Sunday, June 16, 2024

Hollywood Catch Up: Golden Globes President Dead, HBO Chief Ousted, MTV Cancels VMAs at Barclays Center


There’s a lot going on, and you will read about it all in various places.

But just to recap:

Lorenzo Soria, the president of the Golden Globes organization the Hollywood Foreign Press, has died at the age of 68. Lorenzo and I were famous enemies. We disagreed a lot, we argued when we first met, but we always laughed everything out. He was devoted to the Globes. Showbiz publicist extraordinaire Norah Lawlor really liked him. She said, “He was the hippest president of the Golden Globes.” A short time ago Lorenzo got married, which softened him a bit and it helped that his wife liked everyone. New bridges were built. I am really upset. I had hoped to keep tussling with Lorenzo for years to come. This is way too young to die. He also leaves a young son. Condolences to his family and friends and to the HFPA.

Warner Media was rocked today by sweeping changes at HBO. Bob Greenblatt, who’d replaced Richard Plepler as head of the studio, is out. So is Kevin Reilly. Greenblatt had come from a successful reign at NBC and at Showtime. He was very popular, and I know he’ll reappear in some great new position. HBO is still the gold standard, and longtime exec Casey Bloys gets promoted in this reshuffle. But with “Perry Mason” getting lots of great attention, and HBO receiving 106 Emmy nominations, I’m surprised Greenblatt is out. But that’s Hollywood, kids.

MTV will still have their Video Music Awards, but they’ll be virtual and from undisclosed locations around New York. They will not be at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. I never understood how that was going to work. Apparently neither did MTV. “The 2020 VMAs will be held on Sunday, Aug. 30 and pay homage to the incredible resiliency of New York with several outdoor performances around [NYC] with limited or no audience, adhering to all state and city guidelines. In close consultation with state and local health officials‎, it became clear at this time that outdoor performances with limited or no audience would be more feasible and safer than an indoor event.”

No kidding.


Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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