1. HOW FESTIVAL SECURITY HAS CHANGED AFTER ROUTE 91 SHOOTING: The mass shooting at last year’s Route 91 Harvest music festival has led many outdoor music festivals to amp up their security with drones and sniper towers—but promoters say that chances of preventing another mass shooting are unlikely. Billboard: “As the 2018 outdoor festival season approaches, concertgoers will encounter increased security measures and—as a result of their implementation and fees paid to the growing group of security consultants that recommend them—higher ticket prices. These precautions may make festival crowds feel safer, but privately, many in the live industry express skepticism that there is any foolproof way to protect outdoor audiences from a terrorist like Route 91 killer Stephen Paddock, who meticulously planned an onslaught that no one had anticipated. ‘Much of what is being done is to create the perception that people are safe and to limit liability, but it’s really difficult to stop a determined individual who takes the time to plot one of these attacks,’ says a source in the festival space who requested anonymity. As another industry insider points out, Route 91 organizers had spent a year preparing for active-shooter scenarios, but did not foresee a sniper attack from above. Now that the attack has become the largest mass shooting in U.S. history, security firms that specialize in risk assessment for live-event spaces are developing protocols to prevent another. Although these firms are reluctant to discuss specific tactics because ‘we don’t want the bad guys to know our plan,’ says one security expert, they increasingly involve the latest in surveillance and detection technology. Mike Downing, chief security officer with Prevent Advisors, a security firm owned by sports and entertainment facilities company Oak View Group, says that his firm is exploring artificial intelligence-directed camera systems that track and assess thousands of people at once, along with tethered drones that can stay aloft in a stationary position for days at a time. (Coachella plans to use drones to monitor the festival site for suspicious packages and activity.)” https://bit.ly/2HkvYVt
2. NETFLIX OFFICIALLY PULLS FILMS FROM CANNES FESTIVAL: Netflix's chief content officer Ted Sarandos has announced that the streaming platform has pulled all of its entries from next month's Cannes Film Festival, after the event banned films without theatrical distribution in France from the competition. Variety: ” Netflix could screen some of its upcoming movies out of competition, but Sarandos says that doesn’t make sense for the streaming service. 'We want our films to be on fair ground with every other filmmaker,' Sarandos says. 'There’s a risk in us going in this way and having our films and filmmakers treated disrespectfully at the festival. They’ve set the tone. I don’t think it would be good for us to be there.' Netflix made a big splash at the prestigious film festival last year with two movies that showed in competition: Bong Joon-ho’s 'Okja' and Noah Baumbach’s 'The Meyerowitz Stories.' But after the 2017 announcement, French theaters owners and unions protested the inclusion of these films to Thierry Fremaux, the artistic director of Cannes. Netflix was amenable to having their movies play on big screens in France, but a law in the country requires movies to not appear in home platforms for 36 months after their theatrical release. ... 'We hope that they do change the rules. We hope that they modernize. But we will continue to support all films and all filmmakers. We encourage Cannes to rejoin the world cinema community and welcome them back. Thierry had said in his comments when he announced his change that the history of the Internet and the history of Cannes are two different things. Of course they are two different things. But we are choosing to be about the future of cinema. If Cannes is choosing to be stuck in the history of cinema, that’s fine.'" https://bit.ly/2qoHF3A
3. FIFA CONSIDERS EXPANDING 2022 WORLD CUP TO 48 TEAMS: Commebol, the football confederation of South America, has asked FIFA to increase the number of competing teams at the 2022 World Cup from 32 to 48. ESPN: “FIFA is already planning to expand its finals in 2026, but CONMEBOL wants more South American nations to be represented in Qatar four years earlier. In the current system, four South American nations automatically qualify or each World Cup, with the fifth-placed country entering an inter-confederation play-off. A formal letter was presented to FIFA President Gianni Infantino, signed by CONMEBOL president Alejandro Dominguez and the region's 10 member associations. … An early expansion would allow FIFA to generate more revenue to replenish the coffers hit by corruption scandals. But increasing the number of games from 64 to 80 would pose additional logistical challenges for Qatar. The first World Cup in the Middle East is already operating on a tight 28-day schedule to please club sides after FIFA shifted the event from its usual June-July slot to November-December because of the extreme heat. Qatar has plans to build eight stadiums, whereas bidders for the 48-team 2026 tournament have been told they need 12 venues. One option to accommodate the additional games, rather than further straining the requirements on Qatar, would be to share games in the Gulf. Qatar won the FIFA vote in 2010 with a vision of the World Cup benefiting the Middle East but with all the games in the small desert nation.” https://es.pn/2qrGvV1
* LOCAL NEWS *
LOS ANGELES: The Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach runs today through Sunday. Event sponsors include Toyota, Patrón, and Coca-Cola.
For information on upcoming events in Los Angeles, visit Masterplanner: http://www.masterplanneronline.com/losangeles
MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA: Art and Culture Center/Hollywood’s 21st annual Cuisine for Art fund-raiser will take place April 26 at the Hard Rock Event Center at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino.
NEW YORK: The 72nd annual Tony Awards nominations announcement will be broadcast live from the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center on CBS This Morning May 1. The event will be co-hosted by Leslie Odom, Jr. and Katharine McPhee.
Printed Matter's NY Art Book Fair will take place September 21-23 at MoMa PS1.
The Ritz-Carlton New York, Central Park, has announced it will undergo a mutli-phase renovation that will modernize the hotel’s guest rooms, suites, Club Lounge, and lobby lounge. The renovation will be completed in early 2019.
For information on upcoming events in New York, visit Masterplanner: http://www.masterplanneronline.com/newyork
SAN DIEGO: Hotel del Coronado has appointed Dane Gorup director of events and catering.
SAN FRANCISCO: San Francisco Marriott Marquis has appointed Yael Rosenwald senior sales executive.
Hello! Destination Management has acquired San Francisco-based Mana, Allison & Associates. The acquisition marks Hello!’s tenth office and first in Northern California.
WASHINGTON, D.C.: Passport DC “Around the World Embassy Tour,” presented by Events DC, will take place May 5. Embassies will open their doors to visitors and locals for food, art, dance, fashion, and music events.
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With contributions from Claire Hoffman in Los Angeles and Beth Kormanik, Michele Laufik, and Ian Zelaya in New York.
BizBash Daily is the must-read digest of event industry news from BizBash.com.
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