TRIBECA TO HOST FIRST FESTIVAL WITH IN-PERSON SCREENINGS: In June, The Tribeca Film Festival will hold the first in-person event in North America since the beginning of COVID-19. A 12-day series of outdoor events will be held starting June 9th at public venues across Manhattan, Brooklyn and Staten Island, organizers, including Robert De Niro, announced Monday. “After the 9/11 attacks, The Tribeca Film Festival helped set the stage for New York City’s incredible comeback – and helped spur a new golden age for film and TV production across the five boroughs,” former mayor Michael R. Bloomberg said in the festival’s press release. “This year the festival is once again shining a spotlight on our city’s resilience and creativity, and just as we’ve done from the start, Bloomberg is glad to support this great tradition, which will once again help lift our city’s spirit.”
OBI-WAN KENOBI ADDS 10 TO CAST: Disney+‘s Obi-Wan Kenobi has added several new cast members, including Moses Ingram, Joel Edgerton, Bonnie Piesse, Kumail Nanjiani, Indira Varma, Rupert Friend, O’Shea Jackson Jr., Sung Kang, Simone Kessell and Benny Safdie. They join series lead Ewan McGregor.
NO OSCARS IN HONG KONG: Hong Kong’s TVB has opted to not air the Academy Awards for the first time in 50+ years, despite Hong Kong film Better Days being the first nominated film for the region since 1993. In a statement to Hong Kong media outlets, a TVB spokesperson said “It was purely a commercial decision that we decided not to pursue the Oscars this year.” This comes after Beijing told mainland China to refuse to broadcast the ceremony.
NEWS CORP SNAGS HARCOURT: Rupert Murdoch‘s News Corp is acquiring Houghton Mifflin Harcourt's Books & Media consumer publishing unit for $349 million in cash. The deal covers several iconic titles, including The Lord of the Rings trilogy and other books by J.R.R. Tolkien, 1984 and Animal Farm by George Orwell, and All the King’s Men by Robert Penn Warren.