David Sterritt of the Christian Science Monitor is retiring after over 35 years (call us, kids, we’ll totally come work for you in, um, Monitoria), and in his farewell column muses about the profession that is being a full time film critic. The obligatory shout-out to us online rabble:
[S]omething everyone can agree on is the flood of new talent flowing into the field. While newspapers are on the wane in many areas, the dwindling number of first-rate print critics is more than compensated for by the growth in Internet reviewers writing for established websites or their own blogs.
Rachel Abramowitz in the LA Times profiles one of the biggest, baddest entertainment blogs around: Mark Lisanti’s Defamer. We love that Defamer has outgrown Gawker amongst the Nick Denton empire â€” Lisanti both outsnarks almost everyone around and is more responsible about his info, as the article outlines:
He also has real sources at all the studios with whom he checks real facts, although that standard doesn’t seem to require him to name names or even to use firsthand accounts, merely "someone who’s authoritative, or who I trust."
It goes without saying that the best Defamer feature remains the Ted Casablancas Blind Item Guessing Game, but of course it’s not libel if you’re just polling opinions, right?
Also in the LA Times (quite the weekend there), Matthew Heller discusses Heather Robinson, who was working as a $6-an-hour customer service rep at AOL, and figured out that she could access the usernames of celebrities and other industry types. So she befriended them online (figuring out that one screenwriter loved mountain bikes, she researched them and approached him through them, faking an interest), eventually using her connections to land a screenwriting gig ("The Perfect Man" is her responsibility, yes, and the more biographical and doubtless less sociopathic "E-Girl" is in the works).
Also at the LA Times (honestly, it was a good weekend), Kemp Powers writes about Sophia Stewart, the woman who claims "The Matrix" was based on her ideas and who unsuccessfully sued the Wachowski brothers for copyright infringement. Due to a poorly reported newspaper story and what Powers attributes to African Americans’ deep distrust of the media (though we feel a general tendency for people to take questionable internet sources at face value is also at work here), the story circling the web remains that Stewart actually won the suit and is now a wealthy woman.