Viacom, AT&T Pass Carriage Deadline With Talks To Avoid Blackout Continuing

Read on: Deadline.

Viacom and AT&T remain in carriage negotiations but have failed to reach an agreement before the expiration of their current carriage deal at midnight on the East Coast. The signals of 23 Viacom networks have not gone dark yet across DirecTV and U-…

‘Supernatural’ Fans And Industry Salute Its Record Run In Online Tributes

Read on: Deadline.

Fans and Hollywood industryites took to the online world today to mourn the end of Supernatural, wrapping its run after its upcoming 15th season, which will consist of 20 episodes.
Stars Jared Padalecki, Jensen Ackles, and Misha Collins made the announ…

Jim Carrey Takes on Attorney General Barr in Post-Mueller Report Political Cartoon

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Special counsel Robert Mueller’s report on possible Russian interference in the 2016 election is in — and so is Jim Carrey’s latest artistic assessment of the political landscape.

Shortly after Mueller submitted his report to attorney general William P. Barr, actor/artist Carrey unveiled his latest work, and it’s clear that he’s waiting to see what Barr will, or won’t, do with the report.

Carrey offered his rendering of Barr with the message, “The Mueller report is out! The question now is…how low will this Barr go?”

Also Read: Jim Carrey Digs Into ‘Crypt Keeper’ Kellyanne Conway’s Marriage in Latest Political Cartoon

Carrey wasn’t the only show business denizen to weigh in after Mueller submitted his report.

“Star Trek” alum and frequent Trump critic George Takei also offered his thoughts on Friday, tweeting, “No matter what Mueller’s report contains, we already know three things: Trump surrounded himself with felons, he obstructed justice on behalf of those felons, and he faces multiple federal and state investigations for other criminal activity … The wheel of justice has many spokes.”

See the latest product of Carrey’s artistic wheel-turning below.

The Mueller report is out! The question now is…how low will this Barr go? pic.twitter.com/IveGZzlcRo

– Jim Carrey (@JimCarrey) March 22, 2019

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What Bruce Lee’s Biographer Thinks of That ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’ Brad Pitt Fight Scene

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

A lot of people got mad this week about a brief fight between Bruce Lee and Brad Pitt’s character in the new teaser trailer for Quentin Tarantino’s upcoming “Once a Time in Hollywood.”

But Matthew Polly, the author of “Bruce Lee: A Life,” isn’t ready to fight anyone for Bruce Lee’s honor. Not yet.

“I find the ‘controversy’ fun,” he told TheWrap. “It’s a trailer. We have no idea what actually will happen between ‘Bruce’ and Brad Pitt or if they are even fighting for real or just acting a scene.”

Also Read: Why Bruce Lee Is All Over the Teaser for Tarantino’s ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’

The criticisms of the trailer footage ranged from the logistical (“So, we’re supposed to believe that Brad Pitt would stand a chance against Bruce Lee in a fight now?”) to the racial (“a white male power fantasy”). People took issue with Pitt’s character, Cliff Booth, disrespecting Lee (Mike Moh.)

The teaser features a scene that seems to take place on the set of “The Green Hornet,” a TV show on which Lee played Kato from 1966-67.

Lee issues a gentle warning to Pitt: “My hands are registered as lethal weapons. We get into a fight, I accidentally kill you, I go to jail.”

Also Read: Why Bruce Lee’s ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’ Costume Is an Intriguing Surprise

Pitt is unimpressed. “Anybody accidentally kills anybody in a fight they go to jail,” he says. “It’s called manslaughter.”

Violence ensues. Polly found a lot to like.

“It’s a pretty good representation of the fighting style of Lee’s character Kato on ‘The Green Hornet,’” he said. “Lee himself didn’t fight like Kato in real life — he invented a new style for the series. Tarantino is riffing on the Kato character.”
After closer study of the teaser, Polly added: “The jump side kick at the end to Pitt’s chest is a pure Kato move. The initial series of punches that ‘Bruce’ throws and Pitt blocks, ending with Pitt trapping ‘Bruce’s’ arm is more like traditional Hong Kong kung-fu movie choreography, but Bruce is wearing the black gloves from Kato. So more or less, it’s Kato — a homage rather than a pure imitation.”
And, in case you were wondering: “There’s no record of Lee ever saying that his hands were registered as lethal weapons, and I doubt he ever did. But Lee was a big talker and liked to brag, so Tarantino is not too far off base riffing on Lee’s tough guy legend. Plus, it’s a great setup for Pitt’s punchline.”
Polly, a martial arts master himself, was impressed not just with Moh’s fighting style, but also his acting. “Probably the best part of the Mike Moh’s version of Lee is the accent. He has the intonations almost the same,” he said.
As we’ve written before, there’s a lot we can pull from the teaser. The “Green Hornet” scene is one of several indications that the film won’t take place close to the date of the Charles Manson slayings, but will rather cover an entire era. The Lee scene seems to take place at least two years before the killings.
As Polly recounts in his book, Lee played a strange and nearly forgotten role in the investigation of the Manson murders. At one point, slain actress Sharon Tate’s widower, Roman Polanski, considered Lee a suspect in the killings.
You can hear Polly tell that story — and many others — on the “Shoot This Now” podcast, available on Apple and right here:
Related stories from TheWrap:

