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WWE RAW 1000th Episode Screens In Australia today; Movie, Hollywood, Celebrity and Casino News - 25th July 2012

WWE RAW 1000th Episode Screens In Australia today; Movie, Hollywood, Celebrity and Casino News; The Dark Knight Rises, The Wolverine, Amazing Spider-Man, Marvel Games...

Pro wrestling fans down under in Australia - are you ready? The WWE RAW 1000th episode screens today at 2.30pm EST on FOX8. Most of the modern day wrestling legends who helped make RAW as great as it is will be appearing. Today's Media Man agency report also offers up news and info on comic book movies and games associated with 'The Dark Knight Rises', 'The Wolverine' and 'Amazing Spider-Man'. Then we check out the Australian casino scene, and pick up a bit of political and celebrity news for good measure. Keep checking the news website portal daily for some of the most superior news coverage on the internet.

WWE Boss Vince McMahon on his WWE; (Q&A interview)...

As the 1,000th episode of "Raw" approaches, the wrestling king offers his thoughts on professional wrestling aka "sports entertainment" (The Hollywood Reporter).

Vince McMahon has the final say at the WWE. He is the chairman and CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment, and his wife, Linda, is running for the U.S. Senate from Connecticut. McMahon, 66, is preparing for the 1,000th episode of USA flagship live show Raw, the longest-running episodic primetime program in the U.S. Raw, which reaches more than 600 million homes worldwide and contributed massively to the network's $340 million in revenue from live and televised entertainment in 2011. Today they kick of with adding a third hour and becoming the most interactive show in pro wrestling, and in just about any other medium or genre.

THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER: You started on USA, moved to another network and then returned to USA …
Vince McMahon: We became the No. 1 show on USA. And they wouldn't be No. 1 right now in primetime if not for Raw. We switched one time to what became the Spike network and became the No. 1 show there. We have proved that we can pretty much make TV networks.

THR: WWE and your performers have started using Twitter more.

McMahon: Back in the early days, our performers elicited a response -- a boo or a cheer. Today, we use all this social media. We are going to do Tout, in which the WWE just invested. With that, you get a 15-second video shout-out that goes straight to our TV programs. Beginning with the 1,000th show, people can participate in terms of the types of matches and what actually happens on air. It will be the most interactive TV programming in the world.

THR: Over the years, you had ups and downs. You had the Monday night ratings wars with WCW, for example.

McMahon: Ted Turner was a bit of a battle [when he bought the World Championship Wrestling circuit]. Ted was part of Time Warner; that was difficult to compete with. But perseverance is extremely important in life and in business. The other guys got tired of traveling each and every week to do TV. They just didn't have the same passion we do. They were working for a paycheck. It was only a matter of time until they burned out.

THR: Why has so much of your talent, like The Rock, gone on to film careers?

McMahon: Our talent is taught not to be prima donnas, to be on time and know their lines. And quite frankly, people in Hollywood, once they see what we do, they are amazed. Our talent doesn't demand the biggest trailer or a certain amount of grape juice or whatever the hell it is. Our talent is extremely flexible and knows how to act, so it's a logical extension for them.

THR: UFC gets big pay-per-view numbers. How do you stack up against them?

McMahon: We're in show business, they are a sport. Their ratings are abysmal. They are in the pay-per-view business, and they do reasonably well there. We just set a record for WrestleMania. We had 1.3 million buys for this year's WrestleMania, and our pay-per-view numbers for our shows have been up 30 percent since then. So, we are looking pretty good.

THR: Are you going to watch the Olympics?

McMahon: I consider our business the Olympics, and it doesn't just happen every few years, but every night. My favorite part will be the closing ceremonies. That means the Olympics are over, and everyone will settle down and Raw, Smackdown! [on Syfy] and WWE will have more prominence.

STORY: ION Enters Pro-Wrestling Ring with 'WWE Main Event'

WRESTLING ROOTS

Dwayne Johnson/The Rock: The third-generation wrestler began his film career with The Mummy Returns. Next: G.I. Joe: Retaliation, The Fast and the Furious 6.

Stacy Keibler: Keibler wrestled and managed WWE stars, then placed third on Dancing With the Stars. And, oh yeah, she's been dating George Clooney since 2011.

"Stone Cold" Steve Austin: McMahon's beer-swilling adversary appeared in The Expendables.
Hulk Hogan: He's acted in Rocky III, starred on his own reality show and done voice acting for Robot Chicken.

Freddie Prinze Jr.: The She's All That star and WWE fan was hired to help create Raw storylines in 2008. He has guest-hosted on the show as well.


WWE Triple H Talks Talent...

Promoting this coming Monday's historic 1000th episode of Raw, Paul Levesque, also known as Triple H, addressed a number of topics including Randy Orton's ongoing sixty-day suspension for his second violation of WWE's Talent Wellness Program.

Orton, who hails from St. Louis, Missouri, the site of Monday's show, will be unable to appear due to the suspension. Though Levesque won't divulge what Orton did wrong, he notes "The Legend Killer" will be back once the suspension concludes.

"It is important to remember that all of our wrestlers are human but they also have to be accountable," Levesque says of Orton's suspension.

As WWE's Executive Vice President of Talent and Live Events, Levesque's corporate role is to discover tomorrow's Superstars. He admits it's a struggle.

"We're trying to teach them to be the Stone Colds and the Undertakers of tomorrow, but the one thing we can't teach is charisma," said Levesque. "You can teach people to do moves and create story lines and the psychology of what we do, but you can't teach someone to be the Rock. It's an innate ability to walk into a room and have everyone pay attention. Put aside the athleticism and what happens in the ring, what our business is really about is connecting with people emotionally. If you are emotionally connected to your character, then people will want to see you. It's true in Hollywood and movies. You don't have to be the best actor, just be a presence."

Triple H, The Rock and "Stone Cold" Steve Austin created on-screen personas "fans loved, hated or loved to hate" on Raw in the late '90s. Levesque feels they were the first stars of reality television.

"Every guy we have, whether it's me, whether it's the Undertaker, whether it's John Cena playing the character John Cena, is a performer," said Levesque. "What we did is very much the beginning of reality television. 'Jersey Shore,' whether people want to believe it or not, is a scripted kind-of show. They don't give them every single word, but they give them premises and they set things up. It's not a documentary where you follow them around brushing their teeth. And that's what we are — we blur that line and that's what people find intriguing."

Levesque also offers insight on The Rock and Kane's on-stage personalities, WWE's decision to make their shows "PG" television, critics denouncing wrestling as "fake," and more.


WWE Raw Supershow - What To Expect On The Broadcast
Live in St. Louis, Mo, USA

The three-hour WWE Raw era will start with a new signature WWE open capturing WWE through the years.

Rapid-fire clips of memorable moments throughout Raw's history - Vince's "Bret screwed Bret" speech, Shawn Michaels losing his smile, Edge retiring, Ric Flair retiring, and Triple H tributing Eddie Guerrero.

A video package focusing on "Stone Cold" Steve Austin, Shawn Michaels and and Bret Hart becoming friends again.

Vince McMahon to welcome and thank the fans.

DX reunion with most members.

The Rock to address the WWE Title.

Brock Lesnar accept Triple H's Summerslam Challenge?

Daniel Bryan and A.J. to get married.

WWE champion C.M. Punk vs. John Cena for the WWE Title

1 -- World Hvt. champion SHEAMUS & REY MYSTERIO & SIN CARA vs. CHRIS JERICHO & DOLPH ZIGGLER (w/Vickie Guerrero) & ALBERTO DEL RIO

2 -- JACK SWAGGER vs. BRODUS CLAY (w/Mick Foley)

3 -- IC champion CHRISTIAN vs. THE MIZ -- Intercontinental Title match

Charlie Sheen via Skype to talk wrestling and "anger management".

4 -- HEATH SLATER vs. LITA


The Undertaker returns to RAW.


5 -- WWE champion C.M. PUNK vs. JOHN CENA -- WWE Title match

*special thanks to our friends at WWE, Pro Wrestling Torch, Wrestling Observer Newsletter and Wrestling Inc in assisting with this report.


New X Men, Wolverine 2 Film Revealed Possible New Viper Actress...

New X Men, Wolverine 2 film revealed possible new Viper actress. According to a new report from Collider, talks with Jessica Biel to play character Viper in the new Wolverine 2 flick, did not workout,so now, this new Russian actress Svetlana Khodchenkova is currently in talks to play Viper instead. It’s also reported that Svetlana is expected to close a deal with the studio pretty quickly.

The character of Viper is said to be of Eastern European decent, and has a complex relationship with Wolverine that includes, at one point, a sham marriage. Svetlana is mostly known for her work in Russia, but she appeared last year in the espionage flick “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.”

On location work on The Wolverine will be done in Japan, while stage work will be shot in Australia in August. The movie stars: Hugh Jackman, Will Yun Lee, Hiroyuki Sanada, Hal Yamanouchi, Tao Okamoto, Rila Fukushima, Brian Tee, and is scheduled to hit theaters on July 26th,2013. Stay tuned.


Wolverine sequel: Jessica Biel out...

Just days after Jessica Biel was announced to play Viper in the forthcoming Wolverine sequel, The Wolverine, it has emerged that the actress has now walked away from the project after contract talks broke down.

James Mangold has taken the reins for this installment with Hugh Jackman returning to play the titular title role. It will hopefully stay faithful to the Chris Claremont/Frank Miller series which sees Wolverine transported to Japan in one of his darkest storylines.

Biel had been cast as Viper, a character who has a tempestuous relationship with Wolverine/Logan, including blackmail, a forced marriage and the odd wound – both physical and mental. Viper is also known as Lady Hydra, a high ranking officer in the Hydra network, but this may not be referenced in The Wolverine as the rights to Hydra are with Disney/Marvel Studios and Hydra was used in Captain America: The First Avenger.

The Wolverine has had a bumpy ride so far getting to the big screen, with Darren Aronofsky leaving the project very early on. This caused a delay in filming, which then grew as Hugh Jackman had commitments to film Les Miserables.

It’s another setback for the production that commences in Australia this August before filming on location in Japan. Sources say that Fox are now talking to other actors about the role as they look to move quickly to replace Biel.

The film is scheduled for release July 2013.


Marvel Entertainment movies; Thor, Spider-Man boost popularity of online slot games...

The Media Man agency reports that Marvel comics themed games such as Amazing Spider-Man, Thor, Fantastic Four and The Incredible Hulk have received a boost thanks to recent and upcoming movie releases tied in with Marvel Entertainment. For the gaming world that Excelsior! (as Marvel legend Stan Lee would say). Check em out at PartyCasino.com, as featured across the Media Man network.


Comic Book Movies News Update...

DC Comics:

Director and screenwriter Quentin Tarantino will soon be scripting for DC Comics. The announcement, made at San Diego Comic Con, was nothing short of cryptic, and we are waiting on more details to be divulged.


Marvel Comics:

The Marvel NOW! Point-One teaser sequentially revealed the heroes that will be strongly implicated in the special issue to be released this Fall. The characters are Nick Fury, Jr., Cable, Ant Man, Loki, Wiccan, Miss America, Nova and Starlord.


Film and Television:

Dreamworks recently entered a bidding war for Classic Media film and television rights to properties like He-Man, Godzilla, Voltron, Turok, Dick Tracy, Archie, Rocky and Bullwinkle, and many more.

Marvel Studios is investigating the leak that uncovered the production of a Guardians of the Galaxy film weeks before the film's planned announcement at San Diego Comic Con.

The Dark Knight Rises has reportedly earned $162 million at the box office in its opening weekend despite tragedy. The gross puts TDKR third behind Marvel's The Avengers and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part II, both of which had inflated grosses due to 3D ticket sales.


O'Neill formally takes over as Echo chairman - 23rd July...

Australian Rugby Union chief executive John O'Neill has officially taken over as chairman of casino operator Echo Entertainment Group's board.

Mr O'Neill takes over from John Story who stepped down on June 8 following a campaign to remove him by James Packer, head of rival casino operator Crown.

Mr O'Neill, a non-executive board director and chief executive of the Australian Rugby Union, subsequently assumed the role of Echo's acting chairman.

His appointment received Mr Packer's support.

Mr Packer, seeking a presence in the lucrative Sydney gaming market, wanted to to increase his influence on Echo, which holds the city's sole casino licence.

Crown took a 10 per cent holding in Echo.

Echo operates The Star in Sydney, the Jupiters casinos on the Gold Coast and in Townsville, and the Treasury casino in Brisbane.

Crown operates the Crown casino in Melbourne and the Burswood casino in Perth.


Steven Spielberg Wants Chris Hemsworth for Robopocalypse...

Aussie actor Chris Hemsworth was a relative unknown Stateside only a couple years ago, but he has become the go-to guy for roles requiring a handsome badass who fights inhuman threats. Hemsworth has battled Frost Giants in Thor and alien invaders in The Avengers as Thor — and Thor's wicked brother, Loki (Tom Hiddleston), in both movies — and trolls as the Huntsman in Snow White and the Huntsman, and it looks like he will soon be battling robots for director Steven Spielberg in Robopocalypse.

The three-time Academy Award-winning filmmaker has been trying to put together an adaptation of Daniel H. Wilson's best-selling novel of the same name since before the book was completed, and now it seems he's finally ready to start moving forward with it. According to Deadline, Spielberg recently met in secret with Hemsworth to discuss starring in the movie and has chosen him to lead the resistance against the artificial intelligence Archos, which seeks to annhiliate the human race.

Further details on the adaptation are scarce at this point. Goddard wrote the initial screenplay adaptation of his book, but Deadline reports that Kario Salem (The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift) has been hired to rewrite Goddard's script. Here's the synopis of the book from Random House's website:

Not far into our future, the dazzling technology that runs our world turns against us. Controlled by a childlike — yet massively powerful — artificial intelligence known as Archos, the global network of machines on which our world has grown dependent suddenly becomes an implacable, deadly foe. At Zero Hour — the moment the robots attack — the human race is almost annihilated, but as its scattered remnants regroup, humanity for the first time unites in a determined effort to fight back. This is the oral history of that conflict, told by an international cast of survivors who experienced this long and bloody confrontation with the machines. Brilliantly conceived and amazingly detailed, Robopocalypse is an action-packed epic with chilling implications about the real technology that surrounds us.

It's the robots' world, we just live in it...for now.

Random House also has a one-minute video short set in the world of Robopocalypse on its site. The director of the short, Stephen Lunsford, is no Spielberg, but the short is worth watching solely for the creepy, child-like voice of Archos declaring itself humanity's god.

Robopocalypse will be a joint Dreamworks-Fox production distributed by Disney. It is slated for release on April 25, 2014.


Hugh Jackman echoes sorrow over massacre...

Australian actor Hugh Jackman has expressed his sadness following the mass shooting at a US screening of The Dark Knight Rises.

'All I can echo is the sorrow I feel for the families, the community, for everybody,' he says.

'It's an issue that goes way beyond, obviously beyond acting, beyond film or anything like that.

'This is just a tragedy on a level that we have experienced in Australia many years ago in Tasmania and it's devastating and I can't comment on (it) anymore than as a human being and my feelings for those people involved.'

Jackman was speaking in Sydney at a press conference on Tuesday for his new film The Wolverine, alongside its director, James Mangold, and Prime Minister Julia Gillard.

Jackman was sporting a red right eye, but it wasn't because of training for the action movie, but rather 'a very energetic game of tag with my kids', which he thinks burst a blood vessel.

Jackman says it wasn't easy getting back into shape for the part, particularly coming from his last role as Jean Valjean in Les Miserables.

'That was a particular challenge because Les Mis, I had to start at 83 kilos and I finished at about 97 kilos by the end of the movie,' he says.

'We did have a holiday recently, but it was more like boot camp for me. But the kids and Deb (his wife, actress Deborra-Lee Furness) were happy.'

Shooting of The Wolverine is scheduled to start in Sydney on July 30, after a number of setbacks for the sequel to X-Men Origins: Wolverine.

Last March, director Darren Aronofsky left the project, and Mangold stepped in to replace him. Then the shoot, which was originally meant to be in Japan, was postponed last October because of weather conditions.

Mangold says The Wolverine is based on a series of comics that detail the mutant's journeys in Japan and he refuted reports that Jessica Biel had turned down the lead role of Viper.

'The story couldn't be more of a fantasy frankly, in terms of what I was reading, so it was nothing more than a list of people we were considering and still are,' he says.

