MediaFile

Redstone’s last picture show

Media mogul Sumner Redstone appears to be sticking with his decision to not sell more shares in Viacom and CBS. Here’s the Financial Times:

Media mogul Sumner Redstone has reached agreement with his daughter, Shari, to put some of National Amusement’s 1,500 cinemas on the block rather than the entire division, as part of debt-restructuring discussions to avoid selling more shares of Viacom and CBS, according to people familiar with the matter.

If lenders agree, the plan would clear the way to sell a part of the US group and 19 theatres in the UK. A prospectus is not expected to be released until early January, one person familiar with the discussions said.

It was not immediately clear how much the proposed partial sale would fetch. The entire chain is valued at $500m to $700m by analysts and at about $1billion by Mr Redstone.

This comes after National Amusements sold its stake in video game company Midway for $100,000 and a big tax writeoff.

Cell phones still No. 1 movie irritant for Regal CEO

People who talk and text on cell phones are still the number one source of movie theater complaints tracked by Regal Entertainment Group, Chairman and Chief Executive Mike Campbell told the Reuters Media Summit on Wednesday.

Campbell made news at a the 2006 Reuters summit by disclosing that Regal, the largest U.S. theater chain, had armed patrons in a few test theaters with gizmos that summon ushers to deal with problems ranging from rowdy audiences to a freezing auditoriums. Back then, Campbell reported that some patrons were “getting into physical battles in the theaters” over cell phones and that the chain had “had people assaulted with bats, knives and guns” over their electronic umbilical cords.

The program worked so well that Regal has now expanded it to 100 of its highest volume locations, and cell phone talkers and texters seem to be getting the message, Campbell said.

Is MySpace dreaming of a music device?

    Step right up and take your best shot. Think you’ve got a digital music player that can compete with Apple’s iPod? Bring it. Go ahead. Others have. Look what happened to them.

Think Microsoft’s Zune or Sandisk’s Sansa.

But one of these days somebody, somewhere is going to come up with a device that trumps the iPod. It’s only a matter of time. The question is, who will that be?

Well, one contender might just be News Corp. Its MySpace could eventually be interested in developing a player to go along with the big music venture it recently launched, it seems.