Plus, Eli Roth gives an articulate defense on why he's drawn to horror. Citing the influence of his psychoanalyst father and artist mother, he sees horror films as fairy tales for adults.

Today's Banter Topics:

- Hollywood studios may be suspected of bribery and other unfair trade practices in their rush to expand in China. The SEC is looking into possible bribes and other behavior in the attempt to get into the super large, super tempting Chinese market. For China the tactics allegedly used are common and expected. China Film, which controls entry into the market, has "gifts" and "considerations" as part of their business practices. Such practices are illegal by US law and apply to all US corporations and individuals.

-Murdock's testimony that "he does not know many politicians" rang as untrue.

-Netflix announced a 5 million dollar loss, it's first ever, last week. The company is expanding into other markets, continents and fields. They are also producing original programming including Keven Spacey "House of Cards" and "Arrested Development". Direct to consumer via multiple channels does not carry the ratings, demographic or time frame limitations of traditional television or film. Netflixs first co-produced series, "Lillyhammer," may have been produced more to help in international distribution than for American audience growth. Still it has as many views, despite being produced with subtitles, as many cable series.

- Cinemacon News: Footage of three upcoming 3D films: Peter Jackson's The Hobbit, Baz Lurhman's The Great Gatsby and Ang Lee's Life of Pi. Cinemacon was Show West in past years. Peter Jackson has the 3 D footage at 48 frames per second, nearly twice the norm. It is suppose to be better and crisper than regular projection, but reviews of "The Hobbit" looked too sharp and real for audiences to accept it. Classics being remade in 3 D for adult dramas without the big special effects and action footage of what has been shown in the past. 

- Speculation over who will success Rich Ross as Chief of Disney studio. Disney presented its slate without their top man, a position now empty. "The Lone Ranger" and "Oz the Great and Powerful" were screened, both projects shepherded by Ross. The feeling is will Disney stick to the theme park, toy sales, marketing secondary sales model or rely more on films made by other studios or independent and perhaps produce more "Disney" regular, or by their standards, low budget films.

Interstitial music: "Tell Me What’s on Your Mind" by the Allah Las
Outro: "Diversion" by Mark Ronson

Toni Blair, student at Casting Call (experienced in LA)

Casting Call Talent Toni Blair!!


Any theater companies, auditions, notes or suggestions are appreciated.

"Chinawood" is a reality (or soon will be) to rival the US. "The Avengers" takes the world by storm. The Summer Movie Season may look like a rerun. There's an Ap for That. One bonus week on top for "Think like a man".

 Photo: Chris Hemsworth, left, stars with Chris Evans in "The Avengers." Credit: Walt Disney Studios

From the LA Times Company Town blog. Click here for the latest industry news.

"The Avengers" makes bank in Asia and Europe one week prior to US Release. "The Avengers" is set to dominate the domestic box office next weekend with a massive opening of over $150 million -- but overseas, the film's ticket sales are already soaring.

The superhero action flick debuted in 39 foreign countries last week and has since raked in a phenomenal $178.4 million, according to an estimate from distributor Walt Disney Studios. By comparison, Universal Pictures' "Battleship" passed the $170-million mark overseas this weekend after three weeks in international release.

The Skinny: I promise I'll never turn off another playoff game, no matter how much of a blowout it looks like. I was safe with the Knicks game but missed a classic comeback by the Clippers. Lesson learned. Monday's headlines include the surprise success of "Think Like a Man" at the box office, the struggle to bring apps to television and a look at why this summer's movie season will feel like a rerun.

Seven Stars Entertainment, city of Tianjin launch 'Chinawood'

Beijing-based Seven Stars Entertainment announced the building of "Chinawood," and a partnership with the Chinese government, to open a new "entertainment and media hub" in the world's most populous countryIn another sign of China's growing appetite for the entertainment industry, Beijing-based Seven Stars Entertainment has announced a partnership with the Chinese government to open a new "entertainment and media hub" in the world's most populous country.

Seven Stars Entertainment, a production company owned by media entrepreneur Bruno Wu, and the city of Tianjin said they would invest more than $1.27 billion to build a new entertainment and media complex outside of Beijing. To be called "Chinawood," the facility is to serve as a base for Chinese co-productions with filmmakers from the U.S., European nations and other foreign countries.

The complex is to include a 114,000-square-foot facility, scheduled to open in October, and house a film studio and private equity group controlled by Wu, who said the new center will "dramatically benefit" U.S. production partners.

Co-productions are exempt from China's quota system on foreign films allowed into the country.
"With the East Asia film market on course to be worth $10 billion by 2015, of which China will account for 50%, and rapidly catching up to North America, it is crucial, as well as inevitable, that we offer the products and services to facilitate substantial cooperation between the two territories," Wu said in a statement. "This project is a significant step towards closing that gap by providing expertise and facilities in all areas of financing, legal, co-production, distribution, marketing, sales and infrastructure."