Jackman, who has played Wolverine now in five different movies over the past 12 years, says he takes the movies on one at a time.

For The Wolverine, he saw the screenplay and was sold.

'I feel like a golfer, always looking for a hole in one and I thought this was the best script we've had,' he says.


Hollywood declares box office truce after massacre...

The Hollywood studio behind the Batman movies has decided not to publish weekend box office figures after the Colorado theatre massacre.

Twelve people were killed and 58 injured when a gunman dressed in full body armour opened fire at a packed midnight premier of The Dark Knight Rises in Denver.

James Holmes, 24, was taken into custody outside the cinema after the attack. He is in solitary confinement and is due in court on Monday morning.

Within hours of the attack, Warner Brothers had cancelled the movie's Paris premiere, which was to have been accompanied by a press junket with the cast and crew including director Christopher Nolan and main star Christian Bale.

The company also cancelled red carpet events for the film in France, Japan and Mexico, although screenings will go ahead as planned.

Warner Bros has now confirmed it will not publish weekend takings - a form of crowing about box office success - until Monday.

This was despite the fact that unofficial figures cited by industry daily Variety suggest that it made $US75 million on Friday alone, the third biggest opening day ever at the US box office.

The move was swiftly followed by major Hollywood rivals including Disney, Fox, Sony, Lionsgate and Universal.

After initial radio silence from most of the cast and crew, Nolan issued a statement lamenting the "senseless tragedy," and expressing "our profound sorrow at the senseless tragedy that has befallen the entire Aurora community".

On Saturday Bale, who plays Bruce Wayne aka Batman, also expressed his sadness.

"Words cannot express the horror that I feel. I cannot begin to truly understand the pain and grief of the victims and their loved ones, but my heart goes out to them," he said in a statement.

In a separate move Warner Bros scrambled to pull a trailer for another film, Gangster Squad, including a scene in which mobsters shoot at theatre audiences. (AFP)


Christian Bale: My Heart Aches for Victims

The film is expected to be among the most lucrative movie openings and possibly contend with the record $207.4 million brought in by "The Avengers."

"The Dark Knight Rises" star Christian Bale said Saturday that his heart goes out to the victims of the Colorado shootings, a tragedy that brought Hollywood studios together in a rare show of solidarity as they opted to give the weekend box-office a rest.

"Words cannot express the horror that I feel," Bale, who plays the caped crusader in the film, said in a statement. "I cannot begin to truly understand the pain and grief of the victims and their loved ones, but my heart goes out to them."

Meanwhile, Sony, Fox, Disney, Universal, Fox, Paramount and Lionsgate said Saturday that they are joining "Dark Knight Rises" distributor Warner Bros. in withholding their box-office numbers for the weekend.

Warner Bros. announced Friday that it would forgo the usual revenue reports until Monday out of respect for the victims and their families in the Aurora, Colo., shooting that killed 12 and wounded 58 at the midnight show of "The Dark Knight Rises" earlier in the day.

The other studios said they also would not report numbers until Monday. Box-office tracking service Rentrak, too, said it would not report figures this weekend.

Sunday box-office estimates are a weekly routine for Hollywood, with studios jostling for bragging rights as the No. 1 movie and always aiming to break revenue records.

Before the shooting in an Aurora, Colo., movie theater at a midnight screening of the new Batman film, the box-office performance of "The Dark Knight Rises" had been eagerly anticipated. The film is expected to be among the most lucrative movie openings and possibly contend with the record $207.4 million brought in by "The Avengers."

But that now appears unlikely, even though "The Dark Knight Rises" earned $30.6 million from midnight screenings alone. Hollywood trade publications Variety and Hollywood Reporter reported estimates of roughly $75 million to $77 million for the film on Friday, based on box-office insiders.

That would put it on track for somewhere around $165 million for the weekend. Such a total would be the second highest weekend opening ever, after "The Avengers."

Any projections, though, are bound to be rough approximates given the atypical nature of the situation. Many of Friday's tickets were presold before the shooting. Moviegoers making their way to theaters also faced increased security and, in some places, bag checks. AMC Theaters, the country's second-largest movie chain, said it would not allow costumed fans or face-covered masks into its theaters.

Warner Bros. rushed to react to the tragedy, immediately canceling a Friday night premiere in Paris. On Saturday, it also canceled the other remaining red-carpet extravaganzas in Mexico City and Tokyo.

The studio, a subsidiary of Time Warner Inc., also moved to pull trailers from its upcoming film "Gangster Squad" from theaters. The trailer of the film, which stars Sean Penn and Ryan Gosling in a ruthless war between Los Angeles police and the mob, includes a scene of mobsters firing into a crowded movie theater from behind the screen.

Christopher Nolan, the director of "The Dark Knight Rises" earlier responded to the tragedy, expressing his sorrow for the victims and their families.

Said Nolan: "The movie theater is my home and the idea that someone would violate that innocent and hopeful place in such an unbearably savage way is devastating to me."

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Crown Casino Braces For TV Week Logies; Katy Perry On Despite Lawsuit, by Greg Tingle - 29th April 2011

Australia's night of nights - the TV Week Logie Awards are to hit James Packer's Crown Casino - The Palladium to be exact, and security is to be on high alert as Katy Perry is to perform despite a lawsuit against ACP Magazines for story she says is not true. And, security and Crown Casino powers that be have banned mobile devices in response to last years Twitter-Gate, where one writer was fired for inappropriate Tweets. Will plastic handcuffs be required and will any footballer players or guest run a muck? Media Man with the calm before the storm that is forecast to hit the TV Week Logies at James Packer's most famous casino...

Crown Casino Expects Huge TV Week Logies Night; Show Must Go On Despite Katy Perry Lawsuit...

James Packer, Australian gambling and media king loves this event - certainly the positives it brings his world famous Crown Casino in Melbourne - home of the original real life and TV Underbelly (in with a slight chance of a Logie we hear).

On the 1st of May Australia and the world will know who the Logies winners will be, and there's going to be plenty of news and gossip stemming from the prestigious event also.

'The Teenage Dream'... call her what you will (but we are not sure on the Russell Brand statue these days before you ask us) has her scheduled performance confirmed at the Logies On Sunday evening. Not even her lawsuit against ACP Magazines...publishers of TV Week is going to slow down this runaway train.

Parry who arrived in about 56 hours ago in Melbourne for her down under tour, has fired off a lawsuit to ACP's women's gossip mag NW claiming it falsely reported that Perry married for six months to Russell Brand (star of Arthur and all round bloody funny chap)... has been having an affair with record producer Benny Blanco. It's implied it was more than a fling.

Her writ, lodged in the Victoria Supreme Court against ACP Magazines, said: "By reason of the publication of the article, the plaintiff (Perry) has been gravely injured in her reputation and feelings (and) has suffered distress, embarrassment and humiliation."

The suit, lodged on Wednesday, has put a shadow over the Logies Awards since ACP - the main partner of the event - is reportedly remunerating Perry in the region of $300,000 to perform on the big night.

The publishing firm may even have to more if Perry's suit is successful. Her label EMI Music yesterday confirmed the pop singer was still due to perform.

ACP spokesman Peter Holder said: "ACP or Nine Entertainment Co have not been served with any court documents as yet and have no comment to make."

It's understood NW executive editor Corrine Barraclough flew to Melbourne yesterday to consult with lawyers.


FOXTEL Stars To Invade Logies; Tipped To Win Big...

FOXTEL TO SHOWCASE ITS BIGGEST EVER LINEUP OF STARS AT THE 2011 TV WEEK LOGIE AWARDS

FOXTEL stars will light up the stage and red carpet at the 2011 TV Week Logie Awards, to be held at the Crown Palladium in Melbourne this weekend. The cast of the much-anticipated Tim Winton’s cloudstreet (showcase) will be in attendance, including Stephen Curry – also presenting an award on the night – Todd Lasance, Essie Davis, Geoff Morrell and Huge Johnstone-Burt. cloudstreet will premiere on Sunday, May 22. Justine Clarke, Silver Logie nominated actress and star of Tangle (showcase) will also attend TV’s night-of-nights, as she prepares to commence production on the third season of the hit drama series in Melbourne. Host and Executive Producer of Australia’s Next Top Model (FOX8), Sarah Murdoch, will present an award at the ceremony and will be joined on the red carpet by Australia’s Next Top Model judge, Charlotte Dawson, as production commences on Series 7 of FOXTEL’s most-watched series. Gorgeous model Tahnee Atkinson, winner of Series 5 of Australia’s Next Top Model returns to the Logies stage for the second year in a row to present the winners with their Awards. Megan Gale, the new host of Project Runway Australia (Arena), will grace the red carpet in a custom-made gown by Project Runway mentor and red carpet divo Alex Perry. The fashion reality series recently wrapped production in Melbourne and will premiere on FOXTEL’s Arena channel in July. Megan will also take the stage to present an award on the night. Nominated for Most Outstanding Sports Coverage, FOXTEL’s own Matt Shirvington, Tiffany Cherry and James Bracey will represent the team from FOXTEL’s coverage of the XIX Delhi Commonwealth Games and will be joined by superstar athletes Geoff Huegill and Liesel Jones. In 2011, one of the most tumultuous years in political history, SKY NEWS has received a nomination for its coverage of Election 2010 in the Most Outstanding News Coverage category – and representing Australia’s News Channel will be Political Editor, David Speers, Senior Political Reporter, Kieran Gilbert and Political Reporter Ashleigh Gillon. One of the biggest ratings hits of 2010, Grand Designs Australia (The LifeStyle Channel), has received a nomination in the viewer voted Most Popular Lifestyle category. Host Peter Maddison will attend the 52nd annual Awards, alongside LifeStyle stable mate Sarah Wilson. For the second year in a row, the hosts of Nickelodeon’s Camp Orange: Castle Mountain, Luke Joseph Ryan and Wyatt Nixon-Lloyd will rock the red carpet in celebration of their nomination for Most Outstanding Children’s Program. Three of the most photographed and beautiful woman on Australian TV – host of Cricket Superstar (FOX8) Lee Furlong, host of Dating in the Dark (FOX8) Laura Dundovic and MTV’s Erin McNaught – will add some glamour to the red carpet. From the new Movie Extra series Small Time Gangster, lead star Steve Le Marquand and Sacha Horler are also on the guest list this Sunday night. Rounding out the guest list are the stars of FOX8’s hot new reality series WAG Nation, who are leaving their ball-playing men at home for a night of glitz and glamour. Shoe designer Terry Biviano, fiancée of NRL Sydney Roosters player Anthony Minichiello; event planner Lynette Bolton, wife of AFL Sydney Swans player Jude Bolton; fashion boutique owner Jackie Spong, fiancée of AFL Carlton Blues player Jarrad Waite; promotions manager Jana Peterson, long-term girlfriend of NRL Cronulla Sharks player John Williams; and flight attendant Chantelle Raleigh, girlfriend of NBL Gold Coast Blaze player Adam Gibson will all attend the Logies.

TV Week 2011 Logie Awards...

And the nominations are:

TV WEEK GOLD LOGIE – Most Popular Personality on Television
Adam Hills (Spicks And Specks, ABC1)
Asher Keddie (Offspring, Network Ten)
Chrissie Swan (The Circle, Network Ten)
Jessica Marais (Packed To The Rafters, Channel Seven)
Karl Stefanovic (Today, Nine Network)
Rebecca Gibney (Packed To The Rafters, Channel Seven)

TV WEEK SILVER LOGIE -- Most Popular Actor
Callan Mulvey (Rush, Network Ten)
Don Hany (Offspring, Network Ten / Tangle, Foxtel [Showcase])
Erik Thomson (Packed To The Rafters, Channel Seven)
Hugh Sheridan (Packed To The Rafters, Channel Seven)
Michael Caton (Packed To The Rafters, Channel Seven)

TV WEEK SILVER LOGIE -- Most Popular Actress
Asher Keddie (Offspring, Network Ten)
Jessica Marais (Packed To The Rafters, Channel Seven)
Margot Robbie (Neighbours, Network Ten)
Rebecca Gibney (Packed To The Rafters, Channel Seven)
Zoe Ventoura (Packed To The Rafters, Channel Seven)

TV WEEK SILVER LOGIE -- Most Popular Presenter
Adam Hills (Spicks And Specks, ABC1)
Chrissie Swan (The Circle, Network Ten)
Hamish Blake (Hamish & Andy 'Specials', Network Ten)
Karl Stefanovic (Today, Nine Network)
Shaun Micallef (Talkin' 'Bout Your Generation, Network Ten)

MOST POPULAR NEW MALE TALENT
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MOST POPULAR NEW FEMALE TALENT
Chrissie Swan (The Circle, Network Ten)
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TV WEEK SILVER LOGIE -- Most Outstanding Drama Series, Miniseries or Telemovie
Hawke (Network Ten)
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TV WEEK SILVER LOGIE -- Most Outstanding Actor
Erik Thomson (Packed To The Rafters, Channel Seven)
Hugh Sheridan (Packed To The Rafters, Channel Seven)
Jason Gann (Wilfred, SBS)
Richard Roxburgh (Hawke, Network Ten)
Richard Roxburgh (Rake, ABC1)

TV WEEK SILVER LOGIE -- Most Outstanding Actress
Asher Keddie (Offspring, Network Ten)
Catherine McClements (Rush, Network Ten)
Claire van der Boom (Sisters Of War, ABC1)
Justine Clarke (Tangle, Foxtel [Showcase])
Kat Stewart (Offspring, Network Ten)

GRAHAM KENNEDY AWARD FOR MOST OUTSTANDING NEW TALENT
Emma Booth (Underbelly: The Golden Mile, Nine Network)
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Shane Bourne To Host Logie Awards...

TV actor Shane Bourne will host the 2011 Logie Awards. In a statement announcing who would be the host, TV Week said Bourne "promises to deliver what he does best" at the 53rd Annual Logie Awards on May 1 at Melbourne's Crown Entertainment Complex. "I am genuinely thrilled to be involved in TV's night of nights," Bourne said. "It's an honour to be following in the footsteps of such television luminaries as Bert Newton et al - and the timing couldn't be better. "I've always enjoyed myself immensely at the Logies, and since the chances of a nomination coming my way this year look pretty slim, I figure it's not a bad way of making sure I score an invitation." Bourne currently stars in the Seven Network drama series City Homicide, but is also known for his comedic roles. Most recently, he hosted the popular show Thank God You're Here and was a regular on Hey Hey It's Saturday for many years. Thank God You're Here won a Silver Logie for most outstanding comedy in 2007. Bourne was also nominated for the most outstanding actor Logie in 2003 for his leading role in medical drama MDA. This year's Logie nominees will be revealed on April 3. Critics are at the read to praise or pan Bourne. Will Twitter-Gate strike again at Crown Casino. Don't blink!


Crown Casino Gorilla's Will Have Plastic Handcuffs; Last Resort To To Use On Patrons Or Special Guests...

We've confirmed that Crown Casino security will have plastic handcuffs (and other measures) at the ready for patrons or special guests who get out of hand. We are not certain if someone attempting a Tweet on a mobile device falls into that category, but punters, don't tell us we didn't warn you. Spin or tap your thingo to win or lose. Enjoy the Logies and don't do anything we wouldn't do. Good luck to all.

*The writer owns shares in Crown Limited

News

Australian And Hollywood Gambling TV Movie News, by Greg Tingle - 10th April 2011

Australian's Kerry Packer and Ita Buttrose In New Cleo TV Show...

