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April 13, 2000

This week, bizbuzz is brought to you by:
and Donovan Unks.

NOTE: There will be no BizBuzz next week because of a little thing called "vacation." Also, BizBuzz might be switching to a bi-weekly format, or maybe not. It doesn't really matter since 2 people read this. The rest of you can blow me like the fucking whores you are.

Take that, you !#!$$@*% V-chip!
Despite the fact that TV sets have been equipped with V-chip devices for over a year, only 3% of parents are using them according to a Kaiser Family Foundation study. In an interview with the Boston Globe, FCC commissioner Gloria Tristani blamed the networks' insufficient airing of V-chip PSAs, with the notable exception of CBS and "Late Night with Conan O'Brien." Television network executives fired back claiming that it was not the fault of the TV industry, but the film industry, specifically the release of "South Park: Bigger, Longer, and Uncut." Further explaining the matter, a press release from NBC read, "Thanks to the 'South Park' movie, parents are afraid that using the V-chip will turn their children into big-boned, swearing, unclefuckers who can electrocute them with lightning bolts from their hands."

TIMMEH Big Hands' "Diary"
Hugh "Toot My Horn" Grant is in negotiations to join Renee Zellweger in "Bridget Jones' Diary." The project is based on Helen Fielding's best-selling novel about a 30-something single woman living in London who moves to America's mid-west. There, she ends up working as a Banana Boat products sales woman and does stand-up comedy on the side. Eventually she ends up married to a TGIF worker/stand-up. Expect exclusive NEW CONTENT related to "Bridget Jones' Diary" to appear on

Don't be so Puccini
The William Friedkin helmed theatrical biopic based on the life of Puccini now has a new star - Placido Domingo. Sadly, once Domingo signed the papers to star in the biopic, Friedkin stabbed him in the back, only to find out the movie's female producer, to whom Friedkin was engaged and whom Domingo was trying to steal, was really killed by a firing squad. Friedkin, who's last girlfriend died of tuberculosis, jumped off a nearby building in despair. He and Domingo are currently in stable, but serious condition.

99 ways to Rushdie
$2.4 million human target and "Satanic Verses" author, Salman "My Last Name Is NOT A Portent" Rushdie tells the New York Post that he has "always been a frustrated actor" and would like to begin a film career. Hollywood insiders say Rushdie may have difficulties finding a studio willing to insure a project he's involved with, particularly in light of an Iranian fundamentalist campaign promoting the selling of kidneys to raise the bounty on his head. However, Rushdie, who claims to have film business connections in New York, says he's had numerous offers to star in either the next movie in "The Crow" or "The Twilight Zone: The Movie" series.

Did my news server just not get it?
Vice President Gore will make a guest appearance as himself on the season finale of Fox's animated series, "Futurama." Gore, who recorded the voice tracks last week for the May 21st episode, reportedly shows up as a head in a jar. No joke here folks, it's just that I didn't see Tuttle paste this info on, so I thought I should let you know. Set those VCRs! Or not.

Surviving the lame
From the "Hey, Let's NOT Be Original; Let's Be Stupid!" file comes word that Paramount Pictures has paid six figures for "Tag," an action-thriller pitch (yes, it was a pitch which means it doesn't even have a script) based on an "original idea" by David Fagenblum and Neil Weinberger. The "original" duo described the movie as "The Fugitive" meets "The Game" and tells the story of an innocent man who finds himself on the run from unknown assassins. He later learns that he has become "it" in a deadly, underground game of Laser Tag run by an elite group of businessmen who gamble on the outcome. The movie is bound to be a hit, because everyone knows a running man is truly the most dangerous game, especially if he's surviving the game.

New shows to tend the "Garden"
Home and Garden Television (HGTV) is planning to add 1,500 hours of new programming to their 2000-01 season. It's hoped the new programming will bring increased viewership to the fledgling channel. Among the 1,500 hours, HGTV plans to introduce several new series, including "Weekend Warriors," a celebration of individuals who planned a project and completed it without killing themselves or family members; "Going Home With Your Senile Grandmother," about grandmothers who return to their hometowns and reminisce about their former homes and neighborhoods for several hours; "Iron Designer," in which three designers will compete to solve a homeowner's decorating challenge using a specified theme item; and "Who Wants A Cask Of Amontillado," a game show in which contestants battle for a cask of Amontillado by being walled up in a closet with bricks, the winner being the one who survives the longest.

Spacey romanced by Godzilla?
Continuing to surf his "American Beauty" Oscar wave, Kevin Spacey will star and produce a romantic comedy for Dean Devlin and Roland Emmerich's Centropolis Entertainment. The comedy centers around a theater director who is forced to cast a movie star in order to launch his play on Broadway. The comedy ensues when we find out the movie star to be cast is left over CGI Godzilla footage, and it's not very good left over CGI footage either. It's expected that Spacey could win another Oscar award for this role if he once again plays a convincing heterosexual male.

"Freaks" refuses to die with self-respect
Fresh off buying the Oscar for "American Beauty," Dreamworks continues to push its now cancelled "Freaks and Geeks" series to potential broadcasters and cable outlets instead of letting it die quietly and with dignity. The Museum of Television and Radio will screen all 18 episodes of the series in New York and Los Angeles in a week long marathon, which includes 6 unseen episodes. MTV, Fox Family and Odyssey are among the channels interested in the critically acclaimed series, sources say. And when they use "interested" with a critically acclaimed, but commercially unsuccessful program, they use it in the way people like to say they're organ donors, but really aren't. The Sci-Fi Channel has also looked into the possibility of picking up the program, but only if producers agree to very little publicity, squished credits with voice-overs, and eventually being treated like bastards.

"Phantom" suckers
In the week it has been released, sales of VHS copies of "Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace" have reached $150 million dollars. The figure represents some 8 million copies of the conventional pan-and-scan and 1 million "special editions" which flew off the shelves in the hands of large, sweaty, mouth breathing "Star Wars" fans. Many of the die-hard, who waited outside their local Wal-marts and were taunted by bored high school students who threw eggs at them, picked up several copies of each edition. "I like the mysticism," explained one long haired fan on the appeal of the film series. Unusually enough, sales of the "special editions" increased after word got out that the 48 page book packaged with the video came with special glasses allowing people to read a hidden message from George Lucas on the book's last page - "SUCKERS!" Precious Roy could not be reached for comment.

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