Keepin’ It Real

After watching Donuts and Dilettantes, I will never feel self-conscious about my fan odyssey again.

Beyism? What the heck?!

This is one of the times (of which there are many) I’m glad I don’t keep up with popular culture too closely.

Of course Beyonce is a great singer, but I’m never gonna be a member of her church after watching Single Ladies. :D

When I was watching that video for the first time, I started looking around to see if someone could see what I was watching. But I could have saved myself the stress if I had known she would have her own religion.

Still felt like I lost a few brain cells.

Richard,

So you’re on Twitter now, and your style has improved. It’s true. You went from this:

richard armitage bafta 2007

to this:

BAFTA Los Angeles TV Tea 2013

But man, please don’t become too hip. If you get too slick, I may find myself in the midst of some real groupies. AS it is, I did hear about some shrines laying around, and there is some sort of mark worn by really RAbid fans and recognized by same. Of course that’s just scuttlebutt, so I’m not really sure it’s true.

Whatever is going on, I like to keep my obsessions real. KWIM?

Signed,
A Crazy Fan who is NOT in denial. Nope. ;-)

P.S. I like the new you, but I also love the guy who went to the 2007 BAFTAs. :)

And now for the story I’ve been saving since I came back from NYC a month ago. I was in the airport waiting for my plane, and a woman saw one of Guylty’s badges on my coat. She actually stared at it intently, and then she started talking to me and eventually mentioned how much she enjoys BBC programs. I chimed in with my enthusiasm, and then she said, “I especially love one that I’ve never seen on any networks here in the states.” My ears pricked up, and I almost felt what she was going to say next. “It stars an actor I have come to adore. Perhaps you’ve heard of him. Richard Armitage?” Then she looked at my badge again. I felt like we were two spies having an encounter.

More on Beyism here if you don’t believe it’s real.

More Donuts and Dilettantes, if you click their photo:
10644101_293723650817233_7887721959928849813_o

Candid shots courtesy of Richard Armitage Central and my stash

That was Interesting or maybe not

vlcsnap-2014-11-06-14h35m57s239Moving on from thoughts of Time Warner’s state of affairs, since it’s not much fun to talk finance or economics. No, that’s not a true statement. I love to talk finance and economics, but I know most people hate it. See why I stay on fluff subjects most of the time here? The serious me is not that much fun and likes to talk about things like the Time Warner/Comcast merger, why Facebook’s IPO was lousy, or about my fascination with Elon Musk and Tesla and renewable energy, or the health care sector or other fun subjects like Quantitative Easing. I really love to talk about Quantitative Easing. Don’t get me started on that one.

Yes, I’m really going to stop all this talk that makes your eyes glaze over and go back to talking about the dwarf actors, which was my initial plan but did not include talking about the snubbing of the Kiwi dwarves. I was more or less going to ignore that until, well, I couldn’t.

Speaking of which, I’ve noticed something about that situation. It’s not a situation to a significant number of fans of the Hobbit movies. It seems the Richard Armitage fans are mostly the ones who were offended if the current chatter is anything to go by. The Tolkien fans, or more specifically the Ringers (fans of Peter Jackson’s Tolkien movies and not to be confused with Tolkienists who are not fans of the movies for the most part) are pretty quiet. This issue doesn’t seem to be a big deal to them. Yep, I’m saying it appears they really don’t care if the Kiwi actors make it to the premiere or not. And that surprises me. It really does. Oh sure, we know the TheOneRing.net got shut down on this issue, but are they the only voice for the Ringers? Maybe so. Maybe the Ringers aren’t as prevalent as I thought.

I could be so wrong about all of this, but that’s how it seems.

Further, it’s made me wonder if perhaps I’ve given the Ringers too much credence as something truly organic and principled instead of something manufactured by someone who had a vested financial interest. Okay, yes, I’m being disingenuous. I’ve known for the last few years that there is an effort to market to and through the Ringers. Because I was taught not to say anything if I couldn’t say something nice and encouraging, I haven’t said anything about this. But the incident with the Kiwi actors bugs me enough to break that rule.

