ArtsJournal: Arts, Culture, Ideas


Inside The Implosion Of ‘Reply All’: Where The Fallout Fell

The conflict over the podcast's, and producing company Gimlet Media's, diversity and equity problems unfolded amidst a fraught unionization campaign and negotiations for the acquisition of Gimlet by Spotify. While important steps have been taken as a result of the controversy, there's been some collateral damage. - The New York Times

The Implosion of ‘Reply All’ And How Gimlet Media Went Awry

When Reply All, Gimlet's tentpole podcast, began airing a four-part series about the reportedly unhealthy and racially exclusionary workplace atmosphere at Bon Appétit magazine, former Gimlet employees began accusing the company itself of those very problems, and the series was abruptly pulled. Reporter Nicholas Quah investigates, finding that Gimlet's problems, especially regarding exploitation and equity are fairly typical of fast-growing startups, especially when the founders and early employees all come from the same small industry (public radio). - Vulture

Yahoo News Is On TikTok? Yes, And It Has Over A Million Followers

Yahoo may be seen by much of the minivideo app's Gen Z core audience as a dinosaur, but Yahoo News has been on TikTok for only a year and is now the third most popular news outlet on the platform, ahead of CBS and NBC News and The Washington Post. The Yahoo News account's bio reads "Yes, we still exist." Sarah Scire reports on how the project got started and how its producers make it work. - Nieman Lab

Hollywood Made Out Big Time In The Stock Market

A month before "meme stocks" like GameStop and AMC Entertainment took flight and captured the public imagination, many of the world’s entertainment giants were the beneficiaries of a nine-figure windfall driven by retail trader enthusiasm. - The Hollywood Reporter

Warner Bros. Has Dropped Pepe Le Pew From Looney Tunes

The amorous/borderline-rapey skunk was cut from Space Jam 2 and is not included in any future projects, though studio sources say that this is not because of last week's tweet from New York Times columnist Charles Blow that Le Pew "added to rape culture." (Alas, it seems the cut scene from the Space Jam sequel showed the stinker finally getting what he deserved.) - Deadline

What It Was Like At The Movies The First Weekend New York’s Cinemas Reopened

Capacity Limits: "Not really an issue for Chaos Walking, a poorly-reviewed mess of a sci-fi adventure." Distancing: "Fortunately, AMC's ordering system handles this well, automatically blocking off two seats on either side of your party." Mask Compliance: "This is where the whole thing kind of falls apart." - Gothamist

Disney+ Closes In On 100 Million Subscribers

The subscriber count is up from the 94.9 million accounts Disney reported last month for the quarter that ended in January. And the surge — fueled by hits such as “The Mandalorian” and “WandaVision” — has encouraged the company to spend more on growing its streaming businesses. Disney in December unveiled an aggressive plan to ramp up programming for the service to 100 new titles a year. - Los Angeles Times

The Democratization Of Storytelling

By now, a successfully kickstarted short is a rather common occurrence, but an Oscar-winning one is rare indeed. Crowdfunding is, of course, not the only way that storytelling on a mass scale has become more democratized in recent years. - Fast Company

Murdoch Admits It Out Loud: Fox News Is The ‘Opposition’ To Democrats And Biden

Fox Corp. CEO Lachlan Murdoch, Rupert's elder son, told a group of investors that Biden's presidency would be good for Fox News (which, of course, used the slogan "Fair and Balanced" for decades): "The main beneficiary of the Trump administration from a ratings point of view was MSNBC … and that's because they were the loyal opposition, That's what our job is now with the Biden administration." - NBC News

Subsidize Old News Media? That Will Stifle Innovation

"The standoff between Big Tech and the Australian government has resulted in 90 per cent of what Big Tech has agreed to pay media so far going to the country’s three largest media companies. That means the vast majority of that cash is destined for purposes other than sustaining actual journalism jobs, and tilts the playing field away from smaller publishers – which is bad for democracy." - The Globe and Mail (Canada)

At The Critics Choice Awards, Nomadland Retains Its Shine

And The Crown's season four, which concerns Princess Diana's difficulties with the Royal Family, won Best Drama Series even as Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's interview with Oprah became a trending topic on Twitter. (You will find the complete list of winners at this link.) - Variety

Was WandaVision A New Hybrid TV Model?

Or was the entire series - spoilers abound throughout this article, by the way - yet another Marvel tease? "It was intentionally meta and experimental, an 'in-between' work that, with its weekly rollout, operated as neither traditional TV nor a bingeable streaming series." - The Atlantic

There’s No Hollywood Ending For Movie Theatres Yet

Studios are fighting with movie theatre chains; not enough people have been vaccinated yet to feel comfortable going to theatres; and, well, there's streaming. To be obvious: "'It’s going to take some time for things to settle out,' said David A. Gross, who runs Franchise Entertainment Research, a movie consultancy." - The New York Times

Some Are Vaccinated, And Very Ready To See A Movie In The Theatre Again

As New York cinemas open with precautions in place, "what movies are even playing in theaters these days? For those in attendance, the film in question wasn’t the main reason they showed up at their closest multiplex on a chilly Friday afternoon. Rather, audiences were guided more by a desire to get out of the house and sit in a darkened theater with a tub of popcorn at a time when it’s too cold to do anything outside. Cinemas across the city were sparsely populated, but those who bought tickets conveyed their emotions ranged from 'pretty excited' to having an 'out of body experience.'" - Variety

Berlin Film Fest Awards Its First Gender-Neutral Acting Award

Women, men, and nonbinary people all compete for the same award starting this year at the Berlin Film Festival - and this year's award went to a woman. "While some will argue gender-neutral categories are socially progressive, they will also have unintended consequences. It could, interestingly, lead to a battle between two different factions of equality campaigners." - BBC

Our Free Newsletter

Join our 30,000 subscribers