Gambling and media fans. You won't have to wait much longer. The late Kerry Packer (played by actor Rob Carlton) will be returning to Australian TV screens (and internet). Paper Giants: The Birth Of Cleo, promises to be a quality production that will also show some of the more intimate details of the relationship between the late Packer and Ita, as well as show us a bit of our mate, Jack Thompson (in a Cleo spread no less). Jack is understood to be pleased with the choice of model just quietly. Yeah, we're going to get some nudity boys and girls. The telemovie stars Asher Keddie as Ita Buttrose and will tell the story of the magazines' rise in the Australian media circa 1970s. The viewer will also get some solid insight into the lives of Packer and Buttrose. What do our friends at the Australian Broadcasting Corporation have to say about it? "In early 1972, 30 year old journalist and editor, Ita Buttrose (Asher Keddie) and 35 year old Kerry Packer (Rob Carlton), heir to what was then Australia's most ruthlessly powerful and influential publishing family, got together to create a magazine that became one of the most dramatic sensations in Australian publishing history. CLEO went on to help define women, Australia and the relationship between the two." Buttrose, who first cemented her place as the magazine's editor, was a consultant on the production. "If there was a supposed affair it didn't happen in this timeframe. I have no idea if there was, we didn't raise it with her," said producer John Edwards. A 2007 feature article by The Sydney Morning Herald revealed on Packer - Buttrose: "He soon proposed marriage and, despite rumours to the contrary, she accepted him. But she was less committed to the idea of marriage than he was. She already had one failed marriage behind her," we were told. That marriage to Alasdair Macdonald produced Buttrose's two children, Ben and Kate. "After Ita accepted Kerry's proposal, Kerry told his wife Ros, who knew about the affair anyway. She threatened to take half his wealth and deny him custody of his children, Gretel and James. Kerry found himself weighing up the loss of half of his riches and the loss of his children and finally had a change of heart. He didn't want to lose either." Actor Carlton says he approached the role of Packer with "an equal dose of terror and exhilaration. Like most encounters with Kerry Packer, I'm told". The two-part telemovie will go to air at 8.30pm, Sunday 17 April (and) the same time on Monday, 18 April, on ABC1. News media is speculating is the son of the late KP, James Packer, may get any positive spin offs or PR's from the telemovie which is being touted to be the talk of 'Sin City' Sydney, and perhaps even across Australia, such is the interest in Packer and Buttrose. Buttrose is managed by the Harry M. Miller Group, and Packer is well... not easy to get in touch with, but the right approach to Crown Casino directly can sometimes work wonders. No, please don't ask us for more information on how to, and no, we don't manage them either, but offer online profiles on the two for folks who are interested. From the leaks we've got on Paper-Cuts so far; 4 out of 5 stars. "It's 1972. Skirts are up, pants are down". Spin to win with Cleo, the telemovie, not the slot!

Boardwalk Empire On Australia's Foxtel ...

Tonight's the night if you have pay tv service Foxtel. The much hyped Boardwalk Empire continues it's dream run on Australian screens. We're 3 episodes in now and the storyline is awesome. We hear that tonight a fella... a bad guy arrives in hospital, giving a shit load of problems for corrupt Atlantic City treasurer Nucky Thompson (Steve Buscemi). Thompson's bro Eli, the city sheriff (Shea Whigham), to make sure the witness dies in hospital. Michael K. Williams (The Wire's Omar) plays Chalky White, a black leader. It's a bit like a Yankee version of Underbelly, but most critics say the acting and production is much better than the Aussie equivalent. No offence Firass Dirani or John "Vulcan" Seru. Just saying.

Boardwalk Empire official website

'Gotti: Three Generations'; Travolta...

The flick stars John Travolta as the leader of the legendary and notorious Gambino crime family is: "Gotti: Three Generations." Film spokesman Steve Honig confirmed the title Saturday and says the biopic about "Dapper Don" John Gotti will be shot on a budget of roughly $75 million this year. Honig says details would be released April 12 at a news conference in New York, where the project will be filmed. An insider spoke on condition of anonymity. It will be produced by Marc Fiore and directed by Nick Cassavetes. The infamous mob leader died in prison in 2002. His son, 47-year-old John "Junior" Gotti, sold film rights to Fiore last year for an undisclosed figure.

Sylvester Stallone Movie And Casino Industry Hotshot To Do Rambo Style Fashion...

Living legend Stallone reckons he has what it takes for men's fashion. The 64-year-old actor is working on his own clothing line, inspired by his two iconic characters in "Rambo" and "Rocky,". The collection, set to debut in 2012, will fall under his new men's lifestyle brand Sly Inc. and will feature "looks for the rebel and the gentleman." "I thought the time is now," Stallone said. "I've lived a life where I know what has worked and what hasn't worked. Clothing is the first step to building a character." According to Sly Inc. president Michael Henry, the collection, to be sold in mid-tier department stores like Macy's, will first debut with jeans, shirts, outerwear and watches, and will then follow by eyewear, fragrance, shoes and grooming products. Stallone, who recently starred in "The Expendables" with Jason Statham, Mickey Rourke and Steve Austin, said the idea to start his own line came up when he lost 45 pounds between "Rambo 2" and "Rambo 3." "Nothing fit so I started buying custom clothing," he said."I found out I really like this world." He added, "I pay a great deal of attention to the way I dress. When men learn to put things together, they start taking care of themselves better." I hope that what worked for me will work for others," he said. "I really believe I have an understanding of the male psyche on all levels. I want to expose people to things that will work and this is the apropos time. I'm not experienced in this field, but we have the proper team to move this vision along."

Snoop Dogg Does 'Sin City' Sydney's Star City; Official Presser...

Not only is SNOOP DOGG a living legend in hip-hop, he is also one of the greatest rappers and pop culture icons of our time. In a musical career spanning over two decades, Snoop has amassed an impressive discography consisting of ten solo albums and has sold tens of millions of albums worldwide. He has scored acting roles in over 40 movies, featured in his own reality show and has endorsed numerous pop culture brands. It’s his natural appeal to both the hood and Hollywood that has allowed Snoop to stay tremendously relevant through the years. Since bursting into our consciousness alongside famed producer Dr. Dre on the 1992 classic “The Chronic”, Snoop has remained a constant force in hip-hop and a household name around the world. With 18 Top 20 singles in Australia, including 3 number ones, NELLY is a Grammy Award winning artist that has been topping the charts for over 10 years. With a genre-defying discography, its easy to see why Billboard Magazine recognized Nelly as the #3 artist of the decade (2000-2009). Hailing from St. Louis, Nelly first burst onto the scene with the massive worldwide hit “Country Grammar”, and continued to consistently return to the charts with hit after hit including “Hot in Herre”, “Dilemma” and “Over & Over”. Nelly became a rapper capable of crossing practically all boundaries from the Dirty South to MTV and everything in between. With 21 million album sales under his belt, Nelly is also a successful actor and entrepreneur, owning two clothing lines, Apple Bottoms and Vokal, plus the energy drink Pimp Juice. Nelly’s latest album “5.0” is out now featuring the hit single “Just A Dream” which peaked at #3 on the Aria Charts. *Snoop Dogg has also appeared in various film and TV shows such as Scrubs, Old School, Bigg Snoop Dogg: Raw 'N Uncut Vol. 1, Snoop Dogg: Drop It Like It's Hot, "Snoop Dogg's Father Hood", Bigg Snoop Dogg Presents: The Adventures of Tha Blue Carpet Treatment, Snoop Dogg: On the Record with Fuse, Snoop Dogg: On the Record with Fuse - The Lost Tapes, Doggy Dogg: Smokefest 1996 Tour Video, Hood of Horror, Snoop Dogg's Hood of Horror, Gang of Horror, Bigg Snoop Dogg's Puff Puff Pass Tour, Youth Authority: California and Snoopadelic Films Presents: Welcome to tha House - The Doggumentary DVD.

News

Asia Pacific Mega Gambling News Update, by Greg Tingle - 9th April 2011

Newcastle NSW War Pokie Laws...

New poker machine restrictions proposed by Tasmanian independent Andrew Wilkie will "annihilate" pubs and clubs in the Hunter, leaving hundreds out of work, ClubsNSW Newcastle councillor Jon Chin says. Clubs Australia is launching a $20 million advertising campaign on Monday in an attempt to prevent the introduction of mandatory pre-commitment technology for all poker machines. Banjo, a John "Singo" Singleton company is behind the campaign. Mandatory pre-commitment requires pokies users to commit to a spending limit before they begin gambling. Once they reach that limit they will be unable to gamble again until the following day or longer, depending on what restrictions the player sets for themselves. Chin said the cost of implementing the new technology in the Hunter region would surpass $100 million. This figure did not include the 40% in revenue clubs would experience once the restrictions were imposed, he said. "This means Hunter clubs will lose another $100 million, making it impossible for us to sustain our businesses," he said. Australian Hotels Association Hunter sub-branch vice-president Bruce Woods said there was no evidence to suggest the restrictions would discourage people from gambling. "This won't help pathological gamblers at all but it will lead to a loss of jobs," he said. "We support the clubs' campaign against this, it will affect pubs just as much as clubs".

Online Gaming Strong Growth In Asia...

Online gaming industry has grown into a $US3 billion business that provides a good standard of living to migrant workers in Asia who play games all day and sometimes, all night! Virtual currency is all the rage, it sometimes gets sold to punters abroad for cash. A World Bank study demonstrates an emerging industry in which firms seeking to boost their brands' popularity pay low-skilled workers overseas to become their Facebook fans or Twitter followers. The study, Knowledge Map of the Virtual Economy, is the World Bank's first in-depth look at the impact of online gaming and social media in the developing world. Vili Lehdonvirta, a co-author of the report, advised that the bank should not pour its money into the industry, because he said the deal making violated some of the game publishers' terms of service and was cheating. Known in the business as "gold farming", the game-playing boomed in the early 2000s with games like World of Warcraft and has evolved considerably. Labourers in Asia spend numerous hours each day advancing through levels of an online game, picking up gold, swords and gems that enhance a game player's status. Then gaming studios, which employ the players, sell those virtual goods to online retailers. Next step, the retailers sell on those goods to more than 120 million players globally, many of them in Europe and North America, who don't want to play the games day and night to gather their own. The bank's report indicates that online gaming has a positive impact in Asia because 70% of the industry's revenue remains in the gaming countries, with most of that money going to the gaming studios. Compared with the $US70 billion coffee market...in which only a tiny fraction of the revenue remains in the bean-growing countries...the gaming industry had a "much better development impact", the report states. A report survey checks out on a group of 26 players and studio managers that offers a rough, yet rare demographic look at their lives. Most of the players work out of studios in China, in Beijing or Changsha, capital of Hunan province. They earn an average wage of $US2.70 an hour, $US1 more than Beijing's minimum wage for part-time factory work. "The larger point is that online gaming is often viewed as exploitation, Lehdonvirta said. "Certainly it's not a dream career, but the players are not at sweatshop levels." The gaming studios keep about 60% of the industry's $US3 billion in revenue. Readers, would you like to be a prize gather for the gaming studios on that level of pay? Better not answer!

Samoan Casino Proposal Has Social Concerns For Kiwi, Samoan Locals...

All these places have land based casinos - Las Vegas, Monte Carlo, Macau, Melbourne and just maybe soon - Apia in Samoa. Some business folks have earmarked it as a future gambling destination, and Kiwi group, the Problem Gambling Foundation of New Zealand, is advising against it, citing social harms of a casino will outweigh any economical benefits that the Samoan government will hope to achieve. In an admission of the dangers of gambling, the proposed casino in Apia will attempt to bar locals by only allowing the holders of foreign passports to gamble. Problem #1... many locals have duplicate passports, so getting in to a casino for locals may not be that hard, and don't even bring up the subject of fake ID. Will the region get a land based casino? Stay tuned for updates.

Clubs Australia War On Gillard Labor Government Re Pokie Laws...

Clubs Australia has declared "open warfare" on the Gillard government, preparing a $20 million media campaign to try to stop laws to limit how much punters can spend on poker machines. Last year "Tasmanian Devil" (MM satire) independent MP Andrew Wilkie backed Labor to form a minority government in return for a clampdown on the use of poker machines. Now, the lobby that represents clubs and pubs is wrestling and punching back, with a media blitz targeting Wilkie and Prime Minister Julie Gillard. Both Wilkie and Gillard are in big trouble in the popularity polls, with Labor set to lose the next federal election, following their NSW loss, where it was bloody and crimson mass. Billboards, a website, beer coasters and more It's war on nationwide. The campaign has been criticised as misleading for claiming punters will need a licence to gamble. Clubs Australia executive director Anthony Ball rejects that. "What we do know is that everyone who plays a poker machine will need to register and obtain a card, and then insert it into a poker machine and set a binding limit. There needs to be player tracking, because how else does the machine know what the player is doing? It will have your private details and your gambling history on it. Now if that's not a licence, I don't know what is." Under Wilkie's master plan, gamblers would have to nominate a dollar figure for how much they are prepared to lose before they start gambling, a scheme known as "mandatory pre-commitment". Wilkie wants the law in place by 2014 and he has the backing of South Australian independent Senator Nick 'Mr X' (MM satire) Xenophon. Senator Xenophon describes the Clubs Australia campaign as a "joke". "This industry is willing to spend $20 million of tax-break money that they get from community clubs - effectively taxpayers' monies, indirectly - to peddle lies in terms of a campaign where they haven't even seen what the final report will say. Whether it's $20 million or $200 million, this mob can spend as much as they like, but they can't spin that they are causing enormous damage out in the community. There are 300,000 Australians who either have a severe gambling problem because of poker machines, or are already showing the signs of one."

Proposed Pokie Laws With Cost 10,000's of Aussie Jobs...

Clubs Australia advise the changes will cost jobs. They want it to be a voluntary scheme and have rejected a government request to hold off on the ad war. "It will cost jobs, for the simple reason that asking Australians to sign on to this licence to gamble will mean they'll do something else," Mr Ball said. "They'll go and gamble online where none of these controls exist, or they they'll go to the TAB - they won't do it at the club.Even the proponent of this, Andrew Wilkie, is saying that this will cost up to 40% of revenue."
It's all hot fodder in Aussie Parliament too. Liberal Steve Ciobo sits on the joint committee on gambling reform, which has been hearing arguments pro and con against a mandatory pre-commitment scheme. "The committee was charged by the Labor party with the responsibility to look at a roll-out of pre-commitment," he said. "But Coalition members will be putting in a dissenting report because the evidence is clear that it's going to cost jobs, it's going to cost investment, and I'm concerned based on the evidence that it will make problem gambling potentially worse." The committee is due to report in the next few weeks. The states and territories have until the end of May to decide if they will agree to the Wilkie-led reforms. If they refuse, the Commonwealth believes it has the power to introduce overriding legislation to impose a national scheme. The pokie industry has shown the willingness to wrestle all the way to the next election, and perhaps even beyond. It's the lovers VS the haters. Who will win, and when will the final victor emerge. Stay tuned.

Sky City Entertainment Group Stocks Fall From Sky...

Sky City Entertainment Group, the casino and hotel operator, fell 0.9% to $3.41 amid media reports that overseas competitors were looking to hire the 500 staff made redundant or on leave without pay due to the closure of the Christchurch Casino. SkyCity owns a 50% stake in the business.

Casino Bouncer Thought Disabled Bloke Was Drunk...

A South Australian man with deasiese cerebral palsy says he was refused entry to the Adelaide Casino because the bouncer thought he was drunk. Mark Thiele was on a big night out with friends when he attempted to enter the casino, but was refused by a bouncer aka "gorilla". Thiele says the bouncer mistakenly thought he was drunk, but the casino is sticking by its decision. "I had said to the man that I wasn't a drunk, I was crippled," said Thiele, talking about his rejection on 7.30 South Australia. "He had said to me he was convinced I was intoxicated even though we said that I had only had a few drinks earlier on in the evening. "So I can't see why I was singled out and everybody else in my party wasn't. There was no difference between any of us besides the obvious. It's a mystery to me really." Last month, he and his friends had walked to the casino from the city's Hindley Street entertainment strip a few blocks away. Thiele has trouble moving his body and for him, walking distances is a big effort. His mate Aaron Nettlebeck says the casino bouncer did not understand. "Walking that sort of distance does get very, very sweaty over that sort of short period. It was a bit infuriating that it happened like that after such a nice evening." Thiele says he has not had a problem at venues until now. "For the vast majority it's never been a problem. Bouncers that I've come into contact with have been understanding and even let me skip the line a few times just to put me at ease," he said. "Obviously it's a stamina thing that I can't walk these long distances and stand in lines and all of these things." He says he is considering lodging a complaint with the commission or under South Australia's liquor laws.The casino's general manager, David Christian, has offered an apology of sorts. "It was certainly not our intention that Mark would have felt discriminated against and I'm sorry that he does feel that way," he said. But he is defending the actions of his staff. "They believe that they made the right call. I would believe that with the calibre we have and the training we put into our security officers, and the level of management that oversees it, that they would be right most of the time."

New Zealand Christchurch Casino Workers Hurting From Earthquake Financial Aftershocks...

