Sunday, April 26, 2009

Film Writers Cuttng Back On Coverage of Movies and Premieres

 Carl Diorio talks to PR

Pros after EPPS event

Recession Forces Industry
To Do More
With Less Say Editors

By George S. Mc Quade III
West Coast Bureau Chief

Most reporters, editors and
writers are doing two jobs

“The most significant changes in what I do on a daily basis, like any business, we are being asked to more with less,” said Carl DiOrio, deputy film editor, The Hollywood Reporter. “They don’t want to hear what’s not possible, it is just circumstances that are just a given.” DiOrio’s message was echoed by Panelists Josh Dickey, deputy entertainment editor, Associated Press and CEO and Co-Founder Michael Stroud, iHollywood Forum, Inc. /Freelance Journalist at an Entertainment Publicists Professional Society (EPPS) workshop at ICG local 600, Hollywood, CA. It was moderated by Joe Schlosser, senior vice president, Communications, NBC-Universal Television Studio-Distribution.

“What used to be considered a skeleton staff is now covering the entire entertainment waterfront,” explained DiOrio. “For example I have added DVD beats to my coverage and luckily I had a couple of years experience in working that area for another publication.”

“The downsizing of publications of all sorts, which has certainly hit the trades, once again just this week at our competitor (Variety), where I used to call home is feeling the cuts,” said DiOrio. “Whenever someone cuts a beat at one of the trades, it allows them to lower the bar down the street and if you see that the mainstream press is an extension of what we prioritize in our entertainment coverage, there is deterioration in the flow of information out of it.”

“The layoffs at the entertainment trades such as Variety, Hollywood Reporter and LA Times have created a new demand for freelance journalists,” said Michael Stroud. “It is not something desirable, but it’s a reality. I have spent the last six or seven years as CEO of a conference company and we have been hit hard as well by the recession. The first thing to go in a recession is marketing and people regard trade shows as an integral part of their marketing.”

iHollywood has two shows at the National Assn. of Broadcasters (NAB) that focuses on digital Hollywood issues and trends entitled, Advertising Innovation Summit and Mobile Entertainment Summit, which are co-producers of the NAB event.

“As the conference business falls back somewhat, suddenly there’s this big industry demand for writing, and I am getting a growing number of calls, which is actually is a good thing as I wanted to write more.” Stroud is no stranger to the business and witnessed the rise and fall ofdot.coms while writing for Red Herring magazine in San Jose, CA. “ You can’t support yourself as a freelance writer, so I’m not giving up my day job.”

Stroud predicted that some newspaper and trade publications will disappear in 10-20 years due to Online editions. Stroud, who writes for Hollywood Reporter is working on a “digital power issue.” He contributes to and the newly launched, which covers Hollywood’s TV, movie and media. “So if you have an extremely powerful and digital pitch, I have done 15 profiles so far for the May Issue, I could use 10 more stories.”

Lots of major changes in industry

“It has been an enormous year of pain at the AP, and I think the recession simply accelerated,” said Josh Dickey, deputy entertainment editor, The Associated Press. “The AP has made it not secret that it is changing from a provider of print content to newspapers, to a provider of digital content to everyone but newspapers.”

The AP stills serves 3,500 newspapers across the world, which is still a big part of its revenue base, but it is not the main part anymore according to Dickey.

“The big assumption people make about the AP is it is the way to get your story into the newspaper across the world,” explained Dickey. “That’s just a smart part of what we do, or a fifth of the total operations. AP Television has become a massive part of our effort. We are not repurposing a lot of the reporting that’s being done for AP radio, AP Television and to also serve the print reports, which today is called ‘text’, which I prefer to call it news. So we are driving news reports through whatever communication format we are using.”

Dickey noted that AP used to be divided into TV, radio, graphics, photos and print sections doing their own thing. As we are a business-to-business model, most business would take that content and package it as they saw fit.

A one man band – wave of the future

“Now what’s happening is all of those departments are starting to mingle,” note Dickey. “We have video journalists who are now learning to write the wire. We have print journalists, who are learning to cut audio for the audio wire and radio packages. Pretty soon they’ll be picking up video cameras. I think that the deeper future shows us journalists it’s not just speaking all the languages but knowing all the platforms. The smart college student right now is taking classes in all of these different things, not pigeon-holing themselves in any of them (skills).”

Josh Dickey, AP Dep. Film Ed.

