Chuck Todd told a Meet the Press panel Sunday morning that the Obama administration’s touting of the “private sector” speed with which its website repair team is working was a tacit acknowledgement that government is inefficient and ineffective at large-scale projects like the Affordable Care Act federal exchange website.Todd’s comments came in reference to the White House press statement, released on the self-imposed December 1 deadline, outlining the improvements made to Healthcare.gov two months after its disastrous rollout.“The most distinct thing in this report: ‘the team is operating with private sector velocity and effectiveness,'” Todd said. “That is an acknowledgement that this was a government operation for a long time, and it failed, and now we’re bringing in the private sector folks. That is an indictment of the whole idea of government as the solution.”“Government is like an offensive lineman,” New … [Read more...] about Chuck Todd: White House Touting Healthcare.gov’s ‘Private Sector’ Speed Is an Indictment of Gov’t
An agent of change
The 2013 edition of the Sundance Film Festival kicked off yesterdayRedford’s opening remarks celebrated film as an agent ofSound City and Twenty. Following a political diversion where the topic switched toFollowing the press conference, both films I was able to seeMay In The Summer, directed by Cherien Dabis, is one of the dramatic competition titles from a female filmmaker.Amreeka which was that year’s Grand JuryMay, that suffers from a simple-minded yet cluttered script. In portrayingMay In The Summer seems more concerned about ticking predictableAfter a quick stop at Indiewire’s annual condo party, theTwenty Feet To Stardom (which competes … [Read more...] about Robert Redford salutes film as agent of change at 2013 Sundance.
Charles Collier, Tavistock WoodDuncan Heath, Independent Sarah Spear, Curtis Brown Josh Varney, 42 Jane Villiers, Sayle Screen What has been the biggest change since you started in the business?Charles Collier There are two clear things that have changed since I came into the business. Firstly, as agents we have to be operating under the UK system and UK laws and, at the same time, we have to be familiar with and confident at working in the US system. Secondly, every career that we look after should have a variety and balance between film and TV to reach its potential. As agents, we have to be comfortable in both worlds and both in the US and UK. The generation before ours let the US agent do what they wanted.Josh Varney What I’ve seen change in the last five years is the volume of information-sharing. In the UK we are now getting the same information at the same time as our US counterparts… A real strength of being in London is that one can sometimes be ahead of the game … [Read more...] about Agents of change
Scheidlinger will be based Los Angeles, reporting to co-chairman Harvey Weinstein and co-president of production Michael Cole. He will work closely with Cole and manage business affairs with Eric Roth, executive vp and co-head of business affairs.Following a long stint in the agency world, Scheidlinger founded production outfit Omnibus, which had a Fox feature film deal and a Touchstone Television deal. His production credits include "Sports Night," "The Court" and "Cousin Bette."Before that, Scheidlinger was a CAA agent for eight years. His client list included Ang Lee, Al Pacino, Annette Bening, Warren Beatty, Gary Sinise, Aaron Sorkin, Christopher Guest and Michael Bay. He came to CAA after serving as an agent and business affairs attorney at ICM in New York.Scheidlinger began his career as an entertainment attorney at Frankfurt, Garbus, Klein & Selz in New York. … [Read more...] about Weinstein’s agent of change
The combination of the two shops would be nearly unprecedented in modern Hollywood, whose agency pairings have tended to come more as absorptions than as mergers of equals.Yet WMA and Endeavor have been in discussions for weeks, with agency partners including Ari Emanuel at Endeavor and Jim Wiatt and Dave Wirtschafter at WMA said to be in the talks. Reps for the two agencies declined comment. But some observers put the odds at 50-50 that a deal could be worked out — far from a certainty but a very real possibility.A merger would hold appeal for both companies, combining departments and strengths that in many cases are complementary."This would get William Morris back in the game with talent, and it gives Endeavor a financial toehold that it needs," said a studio producer who has worked extensively with clients from each, noting that WMA does have many A-list actors, but a merger would further bolster their ranks.In addition to its core film and TV business, WMA has developed a … [Read more...] about WMA, Endeavor: agents of change?
