Friday, 14 November 2014

Hollywood Babble On & On #1194: Random Bits of Nonsense


Mega-retailer Amazon and Mega-publisher Hachette have inked a multi-year deal, calling a truce on their war over e-book pricing.

To sum up the feud Amazon was racking up big losses in their quest to undercut and monopolize the book retailing business. They thought that they could use their bulk to get the big publishers to start eating some of Amazon's losses. Well, Hachette was the first one to say: "Ah hell no!" and thus the war began.

Now it's over. Probably because Amazon's shareholders took a look at the money they were haemorrhaging in the CEO's war of supremacy, and told Bezos, to make some kind of deal.

I still stand by my previous statement that if the big publishers don't want this to happen again, and again, and again, then they need a plan.

1. IMPROVE DISTRIBUTION: A few years ago I tried to order a book, a newly released novel from a popular author, through my local bookstore, which is now out of business. I had Amazon as an option, but I was willing to pay a little more to help support my local indie. They told me that the distributor took 6 to 8 weeks for those kinds of orders. Well that put the kibosh on that plan, since I was hoping to give it as a Xmas gift. There is no reason for that in this day and age. If Amazon can do it, the big publishers can do it for retailers. Or they can...

2. EXPLOIT PRINT ON DEMAND: The machinery to manufacture books on site exist, it's just not being used. There should be a machine in every bookstore in the world, right by the cashier, and under a sign that says: "If it's not on our shelves, it's in this machine." The customer gives the cashier their order, and they're told to feel free to browse the shelves while they wait the 10 minutes it takes to print and bind the books. You can also use this to screw Amazon by making their publishing arm's titles available via these machines. Thus they can't complain about being shut out, and the combine behind them will make a little off of every order.

Anyway, what else is in the news…


I'm not normally one to jump on rumours of who is doing what until things are signed, sealed, and delivered, but I just can't resist this one.

DC/Warner Bros. are reportedly interested in getting a female director for Wonder Woman, and at the time of this writing Canadian TV director/producer Michelle Maclaren is in the front of the pack.  Maclaren certainly has the right CV, starting her directing career on the X-Files and working on such big name and acclaimed shows as Breaking Bad and Game of Thrones. Also, as a female director the studio only has to pay her 77¢ for every dollar they would pay a male director. (Now that's good satire!) 

But seriously, her record shows an ability to do quality drama, action, and suspense, while working within the tightly controlled budgets and schedules inherent in TV production. Plus, TV is where all the interesting storytelling is being done these days, and she's in the thick of it. Which makes her more than qualified for the job regardless of gender.

All I ask is that they work in getting some colour on Wonder Woman's outfit. Brown is not a super-heroic  colour scheme.

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