The ex-agent and producer takes a new tack than other Nikki Finke critics in his column at Vulture. Rather than be just another Hollywood type who complains about the unprofessionalism and blackmail of the Deadline founder, he dares Finke to prove her clout and actually harm his career. If she can't, Polone suggests, then the Hollywood executives who wither under the legendary Finke temper should get over their fear of her.
The most fascinating element of the Nikki story is that people in this industry fear her and invest power in her. She has no real power: She can’t fire anyone at the studios, and she can’t influence the audience of films or TV. She isn’t a reviewer and most people in the country don’t even know who the hell she is. Deadline doesn’t have a monopoly on entertainment business news, and it isn’t even the most widely read...
And when Deadline scoops the other trade news sites on a story, they aggregate it within five minutes, anyway. If she has some reason to think that her threats should be taken seriously, I can’t see it … but since so many people in my industry act like they have a reason to cower from this woman, it makes me wonder if I could be wrong.
So, I think we should run an experiment and see if Nikki Finke does have any power. The first step in this test is my making the following public statement: I think Nikki Finke’s manner of writing nasty personal attacks, threatening people, and exhibiting general incivility is unacceptable, and I am asking those who read this to “unfavorite” Deadline from their browser, read it less often, and stop tipping her and her reporters when they have a story until such time as she has modified her behavior and begun to adhere to a more professional practice of journalism; she could start by apologizing for attacking Bret Ellis and anyone else at ICM for the recent scrap. Step two is to wait and see if she can rain down fire and brimstone on me for my insolence.
We'll see. Hat tip to Richard Horgan at Fishbowl LA.
Hollywood sign photo: Veronique de Turenne