Financial and emotional aftershocks are still be felt by the casino sector after a series of earthquakes that rocked the Asia Pacific - Japan and New Zealand region. Christchurch Casino workers are feeling disappointed and even depressed after having failed attempt to get a bigger redundancy payday.In excess of 500 formally happy and motivated casino employees were offered redundancy at the central Christchurch casino last weekend, which was badly damaged in the February 22 quake and has stayed closed ever since the act of mother nature. Anyone who wants to stay at the casino will be paid their holiday pay as either a weekly amount or in a "lump sum". Simply put, they will remain as employees of the land based casino on leave without pay until the the gambling den opens again. The SFWU (Service and Food Workers' Union), which reps for 100 plus casino workers, has a meeting with the casino's managers on Thursday. SFWU strategic industry boss Len 'Razor' (MM tag) Richards said workers were sombre but firm in their desire about securing a more attractive redundancy package. The union power that be were also asking for continued pay for employees that choose to stay on until the casino opens again. However, he advised management was not prepared to increase the amount of redundancy pay for staff, but did agree to request for a government wage subsidy. Due to a private insurance deal and policy in place, the land based casino has not relied upon the $1.5 million government subsidy available for quake-affected businesses. Richards stated that the union has contacted earthquake recovery minister Gerry Brownlee to request assistance to help pay workers who remain employed. SkyCity, half owner of the famous Christchurch Casino, has projected a $130 million plus profit this year. It's not known how much financially the quake cost Christchurch Casino or SkyCity. Christchurch Casino top sheep er top dog...chief executive Brett 'Ask Him' (MM satire) Anderson said about 70% of employees have indicated they will stay with the company rather than take the offered redundancy. He said a number of employees are also being offered jobs offshore. Anderson elaborated "I'm getting phone calls from Australia looking for our people and likewise all over New Zealand, and a few of them have spread their wings. More than a few have gone over to the Gold Coast. It's a lot warmer, it's a lot more stable, you can swim in the sea, the pay rates are better." Anderson said he still does not know when the casino will reopen.Employees have a deadline until Monday to decide whether they will take the redundancy package or stay on. Yep, it's the money or the box. Workers who have not contacted the company by showdown at 5pm on Monday will be deemed to have left their jobs and will be paid out a four-weeks-notice payment, along with their annual leave entitlements. Casino workers, did you get that. D Day is approaching.

A AustralianSportsEntertainment.com spokesperson said "In the current global economy anyone with a decent job should be grateful, especially in the casino or gaming sector. Well done to Christchurch Casino management for doing their utmost to assist in their difficult times. Employers will always want to ask for more... its in the nature. Land based casinos generally remain popular around the world so good staff will always be in demand."

Media Man and Gambling911 wish all parties well with their dealings, and hopefully some win - win - wins will still be possible.

States Probe Sports Betting Ads...

Aussie states are uniting to consider a crackdown on an explosion in advertising of sports betting, Victoria's Gaming Minister says. Michael O'Brien last night revealed the betting blitz on sport was being examined by the Council of Australian Governments. "There is growing concern at the extent to which is becoming inseparable from the coverage of major sporting events. Kids are being exposed to it constantly just by watching the footy or cricket," he said.AFL chief executive Andrew Demetriou said the league had expressed its concerns to stadium managers. Goal posts, boundary line fences and scoreboards at the MCG and Etihad Stadium have been plastered with ads from bookmakers. Demetriou said the alarm was raised during last year's Brownlow Medal telecast. "There seemed to be an enormous amount of (gambling) advertising after each break," he told press. O'Brien said the AFL, which enjoys lucrative sponsorship arrangements with gambling giants, could take responsibility through its media and stadium deals. "It may be that there's an opportunity for this influence to be exercised to ensure the promotion of sports betting isn't allowed to detract from family-friendly objectives of (such) sports," he said. This week, former Demon Daniel Ward revealed in the the newspapers his battle with gambling. "It's always in your face," he said of the ads. "It's like being a drug addict and an advert comes on saying, 'The first 50 people to ring will get a free bag of marijuana'."

Hawkins Former Ms Univervese Lookalike Kahili Blundell Wins Ralph Swimwear Title At Star...

Sin City Sydney babe Kahili Blundell has snatched the Ralph Australian Swimwear Model of the Year comp. The Crows Nest bikini super babe bested more than 2000 babes from all over Australia and Kiwi land to grab the coveted title at Sin Sydney's Star City Casino on Thurday. "I feel more than special right now, I'm blown away and so honoured to be given this position," Blundell said. "I was expecting him to call another number and I stood there thinking 27, is that me? "It's also my boyfriend's birthday, but I realised it was me and I was shivering." The 21-year-old Jennifer Hawkins lookalike works as a personal assistant and dabbles in makeup artistry in her spare time. Blundell says modelling has been tough, slogging it out for 3 years. "Since November I've been training every week for this, thinking about it every night," she said. "I've been brought up to eat very healthy, so I don't have too much trouble doing that, but I definitely exercise a lot. I've been working very hard so thank god it's all paid off." The comp saw the 38 finalists strut their stuff in catwalk parades. Sex bikinis were all the rage. A select group of a bakers dozen were picked, then reigning champ Emmi Moore handed over her sash and championship title to Blundell. "I've been doing this for three years now and this is exactly what I've been dreaming and hoping for," Blundell said. "I'm open to any opportunity and I love challenges. I've obviously done well in the bikini field, so I might just continue on this track for a little while." Burlesque babe Sina King from Underbelly home Melbourne snatched runner-up while second runner-up went to 21-year-old writer - journo type Tiffany Baker from Fremantle in Western Australia.

Australian Boxer Katsidis To Fight Guerrero In MGM Grand Casino Las Vegas Bloody Sunday...

Down under's Australia's Michael Katsidis and his opponent in Sunday's (AEST) interim lightweight world-title fight at Las Vegas' MGM Grand Casino, America's Robert "The Ghost" Guerrero, also have powerful stories. Guerrero's world was crushed big time circa 2007 when his wife, Casey, was diagnosed with leukemia. The Californian gave up boxing, giving up his world-title, so he could be by Casey's side and stay close to their young children as she underwent a bone-marrow transplant. Things are now looking up for Guerrero. "Casey has been cancer free for almost a year now," 28-year-old Guerrero, the number one ranked lightweight in the world and a former featherweight and super featherweight champion, said. Last year Katsidis' was having a dream run. The likable 30-year-old blokefrom Toowoomba celebrated his first wedding anniversary with wife Kumiko. He loved being a dad to their one-year-old daughter Kalia and was preparing for the biggest bout of his career, a world-title fight in Las Vegas against Mexican legend Juan Manuel Marquez. Things quickly went downhill when five weeks before the Marquez fight he learned his 31-year-old brother, champion Australian jockey (horse racing) Stathi Katsidis, had passed away. Just days later Katsidis' longtime trainer, Brendon Smith, received two more bad news calls. Smith's nephew got paralysed from the chest down in an accident and one of the trainer's former boxers passed away. "We got it all within three weeks and just before the Marquez fight," Smith said. Katsidis and Smith made the call to keep training at their Thai boxing camp and take on Marquez at the MGM Grand Casino, a match that would be voted the Fight of the Year after Katsidis floored Marquez to the mat in the third round. Marquez guts and balls by getting up and pounding Katsidis so badly ref Kenny Bayless ended the match in the ninth round, giving Marquez a ninth round technical knockout victory. On the eve of the Guerrero fight, Katsidis and Smith, who kept quite before the Marquez bout, finally opened up about their personal tragedies. Katsidis did not sleep two days before the Marquez fight. "He was emotionally spent before he got in the ring and to do what he did under the circumstances was incredible," Smith said. "I believe if something doesn't kill you it only makes you stronger," Katsidis said. Guerrero has 22 knockouts in his 27 professional victories. "This is truly a fight for boxing fans," Guerrero, who has a 28 win (18 KO), one loss professional record, said. "You are going to see two guys go at it and give it their all." The winner of the match will be named the interim World Boxing Association and World Boxing Organisation lightweight champions. Promoter 'Golden Boy' Oscar De La Hoya has named the MGM card "Action Heroes", with another Mexican legend, Erik Morales, fighting Argentina's exciting welterweight contender Marcos Maidana and in another welterweight battle, Brooklyn's Paulie Malignaggi VS Jose Miguel Cotto. The matches will be broadcast live in Australia on Sunday from 11am AEST by Main Event pay-per-view. "For a boxing card, sounds like it will be value for money for a bit of a change", said a Media Man insider.

News

Underbelly Gets Average TV Viewership In February..., by Greg Tingle

It had to happen eventually. The TV Underbelly series numbers have done down. The third Underbelly telemovie 'The Man Who Got Away' came out in 9th for the night with just over a million viewers for Channel 9. It was beaten black and blue (pardon the pun) in its timeslot by a new episode of 'Bones' on Channel 7, which snatched 1.148 million. Seven's 'My Kitchen Rules' was champion of the night with an massive 1.457 million viewers.

Sydney: St Ives Gets Gunshots For Underbelly TV...

The residents were instructed not to be alarmed by machine guns before scenes from series of a couple of Underbelly takes were shot in an otherwise quite St Ives street. Filming took place at two homes in Waterhouse Ave. Underbelly: A Tale of Two Cities is set in the years from 1976 to 1986. Series on-set manager Chris Wheeler said the street was a good reflection of houses from this period. "St Ives shows the 70s and 80s style for the series in the most beautiful way," he said. Residents were informed of filming via a letterbox drop. In the letter, location manager Carl Wood said: "The production of Underbelly in Sydney (rather than Melbourne) is considered to be something of a coup for Sydney, and the NSW Government is right behind the project." The prequel cast includes Peter O’Brien, Roy Billing, Asher Keddie and Matt Newton.

Boardwalk Empire: International Bonus - Atlantic City Roaring 1920s: Crime, Gambling, Prostitutes, The Works...

Enter Atlantic City in the 1920s when prohibition was introduced and alcohol became illegal, everybody partied big time. Dancing, champagne, beer, the best food. County Treasurer, Enoch “Nucky” Thompson (Steve Buscemi) was living large. Nucky was a real life character in Atlantic City who rose to power as one of the city’s leaders who became a racketeer running bootlegging, gambling and prostitution. HBO’s new drama series is a fictionalised version inspired by actual events in a book by writer Nelson Johnson. It’s a backdrop to themes of corruption, vice and larger-than-life characters. Buscemi has the lead TV role. Screenplay is by Sopranos writer Terence Winter. It has Martin Scorsese directing its first episode. Mark Wahlberg is also a producer. Nucky is a complex man. To the masses and media he condemns alcohol to the Women’s Temperance League while secretly commandeering backroom deals of booze smuggled and sold at inflated prices, all going strong under the federal law of Prohibition. He was the king in Atlantic City’s own underbelly, acquiring wealth via organised crime. Buscemi nailed this role, even snatching a Golden Globe for his efforts. The other key characters in the opening episode include Jimmy Darmody (Michael Pitt) Nucky’s former protégé, who is tempted to work for the Feds, and Margaret Schroeder (Kelly Macdonald) a wife who is beaten by her husband and turns to Nucky for help. In a city of liars, cheats and fornicators, she serves as the symbol of virtue. The production values of Boardwalk Empire are awesome. The Art Direction, Costume and Cinematography are outstanding. There are lavish sets and the attention to detail is world class. Scorsese’s use of period music hits the right tone. There’s nothing quite like hearing a 20's ditty warbling on an old gramophone while an unlucky person gets whacked. Boardwalk Empire premieres 8:30pm Sunday March 27th on Australian pay television via Showtime. If you have pay TV, you owe it to yourself to tune in. Yes, most critics think its better than 'Underbelly' also, but you be the judge, jury and executioner.

 

Crown Casino Teams Up With NRL's Melbourne Storm...

Melbourne are expecting a cyclone size backlash as the latest National Rugby League club to link with a gambling establishment after confirming Crown Casino as their new major sponsor. In a massive deal snatcher for a club which last year was disgraced after being stripped of all points and two premierships during the salary cap scandal, the Storm unveiled Crown as their front jersey sponsor on Friday. Melbourne chief executive Ron Gauci agreed there would be criticism of the club's link with gambling. However he defended the arrangement and said Crown offered a home for Storm supporters, which the club had not had since it joined the competition in 1998. All Storm after-match and mid-season functions for members will be held at Crown. The casino believes the sponsorship will boost their exposure interstate. "I think you'll have those that wish to comment but I think we need to emphasise what it is that we wanted out of the relationship and that is a home for our supporter base," Gauci said. "If you think about what Crown has to offer as an entertainment complex ... this is a great place to consolidate those activities." The Storm lost major sponsors Host Plus and ME Bank in the wake of last season's scandal. Gauci said the new sponsorship delivered a message of confidence in the Storm ahead of the 2011 season. "I think it does deliver us a substantial message to the marketplace, and for the club it's very important to have an organisation as big a Melbourne icon as Crown is to support the club. It delivers a magnificent message about the confidence the corporate world has in Melbourne Storm and our future direction." The Storm joined South Sydney as the second NRL club to have a gambling establishment as their major sponsor, while Penrith have renamed their home ground Centrebet Stadium and Manly will also have the Centrebet logo on the back of their jumper. Yes, NRL ramped up links to gambling are all the rage. A rumour has started that igaming kings PartyGaming want into Australia and would accept an NRL jersey, shorts or even stadium deal. The firm is known for its well known and respected PartyCasino, PartyPoker and World Poker Tour brands, which have a strong following in Australia, other parts of the Asia Pacific, such as New Zealand. Party is also looking to ramp up sports betting services in the Asia Pacific region. Melbourne's announcement also comes in the same week as Ryan Tandy, who left the Storm midway through last season to join Canterbury, was arrested and charged as a result of an ongoing police investigation into "irregular betting" on a match between the Canterbury Bulldogs and North Queensland Cowboys last August. Dennis Watt, rugby league general manager with News Limited, who own the Storm, defended the arrangement between a gambling establishment and a sport sold as a family game. "I can speak for Crown as an integrated entertainment, retail complex. It is very much reflective of the heart and soul of Melbourne and it's a great relationship for us to have and I don't see a conflict for the relationship the Storm have sought here." He echoed the views recently expressed by NRL chief executive David Gallop that the association between sport and gambling "is as old as sport itself". "Gambling's a part of the Australian way of life, part of our character and our history," he said. "We advocate moderation, we know that problem gambling affects less than half a per cent of the population. "You've got two million problem drinkers, four million smokers, over nine million Australians suffering levels of obesity which are also big social issues."

A AustralianSportsEntertainment.com spokesperson said "The Crown Casino - Melbourne Storm sponsorship deal looks to be a match made in heaven. Crown has world class facilities and entertainment is the name of the game. Entertainment takes many forms, be it football, burlesque, television, rock bands or slot machines aka one armed bandits. Crown Casino can do it all. Already this deal has generated national and international headlines, and yes, we are helping spread the word to our friends in the U.S and Canada. Gambling911, CAP, GWPA and Poker News Daily are just a few outlets that we expect to run the story. It's balanced and positive coverage all the way, instead of the agenda driven gaming hater stuff you read from time to time. Chalk up more browny points for Crown's James Packer and his world class team at Crown, and good on the NRL and The Storm for seeing the golden opportunity and moving it into high gear. I never thought I would say this again after last season's scandals, but Go The Storm!"

Australian Betting Limited 'Bullet Proof' NOT! Says Maker Aristocrat...