Someone slap me ’cause if I really get rolling here, I may get so candid that I say something I really regret.

So am I just a fan bitching? Maybe, but then again, I have been cultivated to be a fan of the actors in this movie, and so it’s natural I would be unhappy with some of them being left out of the world premiere. Yep, I’m saying that if anyone is to blame for my feelings about that, it’s the powers that be who drew my attention to these guys in the first place– Richard Armitage excepted of course.

No worries that I’ll go further than this post. This is the last of my venting about it. I think it’s all off my chest now, and I can move on to more fun topics. Like my piece on Graham McTavish. But I’m going to do McTavish a favor and not put his piece right up against these rants.

I Guess Three Billion Isn’t What it Used to Be

Warner_Bros

So I put up a graphic in my last piece about the profits from The Hobbit franchise, and my friends, those figures were conservative. On second thought, I should have called this piece Seven Billion Isn’t What It Used to Be.

Pardon me if I’m not sympathetic about Warner Brothers having financial difficulties. Oh, I’m sympathetic toward those who lost their jobs but not toward upper management.

LOS ANGELES — Warner Bros. on Tuesday began layoffs that will ultimately eliminate about 1,000 jobs, or 12.5 percent of the studio’s total staff, as it tries to increase profitability in the face of weak domestic box-office sales and a challenged television business.

Kevin Tsujihara, Warner’s chief executive, speaking at a recent investor conference, said the studio was seeking to cut annual overhead costs by $200 million. Mr. Tsujihara announced the layoffs in a memo to employees on Tuesday.

“We examined every aspect of our businesses to ensure that we are restructuring in a way that would allow us to minimize the impact,” he wrote.

Layoffs at Warner, Hollywood’s largest movie and television studio, come as part of a broader effort to trim costs by its corporate parent, Time Warner, after an unsuccessful takeover attempt last summer by 21st Century Fox. Time Warner’s struggling cable network division, Turner Broadcasting, last month eliminated 1,475 jobs, and HBO recently trimmed about 150.

Cost-cutting at Warner has rattled the entertainment industry. Warner — home to Batman, Harry Potter, “The Big Bang Theory” and “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” — has long been Hollywood’s most stable studio. Warner has ranked No. 1 at the domestic box office in five of the last 10 years. It was second in all but one of the other five years.

the rest here

edit:

I didn’t want to get into this, but I will (at least a bit). Time Warner, the parent company of Warner Brothers Entertainment, is streamlining in order to make their stock improve and in turn remain independent.

Bewkes, [CEO of Time Warner] meanwhile, told attendees that Time Warner “will more than double our earnings over the next several years.” The company earned $3.51 per share last year, and Bewkes predicted $8 per share by 2018.

Much of that will come courtesy of HBO, whose CEO, Richard Plepler, was at the investor day to tout the premium cable channel, which he said boasts 136 million global subscribers. Plepler said HBO will launch an online service in the U.S. similar in some ways to Netflix.

“In 2015, we will go beyond the wall and launch a stand-alone over-the-top service with the potential to produce hundreds of millions of dollars of additional revenue,” Plepler said. “And the international possibilities could be just as large, if not larger.”

He also said that while original programming might get the most attention at HBO, 40 percent of its subscribers only watch the theatrical movies on the channel. We’re the Millers attracted 26 million viewers, more than Games of Thrones, which is the most popular original HBO show in history. For these reasons, Plepler said HBO has struck long-term deals with outside film studios, such as Universal and 20th Century Fox, until the next decade and Summit Entertainment until 2017, for example.

source

And Time Warner needs to be independent long enough to get approval for a merger with Comcast which would create a helluva media empire. Think of the marriage of that infrastructure and content creator. It could be something like being one of the Big Three and more. You think seven kiwi actors and some ringers matter to the powers that be in the face of that?

To be clear, I’m not a friend of Comcast and tend to think this merger would not be a good thing for consumers with regard to cost. Other than that, it’s scary how quickly things have gone since I wrote this. We’re fast approaching the point of first run movies being mostly streamed to the home. I don’t think movie theaters will ever go away entirely, but I do think there will be very few in the future.