"Think Like a Man" once again surprised the box-office experts by staying in first place and beating back four new movies
 Photo: A scene from "Think Like a Man." Credit: Alan Markfield / Associated Press

Return that ring. "Think Like a Man" once again surprised the box-office experts by staying in first place and beating back four new movies. The romantic comedy took in $18 million and is clearly appealing beyond its African American base. The big disappointment of the weekend was the romantic comedy "The Five-Year Engagement," which was supposed to open at No. 1 with $18 million but finished fourth with $11.2 million. I do recall saying in this space last Friday that the movie's marketing left much to be desired, so I'm honestly not surprised that viewers stayed away. It was pitched like a straight-to-DVD release and tried too hard to tie itself to "Bridesmaids." Box-office recaps from the Los Angeles Times and Movie City News.

Daily Dose: This time of year, TV actors and producers are walking on egg shells waiting to hear if their shows will get renewed for the fall schedules, which are announced in a few weeks. Some casts have to be good sports about the whole thing too. NBC had its prime-time programs take part in filming a bit the network will show at its presentation to advertisers next month. Some of those participating, including the cast of the drama "Parenthood," still don't know if they'll be back next season. If the show gets cut from the schedule, their faces will get cut from the video. Ouch.

Gambling on a Blockbuster to make the summer hot...

 Why isn't there an app for that? Although new platforms have changed the way people get their content, cable and satellite companies have steered clear of so-called apps. Though it may seem like only a matter of time until one turns on the TV screen and downloads apps for the cable channels they want, programmers have little incentive to tear up the current business model. Time Warner doesn't want to sell you a TNT app. They want you to have to buy TNT, TBS, TruTV, CNN and their other channels. The New York Times looks at the challenges of introducing the app approach to the pay-TV world.

Bygones. Although much of Hollywood cooled on its love affair with President Obama after the administration expressed concern about anti-piracy legislation that was subsequently defeated, now the wallets are opening up again. George Clooney is hosting an all-star fundraiser expected to bring in at least $10 million. The Wall Street Journal looks at how Obama is wooing back Hollywood.

We have met the enemy, and he is us. Kids love watching cartoon on Netflix. Disney and Nickelodeon make nice money selling their content to the streaming service. But in some cases, Netflix viewing may be taking eyeballs away from the cable channels. Media analyst Todd Juenger wonders if kids' programmers should rethink how they sell to Netflix. More from Barrons.

Maybe the lockout was a good idea. A shortened basketball season gave a sense of urgency to the season, and ratings were up at ABC and TNT and flat on ESPN. The playoffs are already off to a strong start as well. Still, I don't recommend the labor dispute strategy again. Details from Variety.

Inside the Los Angeles Times: If this summer feels like a rerun, that's because there are lots of sequels at the box office. Ben Fritz looks at what is coming this summer (see graph at right).

-- Joe Flint and others

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Drop-In Improv Workshop Tonight

Improv-Vegas and Sin City Improv Tonight

953 E Sahara Ave, Las Vegas, NV (map)

Improv-Vegas presents a weekly drop in workshop at The Onyx theater. Paul Mattingly will help to reinforce the basics while introducing new techniques and skills. Everyone is welcome, whether you have never stepped on stage before or if you are an improv veteran. No matter your skill level, you will have fun and learn.

$10 for each 2 hour workshop, and stay for the SET showcase for free.  Please note there is no Meet Up discount for the Drop-In Workshop, but as Paul Mattingly has taught us, $10 is the best VALUE!!!! on or off the Strip!

Auditions Set for "The Color Purple" This Week!

Open Casting Call For
“The Color Purple: The Musical”
WHO: A Source of Joy Theatricals - Las Vegas, NV
WHAT: Open Casting Call for the Soul Stirring Broadway Musical “The Color Purple”:
Directed By: Torrey Russell   Choreography: By Avree Walker
We are casting males and females age 8 & Up to play principal and ensemble roles in the Las Vegas non-touring production of The Color Purple - The Musical. We need powerful singing voices and dynamic dancers. All types and vocal ranges are encouraged to attend.

WHEN: Saturday, May 5, 2012,   11:00-5:00pm    (You must be signed in by 3:30pm)
Sunday, May 6, 2012,     11:00-5:00pm    (You must be signed in by 3:30pm)
Dancers Only Call – Sunday, May 6, 2012   11am-1:30pm   (You must be signed in by 10:50pm)

WHERE: West Las Vegas Theatre
951 W. Lake Mead Blvd. Las Vegas, NV 89106

A Source Of Joy Theatricals/ Broadway In The Hood
c/o Toni Ellis (Casting Director)

2 principle male roles
5 principle female roles
6 male chorus members (will play multiple roles).
6 female chorus members (will play multiple roles).
1 male child role
2 female children roles
Gospel choir singers
8 principle dancers (age 15- Up) 

Click on "read more" for additional information.