Tarantino’s ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’ Teaser Drops Timely Clues It Goes Back Way Before the Manson Murders

Why Bruce Lee’s ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’ Costume Is an Intriguing Surprise

Why Bruce Lee Is All Over the Teaser for Tarantino’s ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’

Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt Do ‘Dangerous Stuff’ in ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’ Trailer (Video)

Discovery CEO David Zaslav’s Pay Triples After Scripps Deal To $129.4M

Read on: Deadline.

Discovery CEO David Zaslav saw his overall compensation more than triple in 2018, the year the company closed of the $14.6 billion Scripps Networks Interactive acquistion, reaching $129.4 million. Most of the total came in the form of equity options.
T…

Dana Walden Pumps Up New Disney Staff in Memo: ‘Overwhelmed By the Excitement’ for Future

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Dana Walden, the newly-entrenched chairman of ABC Entertainment and Disney Television Studios, attempted to rally her new staff on Friday, amid company-wide layoffs following the close of the Disney-Fox merger.

“I am almost overwhelmed by the excitement I feel for our future,” Walden wrote in an internal memo. “We are now positioned to win, big time, and I am grateful to Bob [Iger] and Peter [Rice] for giving me this opportunity.”

Walden’s memo comes as many Fox employees — mostly on the film side — are being laid off as Disney integrates Fox into its operations. The layoffs have affected a couple of major TV executives — Twentieth Television president Greg Meidel and 20th Century Fox TV Distribution president Mark Kaner.

Also Read: Disney Keeps Key Leaders in Place After Day of Layoffs at Fox

“Please know that we are all here for you and that we too are experiencing both the exhilaration and anxiety that accompany change,” Walden continued.

On Wednesday, Disney completed its $71.3 billion acquisition of 21st Century Fox’s film and TV assets.

Disney set most of its senior leadership on the TV side prior to the close of the deal. Along with Walden, Peter Rice has moved over and serves as chairman of Walt Disney Studios and co-chair of Disney Media Networks. Hunegs was brought in to oversee the newly-named Disney Television Studios, which encompasses ABC Studios, ABC Signature, 20th Century Fox TV and Fox 21.

John Landgraf and Gary E. Knell who serve as chairmen of FX and Nat Geo Partners, respectively, will report to Rice. Ben Sherwood, who had been serving as co-chair of Disney Media Networks and the president of the Disney-ABC Television Group, is leaving now that the merger is closed.

In a memo of his own, Hunegs confirmed that the leadership at each of the individual studios would remain in place:

“As we go forward, each of our studios – ABC Studios led by Patrick Moran, 20th Century Fox Television led by Jonnie Davis and Howard Kurtzman and Fox 21 led by Bert Salke – will continue to carve out unique identities with their own distinctive creative taste,” he wrote. “I’m here to help bring it all together, to have us work seamlessly as a group. It’s a time of rapid, fundamental change in television and I’ll work with all of you to make sure we have what we need to grow and succeed.”

Read Walden’s full memo below:

Day three, and the energy and excitement inside our newly merged organization is palpable! I’m so happy to be starting this journey with all of you. To say I’ve been looking forward to this week would be an enormous understatement, and I want to start by thanking you for the warmth, thoughtfulness and goodwill many of you have already extended to your new colleagues.

Over the past few months, I have had the good fortune of getting to know some of you on the Disney side, and throughout my 26 years at Fox I’ve been lucky to work with many of you for decades. The combined companies represent a dream team of executives and staff, and we all share the same goal — to be the best by creating the best environment for our people and our extraordinary creative partners.

When you look across the Disney Television Studios, ABC Entertainment, the ABC Owned TV Stations and Freeform, many of us have already worked together in the past. Our companies have a long history of teaming up to do spectacular things together. Look no further than multiple Emmy and Golden Globe winner Modern Family for an example of the extraordinary work that resulted when we joined forces. That happened when we were completely separate companies — just think about how much we can achieve now that we are united. There is no greater bonding experience than shared success, and I know that going forward we will have much to celebrate together.

