May 4, 2018: Why Booking Female Headliners Is a Win for Music Festival Organizers, Oscars Board Expels Bill Cosby and Roman Polanski, New Tech-Theme Film Festival Aims to Bridge Hollywood and Silicon Valley

1. WHY BOOKING FEMALE HEADLINERS IS A WIN FOR MUSIC FESTIVAL ORGANIZERS: The 2018 music festival season has already shown that creating more buzz for a festival can simply be done by booking women headliners—such as Beyoncé, Cardi B, and Janet Jackson. Billboard: "Beyoncé slayed expectations with her history-making appearances at Coachella—aka 'Beychella'—and her Saturday performance on the first weekend became YouTube’s most-streamed festival set ever with 458,000 live global views. And she wasn't the only big story at the show: A pregnant Cardi B made headlines twerking onstage without missing a beat; SZA followed a shaky first weekend with a triumphant set on the second; and HAIM opened up for Beyoncé with a visually stunning performance featuring direction from Paul Thomas Anderson. Male headliners The Weeknd and Eminem, meanwhile, arguably generated less buzz than even non-headliner Cardi. And some of the most promising festival appearances by women are yet to come. Cardi B canceled her scheduled set at Panorama, as well as tour dates, due to her pregnancy. But Janet Jackson will headline Panorama on July 28, and also close out the Essence Festival on July 8 (ending her eight-year festival hiatus), play FYF Fest on July 22 and top one of Outside Lands’ three nights (Aug. 10-12). Dua Lipa and Sheryl Crow are scheduled for Bonnaroo (June 7-10); Florence + The Machine will headline Outside Lands, FYF and Osheaga (Aug. 3-5); and in Barcelona, Spain, Björk will headline Primavera Sound on May 31 and Lorde will take top billing on June 2. For Jackson in particular, closing out a given night of a festival is a notable feat for a legacy artist who hasn’t released an album since 2015. Of course, Jackson, who turns 52 on May 16, is no stranger to defying convention. She abruptly halted her Unbreakable World Tour in 2016 owing to her pregnancy with son Eissa Al Mana, then picked up where she left off, resuming the tour (renamed State of the World) last September to critical acclaim and commercial success; it grossed an estimated $33.4 million, according to Billboard Boxscore. Jackson has since extended the run, with new dates starting in July."

2. OSCARS BOARD EXPELS BILL COSBY AND ROMAN POLANSKI: The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has expelled Bill Cosby and Roman Polanski. CNN: “’The Board continues to encourage ethical standards that require members to uphold the Academy's values of respect for human dignity,’ a statement from the Academy read. Cosby was found guilty last week on three counts of aggravated indecent assault. Although he is more strongly associated with television, Cosby was a long-time member of the Academy for his work in film but never won an Oscar. Polanski fled the US in 1978 after being charged with statutory rape of a 13-year-old girl. He has continued filmmaking in Europe. He won the Oscar in 2003 for directing the World War II drama ‘The Pianist.’ Since producer Harvey Weinstein was expelled from the Academy in October, following allegations of sexual misconduct that Weinstein has denied, the group received criticism by some in Hollywood for not taking similar action with Polanski. No additional information was immediately available about the pair being expelled from the Academy. Separately Thursday, members of the American Advertising Federation's (AFF), a trade organization that recognizes professional achievements in the advertising industry, voted to rescind Cosby's induction into the Advertising Hall of Fame. The group also rescinded Cosby's President's Award, which was presented to him at the time of his 2011 induction.”

3. NEW TECH-THEME FILM FESTIVAL AIMS TO BRIDGE HOLLYWOOD AND SILICON VALLEY: This fall, Beverly Hills will be home to a new film festival that aims to bridge Hollwyood, Silicon Valley, and Silicon Beach. The Hollywood Reporter: “While planning is still underway, the debut of the Beverly Hills Infinity Film Festival is slated to take place Nov. 1-4, with The Paley Center for Media as its home base. Additional intended locations include the Writers Guild Theater and various private screening rooms at Beverly Hills-based talent agencies. Organizers also hope to attract area hotels for participation and various retail storefronts to host pop-ups for exhibitions and installations. The first two days will feature screenings and programming for industry professionals. At press time, organizers confirmed that Paramount intends to premiere a new restoration of its 1953 classic The War of the Worlds, which won an Academy Award for special effects, at the festival. The final two days will be open to the public. The fest’s November slot was selected to potentially attract awards season/holiday features or new product launches. The event is co-founded by a trio of entertainment technology vets: co-BHIFF CEOs Nick Urbom and Mark Lieber; and chairman Roy Taylor, a BAFTA Los Angeles board member. Organizers expect technology themes to include artificial intelligence, light field and volumetric capture, LED screens and projection mapping. Urbom says the festival will incorporate Blockchain.”


BALTIMORE:  Joie de Vivre Hospitality opened its first hotel in Baltimore, Hotel Revival, May 2 in Mount Vernon. The hotel features an artistic design and has two unique dining concepts: the farm-inspired Square Meal and the rooftop restaurant and garden bar concept Topside. 

CHICAGO:  Choose Chicago has named Dawn Young vice president of hotel sales.

LAS VEGAS:  Live events agency G.E.S. has appointed Jay Altizer president of North America.

LOS ANGELES:  Los Angeles Travel Magazine’s Taste of the World event, a culinary competition and tasting event that offers dishes from Southern California chefs, will take place Sunday at the Paramour Estate. 

For information on upcoming events in Los Angeles, visit Masterplanner:

NEW YORK:  This year's OZY Fest will take place July 21-22 at Rumsey Playfield in Central Park. The festival lineup includes Michelle Wolf, Hasan Minhaj, Chelsea Handler, Common, Martha Stewart, and Laverne Cox. 

Performance Space New York will host political organization and skate collective Brujas’s new project, Training Facility, May 25-June 9. As part of Red Bull Music Festival, Brujas will host its third annual Anti-Prom May 25 to open the project. The project will bring a neighborhood skate park to the theater space in an effort to express community through art, skateboarding, and political organizing.

For information on upcoming events in New York, visit Masterplanner:

SAN FRANCISCO:  The Experiential Marketing Summit will take place May 14-16 at the Marriott Marquis San Francisco. 

TORONTO:  Radisson Toronto Airport West has opened 12 miles from the Toronto Pearson International Airport. The hotel has 11 meeting rooms and is attached to the Grand Victorian Convention Centre.

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With contributions from Claire Hoffman in Los Angeles and Beth Kormanik, Michele Laufik, Ian Zelaya, and Deirdre Jahn in New York.

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