First Friday. Bad Head and Sirc Michaels Productions


You asked for it, so we're doing it!

BAD HEAD has been extended into next weekend!

You'll have 2 more chances to watch this audience-interactive mashup of sci-fi, horror, and burlesque! Armed with FOMATOES, you become a part of the show!

This will be the final weekend to join us in the Arts District for John Tomasello's BAD HEAD! Forget your chores, take off from work, steal the money if you have to! - just make sure you get over the see this show before its gone.

Beautiful burlesque babes battle it out for control of your heart, while mad scientists fight for control of your mind!

BAD HEAD features all the awkward dialogue, camp comedy, and sci-fi silliness that can be expected from a show based on such classics as THE BRAIN THAT WOULDN'T DIE, THE THING WITH 2 HEADS, and THEY SAVED HITLER'S BRAIN.

Come for the girls - stay for the fomatoes!

Not sure what fomatovision is? Check out a video about it by clicking here.

To help celebrate our extension, and give the passersby at 1st Friday the chance to experience some of what the show is about, the cast will be out in FULL FORCE.

GET YOUR PICTURE TAKEN with the fabulous Burlesque Babes and Sinister Scientists from the show!

And - if you're REALLY DARING, pose in our INFAMOUS DECAPITATION MACHINE! We'll take your picture and - through the science of stage wizardry - it will appear as though your head has been removed!

Everyone who gets their picture taken gets a coupon for $5 off admission to the show! How cool is that? Get your pic taken with lovely burlesque babes and we give YOU something for the privilege!

And, if you're SUPER EAGER to ensure you get a seat on Friday or Saturday night, there will be special discounted admission for those who pay DURING 1st Friday!

So come out to 1st Friday, stop by and get some pictures taken, and then come see the show after 1st Friday. It's the perfect end to a killer evening in the Arts District!

1129 Casino Center Blvd
Las Vegas NV 89104

Sunday 4/29 at 2pm
Friday 5/4 at midnight
Saturday 5/5 at midnight

$20 admission
$15 Vegas Locals (bring valid NV ID)
$10 students (bring valid student ID)
Cash only at the door
Seating is first-come, first-serve, so it is recommended you get to the venue no later than 15 minutes before the show is slated to begin

1129 Casino Center Blvd
Las Vegas NV 89104

For more info visit:

To reserve seats online:
About Us
Sirc Michaels Productions offers several types of live entertainment:

A) Shows designed for the enjoyment of Las Vegas locals put in spots frequented by the denizens of Sin City but not often seen by tourists

B) Productions designed for tourists looking to get a taste of what Sin City has to offer in entertainment and unforgettable experiences without clowns, magicians, or circus acts

C) Events and productions designed for everyone to take advantage of special occasions such as Halloween, Christmas, or - in the case of 2012 - the End of the World Party on December 21st

Sirc Michaels Productions works with the finest performers, technicians, directors, and designers to create unforgettable live entertainment. Unlike companies that bring in talent from out of the area or even overseas, Sirc Michaels Productions believes that the talent base in Las Vegas is vibrant and diverse enough to support any needs that arise for its productions.

Keeping with that philosophy, all auditions are open to the public and anyone interested in becoming a part of the excitement is encouraged to try out. This gives undiscovered talent a real opportunity to find a pathway to a career in the arts.


SEC-China letter sent to all Hollywood studios

Photo: Chinese film director Feng Xiaogang, center, actress Fan Bingbing and Chinese-U.S. singer Wang Leehom arrive for the opening of the Beijing International Film Festival in Beijing on April 23. Credit: How Hwee Young / European Pressphoto Agency.

From the LA Times Company Town Blog.  

A letter from the Securities and Exchange Commission was sent to all six major Hollywood studios and DreamWorks Animation probing potential violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act in their dealings with China, knowledgeable people not authorized to speak publicly confirmed.

In earlier reports, it was not clear how many studios had received the letter.

The fact that all did indicates that the SEC is looking into general industry practices and not the actions of any specific company.

Twentieth Century Fox, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures, Universal Pictures, Walt Disney Studios, Warner Bros., and DreamWorks Animation all regularly export their movies into the fast-growing Chinese market, which generated more than $2 billion in box-office revenue last year.

Additionally, as members of the Motion Picture Assn. of America, the six majors were supporters of trade negotiations that earlier this year led to China allowing more foreign movies into the country on a revenue-sharing basis and increasing the percentage of box office that the American studios could receive.

Sony co-produced its 2010 film "The Karate Kid" with China Film Group, and Disney is producing "Iron Man 3" in partnership with Beijing firm DMG Entertainment.