Agency founder Scott Harris wanted more of his staff to manage the company as it grows its business. For the first time, agents have been given titles.In addition to president Harris, the committee includes newly named executive vp Nevin Dolcefino (talent department) and vps Paul Blechner (business affairs), Kimberly Carver (literary, alternative), Maury DiMauro (New York — beauty, commercials), Harvey Finkel (CFO), Gary Gersh (New York — talent, Broadway), Debbie Haeusler (production/below the line), Jonathan Howard (talent), Marcia Hurwitz (commercials, voice-over) and Craig Shapiro (talent).Innovative has about 160 employees and offices in Los Angeles, New York and Chicago.The firm also has launched an agent-trainee program, spearheaded by Howard; a dozen staffers are taking part. (partialdiff) … [Read more...] about Agents of change at Innovative
In just a few short years, international sales shingle Wild Bunch has transformed itself into an emerging international co-production/distribution/sales powerhouse — this year financing and selling two Oscar hopefuls: Fox Searchlight's "The Wrestler" and IFC's Steven Soderbergh epic "Che.""Wild Bunch is an agent of change. We are the Barack Obama of the movie industry," Wild Bunch CEO Vincent Grimond quipped during a recent interview. The past couple of years have been critical for the company, which became a ubiquitous film market entity soon after its 2002 launch, repping a series of prize-winning films that included Venice Golden Lion winner "The Magdalene Sisters" and Michael Moore's "Fahrenheit 9/11."The transformation from simple sales agent began in earnest in 2004, when Wild Bunch got into the distribution game via its acquisition of Wild Side Films and Wild Side Video. It also bought a majority share of distributor Pan Europeenne Edition and increased its bankroll via … [Read more...] about From party hearty to ‘agent of change’
Like when you heat water: Its temperature goes up (a quantitative change), but it remains basically the same (it's still water). But if you keep heating past 100°C, the water boils until it evaporates, undergoing a qualitative change and turning into something new — steam — just like if you cool water past 0°C, it turns into ice.I've been thinking about that law — part of my mandatory high school curriculum in communist Bulgaria — for the past month. Because after years of gaining on broadcast in the ratings and on the awards circuit, cable recently jumped to a new level with a series of A-list talent migrations: >Top broadcast producer John Wells made his foray into cable with the dramedy "Shameless" in the works at HBO. >Phil Rosenthal and Ray Romano, the respective creator and star of one of the biggest broadcast comedies, CBS' "Everybody Loves Raymond," picked the cable route for their return to television. Rosenthal is developing three … [Read more...] about Agents of change: Cable sneaks up with A-listers and fresh biz models
It's early morning on an overcast day in June. Slate-gray waves pound the Malibu coastline and seagulls hover in the moist air above the two dozen men and women who huddle together just a few feet from the water.They could be a regular group of surfers. But they're not. And as you look at them more carefully, you start to notice things. One is blind. Several are without legs. Many are covered with battle scars. These are veterans who have been badly wounded in Iraq, and they are here to take part in Operation Amped, a surf camp that is helping them return to normal life.As their leaders rally the surfers with a pep talk, one of the men lets out an excited whoop.This is Jesus David Vidana. He is tanned and muscled and there's hardly anything to indicate he almost lost his life in Iraq. But he knows it's a miracle he's here -- and he also knows how much the camp is doing to help him move forward. (Vidana declined to be photographed for this story.)"There are no bounds," he says. "You see … [Read more...] about Philanthropy in Hollywood: Agents of Change
He died Tuesday of lung cancer at his home in Beverly Hills. Although Fields went on to become a studio executive and film producer, he made his mark on the industry through the Creative Management Agency, which he co-founded with David Begelman in 1960. CMA — which later evolved into the current ICM — exemplified what at the time was called the New Hollywood.From its headquarters on Beverly Boulevard, it boasted a glittering talent roster that included Robert Redford, Paul Newman, Gene Hackman, Michael Caine, Woody Allen, Barbra Streisand and Steve McQueen along with such directors as Arthur Penn, Steven Spielberg, Mel Brooks, Sydney Pollack, George Lucas, Francis Ford Coppola and Paul Mazursky. It also employed some of the era's most dynamic agents including Sue Mengers, Richard Shepherd, Guy MacElwaine and Mike Medavoy.Jeff Berg, who joined CMA as a young agent and now heads ICM as its chairman and CEO, said: "It was a very high-energy environment, a very collegial … [Read more...] about An agent of change