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Art, Fashion and Entertainment

Archive for the ‘Entertainment’ Category

They sold the original Apple 1 computer for $387,750 recently. Of course we are talking of Christie’s International. It is the world’s largest art business as well as a fine arts auctioneer head quartered in London with a New York office at the Rockefeller Plaza. Their most recent offices are in China and India and Brazil is scheduled for opening in next year. Collector’s prefers to deal with a specialist such as auctioneer Christie’s International owned by the France’s Francois-Henri Pinault family. They sold second century master piece, Three Graces, a Roman marble recently for $813,958. 2013 sales of Christie’s topped $7.13 billion beating the competitor Sotheby’s who earned $6.3 billion for the same period.

Christie’s known for their live auctions, private sales, online only sales, and many others. It collects fees of 25 percent for first $75,000 to 12 percent for over $1.5 million. In June 2012, it sold George Washington’s annotated copy of the “Acts Passed at a Congress of the United States of America” including the Constitution for $9,826,500 and in November 2013, Francis Bacon’s Three Studies of Lucian Freud for $142.4 million (most expensive work of art sold at an auction).

Is Hollywood losing its luster?

Posted by elegant On April - 21 - 2014

Most recently, the NBC’s late night show left Hollywood and went back to New Your City after decades of absence. It is no secret that big movie productions citing cost concerns are looking outside tinseltown for productions. Other cities and states are providing tax and other incentives to lure more and more movie productions. According to Variety, a magazine specializing in movies reports that number of positions related to movies in Hollywood dropped from 136,000 in 1997 to 116,000 in 2011. Big budget movies such as “Iron Man 3”, “The Lone Ranger,” and “The Great Gatsby” were filmed in North Carolina, New Mexico and Utah, and Australia respectively. Additionally, revenue from movies is also going down recently adding fuel to the fire.

Not just movies, some TV productions are also leaving Hollywood too. California’s share of hour-long network shows dropped from 89 percent in 2005 to 39 percent in 2012, a huge blow to California. A renewed effort to keep production and bring new filming is underway at the state as well as local levels. Taxes and cost of productions are two key concerns and renewed efforts are aimed at helping to production companies in these areas.

“Tonight Show” moves back to New York City

Posted by elegant On April - 9 - 2014

Nearly after 42 year absence, the NBC‘s late night sensation, “Tonight Show,” returned back to the same studio in Ney York City in February 2014, where Jonny Carson broadcast his show in 1972 and Jack Paar before him. The new host, Jimmy Fallon replaced legendary host of the show, Jay Leno. Jimmy Fallon emerged from the Saturday Night Live (SNL). The Tonight Show defines the late night television for everyone.

Beside the personal change, the venue change from Burbank, California to Manhattan, New York City brings cultural and economic changes to the area. New York City considered as the trend setting capital of the world that never sleeps. NBC and its parent Comcast spend many millions of dollars to make the change and the show is expected to bring more than 100 additional jobs, boost tourism and bring revenue to the area. Investment includes new state-of-the-art studio, control room and an elaborate new lobby to welcome the nightly audience. The new studio brings 50 additional seats than the studio in Burbank. While Tonight Show joins other shows such as 30 Rock, MSNBC and NBC News, Los Angeles is losing many jobs as well as associated revenue and luster.

The Lego Movie, a thriller for kids and parents too

Posted by elegant On March - 4 - 2014

The numbers are in and The Lego Movie had very impressive box office opening for a 3-D computer animated movie. The movie as of this writing made over $ 200 million domestically and over $ 100 million internationally and is on its way to make a record setting revenue figure. The success of the movie enticed producers to announce in February 2014 that it is making a sequel that is scheduled to be released on March 26, 2017.

The computer animated adventure comedy was a 2014 Australian production that carried voices of famed Will Ferrell, Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Banks, Charlie Day, Liam Neeson and several others. The movie revolves around Emmet, an ordinary Lego construction worker who was recruited to save the Lego universe from an evil tyrant President Business who wants to glue the Lego universe into eternal stasis. Emmet and would be love interest Wyldstyle (Elizabeth Banks) travel through hodge-podge universe where heroes, superheroes, Abraham Lincoln, and basketball star Shaquille O’Neal join forces to foil President Business’s plan. The movie also introduces 17 new building sets and 16 new characters giving parents heartaches but children more thrills and something to look forward to.

One of world’s best auction houses, Sotheby’s

Posted by elegant On February - 17 - 2014

The world’s fourth oldest auction house, Sotheby’s founded in London, England in 1744 and today a multi-national company headquartered in New York City. As of the end of 2012, it had 90 locations in 40 countries and employed more than 1,500 people worldwide. They are the world leader in fine art and books auctions generating more than $850 million in revenue a year. Global sales generate over $ 5 billion a year. Additional broker services of the company include jewelry, real estate, and collectibles. All these falls into three main categories of the company, namely auctions, finance and dealer services.

Their auctions are held during the day and majority is free to general public with no requirement to bid. Some events may require tickets and may be held in the evening. They publish catalogues well in advance of auctions and anyone can browse their offerings on the Internet, at their Web site. Prospective buyers need to register and bids can be placed in person or through online. Successful bidders need to sign a contract with the auction house and pay using many options including cash and wire transfer. If the bids are below the minimum set by the auctioneer, no auction will be held.