DreamWorks Animation is building a new studio in Shanghai along with two state-owned firms.
People who have been briefed on the content of the letters said they contain a broad array of questions and don't indicate that the SEC is currently focused on a specific element of studios' dealings with China, be it possibly bribes related to the selection of films for import, producing partnerships, or other interactions.

The letters are in most cases being handled by the legal departments of studios' parent companies: Time Warner Inc. for Warner Bros., for instance, and Viacom Inc. for Paramount Pictures.

Studios' dealings in China said to be subject of SEC investigation
U.S. and China reach deal to allow more movies into China
Disney, DMG team up to make "Iron Man 3" a Chinese co-production

-- Ben Fritz

Pilot Season, the reality and a fantasy as to what would work be more creative

The Deadline

KCRW WED OCT 12, 2011
Every year television executives gather at some conference or another, and every year they say the same thing. The way we're going about choosing shows and making pilots is crazy.  We all compete in a two-month frenzy for actors, directors, writers, even stage space, and we slam everything together and make a lot of under-the-gun decisions about which pilots to order to series, so that we can make a presentation in New York to a lot of 27 year-old media buyers, when the whole thing could be done more effectively and efficiently and with a much higher success rate if we all came to our senses and called off pilot season, and instead wrote, developed, shot, and chose pilots all year round...

Aired 10-12-2011

High Comedy Script Contest and Submissions



Street Justice Films - Seeking Unique High Concept Comedy Scripts

We are looking for completed feature-length comedy scripts that start out with comedy on the first page and are completely out of the box. Submissions must be for high concept material that can be pitched in a sentence or less, and must be completely non-derivative, i.e., as insane as possible, preferably R-rated, and in the vein of nothing you've seen in a comedy movie before. Target audience is the 18-35 demo.

Budget will not exceed $1 million. WGA and non-WGA writers may submit.

Our credits include “FDR: American Badass."


1. Please go to
2. Enter your email address (you will be signing up for InkTip's newsletter - FREE!)
3. Copy/Paste this code: wxhche1gvc
4. You will be submitting a logline and synopsis only.

IMPORTANT: Please ONLY submit your work if it fits what the lead is looking for EXACTLY.

If you aren't sure if your submission fits, please ask InkTip first. Please mention you heard about this from Jeff Gund at and please email any questions to:
Get exposure and gain access to entertainment pros looking for good scripts. List your scripts in InkTip's searchable index accessed 24/7 by qualified producers, representatives, directors and more.


Note: SAG-AFTRA ACTOR has no direct affiliation or interests in this group. I joined this group, but it is one of many posted here without a positive or negative endorsement. If you have comments or additional information feel free to e-mail it to my attention - Art Lynch,

The Las Vegas Film and Television Artists are a coalition of Filmmakers and Television professionals who work and cast in the Entertainment Capital of the World. We are the largest group of Film and Television professionals in the state of Nevada and the largest Entertainment Network to ever exist in the state. We are like-minded artists who are serious about making Film and Television Entertainment, with an emphasis on modern techniques. We encompass all aspects of the industry from Actors and Stuntmen to Directors and Producers.

We also promote our group and database to outside Casting and Production companies coming to film in Vegas.
We embrace the power of Indie Film and Television and refuse to acknowledge the monopoly of Hollywood on the Industry in today's modern era of Digital Competition. Beginners or Experts we network together to combine resources and talents.
We pride ourselves on being a "complete" resource for the Las Vegas area and assist beginners, and expert artists, in the local entertainment community. PROUD TO BE A WATCHDOG GROUP. We help local talent find legitimate resources by offering: Affordable Workshops, Free Networking Events, Cheap Headshots, Providing details on local Scam companies and Legitimate Agents/Mgrs ....and so so much more.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Film Class

117 s Water st , Henderson, NV (map)


Join a  film class on Saturdays. It will be 4 to 5 weeks long and will involve students in the entire filmmaking process.

Students will start be developing scripts concepts then shotlists, rehearsals, shooting and even some editing insight.

Classes are $150. and start soon. for more info contact me. to see other films go to youtube and watch.

WGA East Stages Rally to Protest Atlas Media

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka - WGA East rally at Atlas Media
Hafeez Raji...Bookmark The Hollywood Reporter’s Labor Page for the most in-depth coverage of entertainment unions and guilds.

The company makes “beaucoups of money,” AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka says, but abuses its writers and producers by denying them overtime and health insurance.

From the Hollywood Reporter (click here).

In ancient Greece, Atlas held up the world, but in modern-day New York, the WGA East says Atlas Media is holding up negotiations. Eighteen months ago, nonfiction TV writers and producers at the company voted to join the WGAE, but talks – which began last August – have been anything but fleet-footed, as if to echo an ancient philosopher’s argument that motion is impossible.