An Open Letter to Peter Jackson

November 3, 2014

Sir Peter Jackson
Wingnut Films
Wellington, NZ

Re: Kiwi Dwarf Cast’s Inclusion in the BOFA World Premiere

Dear Sir Peter:

This last weekend I wasn’t sure what to think about the BOFA premiere controversy concerning the Kiwi actors. Facebook pages and fan websites are not the most accurate places to determine what’s going on. Oh, they can be at times, but they aren’t always, and with something this inflammatory, I withheld an assessment until a more reliable source came to the fore.

Yesterday morning I read the NZ Herald, and it became obvious the powers that be at Warner Brothers have made a faux pas, and it doesn’t matter what has gone before. It doesn’t matter if these actors did or didn’t negotiate travel expenses for a trip to the final premiere, or whether WB ever intended to send them or not. The important thing here is there has been an underestimation of the will of the fans — that the dwarves are all expected to be at the BOFA world premiere.

We fans have not only been on this journey to see where the Hobbit movies would take us, but we have also been on an odyssey with this cast through the video logs you so graciously provided and the other tie-in materials which shared quite a bit of these actors’ experiences making the movie. Given all of that, it only seems fitting to end this trip as it began — with the cast being all together in a sea of welcoming fan love at the premiere instead of being shunted off to a dark corner now that their usefulness is done for Warner Brothers. A comparison to the marginalization of the dwarves in Tolkien’s classic will surely not escape the fans’ notice if the latter is done.

You may wonder why I’m addressing this letter to you. Given that you understand the significance of fan fervor, I believe you are the obvious choice to hear this fan appeal, and to in turn characterize it for WB. And perhaps you have already pled the case. Whether you have or not, I come prepared to lend some help that hopefully will yank this situation into perspective at a glance and bring others into the collective thought that it’s only fair to include all of the cast at the world premiere.

To wit (click to enlarge):

londonandbackagaininfographic

Signed,
A crazy fan who appreciates fair play

Infographic courtesy of my collaborator extraordinaire, Armitage Besotted.

The Crucible will be available for download

Marlise Boland is on it.

Thank you, Marlise. I appreciate all that you’re doing!

NZOVDzBg_400x400

Through the Eyes of the Artist

Whatever else anyone sees, an artist sees something worthy; otherwise, why spend the time to convey something to the rest of us.

This captures some of the essence of my banner picture, an essence which can still rivet me, and I guess some of you as well:

richard_armitage_portrait_by_dmkozicka-d63de8e[Click to see the original]

If you have never watched Richard Armitage as Guy of Gisborne, do yourself a favor and give it try. The show was not the greatest, but he makes up for it.

Whoever gets my organs…

I will perhaps be an organ donor some day. For now, it’s on my driver’s license that I’m willing. If you’ve read much of my blog, you know why, and frankly, it is the very least I can do to give back. But lately I’ve wondered what would happen to my organ recipient, since SO has expressed an interest in foods he never liked before, and lo and behold his organ donor loved those same foods.

Then I see this:

I hope whoever gets my organs is prepared to be a complete nut about talk, dark Englishmen who have fantastic voices and who look like this:

rich

Dear Rich,

I would say this whether The Crucible gets a download in the U.S. or not; however, someone’s head is going to roll if we don’t. Metaphorically speaking that is. :D

Realistically speaking it means there will be those who watch the download whether it occurs in the U.S. or not. And the sad truth is that most of them will do it for free.

Signed,
A crazy fan who would prefer to pay for the privilege

P.S. Can you pitch a damn fit to ensure we get a download in the U.S.? *trying to think of some appropriate American slang for this* I think I’m too much of a lady to use the words mother fucker to describe my frustration, but I might break down and do it.

P.P.S. Just so you know, I do very much appreciate what you’ve done so far for the fans. Maybe just a little fit? :D

note: I got the image from this Pinterest board. I would dearly love to know where it is from originally. Someone please, please tell me.

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