Following Warner and women

Good luck. Nikki Finke had posted last week that Warner production head Jeff Robinov told three different producers that the studio was no longer doing movies with women in the lead (he supposedly doesn't even want to see a script with a woman in the top spot). Now she posts - at some length - the exchanges she's had with Robinov and Warner flaks about the subject. After lots of hemming and hawing, Robinov had asked Finke to post a statement from him in which he denied ever saying that women can no longer be in the lead. Two hours later a Warner flak said Robinov had decided that he didn't want to issue any statement after all. Sounds like the “pretend it goes away” strategy of management. Here's her updated take on the matter.

Sources inside Warner's tell me that, 1) Robinov doesn't believe there's an actress who can carry a movie worldwide since Julia Roberts, 2) Robinov has now gone so far as admitting to his studio colleagues that the decree I reported was made when he was "in the room", 2) Robinov is acknowledging that the studio is reassessing the strategy of making action pictures starring women, 3) Robinov was inundated with calls on Monday and Tuesday from media and Hollywood types asking him about my posting, 4) Robinov has three pics currently in production and six in pre-production and not one stars a women as the main lead of the film, 5) he's nixed Wonder Woman as a stand-alone film, downgrading her to just one of four superhero characters in the proposed Justice League, and, 6) Robinov will only make Wonder Woman as a spin-off of Justice League, about four superheroes including Wonder Woman. But his proviso is that JL would have to do really, really boffo to justify having a female star-driven pic. Again, I stand by my story.

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Mark Lacter
Mark Lacter created the LA Biz Observed blog in 2006. He posted until the day before his death on Nov. 13, 2013.
Mark Lacter, business writer and editor was 59
The multi-talented Mark Lacter
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