Seeking to change that dynamic – and end a “race to the bottom” in pay and benefits – about a hundred WGA East members and their supporters staged a rally Friday at the offices of the company, which produces such shows as the Travel Channel’s Hotel Impossible. Their efforts included a faux footrace, and some firepower from the national labor movement.

"We held a ‘race to the top’ and poor old Atlas came in last,” AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka told The Hollywood Reporter shortly after the event.

The company “is making beaucoups of money,” he added, but the employees “work 80 hours a week with no overtime and no pension or health benefits. A model that so abuses its most important assets can’t long endure.”

The company responded Saturday with a statement: "For 14 years, Atlas Media has been one of the few indy non-fiction production companies to actually offer health care and 401k benefits to its employees.  We also continue to search for creative ways to address an industry-wide dilemma: how to bring health care access to temporary freelance workers."

The next talks between the company and the AFL-CIO-affiliated WGAE are scheduled for Monday. The guild also won union elections at three other non-fiction/reality TV production shops, ITV Studios, Lion TV and Optomem. Negotiations with the latter two companies are in process, but ITV has appealed the election results to the National Labor Relations Board.

The key first issue, according to WGAE executive director Lowell Peterson, is health care, with other goals including overtime, wage minimums and paid time off and sick time. A future objective is pension benefits.

“This is an industrywide campaign,” he told THR.

Underneath it all, Peterson added, is that the writers want representation – “they want to make sure that someone’s got their back.”

Peterson noted that some non-fiction producers offer some benefits to long-term staff. He attributed this in part to the WGAE’s efforts, saying “our presence has opened people’s eyes.”

Twitter: @jhandel

our editor recommends

Atlas Media Responds to WGA East Reality Rally

The company points out that it’s one of the few independent non-fiction production companies to offer health insurance and retirement accounts.

From the Hollywood Reporter, click here for additional coverage.

Calling heath care “an industry-wide dilemma” in the non-fiction television industry, Atlas Media responded Saturday to the WGA East’s rally the previous day for pension and health benefits, overtime and other changes.

The company says it’s “search(ing) for creative ways to . . . bring health care access to temporary freelance workers.”

In addition, the company told The Hollywood Reporter “for 14 years, Atlas Media has been one of the few indy non-fiction production companies to actually offer health care and 401k benefits to its employees.”

The next talks between the company and the WGAE are scheduled for Monday. The guild has contended that the health and retirement benefits the company offers are inadequate, and, in addition, that those benefits should be extended to what the union contends is a large number of freelance workers at the company.

Atlas, which was founded in 1989 by writer/producer/director Bruce David Klein, produces such shows as the Travel Channel’s Hotel Impossible. The company says its programming ranges “from documentaries to docu-soaps…from reality to MOWs,” and has produced for numerous basic cable networks, including TLC, Discovery Channel, E! Entertainment, Travel Channel, A&E, National Geographic Channel, History Channel, Discovery Fit & Health, Food Network, GSN, WE: Women’s Entertainment, ID-Investigation Discovery, The Disney Channel, and USA Network, as well as national syndication, DVD/home entertainment, web channels, and distribution in 100+ markets worldwide.

Bookmark The Hollywood Reporter’s Labor Page for the most in-depth coverage of entertainment unions and guilds.

Twitter: @jhandel

From the Hollywood Reporter, click here for additional coverage.

'Think Like a Man' is surprise No. 1 again

"Think Like a Man" No. 1 at weekend box office again
 Photo: A scene from "Think Like a Man." Credit: Sony Pictures