Reporters lose sleep over
demanding deadlines

AP’s Dickey admits he finds himself reading emails at 2:00 in the morning just to play catch up with the job and bombardment of information coming to his beat. “My day-to-day responsibilities changed just a few days ago, and they took the deputy title off, and put interim for the time being. We lost Jeannette Adams in New York when she left the company creating a vacuum for me, so I am doing two jobs. I’m tap dancing more and sleeping less. First thing I do when I get into the office is ramp up training on new platforms, and all of our journalists around the globe have to do the same to be able to do each other’s jobs.”

“We never sleep, you are never off deadline when you have the website and something breaks at 10:00 at night they kind of want you to write it up and get it posted as quickly as possible before you go to sleep. News hole or no news hole you do have a way of getting things out and that’s a good thing,” said DiOrio.
“There is going to be things that fall through the cracks in coverage. The news hole is shrinking. If you do not have the advertising support, how much news you can cram into the book is going to be less. As a practical matter less is covered,” said DiOrio.

One huge surprise story that was posted Online, after it aired one week after
Susan Boyle
- Britain's Got Talent 2009 Episode 1 – Saturday, April 11th. Boyle became an overnight sensation when everyone thought she was destined to be voted off the show of Britain’s Got Talent, until she sang on stage. A Youtube version earned more than 44 million visitors Online. (
“I would love to have 60 people in Britain watching YouTube all the time,” said Dickey. “That was an amazing story that took us all by surprise and got legs worldwide.”

All of the writer panelists said they prefer an email pitch, and it you do not hear back from them a follow-up call might be in order. To contact them the writers:
Joshy Dickey, Associated Press:; Carl DiOrio, Dep. Film Editor, The Hollywood Reporter: and Michael Stroud, iHollywood Forum, Inc., Freelance Journalist:

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Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Americans on D-Day Coming This Monday

The Americans on D-Day Film Coming Soon!

The Americans on D-Day

From American Legion Newsletter

"The Americans on D-Day" is the first battle-tour film produced by WW2-Reflections of Dublin, Ireland. It makes extensive use of smart graphics and veterans' recollections, with invaluable assistance from Dale Dye, a retired U.S. Marine captain who specializes in training actors for war-themed film and television productions.

The film will be shown April 27 at American Legion Post 43 in Hollywood, Calif.

Dye said the film "provides an exciting insight into one of the most pivotal events of the 20th century. I'm really proud to have a hand in this effort to provide a foxhole-level view of what happened in Normandy on June 6, 1944.

"I've seen a lot of tour videos that purport to give viewers an insight into what gallant Americans endured and accomplished on D-Day, but this one really hits the mark," Dye said.

Mort Schecter, who attended the film's premiere last month, witnessed the real D-Day landings from his perch as a tail gunner in a B-24 Liberator bomber.

"When we flew over the English Channel, there were a million ships in the water," Schecter said. "And I have yet to meet any of those guys who were on those ships." Now living in Northridge, Calif., the 85-year-old retired Air Force staff sergeant is a member of Post 43. During the war, he was assigned to the 467th Bomb Crew and 791st Bomb Squadron in England.

"I'm lucky to still be here," Schecter said. "We were never shot down, but we did crash-land with six 1,000 pound bombs on board. We flew the first mission on D-Day and bombed at 3:30 in the morning, and it was the easiest mission, because we never saw any fighters or opposition." Schecter still has a list of the missions he flew.

"Actor Jimmy Stewart was in our division, and he flew 28 missions," he said. "He entered the service as a buck private and, when he died, he was a general," he said.

Veterans who want to attend the April 27 screening at Post 43 should call (323) 851-3030 and leave a name, city and phone number.

"The Americans on D-Day" is available for online purchase.

Hollywood Salutes America’s Heroes


The Americans on D-Day Tour Film


What: Premiere Screening of Battle Tour Film “Americans on D-Day” for Veterans

Who: Ernest Borgnine, “Ernie”(Autobiography), Wishing Well,” TV-2009

Gina Elise, “Pin-Ups Calendar Girl” nonprofit for Vets (Confirmed)

Commander Bill Mc Taggart, American Legion Post 43, Hollywood

Captain Dale Dyle, Warriors, Inc., Band of Brothers (confirmed)

Morton Schecter, B-24 Tail Gunner, Northridge, Ca (Confirmed)
Richard D. Lanni, Director/Producer, The Americans on D-Day