A card-based system forcing pokie players to set betting limits isn't a "bullet proof" solution to problem gambling, poker machine maker Aristocrat Leisure Ltd says. Aristocrat, representing over 60% of the Australian pokies market, is instead proposing a machine-based system that lets gamblers set time and/or betting limits. But the proposal was met with some opposition when Aristocrat executives appeared before a joint federal parliamentary committee hearing in Sydney on Friday. The committee is investigating the idea of a pre-commitment scheme using smart card or other technology to force pokie players to set limits on their gambling. It follows a controversial commitment from Prime Minister Julia Gillard to Tasmanian "independent" (so to speak - has seen to be bias and preduduce against those liking a punt) MP Andrew Wilkie to introduce such a scheme across the country in return for his support of her Labor government. "As a company, we acknowledge that there is a problem out there," Aristocrat general manager of corporate affairs Kristene Reynolds told the hearing. "For us, coming here today is to come to the table and be part of that solution." The company's managing director in Australia and New Zealand, Trevor Croker, said card-based systems, which have been used in other countries, can be manipulated by problem gamblers. "It is not a bullet proof solution. People do swap cards and have been able to use multiple cards," he said. "I think finding the complete solution is going to be a very difficult outcome. "It should not be something we don't aspire to, but it will be very difficult, from what we see in those (other) markets." Aristocrat will soon trial a new slot machine that features opt-in pre-commitments, allowing users the option to set themselves spending or time limits. These machines could be ready for mass production from the end of 2012, and phased in as part of the normal machine replacement cycle, Croker said. But with the average cost of a pokie at $25,000, Labor MP Stephen Jones questioned the Aristocrat executives on the cost effectiveness of such a solution. "It would be good for Aristocrat, I can see that. But it's a very expensive solution to the problem, isn't it?", he asked. Aristocrat general manager of design and development Justin Brown said smaller venues could be given longer to replace their machines, while newer models may only require a software upgrade, at a cost of about $3,000. Mr Wilkie, the committee's chairman, also questioned the motives of Aristocrat's proposal. "I can't help feeling an element of commercial self interest in your advice to the committee here," he said. Further questioning resulted in the Aristocrat executives conceding their machine-based proposal would not prevent problem gamblers from simply switching machines or venues once they had reached a pre-committed loss or time limit. The hearings continue in Canberra and Hobart later this month. In Australia the machines are often known as pokies or poker machines, in the U.S - slots, and much of Europe - Fruit Machines or Fruities!

Queensland's Sunshine Coast A Big Winner For Lottery Sector; Punters To Win Homes Via BoysTown Gambling...

It's steal from the rich to give to the poor! Ok, not exactly, but read on and you will get the drift soon enough. The Sunshine Coast has long been regarded as a prize location by local residents, but now a range of national and state lottery organisations are taking notice. BoysTown Lotteries recently unveiled a million-dollar home in Buderim as its latest prize home offering. Located at 22 Orme Rd, the home is part of a prize package worth more than $1.5 million. It is arguably one of Buderim’s most beautiful homes, according to BoysTown’s general manager fundraising Keith Coventry. "Our previous lottery prize home was in Nerang (Gold Coast) and the one before that was in Rainbow Bay (Coolangatta). Now we find ourselves in Buderim on the Sunshine Coast. When deciding on a prize home, we look at the property itself and then the desirability of the location and the features of the area," Coventry said. "I think the thing about Buderim is that you are close to the beach, but you also have those great views over the ocean and the coastline. I guess you get the best of both worlds. "The Buderim home has been particularly popular and the retail sales have been very strong." Yet another contender in the Coast’s prize pool is a home in Mount Coolum, raising funds for the Mater Foundation as part of the Mater Prize Home Lottery. Also sporting a million-dollar price tag, the home is located at 47 Boardwalk Blvd in Coolum’s Boardwalk Estate. Twin Waters is the site of Surf Life Saving Lottery’s prize home, which is valued at more than $750,000. The three-bedroom home at Lot 4 Ameen Cct comes with $41,832 in furniture and electrical, along with 12 months paid council rates. Coventry said funds raised from the BoysTown lottery would assist the Kids Helpline service, which was in particular demand since the recent floods. "Kids Helpline is certainly taking a lot more calls from kids who are worried about the impacts of the floods, or who have been affected by the floods. A lot of people are seeking assistance with the mental health aspects of this natural disaster, so I think that is certainly going to be the focus of much of our fundraising over the coming months." The money raised from Mater lotteries help funds medical research teams and the purchase of life-saving medical equipment, as well as supporting patients and families. Surf Life Saving lotteries assist Surf Life Saving clubs around the country. Aussies, feeling lucky. Go on, give them a go, and you know the money is going to a good place, if you don't happen to win. Mind you, feel welcome to check out the slots, poker, bingo and other casino games showcased on the portal also. BoysTown Lottery will set you back a bit, while at AustralianSportsEntertainment.com partners like PartyGaming, many games can be played for free or for money. The choice if yours. Hours of entertainment for young and old - just kidding, check legalities but most counties insist you are at least 18 years old to gamble, and that includes from lottery to poker to slots, ok crew!

Clubs Australia VS Productivity Watchdog: Dog Fight; Bark Worse Than Bite?...

Clubs Australia will today accuse the nation's productivity watchdog of making a mathematical error in its claim that problem gamblers are responsible for 40% of poker machine revenue. AustralianSportsEntertainment.com spokespersons and investigators have been disputing the "problem gambling" numbers for almost 2 years! The figure of 40% is being used by anti-gambling politicians aka "gaming haters" to try to justify new limits on gambling the Gillard government has pledged to introduce to maintain the support of independent MP Andrew Wilkie in the hung parliament. Clubs Australia is fighting a mandatory precommitment scheme that would force pokies players to set a limit on how much they intend to spend before they start gambling. It claims the scheme will cost clubs and pubs $2.5 billion nationally and cost thousands of jobs if it turns off casual gamblers from having a punt, throwing a couple of bucks down the throat of an "one armed bandit", whilst often sinking a cold Aussie beer at the same time (not that we endorse it). Beer can change ones thinking, but you likely knew that already Jack! Politicians backing the reform have seized on a claim in the Productivity Commission report that problem gamblers contribute 40% of pokie revenue to justify the crackdown. Clubs Australia president Anthony 'On The Ball' Ball will tell a parliamentary inquiry in Sydney today the figure is "highly contentious" and "inaccurate". In his opening address to the inquiry he will say that the Productivity Commission claims there are 95,000 problem gamblers who play the pokies and spend on average $21,000 each year on the machines. When multiplied together, this comes to a total of $1.995bn, and this figure represents just 16.8% of the $11.9bn total expenditure on poker machines. "These are not our numbers. These are the figures from the commission," Ball will say. "Therefore the vast majority of gambling revenue comes from recreational gamblers." The Productivity Commission used a range of different methods to calculate the amount spent by problem gamblers and found both problem and recreational gamblers underestimated how much they spent on gambling each year. The 40 per cent figure was not derived from multiplying the number of problem gamblers by the amount they said they spent each year but was derived from a range of surveys that looked at what gamblers actually spent. Clubs Australia will tell the parliamentary committee the proposed mandatory precommitment scheme is a "massive infringement of people's individual rights". "There's a vast difference between making the pre-commitment available to any player who wants to use it, and forcing anybody who wants to play a gaming machine to register, obtain a device and provide personal details or fingerprints in order to be able to play," Mr Ball plans to tell the inquiry.

Australian Gambling Enquiry: Traditional Gamblers Heading Online For Slots, Poker, Roulette Et Al; Problem Gamblers VS Problem Child Government Policy?...

Using hi-tech to force pokies players to set betting limits would drive gambling addicts online in the masses and divert resources away from helping problem punters, a Senate inquiry has heard. The inquiry, chaired by Tasmanian federal independent MP Andrew Wilkie, is investigating the concept of a pre-commitment scheme using smart card or other technology to force all pokies players to set limits on their gambling. Clubs Australia, the peak body for registered clubs in the nation, on Friday told the joint parliamentary committee inquiring into the issue it had reservations about the proposal in its current form. Clubs Australia executive director Anthony Ball said more research was needed on how effective it would be. "There is very little good research out there about whether this proposal or any others are going to work," he told the inquiry in Sydney. "There are a multitude of gambling opportunities. The strategy must not be to drive (problem gamblers) online ... The strategy must be to find these people, get them the right treatment and turn their lives around." He said state regulations on gambling were sufficient and that a 'one-size-fits-all' policy should not be applied across all states. Clubs Australia president Peter Newell said the three main issues regarding the scheme were cost, whether it would reduce problem gambling and the consequences of implementing it. He said the system failed to work in Norway, and instead drove problem gamblers to the internet. Five million Australians would play the pokies in any given 12-month period and the system would only drive away recreational players, who represented the "vast majority" of gambling revenue, he said. "As a recreational gambler myself, I am disturbed that there are people who think I need assistance in determining how I spend my money," he said. "Mandatory pre-commitment fails to provide what problem gamblers need most and that is treatment, and in doing so, diverts attention and resources away from treatment. Problem gamblers will still gamble in the mandatory pre-commitment system. They are addicted. But recreational gamblers will walk away from pokie machines." Newell said the system would be expensive and difficult to implement across 197,000 machines nationwide, taking years and billions of dollars to do - forcing clubs to close and costing thousands of jobs - with no indication as to how effective it will be. It's man VS machine; The People VS The Government, and The Government VS The Gaming Industry. News media and website portals just keep lapping up the action resulting in a readership jackpot bonanza.

 

News

Australian Celeb News: Media, Casino And Gaming Celebs, by Greg Tingle - 29th January 2011

G'day punters, celebrities, journos, high rollers - casino whales, gambling millionaires and billionaires, poker sharks, entertainment news junkies, media tycoons, politicians, insiders, outsiders, legal eagles,... one and all. You know who you are. Seems just about everyone is a celebrity, or knows a celebrity these days. God know the poker world is full of them. This is our Aussie celebrity special, featuring Aussie celebs from the world of media, gaming, poker and more, and even a few ring-ins for good measure. Media Man and Gambling911 with celebrities you love to love, and even a couple you love to hate...

Shane Warne...And Liz Hurley...

Warnie and Liz look to be in love, with each other and with Twitter. The spinner is hanging out for a game of poker or "poke her" with Liz, almost begging for Hurley Burley to come down under for a face to face. The couple have taken to Twitter like ducks to water. Warne and Hurley's developing romance is good fodder out for their almost half a million Twitter followers. They are now publicly planning her trip Down Under. The poker - fashion babe might be in Australia within weeks. Hurley has been tweeting about her new parrot, Ping Pong. "I'm getting jealous of ping pong! Think it's time you left ping pong alone for a while & come visit me in Australia," Warne tweeted. "No need for jealousy SW, she's not getting any cuddles or kisses!" Hurley replied. The model brunette is teaching the parrot to talk and Saints fan Warne has urged her to teach it the St Kilda club song. "Don't forget advance Australia fair !!!! In tune too please ping pong . . . Ps organized kangaroos and koalas for your trip," he wrote. The affair between the former spinner and the movie - poker babe went public in December and the pair were busted on a romantic weekend in LA earlier this month. Both have bounce back, and judging by the Tweets, can't wait to bounce, fly and play together. Is it an Aussie expression... a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush? Never mind. Tweet me at twitter.com/mediamanint

Russell Crowe: Ex Kiwi (On Defending His South Sydney Rabbitoh's Star City Casino Deal)...

"The football club is a completely different organisation from the leagues club. We don't have any control over what the leagues club does; they run their own game." Crowe then went on to defend the move by pitching Star City as primarily an entertainment precinct and putting forward society benefits from gaming revenue, of which there is some truth in. Entertainment is the name of the game, and its broken into sub sectors. "This is an entertainment venue in general; it's not just about gaming. Let's get real about this situation; we're living in a state where they're telling us that the revenue from poker machines is paying for our hospitals. What we're talking about here is about a connection between two organisations that are all about entertainment, that are all about the future of Sydney." Souths chief executive Shane Richardson seconded the views put forward forward by NRL chief executive David "Gambling" (MM satire) Gallop this week that the association between sport and gambling "is as old as sport itself". "Let's be honest no sport in the world could ignore it, we're not holier than thou, the NFL, the English Premier League, wherever it is, there's gambling. As David Gallop said all along, it's going to be there, it's a major part of what sport is whether we like it or not and we've got to be part of it to have some sort of control over it." Crowe did concede that his own personal beliefs on gambling were at odds with the deal and recognised that problem gamblers were an issue of concern. "I don't like them (pokies). I'm not a fan of them; I've made that clear in the past. "But in life I am a gambler. The fact that I took on South Sydney underlines that." Media Man and Gambling911 congratulate both the Rabbitohs, Crowe and Tabcorp's Star City for taking a bet on this. Life is a gamble, just don't let it get the better of you, and always have fun... on and off the field. Work hard and play harder!

Julian Assange...

He is possibly Australia's most notorious public figure in a strange sort of way. Hero or Villain? Guess it depends on who you ask. If you ask Prime Minister Julia Gillard we think you know the answer! This weekends' The Australian newspaper fueled rumours that the James Bond franchise might like to have an Assange type in an upcoming flick. The journo penned...Ian Fleming could have turned the WikiLeaks boss into a villain in a James Bond novel. Given the pervasiveness of the Bond myth, it is no surprise that Assange, like Osama bin Laden before him, should be likened to a Bond villain. He has been labelled many things both positive and negative, from champion of free speech to cyber-terrorist. Perhaps the strangest, and for many fans of popular culture most glamorous, epithet applied to Julian Assange is that of Bond villain. Moreover, it is an epithet that has found widespread media acceptance. The connection has been made in blogs and especially tabloid newspapers, and equally it has surfaced in such diverse publications as Britain's The Guardian, The Financial Times and the US's The Washington Post. The most conspicuous parallel between Assange and the fantasy world of Ian Fleming's James Bond involves the Bond villain's lair. The WikiLeaks HQ, known as the Pionen data centre, is a remodelled Swedish nuclear bunker set in a granite mountain face. Special thanks to Simon Caterson at News Limited. We like your work mate.

Elle Macpherson...

The once former flame of Brit gambling tycoon Damian Aspinall has got busy again as of late. Elle Macpherson and Cate Blanchett were guests at the major bling event for the Portofino range at a dinner in Geneva yesterday. They were joined by Lost's Matthew Fox - looking heavier and a bit ratty in a Brad Pitt-style Catweazle beard - plus Kevin Spacey, Ronan Keating and more. We're sure it was a fun event. And we're sure all received a special gift.

Damian Aspinall (James Packer Mate) To Sell Aspinall's Casino In Britain Following Bad Luck!..

Damian does business with Australia's James Packer, but its possible that soon that may come to an end. The Brit has had relationships with glamorous women, including the TV presenter Donna Air, Elle Macpherson and Naomi Campbell. He confirmed the scale of the club’s debts but said it was not unusual for a casino business. He said: “You are talking about a business that has £250 million a year drop (the money staked by its clients). So it is a bit circular. You are looking at unlucky years. That is the business we are in. “Anyone in the business with high value VIP tables will have years when you do well and years when they don’t do well because it is volatile." Asked about the house’s performance last year, he added: “That’s completely normal. You are talking about a volatile business.” He said over a 10-year period Aspinall’s was winning 18 per cent of the money gambled at its tables. But he added: “You have years when you do nine per cent and years when you do 24 per cent.” The most recent available accounts for the club are for 2009 and Mr Aspinall said the club was now doing better. He said that despite his plan to move away from the elite clubs founded by his father such businesses would not die out. “I think there is a future. You have got to be grown up about those sorts of investments. You lose £10 million one week, and win £8 million the next. It is part of the business. When you lose these amounts it is a knock for the casino concerned, but you have weeks like that. We also had a week where we won £11 million in six days. It is big numbers these days. The winners could be three people over a number of days, it can be one person in one night. There are plenty of players all over the world who have won and lost that sort of money in a night."

Mel Gibson...

American law enforcement sources say Summit Entertainment which is distributing Aussie Mel's upcoming movie, "The Beaver" - gave Mel the final cut of the movie on DVD. Mel screened it at his home, and at 10:45 AM put the DVD in his mailbox so a courier could pick it up and return it to Summit. The DVD was rumoured to go missing in action, not Mel!

Hugh Jackman...

Hugh Jackman, Oprah Winfrey, Halle Berry and Marisa Tomei Among Oscar Presenters...Tony Award winner and previous Academy Awards host Hugh Jackman will be part of this year's Oscar ceremony, according to the Associated Press. Jackman will be a presenter at the 83rd Academy Awards. Other presenters currently include Sandra Bullock, Jeff Bridges, Oprah Winfrey, Halle Berry and Marisa Tomei. Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2010 will be presented Feb. 27 at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center. The awards will be televised live by the ABC Television Network beginning at 8 PM ET. James Franco and Anne Hathaway will co-host this year's ceremony. Jackman, who was seen on screen in "X-Men Origins: Wolverine," earned a Tony Award for his work in the Broadway musical The Boy From Oz. He is also known for his film roles in the "X-Men" trilogy, "Someone Like You," "Swordfish," "Kate and Leopold," "Van Helsing" and the recent "The Fountain" and "Happy Feet" (in voice). His stage credits also include Trevor Nunn's staging of Oklahoma! at Britian's National Theatre and award-winning work in productions of Sunset Boulevard and Beauty and the Beast.

John Travolta...(As John Gotti)...

