Justin Bieber Spoofs His Own Calvin Klein Ads in Promo for Comedy Central Roast

March 6, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Justin Bieber is officially eating his own tail. To promote his upcoming roast on Comedy Central slash desperate plea for respect, Canada's cruel revenge on America participates in a parody of his much-buzzed about, possibly-but-he- swears-it-totally-wasn't -Photoshopped Calvin Klein ads. Jeff Ross dresses as model Lara Stone and does a good job of creeping hard on Bieber, who keeps playing the same drum fill over and over, like the greasy pop machine he is, posing as the real boy he seems to be. It's not as funny as Kate McKinnon's SNL parody, but Bieber gets points for self-deprecation. And while he doesn't really have to do anything special to be comical, he does up the ante a little, pretending to be anxious, rebuffing Ross's grabs, and ultimately returning the favor. The brief high point, though, might be the comedian's jiggly beer-belly dance. Overall, the video makes for a pretty good teaser … or at least, a reminder that there might be some entertainment value in watching Bieber get chewed out. And while it's impossible not to wonder what Martha Stewart, Shaq and Snoop Dogg might have to say to Bieber, it can't be a good sign—if not surprising—that Seth Rogen seems to have something better to do that night.

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What Will the ‘Slow TV’ Phenomenon Look Like If It Comes to the U.S.?

March 4, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

A rather strange programming phenomenon is sweeping Europe: slow TV, which bypasses quick edits and montages in favor of leisurely paced windows into the world. The biggest splash has been made in Norway by a documentarian named Thomas Hellum, whose work includes such milestones as a 134-hour documentary on a cruise ship and an 18-hour show about salmon fishing, which (between them) have attracted some 3.2 million viewers .

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Bobby Flay Isn’t a Fan of Food Bloggers Trading Snark for Clicks

March 4, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Specs Who Bobby Flay Age 50 Claim to fame Chef (restaurants include Gato, Bar Americain and Mesa Grill); host of Food Network series such as Beat Bobby Flay, All-Star Academy and Bobby Flay's Barbecue Addiction Base New York Twitter @bflay What's the first information you consume in the morning? It's usually The New York Times, the actual newspaper. I'm a die-hard home delivery person. The first thing I do after waking up is I go to my door and get the newspaper. Then I watch news programs, which varies from The Today Show to CBS This Morning . I like Morning Joe a lot. What social media do you use? I use Twitter, but not really much else. I've used Instagram sparingly, although I am going to start doing it again. Do you read any food blogs or sites? I like Food52 a lot. I use the Bon App

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Yahoo’s New Season of Community Spoofs Age of Ultron Trailer

March 3, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Yes, it's really happening, folks: Yahoo Screen's sixth season of Community —the one that nearly didn't happen because of low ratings and a difficult relationship between creator Dan Harmon and NBC—released its first trailer. And it spoofs the worlds-will-die grandiosity of Marvel's buzzy spot for The Avengers: Age of Ultron, of course. Yahoo has acquired plenty of sponsorship muscle for the upcoming season—Harmon joked at the Television Critics Association winter press tour that "the entire sixth season takes place inside a Honda," and sure enough, the trailer has a Honda tag at the end. Here's hoping Yahoo lets Harmon nibble the hand that feeds him a bit; some of the show's best gags have been at the expense of laid-back brands like Subway . The show is produced by Sony and held together with chewing gum and bailing wire by Harmon, producers the Russo Brothers (who also directed the second Captain America flick, explaining both the Marvel love here and Community star Danny Pudi's appearance in that film) and Joel McHale, who reportedly

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Guy-Centric Spike Network Hopes Scripted Shows Like Tut Will Entice Female Viewers

March 3, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Viacom's bro-centric Spike network hasn't been in the upper echelons of cable TV in the recent past, but the company plans to change all that. Today at Manhattan's Cipriani 42nd Street, a cavernous restaurant housed in what used to be an art deco bank building, the network announced its intentions to attract more women to its air, pump up its scripted offerings, and bring viewers the story of King Tut. Also, lip syncing. Within the larger Viacom portfolio, "I think it's in a great place to be the home for general entertainment for both men and women," said the network's evp of brand marketing and creative, Frank Tanki. "Shows like Ink Master and Bar Rescue have brought in a ton of women, so now we just want to put a little polish on the brand. We're trying to make it a little more holistic as a brand. We want to make it more cohesive." The network has big plans for the future, including a new show from World War Z author Max Brooks called Emergency Broadcast, in development with Legendary Entertainment, more episodes of Lip Sync Battles, and a new show ordered for 10 episodes called Sweat Inc., an unscripted series in which a health guru tries to find the right workout for the right bod. Tut is definitely the highlight of the slate—star Ben Kinglsey attended the event in person alongside Avan Jogia, the miniseries' lead actor, and actress Sibylla Deen. It's a major investment in an original production (as opposed to an acquisition or a co-production with a larger partner) commissioned from Muse, the outfit that put together The Kennedys and Pillars of the Earth