Howard Manioan, Retired, U.S. Army 82nd Airborne who landed in

Normandy on D-Day (Confirmed)
Hollywood von Seibold, Tour Film Host of The Americans on D-Day (Confirmed)
Other Military Dignitaries TBA (Confirmed)

When: MONDAY – April 27, 2009

6:00 - 7:00 p.m. Cocktails, VIP, Refreshments

7:00 - 8:00 p.m. Film Screening (limited seating)

Media please RSVP with MAYO Communications

Where: The American Legion Post 43Hollywood
Veterans should RSVP with Terry Duddy 323-851-3030

Background: About 200 military, media and movie industry executives are expected to attend

a special screening of Americans on D-Day, the first of a series of tour films produced by WW2 Reflections, Dublin, Ireland. Director Richard Lanni has just completed his first of a series of battle tour films entitled,
The Americans on D-Day (, which will premiere Monday, April 27th, 7:00 p.m. (PDT), (Cocktails 6:00 - 7:00 pm), at the American Legion Post #43, 2035 N Highland Ave., Hollywood, CA., 90068. The
film is available for any American Legion Post or veteran organizations upon request will be shown for free. Lanni is meeting with military dignitaries, museum officials and veterans of World War II. Lanni is researching California veterans of WW II for future interviews and plans to interview historians, museum officials in a series of films on Normandy.
[Editors: Credential Media must RSVP with MAYO Communications, 818-340-5300.]

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Sunday, April 12, 2009

U.S. Navy, Army and Marines Vets To Be Treated To “Pin-Ups Calendar Girl,” Who Plans to Attend Premiere of The Americans on D-Day Film

Photo by Marcus Menchaca

Veterans of American Legion Post 43

Hollywood, will enjoy some nostalgia

of Gina Elise, who has been nicknamed

“The Calendar Angel” for her volunteer



Photo by Mike Forster

During World War II pin-up
calendars boosted moral of U.S.
Soldiers fighting overseas, and that spirit comes alive again
with the California’s “Calendar Angel” Gina Elise on Monday,
April 27, 2009. That’s when the American Legion, post # 43
will show the battle tour film Americans on D-Day.

Elise will join, surviving American Legion veterans of D-Day
in Normandy, Richard Lanni, Film Director, The Americans on
D-Day and film Host Ellwood von Seibold. One of the stars of
the battle tour film Howard Manoian, a veteran of the U.S.
Army 82nd Airborne will attend the event. He landed in Normandy
on D-Day and returned many years later to live in the country that

he helped liberate.

Gina Elise YouTube:

Gina Elise, nicknamed "The Betty Grable of a new generation" and
"The Calendar Angel" will be selling her T-Shirts and Calendars at
American Legion Hall event. Elise, who has donated $20,000 to aid
veteran hospital patients has received numerous community awards for
her volunteer work. “ I want to raise $20,000 for veterans this year,”

said Elise, who has made countless personal visits to ill and injured
veterans in hospitals and facilities across the country. Elise was
featured on Fox News last January.

"I now truly believe, three years after launching this project,
that one calendar, included with a special message, purchased for
a young recruit, can make all the difference in the world,” she said.

“Just to let him know that others are thinking of him.”

Film Director Richard Lanni has also trekked across the country
meeting with military dignitaries, museum officials and veterans
of World War II about Normandy. He‘s researching D-Day and
interviewing veterans in a series of films on Normandy. The next
film will be “A Soldier’s Journey” to be released around Memorial

“It is the 65th Anniversary of D-day,” said Lanni, WW2 Reflections,
Dublin, Ireland, who arrives in Hollywood this week. “We have
filmed interviews with surviving veterans of Normandy that will
be showcased in Hollywood later this month to relive those days.
I am here to meet more veterans and visit museums so our films
will be accurate.”

The first film premieres Monday, April 27th, 7:00 p.m. (PDT),
(Cocktails 6:00 - 7:00 pm), at the American Legion Post #43, 2035
N Highland Ave., Hollywood, CA. 90068. The film is available for
any American Legion Post or veteran organizations upon request
and will be shown for free. Veterans need to RSVP with the
American Legion.

Veterans who would like to RSVP to the event on April 27, 2009
need to call 323-851-3030 and leave your name, your city and
phone number. Media must RSVP with MAYO 818-340-5300.

[Editor's note: EPK DVD with extras like uniforms and weapons
used are available upon request. To obtain a preview copy contact
Aida Mayo or George Mc Quade, call 818-340-5300, or email: or visit:

(Press Clips are available at:
For more about Gina Elise visit: or contact

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