Travolta was at Amici restaurant in Brentwood a few nights ago. He wasn't giving much away about taking the role. But Marty Ingels, Executive Producer of the movie was much more direct, stating Travolta will play the lead role in the movie, "Gotti." Leaks tell us James Franco has been approached to play John Gotti, Jr. Bang! Hit us up for an update soon.

David Gyngell...

Gyng is tipped to be very shortly flying to the U.S to test the waters re the upcoming float on the stock market on his CVC. Nine Entertainment's private equity owners will assess the health of the local equity and advertising markets this month. After which, they will decide the date for a $5 billion listing of the television, magazine and digital group. According to market sources, Nine's owner, CVC Asia Pacific, is yet to decide on the listing date although most observers expect the debt-laden group to test the waters as soon as April if global equity markets remain relatively strong. Management, including newly installed chief executive David Gyngell, will travel to the US next month to gauge the interest of potential offshore investors.

Celebrity Poker Pros: Tyron Krost And Stewart Scott: Celebrity Stars Going Down In Ratings; Direct Response To Poor Showing In Aussie Millions 2011...

These couple of poker celebs were on fire at some point, but lately a shower has been thrown on their parade. Both are former Aussie Millions champs - Krost from last year, Scott from 2009. Fellas, time to win some big games again or you might not even be thought as celebs any more. Start performing or might those sponsorship deals with PartyGaming's PartyPoker.com dry up?

Van Marcus...

Poker pro Van Marcus, currently in Melbourne for Aussie Millions, is the chap who has his red rare Ferrari nicked from the Crown valet parking last year, in a story that generated massive international headlines. In the past days Marcus has been seeing driving around Melbourne in what looks to be the same card, but this time reportedly with a hot blonde or brunette in the passenger seat. Hows the ride girls?

Australian Chris Hemsworth Plays Father To Thor; Anthony Hopkins Is Thor!...

The Aussies and Brits are teaming up again in film, thanks to our friends at Marvel Entertainment. The industry is abuzz for Aussie Hemsworth and Brit Hopkins. Hopkins has portrayed so many notable characters from history, literature, and the arts, that it’s no surprise we will see him in yet another role of stature. In this year’s hotly anticipated Paramount Pictures and Marvel Entertainment epic adventure Thor, he will be Odin, the major god of Norse mythology, and father to Thor, (played by Australian Chris Hemsworth). The film is based on the Stan Lee comic book version, and directed by Kenneth Branagh. Excelsior! Marvel Entertainment: Don't just buy the comics and watch the movies, play the games at PartyGaming. May the power of Thor be with you.

James Packer And Co...

Marketing and gaming advisers to James Packer have leaked that they see merit in having an Aussie Millions branded online slot game. They saw the popularity of Cleopatra and Sinatra in an online environment, and well as PartyGaming's World Poker Tour slot in land based casinos. They have not confirmed a Kerry Packer themed slot game, with some concerns it may be a uncomfortable proposal for one or two of the Packer family, however many punters and insiders think that Kerry would have loved the idea, and further would have loved the concept that a slot game will his likeness via tribute slot would actually make Crown Limited money. PartyGaming, WMS and IGT are keen to talk turkey with Crown Limited with their online plans, which may also compliment what's in store for the further development of Packer 50% owned Betfair. Who is tipped to the the contract?

We think PartyGaming, based on their strong US land based casino deals, ink still drying over the last few days, but you will just have to keep watching the space.

As they say on TV, I'm a celebrity - Get Me Out Of Here!

*Media Man is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. Gaming is just one of a dozen sectors covered

*the writer owns shares in Crown Limited and Ten Network Holdings

 

News

Australia Day Special, by Greg Tingle - 26th January 2011

G'day and Happy Australia Day everyone. Ok, we know some of you punters, journos, high rollers - casino whales, entertainment news junkies, politicians, insiders, outsiders and legal eagles are from across the globe are not Australia, nor have ever been down under, but you get the idea. Did you know that some indigenous Australia's call Australia Day 'Invasion Day'! That's because most history books show that Captain James Cook and his crew invaded Australia on this day in 1988. They are known by a new names including the First Fleet, while some aborigines will always think of them and murderous mongrels, who stole their land and pride. It's easy for many of us to get the point of the blackfellas (affectionate). Media Man and Gambling911 with a bush tucker bag full of Australian gambling, casino, poker, media and sports news. Fair winds...

Queensland Banana Bender State: Pub Pokies And Online Pokies Becoming More Popular?...

One armed bandits are maintaining their popularity in 'The Sunshine State'. It's understand that punters might have only a 1 in a million chance of winning really big, lotto - millionaire style, but they just keep coming back for more. Yep, throw another dime in the pokie baby. Queenslanders "invested" close to $2 billion last year as the punters passion for the slots maintained its fever pace. The total pokies expenditure of $1.81 billion was slightly down on the previous year, it was the third year consecutively the number exceeded $1.8 billion. We're also learned that the 2008 figure of $1.83 billion was an all-time record. Now, this is important - those numbers Do Not take into account the rabid take up and roll our of online poker or sports betting. You know, betting over the global medium - the internet. Overall, Queenslanders spent $7 million less on pokies than last year and $28 million less than in 2008, but it still works out at in excess of $150 million every month down the slots August was the year's biggest month for slot gamblers, who put close to $170 million in the throats of the one armed bandits. August was also the biggest month for gamblers in 2008, with more than $173 million lost. Pokies remain by far the most popular games for punters in Australia, bringing in most of the estimated $17 billion spent on all forms of gambling down under each year. Some insiders think that the reduction in official spending was more a sign of the increased popularity of internet and sports-based gambling. Concentrating on pokie figures, it appears Queenslanders gambled more at the height of the global financial crisis two years ago than they did throughout 2010.

Tassie 'Devil' Gambling Tycoon Devilish Quotes...

David Walsh from Tasmania was such a big hit with the readership we thought we would dig up a few more of the red hot 'The Devil's' quotes, that are too good not to share. First a refresher...Art and gambling do mix, at least that's the experience of Brits Damian Aspinall, Phil 'Tuffers' Tufnell, Australian artist Gina Sinozich, AustralianSportsEntertainment.com (bodypaint and burlesque "fetish") and Tasmanian gambling whale - tycoon, David 'Wicked' (satire) Walsh. You will pick up on Dave's affectionate nickname by us later. We like you David, ok mate. Tasmania's most famous or infamous gambling figure, millionaire, David Walsh yesterday gave us a peak into his art exhibit...the biggest (and weirdest) private art gallery in Tasmania, if not the Asia Pacific. The $110 million Museum of Old and New Art is nestled on the banks of Hobart's Derwent River.

Quotes By The Tasmanian Devil!...

"FUCK the art, let's rock'n'roll."

"I think formal curation is a form of mental masturbation."

"I'm not really that interested in a bunch of big names. Most of the works are by people most people haven't heard of and still won't have heard of because there's no wall labels."

"I don't want to lose control (or) something that ends up looking like a pale version of the National Gallery of Victoria".

"Subversive adult Disneyland".

"Please see reception if you are planning a pool party or a ritualistic orgy."

"It's the opportunity to mess with your head. I like the idea of people having a couple of beers and looking at the art, having a couple more and changing their mind."

"Just a privileged guy with a megaphone"

"It’s like a rich man’s soap box. I’m standing on my soapbox and I’m shouting my views like they mean something."

"I’ll take all the popular stuff out. And if you go to the toilet two or three times we’ll recommend a good urologist."

“My brother once said about me that I’d rather be outside a barrel pissing in than inside the barrel pissing out. I’m anti this idea that we know what we’re doing with certainty. I kinda think that most things that are good happen to people largely by accident, but then they start looking for explanations. You see the views of rich, successful people on television, and they tell you why they got rich and successful; they don’t interview all the people who went through the same process and didn’t. I think most things are complete crap. I want to show that you can be fortunate without believing that your fortune was anything other than fortune."

"There are so many things we do that we hide from. We hack open cows and eat their guts but we compartmentalise that away from our lives so we can pretend it’s not happening. And on a larger, more important scale, if each of us acted individually to say ‘OK, we f…ed up the atmosphere, it is our personal responsibility’, humanity would behave in a very different way."

"One of the things about having money is that … I feel a bit of guilt and a level of privilege, and it seems to be an obligation to do something, and since art is what I’ve been doing....but it wasn’t really like that. It was: I bought this small gallery, bought a bigger one, and gradually it became something of this scale. It’s become a lot more serious endeavour than I intended it to be. There’s a bit of thumbing my nose at the establishment and trying to bypass academia, but mainly I just wanted it to be a bit of fun. And it is. And it will be."

"The gambling is all a computer thing that is going on right now".

Website

Museum of Old and New Art

Queensland: Cairns Reef Hotel Casino Poised To Raise Big Bucks For Flood Relief On Australia Day...

Punters, let's all spare a thought for those who have been attacked by the floods on Australia Day. Numerous events are being planed around Australia, from 'Sound Relief' to and initiative from the Cairns Reef Hotel Casino 'Bring on the Sun' It will be one of the biggest events on the Australia Day calendar for the city and all funds raised will go to the Premier’s Flood Relief Appeal. There's a good old fashioned sausage sizzle, competitions and female performers including the Marlins’ cheer squad. "The whole idea is slanted towards the female performer," entertainment manager Bruce Stewart said. "We’ve got an eclectic blend of female artists coming to perform as well." Cazalys, El Mundo Tapas Bar and the Marlin Coast Bowls Club will also host events to raise money for flood victims. Cairns Regional Council will hold events across the region, including the ever-popular celebrations on the Esplanade. Mayor Val Schier said the council was expecting a good attendance as usual with residents keen to get outside and celebrate our sunburnt country in the green and gold. "Even last year when it poured, a huge number of people came to the Aussie breakfast; we expect the same will happen this year, rain, hail or shine. It is one of those days where people can come together as a community and help celebrate why it is great to be an Australian. We live in a fantastic country and it is good for people to get out and enjoy it." Pubs and clubs will also get into the Aussie spirit with a number of activities on offer. Paradise Palms Resort and Country Club has a patriotic, fun-filled day planned with activities that pay homage to Australia’s heritage such as the much-anticipated pie-eating competition. "Everybody is welcome to come along and have some fun while tucking into our Aussie selection of meat pies, icy beers, lamingtons and classic Australian music by DJ Danny from Millennium Sounds," director of sales and marketing Darlene Holdsworth said.

Events

Join the celebrations

Paradise Palms Resort and Country Club Australia Day celebrations
What’s on: Australian menu served from noon in Restaurant 59, pie-eating and thong-throwing competitions start at 1.30pm. Pies, icy beers, lamingtons and classic Australian music on offer at the resort.
Time: 12pm. Entry free.

Bring on the Sun at Cairns Reef Hotel Casino
What’s on: Entertainment, sausage sizzle, raffles, jumping castle and more with all proceeds going to the Premier’s Flood Relief Appeal.
Time: 2pm. Entry free.


Shane Warne And Poker Mates Get VIP Star Treatment At Australian Open Tennis Sunday Night...

The spinner got there at 8pm hoping to get star VIP treatment for 14 of his closest mates. In the mix was was Joe Hachem, who he had earlier caught up with at the launch of the Aussie Millions Poker Tournament at Crown Casino. Warne requested an escort (no, not that type silly) when he arrived and posed mostly for photographs with his sunglasses on. He also spent time in Andy Roddick's player's box during his loss to Swissman Stanislas Wawrinka. It been a big couple of days for "poker her" for the legend, playing rendezvous with Liz Hurley in LA. He is expected to play in the second round of the poker tournament and could face off against Gary Ablett Jr and Jeff Fenech tomorrow. Blett made it through to the second round.


Australian Financial Review Goes Gaga For Lady Gaga; Gets Facts Wrong (We Think)...

It took us a few months of going through newspapers but we finally found the AFR to make a slip up, and its a doozy....An article reads "the complex will have a few upmarket bars, including one on the roof, and an events theatre to house live acts – think Lady Gaga – as well as awards nights." With Gaga's level of popularity she would require a much larger venue than Star City. Earlier this year, she - they played two concerts at the Sydney Entertainment Centre, capacity 12,000 or thereabouts. Do the math.

Australia's Kylie Minogue To Do The Colosseum At Caesars Palace Las Vegas: Aphrodite Live...

Mark is down Kylie fans the word over. She's doing Ceasers Sunday May 22, 2011 8pm


Melbourne: Aussie Joker Comedian Performs At Packer's Crown; Raises Cash For Flood Relief...

Melbourne folks at Crown Casino recently enjoyed 'The Jokers Comedy That Rocks' at Crown Casino. James Packer's casino donated all proceeds from last Friday night’s show to Queensland flood victims. Organiser William Leitch has happy with the way things went and showcased an evening with some of the city’s top stand-up artists, including Brad Oakes, Christine Basil and Greg Fleet. It's understood he got close to 150 people to come along, and he may be invited back on upcoming Friday nights.


Top 100 ASX Listed Companies Respond To Flood Cry For Help; Gambling And Gaming Industry Steps Up; Mining Firms and Banking Bastards Lead Charge...

1. BHP Billiton: $1.3 million (in addition, matching employee donations)

2. CBA: $1.35 million

3. Westpac: $1 million

4. ANZ: $1 million

5. NAB: $1 million

6. News Corp: $500,000 and Blue Ribbon campaign

7. Rio Tinto: $1 million ($700,000 to Premier Relief, $300,000 to Emerald community)

8. Wesfarmers: $7.5 million (plus $3.5 million from Coles customers)

9. Telstra Corp: up to $1 million by matching staff contributions (so far $338,000; is also supplying phones and free calls to people affected)

10. Woolside Petroleum: $122,395 (corporate + employees)

11. Woolworths: $6.9 million (matching customer donations in Woolies, Big W, Dick Smith dollar for dollar)

14. Fortescue Metals: Matching staff donations dollar for dollar

15. CSL: $250,000

16. QBE Insurance: not releasing a statement

17. Origin energy: $1 million

18. Macquarie Group: $200,000 (combined staff and company effort with fundraising activities continuing both here and overseas)

19. AXA Asia Pacific: No response

20. Santos: $500,000 plus use of helicopters and vehicles for clean up. Also $50,000 for flooding in WA

21. Coal and Allied Industries: (see Rio Tinto)

22. AMP: $250,000 + matching employee contributions to WA flood appeal up to $250,000

23. Suncorp Group: $100,000 (staff and customers have donated $1.5million)

24. Foster's Group: $500,000

25. Brambles: No response

26. Leighton Holdings: No response

27. Orica: No response

28. Oil Search: No response

29. Stockland: Donated $250,000 to the Premier's flood relief appeal, another $30,000 to the Mayoress Rockhampton regional flood appeal and are matching employee donations dollar for dollar

30. Coca. Cola Amatil: No response

31. Amcor: No response

32. Westfield Retail Trust: No response

33. IAG: No response

39. Crown: Donation tins in Crown complexes and have committed to matching all donations as well as staff contributions

52. Tabcorp Holdings: $1 million

78. Tatts Group: Going to run a dedicated lottery for the Queensland flood appeal where all profits will go to the Premier's Flood Appeal. They ran the same thing in Victoria after the Black Saturday bushfires. It will run on Wednesday 2 Feb in Queensland and is expected to raise $200,000. In addition, another donation will be made from the unclaimed prizes fund of an as. yet undecided amount

79. Fairfax Media: Matching staff donations

100. Seek: Reported it had made a donation to the Premier's Flood Appeal but chose not to disclose how much

Brisbane: Flood Relief Money Gets Spend On Pokies, Vice - Piss Up At Pubs...

It's been reported in a number of Queensland newspapers that the $1000 flood relief grants that went to many good folks in Granville are being used to feed slots and buy piss (beer) rather than food and necessities. Two Maryborough publicans say that in some instances the answer to that is yes, and they are disgusted. One of the publicans was so incensed by the misuse of flood relief money she telephoned Fairfax Media to complain. "A man came in bragging about how he’d got the $1000 payout because he told Centrelink he was stuck in Granville – but he was here the whole time. It makes me sick that people are openly admitting they’ve got the money for nothing, while there are people who’ve died or lost everything." She said Centrelink should have screened the applications more carefully to make sure only people who were genuinely in need received the cash. Another pub owner said his one armed bandits had not stopped buzzing since the grants became available. "We were quiet during the actual floods but this week’s been totally different. The pokies and the bottle shop have been going non-stop." Yeah, Aussie continue to love a punt, rain, hail, shine or flood!