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This Mika Brzezinski and NBCU Tour Is All About Empowering Women Leaders

March 2, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

In 2011 Mika Brzezinski released her powerful New York Times bestselling manifesto, Knowing Your Value: Women, Money and Getting What You're Worth —a must read for women everywhere. And now, Brzezinski, co-host of MSNBC's Morning Joe, will bring

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Fox Is Rebuilding Its Slate, One Hit at a Time

March 2, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

As co-chairman and co-CEO of Fox Television Group, Dana Walden, alongside partner Gary Newman, now oversees both Fox Broadcasting Company and 20th Century Fox Television, which Walden (who started there in 1992) has run with Newman since 1999. But when she and Newman took over the network last summer, replacing Kevin Reilly, who stepped down shortly after the Fox upfront last May, they received a baptism by fire. Aside from Gotham, audiences rejected all of Fox's new fall shows, including Utopia, Mulaney, Red Band Society and Gracepoint. Then, hip-hop drama Empire, from Walden's studio, wiped the slate clean in January, becoming the biggest new series in decades, with an unprecedented seven consecutive weeks of audience growth and an 18-49 rating of 5.4. The show has helped pull Fox from a distant fourth in 18-49 this season to a tie for third with ABC. Walden—who jokes that she handles the "fun stuff" (i.e., creative issues) while Newman gets the "hard stuff" (business issues)—talked about surviving Fox's fall to forget and how she'll capitalize on Empire's success. Did you have any idea that last fall was going to be as rough as it was? Yes. Going in, Gary and I always anticipated that this was going to be a really tough fall. We were encouraged by Gotham , encouraged by Sunday night. I felt like our job as the new leaders was to stay focused on the positive momentum and point to things that establish what we wanted to do in the future. That was a far better approach than being mired in how demoralizing the overnights can be. You and Gary have been in the new job for seven months. How has it been working out managing your network and studio hats

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After Conquering Reality TV, Kim Kardashian Is Taking the Mobile World By Storm

March 2, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Kim Kardashian West first grabbed our attention in October 2007 with the premiere of E!'s Keeping Up With the Kardashians. Who could have guessed where that basic-cable reality show moment would lead? Since then, Kim, 34, has entered that rare pantheon of mononymous celebrities. Like Madonna and Oprah, Pel

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How Leonard Nimoy Created an Alien Who Embodied the Best of Humanity

February 27, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

One story often told by Leonard Nimoy, who died today at age 83, was that quite a few fans of his Star Trek character, Mr. Spock, assumed Nimoy himself was a real scientist. Maybe it was the gravity he brought to what was, occasionally, a very silly show. Or maybe it was simply that television was so young when the show premiered in 1966, viewers weren't as skeptical as they are today.

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Nickelodeon Unveils Subscription Service for Preschoolers at Upfront

February 25, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Starting March 5, Nickelodeon will debut a streaming service for TV's smallest viewers: Noggin, a preschool-targeted, ad-free app that will stream reruns of Blue's Clues; Little Bear; Ni hao, Kai-Lan; and music videos featuring Nick's kids characters. The $5.99 monthly service will be "library-based, separate and distinct from Nickelodeon's preschool content available on its existing distribution platforms," the company assures. But it's a good indicator of which way the wind is blowing—we've been saying for years that kids prefer the iPad to TV. The announcement came out of Nick's Wednesday afternoon presentation, in which the company also announced a number of new series and took a victory lap for its recent movie successes, including The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie and Michael Bay's recent Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles flick, represented at the event by star Will Arnett. Nick is doubling down on star Nick Cannon, who co-creates and produces the new musical series Make It Pop. The network is also going really old school: H.R. Pufnstuf masterminds Sid and Marty Krofft will have an upcoming show on the network—yes, really—called Mutt & Stuff starring actual dogs and, obviously, dog puppets. Should be trippy.

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