By David Poland email@example.com
It’s been years since I have gotten my ShoWest on. It was once my favorite annual movie biz event. But it was sold, it was less fun, and I stopped showing up.
This year, ownership is back with the theater owners and it’s called CinemaCon. My primary attraction was a chance to sit with John Fithian and new MPAA mastter, Sen Chris Dodd, to see what we might expect from him.
First impression is that he will be more of a showman than Dan Glickman, but not looking to be Valenti 2 either. He’s not going to be Mr CARA. His #1 target was piracy (futile, aside from international trade agreements). #2 was the euphemistically phrased, “expansion of opportunities for access.”
But there would be mud wrestling between exhbition and the studios here. Essentially, they seemed to agree to keep it all smiles and explanations for a weak Q1… as expected, really.
I liked Dodd. He was quick with a smile and a pat on the back, both using the Bullshit Thesaurus with skill and actually saying, mostly by inference, some real things. At least, enough so that with more than 9 days in the gig, I have hope he will become a mostly-truthteller and be willing to discuss the nitty gritty of international relations for the industry and some day, even windows.
I wandered into the massive Coliseum theater, usually Celine Dion’s home, for the opening event. I expected nothing of note, as traditionally, nothing much ever happened at these, save a speech about The State of Exhibition. But I walked in, a few minutes late, to Stacey Snider presenting the cast of The Help, followed by Colin Farrell and Lars director Craig Gillespie presenting the new version of Fright Night (nothing like the old one in this clip… and none of the humor the director and star spoke of in their presentation), and then Jackman and the other Shawn Levy with an EPK from Real Steel… which confuses me as an October movie… screams of late July. (Don Murphy was in the house, but I did not see him, so I didn’t get the chance to be “Kingo”ed in person.)
They then honored 13 past presidents and CEOs of NATO, just 2 not attending; Sumner and Barrie Loeks. It was a lovely moment of looking back and looking forward.