Four new films hit theaters this weekend, but moviegoers were still thinking about "Think Like a Man."
In a surprise win, the ensemble comedy topped the box office for the second consecutive weekend, collecting $18 million and bringing its 10-day total to $60.9 million, according to an estimate from distributor Sony Pictures. Heading into the weekend, the Judd Apatow-produced romantic comedy "The Five-Year Engagement" was expected to be No. 1. Instead, the movie debuted with a disappointing $11.2 million — far under industry projections of at least $18 million, and below even Universal Pictures' modest $13-million prediction.
Three other debuts also failed to make serious dents at the box office. "The Pirates! Band of Misfits," a 3-D stop-motion animated picture, started with a slightly better $11.4 million — though it cost about $30 million more to produce than "Engagement." The Jason Statham action flick "Safe," meanwhile, grossed an unimpressive $7.7 million, roughly as much as the lackluster $7.3-million opening of the John Cusack horror film "The Raven."
As a result of the weak performance of the slew of new films, ticket sales were down 30% compared with the same three-day period last year, when "Fast Five" debuted with a massive $86.2 million.
"The Five-Year Engagement" marks the second-worst opening ever for writer-director Nicholas Stoller, who teamed with star Jason Segel to pen the relationship comedy. The pair have successfully collaborated together before on projects such as 2008's "Forgetting Sarah Marshall" and last year's solid hit "The Muppets."
Outside of March's "Jeff, Who Lives at Home" — a low-budget film that never played in more than 500 theaters — Segel has proved to be a reliable box-office draw in recent years. The 32-year-old actor is best known for playing overgrown man-children in movies such as "Marshall" and 2009's "I Love You, Man," and was one of the main reasons moviegoers said they showed up to see "Engagement" this weekend. However, moviegoers — like the critics — were ultimately not enamored with the picture, assigning it an average grade of B-, according to market research firm CinemaScore. Not surprisingly, the film appealed to a 64% female audience — but the crowd was a bit older than is typical for an Apatow film, as 57% were over the age of 30.
The movie, also starring Emily Blunt, follows a couple whose engagement is derailed for half a decade due to career ambitions. Universal and Relativity Media spent about $30 million to make the film.
"The Pirates! Band of Misfits" is the latest production from England's Aardman Animations that has failed to resonate in a major way with American audiences. Known for creating films such as "Wallace & Gromit" and "Chicken Run," Aardman's most recent production, last winter's "Arthur Christmas, only grossed $46 million domestically, though it raked in $100 million abroad. "Pirates" should follow that same trajectory, as it has already collected $63.7 million from 49 foreign countries.
In the United States and Canada this weekend, the movie attracted a 76% family audience, who gave the well-reviewed film an average grade of B. The movie, featuring the voice of Hugh Grant as a pirate trying to become buccaneer of the year, had a budget of about $55 million.
"Safe," which stars Statham as a former cop on a mission to save a girl from international gangs, appealed mostly to older men this weekend. The opening for "Safe" was a bit lower than that of the typical Statham film: Last year, the action star's "Killer Elite" started off with $9 million, while "The Mechanic" debuted with $11 million. Audiences who saw his most recent film liked it a tad more than any of the weekend's other new releases, giving it a B+ on CinemaScore.
Lionsgate, which is releasing the film in the United States and Canada on behalf of film finance company IM Global, only paid for the film's prints and advertising costs.
"The Raven" received the most dismal critical reviews of any film hitting theaters this weekend — earning only a paltry 22% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Moviegoers — 59% of whom were age 25 and older — were more kind, giving the film an average grade of B.
The movie stars Cusack as 19th century author Edgar Allen Poe, who ends up having to face reenactments of the scary stories he penned. The film was made for $26 million by production and financing company Intrepid Pictures but was later acquired by Relativity for about $4 million.
The movie's opening weekend is not great news for Cusack, who has had a mixed track record at the box office in recent years. The 45-year-old actor was part of a phenomenal hit with Roland Emmerich's disaster epic "2012" two years ago, but has had less success with films such as 2007’s “Martian Child” and 2005’s “Must Love Dogs.”
[Updated, 12:13 P.M., April 29: In limited debut, the dark comedy "Bernie" scored the best per-theater average of the year for a specialty release. The film, directed by Richard Linklater and starring Jack Black as an undertaker who commits a crime but is still popular in his Texas community, grossed $90,438 over the weekend. Playing in three theaters, that amounted to a strong location average of $30,146. The movie, which is being released by Millennium Entertainment, debuted at the Los Angeles Film Festival last June and earned largely positive critical reviews.

Here are the top 10 movies at the domestic box office, with international results when available, according to studio estimates:
1. "Think Like a Man" (Sony): $18 million on its second weekend, down 46%. Domestic total: $60.9 million.

2. "The Pirates! Band of Misfits" (Sony): Opened with $11.4 million. $5.5 million overseas in 49 foreign markets. International total: $63.6 million.

3. "The Lucky One" (Warner Bros./Village Roadshow): $11.3 million on its second weekend, down 50%. Domestic total: $39.9 million. $4.8 million overseas in 20 foreign markets. International total: $10 million.

4. "The Hunger Games" (Lionsgate): $11.3 million on its sixth weekend, down 23%. Domestic total: $372.5 million. $7.4 million overseas in 60 foreign markets. International total: $228.5 million.

5. "The Five-Year Engagement" (Universal/Relativity): Opened with $11.2 million.

6. "Safe" (Lionsgate/IM Global): Opened with $7.7 million.

7. "The Raven" (Relativity/Intrepid): Opened with $7.3 million.

8. "Chimpanzee" (Disney): $5.5 million on its second weekend, down 49%. Domestic total: $19.2 million.

9. "The Three Stooges" (Fox): $5.4 million on its third weekend, down 45%. Domestic total: $37.1 million.

10. "The Cabin in the Woods" (Lionsgate): $4.5 million on its third weekend, down 44%. Domestic total: $34.7 million.] 
'The Pirates! Band of Misfits' helps stop-motion endure
'Think Like a Man's' Will Packer: Hollywood's new buzz king
Movie Projector: 'Five-Year Engagement' expected to reach altar first

— Amy Kaufman

Ahead of U.S. debut, 'Avengers' opens with $178.4 million abroad

Photo: Chris Hemsworth, left, stars with Chris Evans in "The Avengers." Credit: Walt Disney Studios

"The Avengers" is set to dominate the domestic box office next weekend with a massive opening of over $150 million -- but overseas, the film's ticket sales are already soaring.

