Life in Hollywood, below-the-line

Life in Hollywood, below-the-line
Work gloves at the end of the 2006/2007 television season (photo by Richard Blair)

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Picks 'o the Week

The Disney-fuck-ation of America
                  Inside the Honeywagon...

Are you ready, America? According to the Hollywood Reporter, after subjecting audiences to four lousy-but-lucrative “Pirates of the Caribbean” movies, the geniuses at Disney are reportedly planning a show based on – drum roll, please -- Big Thunder Mountain.

Yes, an actual movie premised on a roller coaster ride through a phony gold-rush era landscape in Disneyland. And if that’s not bad enough, they also have television shows or features in development based on The Haunted Mansion, The Matterhorn, The Country Bears, Mission to Mars, the Jungle Cruise, and Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. But the topper has to be "the ultimate theme park movie,” Disney’s “Magic Kingdom,” set entirely inside the park... an immense steaming turd that will supposedly be written by none other than San Francisco Bay Area literary darling Michael Chabon.

 Wow.  Go figure.

Clearly, Disney has no shame -- and apparently not much imagination, anymore -- but I’ve no doubt they’ll keep printing money hand-over-fist while shoveling such cinematic crap down the wide-open mouths of the viewing public.


A couple of weeks ago I put up a post on the difficulty of trying to make it as an actor in this town. The LA Times went me one better last Sunday with a terrific piece about a young actor chasing his Hollywood dream. It’s a great read providing personal insight into just how hard that life can be, and the price paid by those who refuse to follow the straight-and-narrow path to a working life on the cube farm.


Again from the Hollywood Reporter comes a column by my favorite blogging producer Gavin Polone, explaining why his old nemesis Jeff Zucker may well succeed at his new job running CNN, despite a sorry record of having driven the once-proud NBC right into the gutter before the corporate honchos finally wised up and fired him.

But according to Polone, a leopard cannot change his spots – and as NBC learned the hard way, the grinning, goggle-eyed homunculus named Jeff Zucker will bring nothing but trouble in the long run.

Good luck, CNN.  You're gonna need it.


And now, a rant...

I hearby bestow the BST Asshole of the Month award to "Marky-Mark" Wahlberg -- former lame-ass rapper-turned billboard underwear model-turned actor/producer -- for his recent appeal urging the Canadian government to restore and boost film and television subsidies intended to lure more U.S. productions north.  I can't argue with Marky-Mark's claim that some his best working experiences  have occurred while filming in Canada, with Canadian crews -- he was there and I wasn't -- and if he had a fine time in the Great White North, good for him. 

My problem with Wahlberg isn't that he likes to work in Canada, but that he has the gall to ask for big government handouts to take productions north of the border.  As a wealthy, powerful player in the film and television business, Mark Wahlberg has the clout to film his projects anywhere he'd like, but now he wants other people -- Canadian taxpayers and American film workers -- to foot the bill.  That's bullshit. 

Tell you what, Marky-Mark:  How about we get rid of all tax subsidies from the provinces of Canada and the forty-odd states offering tax breaks in the U.S.?   Absent all those taxpayer-funded subsidies, then the competition for the film and television business could proceed on a level playing field.  If you want to shoot all your shows in Canada, go right ahead, but let's allow all the other producers to make their decisions where to film projects without being tempted by the sweet lure of  government bribes.

Until that happy day comes -- and don't hold your breath, folks -- BST extends a hearty FUCK YOU! to Marky-Mark Wahlberg, Asshole of the Month.

Those are your picks 'o the week.  Check 'em out...


k4kafka said...

And I second that emotion...

Anonymous said...

hahaha fuck marky mark