After the coffee. Before trying to cast "The Expendables 3."
The Skinny: I keep forgetting to watch the new FX drama "The Bridge." It's sad that I'm getting so old I now have to put reminders in the BlackBerry to record TV shows and pay the rent. Enough of that depressing stuff. Thursday's headlines include Fox Sports making a big deal for golf and Sylvester Stallone calling out Bruce Willis on Twitter.
Daily Dose: The big winner in the CBS-Time Warner Cable distribution fight may be newspapers. Both companies have taken out lots of ads in the cities where the CBS signals were dropped (including Los Angeles) taking shots at the other side. Now even industry lobbyists are weighing in as a cable group on the side of Time Warner took out a big ad in Thursday's New York Times.
Nothing but net. Coverage of college and professional basketball were among the key drivers for Time Warner, which posted strong second-quarter results. Warner Bros. also delivered with "Man of Steel" and "The Great Gatsby" and HBO's "Game of Thrones" helped drive the pay-cable channel's ratings. More on the numbers from the Los Angeles Times and Wall Street Journal.
Fore! Fox Sports hit a hole in one with a 12-year deal for TV rights to United States Golf Assn. events. The new agreement will provide lots of content for Fox Sports 1, the new cable channel launching next week. It is also a blow to NBC's Golf Channel and ESPN. I wish I knew more about golf so I could riff on this deal. I will predict that specialty channels such as Golf and Tennis are going to lose content to ESPN and Fox Sports as those two try to gobble up everything. Coverage from Bloomberg.
Movie tax issue in China near resolution. I start writing this column very early in the morning and my brain isn't always firing on all cylinders. I say that as precursor to linking to a New York Times story about a movie tax in China that is affecting American studios doing business there. It's too complex for me to grasp right now but it sounds important and it is getting resolved. Hey, at least I'm honest!
Take it outside boys! Sylvester Stallone took to Twitter to blast Bruce Willis as greedy and lazy after Willis pulled out of "The Expendables 3." Willis was quickly replaced by Harrison Ford and the Hollywood Reporter said the issue was Willis wanting $1 million a day for the four days of work his role required. Maybe Stallone and Willis fight on pay-per-view and use the proceeds to resolve the salary dispute.
Where there's a will, there's a way. Some fans of the CBS summer series "Under the Dome" who can't watch the show because of the fight between Time Warner Cable and the network are taking to piracy to get their fix. According to TorrentFreak, the number of illegal downloads of "Under the Dome" rose in markets where Time Warner has dropped CBS TV stations including New York City and Los Angeles. Fortunately for me I can just call CBS and tell them to send me a copy. It's one of the few perks of this job.
Follow me on Twitter. It pays my bills. @JBFlint.