The superhero action flick debuted in 39 foreign countries last week and has since raked in a phenomenal $178.4 million, according to an estimate from distributor Walt Disney Studios. By comparison, Universal Pictures' "Battleship" passed the $170-million mark overseas this weekend after three weeks in international release.

The movie, which was produced by Disney's Marvel Entertainment for about $220 million, brings together a cavalcade of beloved comic-book heroes played by A-listers such as Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson and Jeremy Renner. The film opened in the No. 1 position in every country it debuted in over the weekend, and had the biggest opening weekend ever in locations such as Mexico, Brazil and Taiwan.

This weekend, the film performed best in the United Kingdom, where it had the strongest opening yet for a superhero flick with $24.7 million. The picture has yet to open in Russia, China and Japan, where the movie is expected to do colossal business.

Marvel's films typically resonate more strongly internationally than domestically. Last summer, about $268 million of the $449.3 million worldwide gross for "Thor" came from abroad. Even "Captain America," which obviously has more patriotic themes, did slightly better overseas: It made $191 million internationally, compared with $176 million in the United States and Canada.

From the LA Times Company Town Blog.

Childrens Film Worshop with Reel

This is a Film and review workshop. Ages 6 to 13.

We will focus on learning to audition for children's programming with a emphasis on comedy and 'childrens' type programming. All full time Students are given monthly scenes for demo reels. All professionally filmed and edited

Nickelodeon and other kids programs will be our focus.

This class is free to first time students and $20. for regular students and discounted if paid in advance.
This is one of our 12 monthly workshops. . 481-4748

"Advanced Action" Saturday Workshops DIFFERENT TOPIC EACH WEEK


This course offers a basic introduction to several acting styles and techniques, a hands on practical application of these techniques, and a film and review of these techniques at various points of the course to determine your proficiency with them.

The main goal of this course is refine basic acting skills as they apply to your level of understanding and implementation.. We will also equip those, who are ready, with the tools of the trade to assist your career towards the next step. 

We will cover a brief introduction to many acting topics including , but not limited to , Oral Interpretation, Scene Study and Cold reading. 

 Since this course is catered to advanced actors the learning curve may be different for some. . Those who struggle to free themselves of personal and physiological boundaries will need to refine your understanding and application through a few private lessons to assure that you get the most from this curriculum.

This course consists of 18 classes that are applied to each actors individual strengths and weaknesses.

Each class is 3 hours long and consists of a 45 minute lecture, lesson handouts, and a 2 hour film and review of your efforts.

Students will be filmed and reviewed at each class and tested 4 times throughout the course to assure the mastery, or at least the full understanding, of the various techniques we teach.

Upon completion of the entire course, and proficiency in the practical application of our techniques, you will receive a certificate of graduation.  Anyone not completing the entire course will be given credit for what is done and a chance to put it towards the graduation certification at a later date.

Demo Reels , Headshots and Resume building will all be offered to students as they progress through the various levels.

When you have successfully completed this course you will have all the tools, techniques, and required equipment to begin participation in the Film and Television Industry. 

You will also be given the opportunity to take your craft to the next level and continue in any of the "Top Action" advanced courses offered by  the Las Vegas Film and Television Artists.

1. Lesson one.                Introduction to Acting Lecture.
2. Lesson two.                 Oral Interpretation.
3. Lesson three.              Method of Physical Action
4. Lesson four.                Opening Emotions
5. Lesson five.                 Overcoming Personal Boundaries
6. Lesson six.                   Skills test 1
7. Lesson seven.             Monologues and soliloquies
8. Lesson eight.               Filming Final Monologues
9. Lesson nine.                Skills test 2
10. Lesson ten.                Scene Study
11. Lesson eleven.           Filming Scene Study
12. Lesson twelve.           Cold Reading
13. Lesson thirteen.         Skills test 3
14. Lesson fourteen.        Serious Improvisation
15. Lesson fifteen.            Understanding Comedy and Comedy Improvisation
16. Lesson sixteen.           Audition Techniques
17. Lesson seventeen.     Audition Call
18. Lesson eighteen.        Final Exam film and review on your weakest area. Test 4.

Acting is not like real life. Acting is a willful and deliberate reconstruction of a story. Actors have to plan every emotion and action. 

When performing actors never play it by ear and hope that the character comes to life. this would make the performance pure chaos with each member of the cast struggling to figure out and respond to random actions from other actors.

Actors must explore the full range of possibilities of all his characters emotions and actions to develop meaning and truthful  justifications for the through line.