What went wrong for “The X Factor USA”?

Posted by elegant On February - 5 - 2014

After three declining viewership, revenue, ratings and record sales, the Fox channel has recently announced that it is officially cancelling the show. The American version of the show debuted in September 2011 in the US at a time its successful run in the UK show while delivering Leona Lewis and top selling British act, One Direction. Legal ramblings over the cancellation are sure to follow. With a glamorous opening and delivering blow after blow to other shows, what went wrong for the X Factor?

Experts name all kinds of things for the failure of the show. Selection of poor judges from Paula Abdul to Nicole Scherzinger and Paulina Rubio, and L.A. Reid quitting the show brought in some dissatisfaction among viewers. Viewers clearly showed their disinterest in the original host and former underwear model Steve Jones and one time co-host Khloe Kardashian-Odom. Then there were promises newer fulfilled. No albums have been released of show winners Melanie Amaro and Tate Stevens as promised. Show expected to draw 20 million viewers but the debut brought in only 13 million viewers. At the end of Season 3, the viewership has dwindled to half of its viewers. This appears to be a hard blow to any show let alone the X Factor.

Why in the world Hollywood is called tinseltown?

Posted by elegant On January - 21 - 2014

Tinseltown is a slang term used to identify Hollywood. The nickname is added because of glittering and superficial nature of Hollywood and the movie industry that is long associated with it. Hollywood is a well-defined area nestled within the City of Los Angeles. Some parts of Hollywood such as West Hollywood and Beverly Hill are separate jurisdictions apart from the City of Los Angeles.

Since 1600s the word “tinsel” has been used to describe something showy or gaudy, but has no value. The word became more associated with Hollywood when the film industry started to take hold in the city in 1970s. The first association with the phrase “tinseltown” was used in 1975 when the film industry started to go through a major transition. Some say Hollywood is all celebrities and glitter with no real substance.

Movies made Hollywood a magical place which was once famous for its orange groves. The readily available vacant land and friendly people attracted movie makers into Hollywood making it a powerhouse just before the World War I. It attracted many studios that are spread across the depth and width of the city. Now the area is full of landmarks associated with the film industry including the Chinese Mann Theater.

The Super Bowl half-time show is traditionally a ratings booster for the artist who performs. This year’s honors goes to pop-icon Bruno Mars. But he has not declared who will be assisting him at this writing. Traditionally the artist get help from others who will also benefits from the show exposure. Last year’s performer, Beyoncé got help from her Destiny’s Child partners Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams.

Super Bowl also attracts other performers to the general area. The Red Hot Chili Peppers are expected to perform a pre-game concert at Brooklyn’s Barclay Center on Super Bowl eve. The Foo Fighters and Zac Brown Band performs on a cruise ship docked at the Pier 88 in Manhattan on the Hudson River on Saturday. Additional performers at the cruise ship include The Roots, Imagine Dragons, Run DMC and Fall Out Boy. Two days before the Super Bowl, Robin Thicke and Kendrick Lamar will be at the Pier 36 where ESPN party will be held. Marc Anthony, Mary J. Blige, and John Legend will be performing at an event held by Men’s Fitness and Shape magazines. Patti LaBelle and Donnie McClurkin will be performing at the Madison Square Garden which sponsors Super Bowl Gospel Celebration.

One of televisions biggest nightly shows, The X Factor, will be entering into live show and voting begging in November 2013. The winner gets a $5 million recording contract and unparalleled publicity for the winner as well as the finalists. Versions of the X Factor take place in many countries around the world and the U.S. show started in 2010 after a legal settlement with the creator of the show, American Idol. In addition to the American Idol, The Voice is also considered as a rival show to The X Factor.

The creator and the producer of the show Simon Cowell will lead the Groups. They include Restless Road, the real life couple Alex and Sierra, and the girl group Sweet Suspense. Mentor Demi Lovato’s Girls include high school senior Ellona Santiago, 16-year old 11th grader Khaya Cohen, and Rion Page. Paulina Rubio’s Boys include the 15-year old youngest contestant Levi, 16-year old Carlos Guevara, Carlito Olivero, and Tim Olstad. Kelly Rowland’s Over 25 includes Nashville waitress Rachel Potter, rocker Jeff Gutt, and Grandmother Lillie McCloud. Watch them perform their best on Fox on Wednesday and vote and watch results on Thursday.

The battle which lasted more than a month between CBS, the No. 1 television network in the U.S. and cable company Time Warner Cable resulted in CBS getting paid increased payments, $2 per subscriber. Re-transmission fees paid by cable companies to CBS accounts for nearly $250 million a year in revenue.

The battle highlights the underlying issues that are faced by content providers and broadcasters such as CBS. They are faced with dwindling revenue from various sources. New technologies such as digital video recording and video on demand are eating into revenue and taking away customers. The ever increasing mobile solutions are helping mobile users to drift away to other sources for entertainment on the go. Broadcasters are also under constant threat from Internet TV from Apple and others. The end result was that CBS had to stick to its position and Time Warner Cable agreeing to pay higher fees.

Television networks are also trying to stay alive in light of new competition. CBS entered into a contract with Netflix for Internet-streaming services for its content including its top-quality shows. It is also recruiting actors with broad appeal to viewers and good stories.