Thursday, July 10, 2008

News Brief

SAG vs AFTRA: The Nastiness Ramps Up
Wednesday night the AMPTP issued this statement on something they call "final offer retroactivity" with SAG quickly responding. Meanwhile the AMPTP and SAG sparred over a letter which the negotiating group representing the Big Media cartel circulated to 120 California state legislators today as well as the full Los Angeles City Council and the Los Angeles County Board Of Supervisors blaming SAG for the current "de facto strike" that has Hollywood at a standstill.

New face for HOLLYOAKS cast
This week saw a new addition to glossy Channel 4 soap HOLLYOAKS in the form of sultry star Kari Corbett. She plays Caroline, who met Russ (Stuart Manning) in the Dog. He was immediately intrigued when she asked him to make a phone call on her behalf before leaving her business card and disappearing into the night. As events unfold, a baffled Russ starts to wonder whether the glamorous girl is up to no good.

Kari, said: "I'm really enjoying the role of Caroline. It's so interesting to be playing a character who herself is acting a character and I love all the mysterious, ambiguous dialogue too. Russ actually thinks she's some MI6 spy but he soon discovers she's just a postwoman!"

HOLLYOAKS isn't her first foray into the world of soap. Scottish soap fans will recognise the actress from her stint in long-running serial RIVER CITY.

ATWT's Michael E. Rodgers gets from love from Scotland papers
A former West Lothian hairdresser turned Hollywood star has secured a part in one of America's longest-running soaps. Whitburn-born actor Michael E. Rodgers has already had a string of bit-part TV and movie roles and is now playing the new recurring role of Neal on AS THE WORLD TURNS.

NY TIMES: Would You Buy a New Car From Eva Longoria?
In the 1950s, a marketing type called James Vicary caused national hysteria when he announced he could get people to buy Coca-Cola by flashing a "Drink Coke" sign on a screen so quickly that viewers couldn’t tell, implanting the urge in their subconscious.

Mr. Vicary’s experiments turned out to be a sham. But the fear of corporations stealthily mucking about with Americans’ brains took hold in the collective imagination.

The Federal Communications Commission issued a policy statement that "subliminal perception" techniques were "contrary to the public interest." Judas Priest was accused in court of inciting suicidal tendencies with a subliminal message in a song. In 2000, Democrats in the Senate accused a Republican National Committee ad of subliminally calling Al Gore a rat.

Now the clever men and women in the persuasion business appear to have found a more effective way to reach surreptitiously into our heads: embedding the commercials into the programming itself. If a subliminal flash of "Coke" doesn’t do the trick, how about a whole episode of “The Apprentice” devoted to designing Burger King’s new Western Angus Steak Burger? Or a three-month plot line in ALL MY CHILDREN in which Erica Kane’s cosmetics company goes to battle against Revlon?

These days if you flip on DESEPERATE HOUSEWIVES, you might find Eva Longoria in an evening dress promoting a Buick LaCrosse. The boss in “The Office” raves about his Levis. And Coke shows up all over “American Idol.” Spending on product placement in the United States grew by a third last year. With TiVo snapping at broadcasters’ heels, allowing viewers to zap traditional commercials out of their shows, product placement is shaping up to be advertisers’ holy grail.

The question is, should we worry?

Regulators do. Last month, the F.C.C. proposed rules requiring broadcasters to disclose embedded commercial arrangements in a minimum font and for a set number of seconds — not just flash them across a screen at the speed of light, which is the current practice. It also opened an inquiry into whether more disclosure is even needed.

Krumholtz and Britting get engaged
NUMB3RS star David Krumholtz and THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS actress Vanessa Britting (Molly) are engaged, People magazine reports.

"The happy couple became engaged in Paris on a hiatus vacation last month and are beyond ecstatic," said his spokesperson, David Lust.

Krumholtz, 30, and Britting, 27, have been dating for three years. The wedding is planned for 2009.

The foursome: Carson Palmer, Jack Wagner, Greg Kinnear, Charles Barkley
Here’s Lake Tahoe Action’s submission of fantasy foursomes for the July 11-13 American Century Championship golf tournament:
If you think Palmer’s name sounds more like a soap opera character than the Cincinnati Bengals’ all-pro quarterback, you’re half right: That was the name of a district attorney on DAYS OF OUR LIVES. Wagner appears on another soap, THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL, and Kinnear played a soap star in Nurse Betty.

The final soap star for the foursome might be a surprise: In addition to playing himself in a number of movies, including Space Jam, Barkley’s credits include appearing in an unknown 1984 episode of SANTA BARBARA as a bartender, according to

SCRIPTS & SCRUPLES: Episode #824

BBC must reveal EASTENDERS costs
The Information Commissioner's Office has ordered the BBC to release information about the salaries of the stars and other staff at soap opera EASTENDERS.

The Beeb had previously refused to give out the information, which was requested under the Freedom of Information Act. The corporation said salary data was not covered by the Act and that giving out such information would have a competitive effect because it would effectively reveal total programme budgets. The ICO rejected both arguments.

EVENT: Soap stars take on soldiers
Soap stars from HOLLYOAKS and CORONATION STREET will play in a charity football match against soldiers of the Mercian Regiment. The game will be held at Hyde United’s ground in Walker Lane, Hyde, Cheshirem, on Friday, July 18, kick-off 7pm.

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