Its the actors ability to use  all his training and ability to interact with the other actors, the environment, and the motivation of each  character  to bring a feeling of realism to what is quite obviously not real.

Understanding through-lines  and embracing the character completely is vital. Acting comes from within and  you must take outside information and internalize it so it may be delivered with passion and realism. 

Remember your performance will always be unique since the main ingredient in any performance is YOU.

The Morning After

Alien make-up all day for the title character of a student film by Mac Hines...that was my Saturday. As my friend Sean Grennan once said, when you are my age you feel all your injuries the day after a shoot. He was right.

But I also feel proud of my students who I worked with on the film, and the positive enjoyable UNLV crew, including the remarkable and patient make-up artists who created the make up and worked with or on me for up to four hours a shoot day.

Nielsen study finds 'second screen' viewing enhances TV experience

Photo:  Klarysa Clark, a teenager from Eagle Rock, checks out a 3-D television at the Atwater Village Best Buy in Los Angeles in June 2010.  Credit: Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times

From the LA Times Company Town Blog. Click here for the latest industry news. 

When viewers watch a TV program with a tablet device, they tend to check their email, hunt for sports scores or seek additional information about the show or a commercial they were watching on the big screen.

A new report by Nielsen Co., released Friday, underscores what network television researchers have been preaching for more than a year: that "second screen viewing" appears to augment the TV viewing experience rather than steal away viewers.

Nielsen's State of the Media: Advertising & Audiences report found that men, when watching TV and using a tablet simultaneously, were more likely than women to look for information related to a TV program they were watching (39% versus 34%). Women were more inclined to seek information related to a television commercial  (24% versus 21%).

Not surprisingly, teenagers with tablets were far more apt to visit a social media site while watching TV than were older baby boomers and seniors (62% versus 33%).

The report also found cultural differences in TV watching and the use of digital video recorders. Nielsen said that white TV viewers use digital video recorders on a daily basis twice as much as any other group, while Asian Americans appear to spend a higher proportion of their overall TV time watching their previously recorded programs.

Adults age 25 to 54 appear to be heavily influenced by advertising. Nielsen said that demographic group was 23% more likely than the average U.S. Internet user to follow a brand through social networking sites, and 29% more likely to purchase a product online that had been featured on TV.

Finally, teenagers used a game console for eight minutes a night, on average -- more than twice as much as the general TV population.

Nielsen study finds that dramas are recorded at higher rates
Hulu's owners said to be buying out Providence Equity's stake
Internet advertising hits a record $31 billion
-- Meg James

Goodall to be Tournament of Roses Grand Marshall

Jane Goodall, top chimpanzee and great ape researcher will be the Grand Marshall of the Tournament of Roses in January. She is 78 years old.

First posted 4-23-2012

Nevada Frachised Talent Agencies

See also other postings concerning agents, agencies, agent relations and the business.

In Nevada please us only the five Las Vegas SAG franchised agencies:

Baskow, J & Associates
Full Service (All Ages)

2948 E. Russell Rd.
Las Vegas, NV  89120
(702) 733-7818

Lenz Agency
Full Service (All Ages)

1591 East Desert Inn Road
Las Vegas, NV  89109
(702) 733-6888

eNVy Model & Talent Agency
Full Service (All Ages)

101 Convention Center Dr.
Las Vegas, NV  89109
(702) 878-7368

Best Agency
Full Service (All Ages)
5565 South Decatur Blvd.
Las Vegas, NV 89118
(702) 889-2900

Don't Give Up

"Just don't give up trying to do what you really want to do. Where there's love and inspiration, I don't think you can go wrong." 
--Ella Fitzgerald

Acting Classes

Acting Classes at Casting Call and at Boulder City Park and Rec

$89 a month for my class plus up to three others per week through Casting Call Entertainment. The studio is in the complex with the light house just east of Flamingo and Eastern.



Now forming  Evening and Saturday acting, voice over and auditioning classes through BC Park District

Budget cuts have reduced advertising and may cut staff, but acting classes through the Boulder City Parks and Rec will continue. We are expanding to Thursday evenings and Saturday Mornings at the same low park district based rate for professional, beginner and intermediate acting, voice over, auditioning and on-camera course work. With six or more regular students improvisation will be added!

Ask whomever answers to take your name and number down and pass it to me! Art Lynch!

Join us and have fun.

Only $40 for a full month of 1 and a half hour (children) or two hours a week (teens and adults).

Boulder City is only a half hour from downtown Las Vegas or the Strip, fifteen minutes from Henderson and is "a world away" in its small town charm and atmosphere. Head toward Lake Mead and the Hoover Dam and stop by BC on the way!

Boulder City

Call 293-9340 or 293-1915.

or (702) 454-1067 for information

$40 monthly fee for weekly classes, 
group discounts available.