The Last Typhoon


In today's New York Observer, Bruce Feirstein considers the evidence and sees a perfect storm of unavoidable change headed at the entertainment business. The piece is long and hard to boil down, so here are some snippets from the top.

So I’m sitting in a film producer’s office in Los Angeles, overlooking Sunset Strip, on one of the final days of June. The sky outside is cloudless and bright, but the atmosphere inside the office is anything but sunny.

As we follow what is almost always the proscribed form in one of these "let’s take a meeting and see if anything comes of it" sessions, the man and I are exchanging our latest tales of entertainment-business madness: Mine concerns a studio that has purchased an autobiography and is now auditioning screenwriters to do the adaptation, yet none of the executives involved seems to have an idea—a clue, a viewpoint—as to what kind of movie they want to make, or what the story should be...

Sitting across from me, behind a glass-topped desk dotted by silver-framed pictures of his family with movie stars, the fiftysomething-year-old producer smiles. Crossing his legs, he scratches a bare, suntanned ankle sticking out from a black Prada loafer. He voices a theory that during the 90’s the brightest and most creative young people went into the Internet business, and the studios are now suffering for it. I nod, not quite sure I agree—but he’s already launched into his own current tale of movie-business woe...

"There’s something about this business that doesn’t work anymore," he says, with a mixture of amusement and pure fear.

Also in the Observer: Memories of Marlon Brando

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