GFCTV, coming to a screen near you. Will art be able to emulate life, or more precisely: make the Global Financial Crisis even more real, or humorous?
Much of what has happened in the GFC since it erupted on 9 August, 2007, has been incredible, unbelievable. In fact, such as been the level of incompetence, cupidity and plain greed, that if you put them into a script for a movie or TV program, it would be incredible. And yet it’s all true, despite the denial still in existence in parts of the business community. Grown men (they were mostly men) paid themselves tens of millions of dollars (collectively billions of dollars) to lose trillions of dollars in a scandal that remains open ended.
A drama would be unable to do the GFC justice, so could comedy be the only way to tell the story?
Well, we are about to find out whether there’s laughs in the GFC.
The US ABC TV Network is reported to have pilots for two comedy programs
One untitled pilot stars Kelsey Grammer, (Frasier) who plays a Wall Street millionaire laid low and poorer by the meltdown. He has to start caring for a family that he rarely saw when he was a master of the Wall Street universe.
The second program is entitled Canned, about a group of Gen-Xers fired from their glossy jobs at an investment bank.
Canned was originally canned with ABC network execs thinking that Americans didn’t want to be face to face with the deepening recession. Apparently its genre is ‘post-friends’. Work on the two pilots starts next month. — Glenn Dyer
Recession bites Olympic broadcast rights. There are reports that the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has reportedly delayed seeking bids for broadcast rights to future games for “some time.”
UK and US reports suggest the IOC may wait until a location has been chosen for the 2016 Summer Games, or until the economy improves, whichever comes sooner. The recession is expected to last until well into 2010. The Nine Network and Foxtel have paid $US125 million for next year’s Winter Games and the 2010 Summer Games in London.
The key will be the recovery in the US which is the most lucrative market for the Games — NBC paid just under $US894 billion for the 2008 Beijing Summer Games and the London and the Winter Games next year. The location for the 2014 Winter Games and the 2016 Summer Games won’t be known for a year. — Glenn Dyer
Cricket produces great knock for Foxtel. Foxtel got good numbers for the second cricket test in South Africa on Friday and Saturday nights. The second session of the first day on Friday night saw 355,000 watch Foxtel across the platforms (Austar and Optus as well). That included 268,000 people watching in the five metro markets. The second most watched program was the second session of Day Two (Saturday) with 333,000 people watching, including 152,000 watching in the five metro markets.
These are among the highest figures recorded for cricket on pay TV. The audience for session two of Day One was the second highest ever for cricket. It was boosted by people tuning from the NSW-Queensland Rugby Union Super 14 game when that ended
The cricket claimed the top six spots on Pay TV for the week, while sport occupied the top 13 most watched programs. With the NRL starting this week, that dominance by sport will increase. — Glenn Dyer
After 43 years Chris Masters finishes with the ABC today.
Truth in online media. When I click on a hyperlink to read an article from The Australian online, the bottom task bar tells me that it is connecting to the ‘bs-serving-system’. Never was a truer word… — Anonymous Crikey reader
Nine shifts abuse ad after complaints. The Nine Network has been accused of contributing to a “conspiracy of silence” after it moved a hard-hitting ad for charity organisation Adult Survivors of Child Abuse (ASCA) to a late night, low rotation slot following complaints … A spokesman for Nine said it was “taking precautions to ensure it is placed in the schedule appropriately”, adding that Nine provides $30 million-worth of community service announcement airtime each year. In the ad, the father drops s-xually-suggestive jokes about his daughter to the wedding crowd who laugh along. Lines such as “I look at Melissa today and I still remember the first words I said to her after s-x — don’t tell Mum!” have the crowd in hysterics. — B&T
Seven leading in race to deliver movie downloads. The Seven Media Group has found a way for people to download and watch as many movies as they like on their televisions without incurring penalties for exceeding their broadband download limits. Seven will take on Telstra and other internet service providers at their own game by selling a broadband internet connection with its TiVo digital set-top box from next month. — The Australian
Hearst plans online-only version of Seattle P-I. The newspaper division of Hearst, one of the most troubled in the country, is in the middle of its “100 days of change”, as we have reported before, and is now taking steps on the inevitable for its Seattle paper, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. It has made offers to some staffers to participate in an online-only version of the newspaper, the P-I reported on its website late last night. This means P-I is ditching the paper version, as it had warned before. — Washington Post
Tennessee’s four largest dailies agree to share news content. Representatives of the four largest newspapers of Tennessee — Nashville’s Tennessean, Memphis’ Commercial Appeal, Chattanooga Times-Free Press and Knoxville’s News Sentinel — met Feb. 4, 2009, to explore opportunities to cooperate to leverage their resources. During the discussion, all agreed that readers would be best served if the papers found ways to eliminate duplicate effort and share content of interest throughout the state. — Memphis Flyer
UK’s Sky News creates Twitter correspondent. The Online team is using Ruth Barnett as a “Twitter correspondent” — scouring Twitter for stories and feeding back, giving Sky News a presence in the Twittersphere. — TechCrunch
With content from Google News, YouTube launches news site. In what could become yet another fractionalization of where people get their TV news, YouTube has launched a page that brings the top Google News stories in video form to YouTube. — WebNewser
Bloomberg’s newbie newsies. Bloomberg TV has been regularly nudging off-air newsmen and — women in front of the cameras … The move has induced some snickers among former Bloomberg veterans. Why, they wonder, in the midst of arguably the most complex financial crisis in the nation’s history, would you want to put inexperienced — and potentially nervous — newborn reporters front and center? — New York Observor
Wall St dumps film deals on Hollywood investors. The financial crisis is forcing Wall Street banks and hedge funds to pull out of billions of dollars worth of film deals, opening the door for specialty investors to scoop up Hollywood assets at discount prices. — Reuters
Oprah shares cover of magazine for first time. For the first time in its nine-year history, Oprah Winfrey is not the lone cover subject of her magazine. Oprah shares the cover of the April issue of O with Michelle Obama. — Folio
Gupta opts out of surgeon general consideration. Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN‘s chief medical correspondent, has withdrawn his name from consideration as surgeon general of the United States, he said Thursday. “This is more about my family and my surgical career,” Gupta told CNN‘s Larry King Live. — CNN