A 24 Fox Doesn’t Want You to SeeNews Corp. has just posted its figures for the latest quarter, and ouch. The profits at Rupert Murdoch’s behemoth have dropped 24 percent compared to last year. The movie division is doing splendidly — Fox’s earnings jumped 57 percent, with a good chunk of the $470 million take attributed to the ultraprofitable Borat. The problems are on the TV end: Broadcast profits are down. Then there’s MyNetworkTV, a blatantly doomed “mini-network” that sounds scarily inspired by Murdoch’s purchase of MySpace (another costly exercise with no clear yield in sight). Even the man himself admits MyNetwork has performed “far below expectations.” No word on how Rupe’s quixotic devotion to the Post is affecting the bottom line; our uneducated guess is, however, it’s nothing a mere twinge of Sasha Baron Cohen’s mustache can’t erase.
News Corp. Quarterly Profit Declined 24% [Crain’s]
Now, New York Rappers Beef Via Photoshop
It’s a bit off topic for us, but the ongoing beef between New York rappers Tru-Life and Dipset seems worth mentioning. This weekend, in retaliation for the cover of Tru Life’s latest mix tape (above left), which depicts Dipset’s Jim Jones wearing Borat’s overly revealing yellow bikini, Dipset affiliates hacked Tru-Life’s MySpace page and put up photos of Tru Life in the bikini (above right). And with that, ladies and gentleman, we have reached the obvious end point of the evolution of rap beef; Jim Jones, who once threatened to slap the kufi off Nas’s head, is resorting to Photoshop geekery. At least no one’s getting shot. —Amos Barshad
Tru Life & J-Love — Tru York Mixtape Cover [Nahright.com]
Capo Strikes Back, Hacks Tru Life’d MySpace [Nahright.com]
Let It Shine, Let It Shine, Let It ShineA choir sang “This Little Light of Mine” at Eliot Spitzer’s inauguration; the Albany Times Union editor was one of the singers. The owner of Patroon, who used to run ‘21,’ brought his current staff to his old restaurant. Courtney Love made 53 New Year’s resolutions. Casa Casuarina in South Beach lost power on New Year’s Eve, and Anna Anisimova and Jonathan Cheban couldn’t take the heat. Brad Pitt wants to produce a Borat project. Spirit Airlines lost James Gandolfini’s luggage. A producer was going to make an Elmore Leonard book into a movie but now isn’t. Oprah is happy that Madonna adopted that Malawian kid. Semi-disgraced Miss USA Tara Conner might pose for Playboy. Someone hit on David Schwimmer at Pastis. The Soup Nazi actor took Kramer’s Reality Tour. Former DNC chair Terry McAuliffe has a new memoir out, in which he tells stories about raising money. George Michael did a private New Year’s Eve concert in Russia for $3 million. Wilmer Valderrama is set to launch a menswear line. Meatpacking club Double Seven is moving down the block. Will Ferrell won’t do Elf 2. Kevin Connolly pulled a blonde out of the way of an ambulance in Miami.
Barry Diller Has No West Side Panic RoomBarry Diller denies that Frank Gehry built him an invader-proof, bullet-proof bunker in the bathroom of his office at the new IAC headquarters. So Pamela and Kid didn’t break up over Borat — they broke up because Pam partied too much and left the kids home with Kid (and maybe lied about her miscarriage). New crotch-flashing best friends Paris Hilton and Britney Spears will host the Billboard Music Awards Monday in Vegas. Rush & Molloy “breaks” the news that the “raisin face” Nicole Richie was referring to on her blog is Rachel Zoe, which, like, everyone knew two days ago. Ed Koch lost his pants at an airport in Portugal. Steve Schirripa accidentally head-butted James Gandolfini on the set of The Sopranos. Bobby Kennedy Jr. had dinner with his sister’s husband’s ex-wife. The publishers of InStyle want the magazine’s weddings editor to make things a little more highbrow. Snoop Dogg filed a $2 million lawsuit against his record label for royalties owed; TomKat spent $4.75 million for a cottage in London. Robert Altman tattooed dogs for a living before he made movies. Publicist Dan Klores has a movie in Sundance this year, his third in five years. Some people laughed at a screening for a new comedy about Adolph Hitler, and some people didn’t. (And yes, the director’s Jewish.) Cindy Adams speculates (twice!) that ABC’s Primetime co-anchor John Quinones will take over Ed Bradley’s vacant seat at 60 Minutes. Liz Smith reminds us that Rudy and Judy Giuliani are truly, madly, deeply in love. Lillo Brancato, of A Bronx Tale fame, is in solitary confinement at Rikers Island for a third time (this time for heroin). And the Post scolds the Daily News for calling a kettle black.
Someone Please Keep Diane Sawyer BusyDiane Sawyer will take over World News from Charlie Gibson after the presidential election, but how will she entertain herself till then? Frank Capra wanted to make a sequel to It’s A Wonderful Life. Rod Stewart told Rolling Stone his daughter has a serious liver condition from partying too hard; she denies it. The owner of Cafe Fuego in the East Village, who’s also the boyfriend of Halle Berry, behaves just like all the ill-behaving ex-boyfriends of Halle Berry. Billionaire Russian heiress Anna Anisimova ditches New York for the warmer climes of L.A., plans to start a perfume company. Stephen Baldwin misbehaved on an airplane. Denis Leary made fun of Mel Gibson at the New York Comedy Festival. Borat had a few issues at the Wellington Hotel when he stayed there while filming a scene for his movie. Peter Cook still likes ‘em blonde. The makers of a documentary about the difficulties American soldiers after having readjusting to life at home are unable to get the Armed Forces to show it. Stylist Rachel Zoe angered Tom Ford when she left a dinner party he was throwing in L.A. Liz Smith has some advice for Britney Spears: Go on Oprah and tell the world, “I was unconscious for two years.” Evidently, Paula Abdul is Jewish.
It’s Not Easy Being a PatakiBreaking: Tinsley Mortimer shops for her own groceries! Kevin Federline is broke, steals food and booze from a restaurant. Emily Pataki failed the bar exam. How Kennedyesque. Former Tom Cruise sparring partner Brooke Shields is going to his wedding, perhaps as a publicity stunt. Nicole Kidman probably isn’t pregnant, Ivanka Trump maybe had a boob job, but Tom DeLay definitely nominated about-to-be House Speaker Nancy Pelosi as Time’s Person of the Year. Dave Chappelle bowed out of a gig for HBO, and HBO isn’t happy. Axl Rose brought some strippers to Soho House. Borat’s cultural learnings may soon be available in a Barnes & Noble near you. (Meantime, he’d do well to avoid getting into a fight with fellow Kazakh Wladimir Klitschko.) Bruce Springsteen made a surprise appearance at a London concert; the crowd liked him. George Gershwin and Ed Bradley were honored at Lincoln Center, where it is discovered that Mr. Gershwin used to be quite the ladies’ man. Liza Minnelli played a $1 million bat mitzvah pro bono. A former America’s Next Top Model winner ditched Tyra Banks as her manager, changed her last name. Angelina Jolie was going to adopt an Indian kid, but Madonna scared her off.