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May 15, 2017: L.A. Olympic Bid Seeks to Cut Costs by Using Existing Venues, President of Oscar Board Won't Seek Re-Election, Portugal Scores Its First Eurovision Win

1. L.A. OLYMPIC BID SEEKS TO CUT COSTS BY USING EXISTING VENUES: Los Angeles's 2024 Olympic bid is opting for efficiency over spectacle, as it includes cutting costs by offering existing venues rather than building new ones for events. I.O.C. members toured the prospective sites, which include the Staples Center, last week. Washington Post: "Hosting an Olympics typically means building new venues for competitions, housing and infrastructure to accommodate the crowds. An Olympic Village for athletes and compounds dedicated to broadcasting and media workspace tend to drive up the costs. Rather than build from scratch, the LA 2024 bid proposes utilizing existing buildings. For example, the IOC evaluation commission visited USC’s communication school, which would serve as a media center. They toured the residence halls on UCLA’s campus, which would house athletes, and dorm rooms at USC, which would house the international media. “These were really impressive because these two beautiful campuses, they have everything,” said Patrick Baumann, chair of the visiting IOC commission. Said Casey Wasserman, the LA 2024 chairman: 'It wasn’t about greenfield sites or blueprints. It was about touching and feeling.' The evaluation commission—short two members because of health issues—spent a full day meeting with the LA 2024 bid committee and another touring the region. They headed to Paris this weekend where they’d learn more about that city’s bid. In Paris, the commission members are expected to meet with newly elected French President Emmanuel Macron. In Los Angeles, however, U.S. politics were mostly kept far in the background. President Trump is a possible wild card for LA 2024, and many fear his comments and policies could impact the bid. Baumann said the president was not a discussion point during their meetings here."

2. PRESIDENT OF OSCAR BOARD WON'T SEEK RE-ELECTION: Cheryl Boone Isaacs, the president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for the last four years, won't seek re-election. The Hollywood Reporter: "Meanwhile, there are a number of big names among the 157 Academy members who have thrown their hat into the ring for this year's board race, which soon will result in a winnowing down of the ballot to no more than four candidates from each of the organization's 17 branches, from which each branch will pick a single representative in June. (Each branch also has two other representatives; terms are staggered so that only one comes up for election each year.) They include Netflix chief Ted Sarandos, Sony Classics co-chief Michael Barker and CBS Films president Terry Press, Get Out producer Jason Blum, Rush Hour director Brett Ratner, Pixar and Disney president Ed Catmull, Martin Scorsese's longtime producer Irwin Winkler, Tom Cruise's former producing partner Paula Wagner, documentarian Morgan Spurlock, Weta chief Joe Letteri and actors Geena Davis, Whoopi Goldberg, Queen Latifah and Rita Wilson (whose husband, Tom Hanks, already serves on the board). ... Academy board members may serve up to three consecutive three-year terms before "terming out" and having to take a year off before running again, while officers, such as the president, are chosen from and by the board for one-year terms, and are permitted no more than four consecutive terms in any one office. Boone Isaacs just completed her second three-year term on the board, and therefore would have been eligible to seek one more, but would not have been eligible to run for president again. Academy sources say that after a grueling four years in that office, she is looking forward to some time off."

3. PORTUGAL SCORES ITS FIRST EUROVISION WIN: Salvador Sobral of Portugal scored the country's first-ever win at the Eurovision Song Contest, an annual international TV song competition, with a ballad that was far cry from the event's typical flashy performances. The New York Times: "Mr. Sobral, 27, performed the song in Portuguese, dressed in an oversized dinner jacket, and often clasped his hands in front of his chest as he sang. It was a far cry from the other performances, which included shirtless men splashing in a pool; a performer wearing a horse head sitting atop a ladder; another straddling a full-sized cannon; and several instances of fireworks. The Eurovision Song Contest’s winner is chosen through an intricate process that combines votes from judges from the participating countries with votes sent in by viewers. The announcement process, which was broadcast on television stations around the world on Saturday night, took roughly an hour. Eurovision, which now draws nearly 200 million viewers each year, begins with a series of contests and official appointments in each of the participating countries to determine who will go to the finals. Most countries compete in a semifinal round, which took place earlier this week. But the countries that pay the highest dues to the European Broadcasting Union, which organizes the event, can move automatically to the finals. Eurovision winners usually have a shooting star-like trajectory that flares out shortly after their victory, but the contest has also launched some talents with longstanding careers—most notably Abba and Celine Dion. Before it was developed into a stage show that became a worldwide phenomenon, the Irish step-dancing spectacle 'Riverdance' began as Ireland’s intermission act when the country hosted the contest in 1994."


BOSTON:  Partners for Youth With Disabilities will host its 12th annual "Party for PYD" benefit event on Thursday at Ernst & Young. 

LOS ANGELES:  M.P.A.—the Association of Magazine Media will host its 13th annual I.M.A.G. Conference May 22-24 at Marriott Marina del Rey. The event will include the Imagination Awards on May 23. 

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

NEW YORK:  The Airbnb Brooklyn Half will take place May 20, beginning near the Brooklyn Museum and ending at Coney Island Boardwalk. The third annual N.Y.R.R. Youth Boardwalk Run also will take place May 20, and the Airbnb Brooklyn Half Pre-Party, presented by New Balance, will take place May 17-19 at Brooklyn Bridge Park. 

Nylon Media Inc. has acquired Simply Stylist, a conference business focused on the fashion and beauty industries. Continuing to operate as “Simply,” Simply Stylist will work closely with Nylon and Socialyte to build and extend its talent roster, conference, and brand activation businesses and video content.

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

ORLANDO/CENTRAL FLORIDA:  Beginning August 29, Cress in Deland will transition from operating as a traditional restaurant to one that is only open for special events. Information on the Cress website says it will focus on hosting events with nationally renowned guest chefs, cooking classes, wine education classes, private events, and more. 

Visit Orlando has announced another record year for tourism in 2016, with 68 million visitors. 

SAN FRANCISCO:  Maker Faire Bay Area, presented by Intel, will take place May 19-21 at the San Mateo Event Center.

TORONTO:  The 14th annual Woofstock, an outdoor dog festival, will take place May 27-28 at Woodbine Park. PetSmart is the event's presenting partner. 

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With contributions from Jenny Berg in Chicago, Alesandra Dubin and Claire Hoffman in Los Angeles, Mitra Sorrells in Orlando, and Beth Kormanik, Michele Laufik, Jill Menze, and Ian Zelaya in New York.

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