I am genuinely thrilled to be embarking on this new chapter in my career with a stellar leadership team — Karey [Burke, ABC Entertainment president], Craig [Hunegs, Disney Television Studios president], Tom [Ascheim, Freeform president] and Wendy [McMahon, ABC Owned TV Stations Group president]– who understand that a winning business starts with a winning culture. The five of us realize that bringing our businesses together will require strategy and patience. Please know that we are all here for you and that we too are experiencing both the exhilaration and anxiety that accompany change.

Throughout my own transition to becoming a Disney employee, I have been thoroughly impressed with The Walt Disney Company’s Human Resources team. They are compassionate and highly skilled executives who are here to help us all through the integration. Each business unit has a dedicated HR business partner, with whom you can be connected through your supervisor. They’ve provided this five-minute video that highlights how you can think about and embrace change. I hope everyone will take the time to watch it.

Finally, I am almost overwhelmed by the excitement I feel for our future. We are now positioned to win, big time, and I am grateful to Bob and Peter for giving me this opportunity. I am especially proud to be working with all of you.

Warmest regards,

Dana

Also Read: How Disney Could Shake Up Fox Film Slate, Starting With Brad Pitt’s ‘Ad Astra’

Read Hunegs’ full memo below:

For those of you I haven’t met, I’m Craig Hunegs, President of Disney Television Studios. I feel so fortunate to join Disney, to work for Peter and Dana and to lead our exceptional TV studios.

I’m sure you agree, it’s a truly unique time to create television and we enter it with great strength. Across our studios, we have an unmatched roster of executives and talent, the highest quality programs and an exciting lineup of development projects. Disney has networks and streaming services with an insatiable need for high quality, diverse programs. We have unprecedented opportunities for our creators to tell stories and touch audiences.

As we go forward, each of our studios – ABC Studios led by Patrick Moran, 20th Century Fox Television led by Jonnie Davis and Howard Kurtzman and Fox 21 led by Bert Salke – will continue to carve out unique identities with their own distinctive creative taste. I’m here to help bring it all together, to have us work seamlessly as a group. It’s a time of rapid, fundamental change in television and I’ll work with all of you to make sure we have what we need to grow and succeed. I’ll also focus hard on making DTS the absolute best place to work for talent, for executives and for all our employees.

An important measure for us will be the compelling, breakout series we create for our sister platforms, ABC, Disney+, Freeform, FX, Hulu and NatGeo. Our relationship with them will figure hugely in our success, and across creative and business affairs we will aim for a true, friction-less partnership.

I feel incredibly lucky to do what we do. We touch and entertain audiences all over the world and together we can do it in an even more impactful way.

Over the coming weeks, I look forward to meeting and getting to know each and every one of you.

Best,

Craig

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The Long, Twisted Story Behind ‘I Got 5 on It,’ the Secret Weapon of Jordan Peele’s ‘Us’

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

In most movies, a fight with red-robed doppelgängers to the tune of N.W.A.’s “F— the Police” would be the showstopper. But Jordan Peele’s “Us” has an even better musical trick up its sleeve — its deft dissection of the 1995 Luniz hit “I Got 5 on It.”

“I Got 5 on It” comes from an underrated school of hip-hop that discusses low-stakes and even trivial problems with high-level musicality. The “5” refers to a five-dollar bill kicked in toward the purchase of marijuana. The song basically says, if you want to smoke some of my weed, please kick in some cash. It’s a gripe everyone’s had at some point about weed, gas, or french fries.

But the song remains such an earworm 24 years after its debut because nothing about its music sounds trivial. The music has overtones of hurt and betrayal, and may owe those qualities to its surprising and contentious origin story. Needless to say, the song’s complexity serves “Us” very well.

Also Read: Here’s All the Horror Movie References We Found in ‘Us’ So Far (Photos)

We’re introduced to the song as the Wilson family tries to relax on a trip to the beach. (Spoilers follow.) It’s a fraught trip because mom Adelaide Wilson (Lupita Nyong’o) doesn’t really want to go. She has bad memories of the beach from childhood.

(Story continues after the song):

When “I Got 5 On It” comes on the radio, dad Gabe Wilson (Winston Duke) sees it as a fun throwback. (It was the 13th biggest single of 1995). It’s also a bit of a guilty pleasure, since his kids, Zora and Jason, figure out pretty quickly that the song is about drugs. The parents make the requisite denials before the family tries to bond over a ’90s banger.

Also Read: Jordan Peele’s ‘Us’: What Does the Bible Passage ‘Jeremiah 11:11’ Say?

But even once they get past the drug issue, there’s still something wrong: Adelaide tries to get Jason to snap along to the beat, but she’s clearly off beat herself. This is foreshadowing how she doesn’t really fit in, to her family or her world.

