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January 11, 2016: Golden Globes Host Ricky Gervais Disappoints, Brands Seek Lighter Tone for Super Bowl Ads, ABC Parts Ways With New Hampshire Newspaper for Republican Debate

1. GOLDEN GLOBES HOST RICKY GERVAIS DISAPPOINTS: On a night of many unexpected wins, the Golden Globes host Ricky Gervais offered no surprises as host, reprising his caustic comedy to ill effect. On a list of highs and lows of the award show, critics ranked him among the lowest. New York’s Vulture blog: “His transphobic opening monologue, his dated Charlie Sheen joke, deciding to remind us of his Mel Gibson material — why? Not just why did he, a professional comedian, think these jokes were funny, but the larger, why are we back here? After a delightful and genuinely funny, but still often edgy, run with Amy and Tina, and even having seen how well Andy Samberg did at the Emmys, why did the Globes revert back to Gervais and his stale, antagonistic shtick?”

2. BRANDS SEEK LIGHTER TONE FOR SUPER BOWL ADS: Brands such as Doritos and Toyota will look to engage consumers with humor in their ads during Super Bowl 50. The New York Times: “Advertisers often reflect the prevailing atmosphere during the Super Bowl, which is also their industry’s top showcase. Last year, some brands tried to make a statement about society’s ills. This year, with topics like terrorism, the economy and the presidential campaign prevailing, there is already enough serious news to go around, says Bradley Kay, president of SS&K ad agency.”

3. ABC PARTS WAYS WITH NEW HAMPSHIRE NEWSPAPER FOR REPUBLICAN DEBATE: The New Hampshire Union Leader—which has editorialized strongly against Donald Trump—will no longer participate in the Republican primary debate scheduled February 6 after ABC ended the partnership. Politico: “The paper was set to have a co-branding relationship for the debate, though it was going to be a comparatively minor role, without any representative on stage asking questions on behalf of the newspaper. In a series of tweets on Sunday, Trump took credit for ABC's move, saying he asked for ABC to remove the paper from the debate.”


The electronic dance music promoter SFX Entertainment could file for bankruptcy. Forbes: “The potential restructuring comes after founder and CEO Robert Sillerman strung investors along a ten month takeover process that included multiple failed bids, in addition to a flurry of capital infusions to keep the money losing company afloat. For SFX, which listed its shares on the Nasdaq at a valuation exceeding $1 billion in Oct. 2013, a filing would cap the company’s stunning unraveling.”*


COAST TO COAST:  Caitlyn Jenner has canceled a five-city speaking tour of the United State and Canada, citing work conflicts. The tour was scheduled through Unique Lives & Experiences. USA Today:

The Pulitzer Prizes will celebrate their 100th anniversary with four events across the country, starting with an event in May hosted by The Los Angeles Times and USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. Poynter:

ATLANTA:  Capella Hotel Group announced plans to open the Solís Hotel adjacent to the Porsche Experience Center. Slated to open in 2017, the luxury hotel will have 214 guest rooms and 6,500 square feet of event space, including a 3,600-square-foot ballroom and a rooftop lounge.

AUSTIN:  Willie Nelson will kick off Rodeo Austin, which runs March 12-26 at the Travis County Exposition Center. Austin Business Journal:

BOSTON:  Puritan & Company, a modern American restaurant in Cambridge, has a new private dining room. The new space holds 30 guests for meetings and private events.

CHICAGO:  Naoki Sushi will open in Lincoln Park on January 20. The Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises restaurant will seat 50 guests.

LAS VEGAS:  Las Vegas' new 20,000-seat arena has officially been named T-Mobile Arena. Press release:

LOS ANGELES:  The Asian American Expo, which celebrates the start of the Lunar New Year, will take place January 16-17 at Fairplex. The event will have eight performance stages and three food courts, and will include an Asian Beer Fest and Silk Show.

Local event listings from the new Masterplanner:

MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA:  Bloomingdale’s and Miami magazine will host a resort fashion and trend show January 21 at the department store.

NEW YORK:  The 140th Westminster Kennel Club All Breed Dog Show has reached a combined entry of more than 3,000 dogs in the show's three competitions. The show will take place February 15-16 with events at Piers 92 and 94 and Madison Square Garden.

Kanye West, the Strokes, and the Killers will headline the sixth annual Governors Ball, which is slated for June 3-5 on Randall's Island. Other performers include Robyn, Beck, Death Cab for Cutie, Of Monsters and Men, and Elle King.

Local event listings from the new Masterplanner:

ORLANDO/CENTRAL FLORIDA:  Disney has asked the Federal Aviation Administration for approval to fly drones, branded as "Flixels," at a new nighttime live show that will become a staple at Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort. Orlando Business Journal:

PHILADELPHIA:  The second annual Big Philly Beerfest will take place January 15-16 at the Pennsylvania Convention Center. The event will feature more than 300 craft brews from 100 breweries.

SAN DIEGO:  The third annual San Diego Travel & Adventure Show will take place January 16-17 at the San Diego Convention Center. Speakers include Travel Channel host Samantha Brown, Frommer Guides editorial director Pauline Frommer, and CBS News travel editor Peter Greenberg.

SAN FRANCISCO:  The JP Morgan Healthcare Conference takes place at the Westin St. Francis Hotel January 11-14. Now in its 34th year, the conference is billed as the country’s oldest gathering of biotech companies and investors.

TORONTO:  The Toronto Region Board of Trade’s 128th Annual Dinner will take place on January 18 at Metro Toronto Convention Centre.

WASHINGTON, D.C.:  The inaugural Breakin' Even punk band festival will take place March 4-5 at Songbyrd in Adams Morgan. Washington City Paper:

The third annual Winter Foie Festival, a celebration of foie gras at several area restaurants, is set for January 13-20. It’s coordinated by the New American eatery Boundary Road.

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

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