Aussie Millions Game 8 Results...

The London based chap took down the $1,100 8 game mixed event title at Crown Casino in Melbourne adding AUD$23,800 to his almost $1.2 million in career tournament earnings. He entered the final table as the short stack, but managed to grind his way to victory and nudge away Australia's Bruno Portaro for the victory. The event marked Ashby's 8th final table appearance at the Aussie Millions that includes a side-event win back in 2005 and a seventh-place finish in the main event in 2009. Ashby also won his first WSOP bracelet this summer in the $1,500 7 Card Stud event and went well in the $10k H.O.R.S.E. for his biggest career score of $378,027. The 2011 Aussie Millions $1,100 8-Game Mixed event drew 68-players and paid the final 7.

Here are the results:
1 Richard Ashby AUD$23,800
2 Bruno Portaro AUD$16,320
3 Casey Kastle AUD$10,880
4 Daniel Ospina AUD$6,800
5 Oliver Gill AUD$4,760
6 Dane Coltman AUD$3,400
7 Paul Ravesi AUD$2,040

Aussie Main Event Day 1b: PartyPoker And Full Tilt Poker Players Feel The Pain...

PartyGaming's PartyPoker and Full Tilt Poker's powers that be likely won't be celebrating. Ok, they got news coverage and exposure, but its because their players are out. Yep, history maties. Full Tilt went well on Day 1a but Day 1b was rooted. Many of the big name pros went down for the count as locals stepped up. 209 players entered the Crown Poker room but after 7 levels of play, 80 remained. David Oppenheim, Annette Obrestad, Carlos Mortensen, David Benyamine, Andrew Feldman, Steve Yea, Andy Bloch and Gus Hansen were some of the Full Tilt players who died. Other casualties included Luke Santo, Raj Ramakrishnan, George Moussa, Michael Pedley, Graeme Putt, Martin Comer, Dennis Huntly, Jamie Pickering, Bruno Portaro, Casey Kastle, Ben Savage and Tim Marsters. 2005 World Champion Joe Hachem (tweeting he struggled with jetlag following a recent trip to the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure.) Defending champ, 2010 Aussie Millions Main Event winner Tyron Krost (PartyGaming's PartyPoker pro went down too). A new champ will be crowned in 2011 with plenty of Aussies still in contention. The field kicked off with Jeff Rossier in the lead with 154,900, closely followed by Michael Ottobra (143,400) and Martin Drewe, After winning the Opening Event last week and going deep in another event, Drewe is now set in the chip leaders in the Main Event after getting to 136,100. Jay “SEABEAST” Kinkade did nicely with 128,700, Haibo Chu (113,900), Manny Stavropoulos (85,600), Sorel Mizzi (74,400), Michael Egan (61,100), Kent Hunter (56,400), Jeff Lisandro (55,000), Eric Assadourian (50,300), Scott Montgomery (49,200), Chris Ferguson (45,400), Lee Nelson (30,200), Neil Channing (28,800), Roland de Wolfe (26,100), Aleks Brkovic (24,600), Jackie Glazier (21,900), Grant Levy (18,300), Gary Benson (10,500) and Mel Judah (7,200) amongst those who will return on Day 2. The 3rd and final flight of the 2011 Aussie Millions Main will commence Tuesday with another strong field and a few big names expected. Even Van Marcus will front up. Van, is your Red Ferrari safe this time mate? We're looking for more good fodder to write about. How about do a publicity stunt and make world wide headlines ago. Maybe someone at Crown Casino - Crown Limited might be open to it. Stanger things have happened... like Ferrari's getting stolen on site, casino fights and a man getting stuck in the Crown Casino kitchen grease vacuum.

Aussie Millions Event #9 Day 1b: Rossiter In Front...

It was down to business with players investing AUD$10,600 to buy in all with the goal of becoming the 2011 Aussie Millions Champion. 7 seven levels of play, and the 209-player field went to 80. Jeff Rossiter is in front with 154,900. Martin Drewe, 2011 Aussie Millions Event #1 winner with 136,100 - now 3rd on the leaderboard. Australian Jay Kinkade is on 128,700, and European Poker Tour mainstay Jeff Sarwer sits 5th with 120,500. Randy "nanonoko" Lew has 110,000 and Gavin Griffin 101,700 in 9th ninth and 10th place. Sorel Mizzi, Jeffrey Lisandro, Eric Assadourian, Team Full Tilt's Chris Ferguson, Full Tilt Poker Red Pros Scott Montgomery and Roland de Wolfe, Neil Channing, and Lee Nelson have also all made it to Wednesday's Day 2, but it was touch and go for some of them, testing the skill VS luck debate. Full Tilt Poker $25,000 Shootout Invitational winner David Oppenheim, Annette Obrestad, Carlos Mortensen, Andy Bloch, David Benyamine, Andrew Feldman, Gus Hansen, Joe Hachem, and David Steicke all had to say goodnight nurse. PartyGaming's - PartyPoker Tyron Krost was eliminated in a hand VS Gavin Griffin where his Ace-Queen couldn't best Griffin's Aces. The 3rd and final Day 1 flight commences Tuesday in Melbourne, Australia at 12:30 p.m. local time.

Getting board of poker yet? If so, try your luck er skill at Baccarat or Craps. If your more into luck, check out the slots like Cleopatra, Sinatra, Rambo, Goanna Gold and The Terminator. Rumour goes PartyGaming also have, or will soon get, a World Poker Tour themed online slot game. We recommend punters open an account with PartyCasino, PartyGaming and World Poker Tour, just to have all based covered. Party appears to still be the most popular online casino brand in Australia despite big efforts by the likes of 888. Marvel slot games are forecast to be some of the most popular of this year with Captain America and Thor tipped to hit Australia cinema's this year, with Spider-Man also getting a remake. Whatever your casino game of choice, good luck, and let us know how you go guys and girls. Spin to win.

Take the time to research and learn games before placing down money

Media Man, Casino News Media and Gambling911 are website portals. Not casinos as such, however are recognised as world leading websites that cover the sector and act as central points to games, news, reviews and more.

Readers... er, punters, how did you like our report? Tell us in the forum.

If you have a bet, please bet with your head, not over it, and for God's sake, have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. Gaming is just one of a dozen sectors covered

 

News

Aussie Celeb News; James Bond Casino Icon Connection, by Greg Tingle - 29th December 2010

Season's Greetings punters, entertainment news junkies, one and all. Today we have a look at the latest from Aussiewood and Hollywood powerhouses James Bond, with a Bondi Beach twist, Marvel Entertainment (go Wolverine)..we love you Hugh, Spider-Man, Underbelly and more.. Media Man http://www.AustralianSportsEntertainment.com and Gambling911 with your celebrity and entertainment news fix, just in time for the New Year. Ho Ho Ho!...

MGM Emerging from Bankruptcy; Wants To Produce James Bond 23...

MGM Studios is emerging from bankruptcy with a $500 million line of credit, and its first Xmas wish is to produce James Bond #23, rumoured to be directed by Sam Mendes and starring Daniel Craig (again), despite many leaks saying that means it will be a gay Bond (for real), if you follow.

The James Bond franchise has long been a fav of casino and gambling lovers, with Casino Royale being the top pick for most punters.

MGM Studios has been going through the wars as of late, with the filing of bankruptcy hanging around their neck. Their massive financial troubles led to the delay of not only The Hobbit, directed by New Zealander Peter Jackson, but also James Bond 23 starring the Daniel Craig.

The studio just underwent a giant restructuring and was able to acquire $500 million worth of credit from financial powerhouse JP Morgan, a good lot of which will likely be spent on the sequel to Quantum of Solace. MGM is expected to partner with Sony for co-financing, as it has done a few times previously with Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace.

Bond fans, did you know that 2012 marks the fiftieth anniversary of Dr. No (1962), the very first James Bond movie ever, which makes it bloody good timing to release a new Bond movie. The studio will be attempting to secure and shore up its cast, director, and screenplay for the new movie in very short order.

The studio had previously announced that Peter Morgan, and frequent Bond collaborators Neal Purvis and Robert Wade, would be penning a draft of Bond 23. Purvis and Wade have worked on every James Bond flick since The World Is Not Enough, and that includes Die Another Day, Casino Royale, and Quantum of Solace - the last two of which were rewritten, to some extent, by Paul Haggis.

Rumors have been flying for months have indicated that Sam Mendes (American Beauty, Revolutionary Road) is leading the pack to direct the new movie. Now, Mendes is not a filmmaker known for his action style skills. He did however direct Road to Perdition, co-starring none other than Daniel Craig.

As of press, James Bond will not be film in 3D. Oh, did we mention AustralianSportsEntertainment.com is the agent and manager for John Seru who played bad guy Gabor in Bond's 'The World Is Not Enough'. In Nine's 'Underbelly' Seru placed Kiwi Steve in the following episodes: Alpha and Omega, The Good Lieutenant, Hurt on Duty (2010), Saving Face and Women in Uniform.

MGM is still technically under bankruptcy protection for a couple more months.

Marvel Entertainment's The Avengers: New Mexico Connection...

Marvel Entertainment's biggest film project of all time is is now New Mexico’s biggest film production ever as 'The Avengers' confirms its 2011 shooting locations.

Thor not only hits off the summer movie season of 2011, but it sets up events that will culminate in the Marvel superhero team-up epic, The Avengers, the following year. With story elements of Thor taking place in New Mexico, and the production shooting in Santa Fe and Galisteo, it’s of little surprise to see Marvel Studios returning once again for their biggest project ever.

New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson and Marvel Studios officially announced the agreement making The Avengers the single largest film production in the state’s history. The current schedule has Joss Whedon’s The Avengers shooting in New Mexico between April and September of next year, using both Albuquerque Studios and of course, the beautiful and vast surrounding locations that so many other major Hollywood flicks have used.

The Avengers also is set to shoot action in Michigan and New York but production will primarily take place in New Mexico’s largest city Albuquerque.

Governor Richardson talks to local economic benefits to New Mexico: "In addition to being our biggest production to date, The Avengers will be the most technologically advanced and will provide cutting-edge training opportunities for our crew… I’m announcing this as a Christmas present of sorts to the people of New Mexico. This is a perfect example of the incredible job creation, economic impact and global visibility this industry has brought our state over the past eight years, and of the need to keep it moving forward."

So Marvel heroes fans, be looking out for Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Jeremy Renner, Scarlett Johansson, Clark Gregg and Samuel L. Jackson.

Thor opens May 5, 2011; The First Avenger: Captain America hits July 22, 2011 and The Avengers is scheduled to debut May 4, 2012.

Spider-Man: Broadway No Match For Movie; Spidy Fans Disappointed; Would Rather Play Spider-Man Games And Play Dress Up...

The new and much talked about Spider-Man musical has another problem stuck in its web. Sick to death of waiting for the problematic Broadway show to officially open, critics for two mainstream news companies released early and negative reviews of the $65 million musical, which won't officially open until February 7.

Writing for Bloomberg News, the influential financial news wire service, veteran critic John Simon slammed the show as "an unfocused hodge-podge of story-telling, myth-making and spectacle that comes up short in every department. A few good songs would help, in which department the show is sorely lacking," Simon wrote in the review late Sunday night. Like most rock stars, Bono and The Edge haven’t a clue about writing for the theatre."

The U2 legends wrote the score for the show, which was directed by Lion King helmer Julie Taymor.

Both Simon and Newsday's Linda Winer defended their premature reviews on the grounds that the show was charging full ticket prices in some cases more than $200 a seat for the performances, and that the opening date had been pushed back twice.

Winer called the show's infamous high-flying acrobatics "exciting and scary, in a circus way" but dismissed the second act as "weak."

Simon was also impressed with the flying scenes: "An hour of anticipation for about 90 seconds of exhilaration," he wrote.

Would you believe four actors have been injured during the show's rehearsals, including a horrible injury to lead aerialist Chris Tierney last week.

Critics almost never publish their reviews of productions before the official opening night. Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark has pushed back its debut twice.

The New York Times said in a posting to its arts blog that it would not review the show until the official opening.

Media Man loves Marvel Entertainment, Spider-Man and U2, but this project does not sound good. Sorry guys.

Underbelly TV Movie Legal Problems...

Network Nine may be forced to shelve forever one of its Underbelly telemovies because of legal action in the state of New South Wales.

Tell Them Lucifer Was Here, the first of 3vtelemovies being made under the Underbelly Files title, tells the story of the 1998 murders of Victoria cops Rod Miller and Gary Silk.

After a probing investigation by the Lorimer Task Force, Bandali Debs and Jason Roberts were found guilty of the double murder in 2003. Debs was sentenced to life in prison, Roberts to 35 years.

The subject seemed relatively safe... for true crime. Reader may recall the first Underbelly could not be screened in Victoria.

However, anything that identifies "Debs" could be a bit no go zone in NSW.

On September 24, the Victorian Government Solicitor applied to the Melbourne Magistrates Court to have Debs transferred to a NSW prison for questioning over the death of a Sydney prostitute 15 years ago.

Debs's lawyer, Michael De Young, did not oppose the application, saying his client maintained his innocence and was confident of being acquitted and returned to Victoria.

New South Wales Police have been trying for 2 years to question Debs...also was convicted in 2007 of the 1997 murder of 18-year-old sex worker Kristy Harty...and reckon they have enough evidence to link him to the killing.

The transfer order was granted by the court, but Debs had 14 days to appeal the decision.

Channel Nine has 3 options: rush the Silk-Miller telemovie out before NSW police have laid any charges that might arise from the interview; release the telemovie in all states bar NSW if charges are laid; or hold off for a national release until any case has been heard.

Nine has has yet to comment on this matter.

Underbelly #4 To Hit Aussie TV...

A 4th Underbelly series to screen in 2011 promises to showcase the birth of organised crime in Australia.

Based in Sydney in the roaring 1920s, Underbelly Razor tells the story of the bloody battle between "vice queens" Tilly Devine and her rival Kate Leigh.

The Nine Network are calling it their most "ambitious and daring" Underbelly series yet.

It will be joined by 3 Underbelly telemovies - Tell Them Lucifer was Here, Infiltration and The Man Who Got Away...which were announced earlier in the year.

Aussie Poker Celeb King Shane Warnie Tag Team With Wolverine Hugh Jackman In Cricket Nets; Jackman Hit In Balls (Almost) In Lead Up To Boxing Day Ashes Test...

The tag team led the celebrity contingent to the Melbourne Cricket Group for the prestigious Boxing Day Test. 'Our Hugh' got hit in the balls by a Warnie spinner, so it seemed, but he had a cup on, perhaps taking safeguards, after getting hit in the eye with a foreign object at his Oprah Winfrey grand entrance via way of flying fox a couple of weeks ago. Wolverine Jackman joined other famous mugs in the crowd, including Opposition Leader Tony 'The Bruiser' Abbott and veteran English talk show king Sir Michael Parkinson aka 'Parkie'. Premier Ted Baillieu and wife Robyn also tagged along, as did Eddie "Everywhere" McGuire, Cathy Freeman and Molly Meldrum. In a smart and rather cunning move, just outside the MCG sports stars and entertainment biz celebs tag teamed a game of cricket which raised money for the McGrath Foundation. The foundation ambassador Lee Furlong joined ex-cricketers Justin Langer and Michael Slater, Glen Moriarty, Kris Smith and Guy Sebastian at the friendly game. Earlier, Shane Warne made one of his very first public appearances since the "Hurley-burley", acting as host for his fav Shane Warne Foundation's annual Boxing Day breakfast at Crown. Warne mate, James Packer, attended, along with wife Erica in a show of support. Singer Leo Sayer also entertained to an appreciative crowd that included Glenn Robbins, Mark Taylor, Ian Healy, Aaron Hamill and Bill Brownless. A great day was had by all, as best we can tell.

Aussie Poker Celeb Shane Warne And UK Sort Liz Hurley: Come Down Under And Come In Spinner?...