Later, as it becomes apparent that the family’s apparent happiness came at a terrible price, and is built on a terrible deception, the once-fun song transmogrifies into something grotesque. The movie’s “Tethered Mix” slows things down, and fully indulges the ominous quality hinted at in the original “I Got 5 on It.”

Just listen:

The producer of “I Got 5 on it,” Tone Capone, worked with intense care to create such a layered musical atmosphere. The song contains an almost-ridiculous juxtaposition of complex sound and straightforward subject matter, but it works beautifully because producer Capone, the Luniz (rappers Yukmouth and Numskull), and vocalist Michael Marshall totally commit. It’s striking how passionately Marshall sings the line: “Partner, let’s go half on a sack.”

Also Read: Jordan Peele’s ‘Us’ Scares Up $7.4 Million at Thursday Box Office

Marshall had a good reason to take the song very personally.

There’s a widespread impression that “I Got 5 on It” is built around a sample of the 1987 Club Nouveau song “Why You Treat Me So Bad.” (On one “I Got 5 on it” remix, guest rapper E-40 begins his verse by rapping, “Why ya treat me so bad?/40 makes it happen.”)

But the notion that Club Nouveau originated the music is bitterly disputed.

Tone Capone, aka Anthony Gilmour, said in an interview with WhoSampled writer Chris Read that the Luniz brought “the idea and the hook to me.” Capone was working at the time with Marshall, a high school friend.

As Marshall explained in a 2014 interview with Trayze TV, “the Luniz wanted to sample the song ‘Why You Treat Me So Bad.’”

Also Read: ‘Us’ Film Review: Jordan Peele Terrifies Again With a Chilling Examination of Duality

As it happened, he knew the song well. Very well.

He told Trayze TV: “‘Why You Treat Me So Bad’ is a melody that was stolen from me from a song called ‘Thinking About You,’ so I had an opportunity to be able to create over the beat that I had first.”

Yes, that’s right: As Marshall described it, at the time the Luniz brought the “Why You Treat Me So Bad” hook to Capone, he just happened to be working with Marshall, who just happened to the real author of the hook.

Also Read: Jordan Peele’s ‘Us’ Headed Toward an Even Bigger Opening Than ‘Get Out’

A Medium post by Gino Sorcinelli concluded that “Thinking About You” did indeed precede “Why You Treat Me So Bad.” Sorcinelli wrote last year that Jay King, the former executive producer of Timex Social Club’s hit song “Rumors,” created Club Nouveau after a falling out with Marshall. Sorcinelli said that when King exited, he had several demos from Timex Social Club, including “Thinking About You.”

King, who is now a respected on-air personality on Sacramento radio station KDEE 97.5, did not immediately respond to requests for comment through the station.

Sorcinelli’s entire post is highly recommended. It gives the date of “Thinking About You” as 1986, the year before the release of “Why You Treat Me So Bad.” (Interestingly, 1986 is also the year when “Us” begins. It’s fun to wonder if Gabe became fixated on the music the same year that Adelaide fixated on a Michael Jackson shirt that may or may not have inspired the entire look of the red-garbed, gloved doppelgängers who pervade the film.)

Here’s “Thinking About You”:

So which version did Tone Capone sample? Neither.

Also Read: Jordan Peele’s ‘Us’ Wins Over Critics: ‘A Masterpiece’ Despite Some ‘Messiness’

As he explained to WhoSampled, Capone played the song himself in order to get the perfect sound we hear on “I Got 5 On It.”

“I looped the Club Nouveau record first and it was too fast,” he explained. “I slowed it down and it sounded good but after I analyzed it more I felt like I could replay it and control the breaks of the song better.”

As Capone further told WhoSampled, that started him down a prolific and lucrative path of replaying hooks instead of sampling them, so he could squeeze out exactly what he needed from each hook without the extra percussive sounds, vocals, or whatever else that he didn’t need.

Also Read: Jordan Peele’s ‘Us’ to Open 2019 SXSW Film Festival

Of course, “I Got 5 on It” isn’t built on just one hook: Tone Capone also borrows from Audio Two’s frequently sampled “Top Billin’” and Kool and the Gang’s “Jungle Boogie,” which got a popularity boost in 1994, the year before “I Got 5 on It,” from its inclusion in Quentin Tarantino’s “Pulp Fiction.”

But no one disputes those samples the way they do the main hook.

So yes, “I Got 5 on It” is about drugs. But it’s also about duality, and second chances, and perhaps betrayal.

Just like “Us.”

Related stories from TheWrap:

Jordan Peele’s ‘Us’: What Does the Bible Passage ‘Jeremiah 11:11’ Say?

Jordan Peele’s ‘Us’ Scares Up $7.4 Million at Thursday Box Office

‘Us’ Film Review: Jordan Peele Terrifies Again With a Chilling Examination of Duality