Is Liz Hurley coming to Australia? Getting spotted at Heathrow Airport sent press into a frenzy and created munch speculation she will keep her date with Warnie. Friends of Hurley told the Pommie press she had dumped the cricket spin legend after learning he had sent more than 100 sexy text messages to another woman behind her back. Warnie is known for his ability to sent sexy texts that can get the right response. Now it appears Liz may have reconsidered after attempts to stop an imminent divorce and rekindle her relationship with husband Arun Nayar reportedly failed. During her public flirtation with the spinner on Twitter, Hurley wrote that she was keen to attend the January 3 "Pink Test," which supports the Jane McGrath Foundation. Talk about a play on words "Pink Test", got to love her form. Liz also told Warnie she would "definitely" make an appearance on his Channel Nine chat show if she made it to Sydney. Sources close to the Aussie spinner have said the cricketer was devastated after being apparently dropped by Hurley, having previously confided his desire to marry her. Both Hurley and Warne announced on Twitter that they had split from their respective partners shortly after spending 2 delightful, fun filled nights together at a luxury London hotel earlier this month and being papped kissing outside a restaurant. Warne was last week caught in the outfield sending erotic texts, including, "I want to see you riding me" to middle-aged Melbourne mum Adele Angeleri. In an apparent attempt to win Hurley back after the messages were published in the British tabloids he logged back on to Twitter to pen "No matter what anyone says if you know in your heart… who cares what people think / say !!!" Hurley was snatched in the airport mess at Heathrow, where snowy conditions caused widespread cancellations from Saturday, leaving over 100,000 punters stranded, having their patience tested. A fellow traveler said the swimwear model and well loved celeb babe "looked nervous" as she attempted to blend in with the crowd, wearing large sunglasses and dressing down. "She'd dressed down and it was clear she wanted to be left alone," the witness told The Sun. "She looked like a woman with a lot on her mind." Liz’s office refused to comment on her travel plans. Whatever the case, we wish Liz (and Warnie) well on any of their upcoming travel plans.

Betting For Aussies On TV And Film Success: Not Yet...

Many Australia's remain pissed that they are not able to bet on financial outcomes of upcoming TV shows and motion pictures. Passionate Aussies has been reading reports filed by AustralianSportsEntertainment.com and Gambling911 on Box Office betting exchanges, but none of the action has come to Australia, so us Aussies can't be on it. We're not sure any Yankees of Canooks got to bet on outcomes either. Sly, Arnie and Wall Street - when you read this, give us an update please. We want to bet on movie and TV outcomes. PartyGaming and Virgin were rumoured to have some interest in the concept, but nothing has eventuated from our probe as yet. Oh, if you want to see the way Hollywood used to work, do yourself a favor and rent or buy 'The Last Mogul', which told the career story of the late Lew Wasserman. Oh, we heard you want a review, so here it is mates...

The Last Mogul: The Life And Times Of Lew Wasserman...

For the second half of the 20th century, Lew Wasserman was without question the most powerful money man in show business, even if most people had no idea who he was. Born in Cleveland, OH, in 1913, Wasserman started out booking music gigs for mob-controlled clubs, and quickly became an agent for Music Corporation of America, which became the most lucrative music agency in America. Funny that. As Wasserman rose through the ranks at MCA, he established such innovative business practices as "packaging" talent i.e: booking hot acts and artists only in a package deal with other artists who were not as talented, to put it politely, and took the company into managing acting talent in Hollywood, where he re invented the film industry forever by negotiating a ground-breaking deal for James Stewart on the film Winchester '73, which reduced the actor's up-front salary in favor of a cut of the movie's profits, earning the actor a mint in the process. Under Wasserman's lead at MCA, the company took over Universal Pictures, established the studio's television branch and made it the most important production outlet in the business), created the hugely successful Universal City studio tours, and expanded MCA's recording branch into one of the biggest record companies in the world. Wasserman was also politically well connected. Ronald Reagan was one of his early clients when MCA want Hollywood), and was reputed to have some handy connections to organized crime. Wasserman was a secretive fellow who did not give interviews or commit anything to writing if it could be avoided, but he knew nearly everyone in show business. The Last Mogul: The Life and Times of Lew Wasserman is a documentary that through interviews with his friends and business associates beautifully showcases his remarkable career, from his childhood in Ohio to his death in 2002. Yep, there's mob ties and such, but hey, that's show business.

Wrap Up...

Readers... er, punters, how did you like our report? What films and celebs take your liking? As Shane Warne says, 'How good was that?!". Have you been naughty or nice? Did Santa give you what you had hoped for? What have you got planned for New Year's Eve? Tell us in the forum.

If you have a bet, please bet with your head, not over it, and for God's sake, have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.AustralianSportsEntertainment.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. They cover a dozen industry sectors including gaming and offer political commentary and analysis.

 

News

Aussiewood - Hollywood Entertainment News, by Greg Tingle - 29th November 2010

Sylvester Stallone Sex Film 'The Party at Kitty and Stud's' Sells For $400K on eBay...

Sly, The Italian Stallion himself, is back in action…erotic action, sort of... The rights to a soft-porn film starring Sylvester Stallone four decades ago, was sold on e-Bay for $412,100. The then strapped-for-cash star made his on-screen debut in the 1970 film "The Party at Kitty and Stud's." Stallone played Stud, a young man who, along with his oversexed lover Kitty, enjoys inviting various women into their bed. The 71-minute movie was eventually renamed "The Italian Stallion" by Bryanston Distributors after the actor became famous in "Rocky." Now that the rights have been purchased (the owner has not yet been identified), it's likely the film will be re-released, The Sun reported. In an interview in the 1970s, Stallone, now 64, told Playboy that he was so poor that he had to take the role. "It was either do that movie or rob someone because I was at the end—at the very end—of my rope. Instead of doing something desperate, I worked two days for $200." After filming "Rocky," the erotic filmmakers tried to sell the movie back to Stallone for $100,000, but the actor said he "wouldn't pay two bucks for it," according to AOL's Moviefone. Last year MGM unsuccessfully tried to buy the flick. Sly, you've cum a long way since then.

U2 legend Bono Waits For Table At Australian Bondi Beaches' Icebergs...

Bono snuck into 'Sin City' Sydney on Saturday. He headed for a eat and a drink as he often does when down under. The renowned Irish rock singer, who spent two weeks at Sydney's Bungan Beach with his family in 2006 completely undetected, casually strolled into Rose Bay nosherie Catalina on Sunday for a seafood feed with guitarist The Edge (David Evans) and the eatery's owner, Michael McMahon. On Saturday night he arrived unannounced at Icebergs Dining Room and Bar at Bondi Beach and like a normal person waited or a table at the "no reservations" restaurant. "He was having a red cocktail but didn't finish it because a table became available," advised a deepthroat. No, not a Stallone type of deepthroat you rascals. The U2 360 tour begins in Melbourne this Wednesday night.

Avatar Michelle Rodriguez Star Teams Up With Sea Shepherd In Perth...

Hollywood babe actress Michelle Rodriguez, star of Avatar, was in Fremantle supporting anti-whaling activist group Sea Shepherd. Rodriguez has been aboard Sea Shepherd’s flagship vessel MY Steve Irwin. The crew are replenishing supplies before heading to the Southern Ocean in December. The trip, dubbed 'Operation No Compromise', will be Sea Shepherd’s seventh mission into the frigid waters of Antarctica to attempt to stop the slaughter of whales by Japanese "scientific researchers". Among the crew are three Perth residents including former Labor Attorney General Jim McGinty’s brother Kevin McGinty, Steven Bennett and Georgie Dicks. Captain Locky MacLean said the crew are looking forward to having Rodriguez on board. The group, which uses rather militant art of war tactics in its fight against whaling, made headlines early this year when their stealth vessel the Ady Gill was "cut in half" by Japanese whalers. This year, a new monohull fast vessel called the Ocean Adventurer will replace the Ady Gill. SS are currently seeking a large sponsor which would give them the naming rights to use 'Godzilla'. Something like that. Sea Shepherd’s Australian Director Jeff Hansen said: "It is great to see high profile people like Miss Rodriguez giving up their spare time to help promote our fight to defend the whales being illegally targeted in New Zealand and Australian waters". AustralianSportsEntertainment.com lost good mate Peter Carrette this past weekend, approximately 48 hours after doing photography at the Bondi Beach 'No Compromise' gig at Bondi Beach last Friday. R.I.P Peter. We miss you mate.

Darren Aronofsky Explains 'The Wolverine' Aussie Hugh Jackman...

If you're wondering why "Black Swan" director Darren Aronofsky was hired to tackle "The Wolverine" for 20th Century Fox, wonder no more. Aronofsky himself has broken his silence on the "Wolverine" front in an extensive interview with Movie City News. According to the filmmaker, his reasons for choosing the "Wolverine" non-sequel as his next project are quite simple: in the end, he just wanted to have a good time. "I'm just trying to have fun," he said. "I think, for the first time in my life, you know, every single film that I've done so far I've been the only person in the room who wants to make the movie. And, I kind of am excited about doing a film where actually everyone wants to make it just to see what the experience is like and to see if I can do what I do in that world." It's not like I'm going to change my process," he added. "I'm going to be working with the same team, and making, you know, really trying to do something very, very different and see what happens." During the interview, Aronofsky said that he's received a large amount of support both from franchise lead Hugh Jackman and Fox Studios head Tom Rothman, joking that Rothman "doesn't even know how gutsy it is" that he hired the outside-the-box filmmaker for "The Wolverine." "I've been looking for a situation where everything lines up really well. This just makes sense; I think I'm being hired because of who I am. I'm not being hired to turn into someone. I'm being hired to do what I do. I don't know if (Rothman) knows exactly what he's bought, but we're definitely going to make something great, you know, but it will be very different, and that's what I do. We're going to try and have a great time with it."

John Travolta and Kelly Preston 'Overjoyed' With New Baby Benjamin; Travolata Not Gay...

Living legend and iconic star of Saturday Night Fever (the movies and the online slot game), is delighted with his new baby, but very unhappy about the gay rumours. Actors John Travolta and Kelly Preston took to Travolta's website earlier this week to announce the birth of their 8-pound, 3-ounce son, Benjamin Travolta. "We are overjoyed to announce the arrival of our son, Ella's baby brother, Benjamin Travolta. Born November23, 2010 in Florida, Benjamin is healthy and doing beautifully. Thank you for the congratulations messages and wishes...we are beyond happy about the newest addition to our family," the family said in the message. Travolta, 56, and Preston, 48, announced the pregnancy earlier this year, celebrating with a dozen close friends at a shower held at their Los Angeles-area home. "This baby is such a healing baby," a family friend told People magazine. The pregnancy was the first bit of good news they had shared in a long time. "It's impossible to keep a secret," they wrote in a statement on Travolta's website in May, "especially one as wonderful as this." We want to be the first to share this great news with everyone that we are expecting a new addition to our family," the online statement continued and like this week's update, was signed "Love, John, Kelly and Ella." John Travolta's family has been dealt another blow as reports emerge that he has been allegedly cheating on his wife...engaging in "lewd sex acts with other men" as part of a "secret gay spa subculture." Perez Hilton posted the story on his website along with a cover of the National Enquirer, carrying the headline "John Travolta Caught In Cheating Scandal! "John Travolta has been cheating on Kelly for years!" said Robert Randolph, author of the memoir, You'll Never Spa in This Town Again. "And when the details emerge, he's gonna make Tiger Woods look like a boy scout." John has been married to Kelly Preston for 19 years, with the pair expecting their third child this year. They lost their eldest son Jett in 2009 to an autism-related seizure.

WWE Studios Films Flop At Box Office; Perform Well In DVD Rental Market...

Entertainment trade publication Variety published a report today on WWE Studios's new films strategy "flopping" at the box office, but perhaps finding a market on home video. Variety followed up on WWE's third quarter earnings report last Thursday by noting WWE reported $3.8 million in revenue related to "Legendary," despite the movie drawing a measly $200,000 at the box office. WWE executive Jim Connelly told Variety that WWE is banking on strong storefront marketing at retail locations such as Walmart to help boost DVD and Blu-ray sales of their movies. Variety also reported on WWE pushing their slate of movies to theaters simply for marketing purposes before pulling the movies and releasing them on DVDs. That was apparent with WWE Studios's theatrical release schedule for "Legendary" and "Knucklehead." Related to the planned launch of the WWE TV Network potentially in 2011, Variety reports that WWE is looking to their slate of movies to serve as "more high-profile programming" on the new cable tele channel. Going forward, Jim Connelly told Variety that WWE will be re-evaluating their movie release schedule for 2011 as they begin to roll out the next slate of low-budget movies in theaters with an eye on home video. Variety concluded: "For now, it appears as if the future of WWE Studios will play out on the smallscreen."

Aussie's Nicole Kidman, Keith Urban To Appear On Oprah Winfrey Show Tomorrow; Australia Catches Oprah - Oprah House Mania...

Australian actress Nicole Kidman and huby singer Keith Urban will be on The Oprah Winfrey Show tomorrow. Urban has earlier confirmed that he would be performing in the shows Ultimate Australian Adventure episodes to be filmed later this year. "Tomorrow, two of the hottest Aussies are here! Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban! The countdown to Oprah's Ultimate Australian Adventure starts now!," says a post on the official Facebook page for The Oprah Winfrey Show. Keith Urban was in The Oprah Winfrey Show earlier this November where he confirmed his performance at the much anticipated episodes set to be shot in Sydney this December. Urban promoted his sixth studio album Get Closer to in the United States. However, the Australia singer did not comment on rumours that his wife Nicole Kidman will also be on Oprah's Australian show. Tomorrow's episode might just confirm if Nicole Kidman will indeed be a guest on December 14 and 15 at the Sydney Opera "Oprah" House.

Mad Max Revamped Movie #4 Will Happen Says Aussiewood Insiders; Fury Road?!...

Remember the Aussie cult film classic that went on to mainstream...Max Max. They got to #3, always with Aussie tough guy Mel Gibson in the lead as 'Max Rockatansky' aka 'The Road Warrior'. Filming will take place near Broken Hill, New South Wales. Gibson will not be reprising his old role in Mad Max 4: Fury Road which will star British actor Tom Hardy alongside Charlize Theron. In November 2006, George Miller had stated that he still had full intentions to make Fury Road, telling the press that he was considering doing the film without Mel Gibson, saying, “There's a real hope. The last thing I wanted to do is another Mad Max, but this script came along, and I'm completely carried away with it." The film's screenplay was co-written with cult British comic creator Brendan McCarthy, who also designed many of the new characters and vehicles. Miller again confirmed his desire to make another Mad Max at the 2007 Aurora film maker initiative. However, he did say he thought Mel Gibson would not be interested in the film because he is too old (not too nuts!)

Billionaire Branson To Launch Apple iPad Lifestyle Mag...

Aussie's live Branson and Virgin, so you'll love this...Word of Sir Dick's plans to publish "Project" for delivery on iPads came shortly after media mogul Rupert Murdoch hinted that his News Corp empire will soon publish a digital newspaper for the hot Apple gadgets. News Corp, owner of The Australian, has been tight-lipped about the project but 79-year-old mogul Murdoch acknowledged in an interview last week that "The Daily" is in the works. Sir Richard said in invitations to the press that "Project" themes will include entertainment, travel, business, design, and international culture. The event in New York City on Wednesday did not indicate whether "Project" would be provided as passenger reading on flights. Billionaire entrepreneur Sir Richard owns about half of Virgin Atlantic airline with its aircraft that boast internet-age amenities such as power outlets at seats and wireless connections to the web. He recently said that his Virgin Galactic enterprise is on track to offer commercial space travel within 18 months, and that space hotels are next on the drawing board. Yeah, we know, Branson has appeared in films such as Casino Royale, Around The World in 80 days, and a good spread of other movies and TV specials. If your going to be a media tart, you might as well be very good at it.

Lachlan Murdoch Acquires Ten Network Stake, Joins Shareholder Aussie James Packer...

Lachlan Murdoch, son of News Corp. Chairman Rupert, has recently acquired a little over half of James Packer’s stake in Ten Network Holdings Ltd. Packer bought a 17.88% stake, or 172.2 million shares, in the media group last month through Cavalane Holdings Ltd. Murdoch, through Illyria Nominees Television Pty Ltd. has agreed to buy 93.4 million shares for A$128.2 million, according to a regulatory filing to the ASX (Australian Stock Exchange). The two gents will act in concert in relation to the exercise of their votes, the statement said. Packer and Murdoch agreed to join the board of Australia’s third-ranked television broadcaster last month. Gina Rinehart, Australia’s richest woman, lifted her stake in the company to 10%. Packer also owns 49% of Consolidated Media Holdings Ltd. which in turn has 25% of Foxtel, down under's largest pay television operator.

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