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Featured Voices

Guest Essay: J. Robert Oppenheimer Biographer on the Nearly Impossible Adaptation

Back in September 2021, a friend sent me a paragraph-long notice in a magazine, reporting that Hollywood director Christopher Nolan was working on a film about J. Robert Oppenheimer. This was disturbing news to me, a co-author of American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer, a 720-page biography of Oppenheimer that was […]

The “Brute Math” Behind Hollywood’s Outsized Role in Shaping Perceptions of Muslims and Jews in America (Guest Column)

As we enter the heart of Hollywood awards season, there are signs everywhere of both how far the entertainment industry has come in telling the whole American story — and just how far it has left to go. Last month, events during the Sundance Film Festival reflected on the fractious times we are living in. […]

A Little Barbie Could Take Nikki Haley All the Way to the White House (Guest Column)

Though Margot Robbie’s delightful tributes to Barbie on the red carpet have become a fun staple this season, seeing a possible homage to Barbie on a presidential debate stage this year was definitely a surprise. During the final, pivotal primary debate on Jan. 10, five days before the Republican Iowa Caucus, former South Carolina governor […]

AI Threats Emerge In Music Publishers’ Battle With Big Tech (Guest Column)

The threat of artificial intelligence to creators, and its value to big tech, is one of the most pressing concerns in the legal and music fields. Current litigation will ultimately shape how AI will be developed and implemented across entertainment with copyright infringement at the forefront of such disputes. In October 2023, three major music […]

It’s Time for Hollywood to Step Up and Fight Antisemitism, Israeli-American ‘Outpost’ Filmmaker Argues (Guest Column)

When we woke up on October 7 to the stories of the barbarity of Hamas, when we heard about the hostages, when we saw the footage of the obliterated homes on various kibbutzim, when we were told the massive death toll and saw kidnappings before our very eyes, when we heard about grotesque snuff videos on […]

‘Creed III’: When Michael B. Jordan Stepped Into the Directorial Ring (Guest Column)

I joined Outlier Society as president and became Michael B. Jordan’s producing partner after serving as president of production at Paramount Pictures. When I arrived at Outlier, the Creed III team was already in development on the script from a story by the franchise’s originator, the incomparable Ryan Coogler, to be written by King Richard […]

How the Smothers Brothers Embraced the Counterculture, Defeated the Censors and Set the Stage for ‘Saturday Night Live’

In 2017, The Hollywood Reporter gave me the opportunity to write an oral history about a passion of mine, The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, the groundbreaking variety program anchored by Tommy Smothers, who died Tuesday at age 86, and his brother, Dick. Airing on CBS from 1967-70, the controversial show offered an alternate television universe for a young […]

Remembering Laurie Frank, the Creative and Social Force Whose Love for L.A. Went Unrivaled

If you knew Laurie Frank — and who didn’t? — you know her great heart burst skyward on Nov. 30. Hours earlier, a technicolor rainbow appeared over the Hollywood Hills, Laurie’s Promised Land. You likely knew she was in the first class at Yale that matriculated women — class of 1973 — and went on to be an accomplished […]

How Multiple Shows This Season Offered Insight Into the Isolation and Insulation of Fame

Early in the final season of The Other Two, Cary Dubek (Drew Tarver) shows up at the distant and dingy offices of a Brooklyn-based burrito review website ready to do some press for his straight-to-VOD indie movie — only to discover what he’s actually been sent to is a mental health facility. “You are here […]

‘Birds of Prey,’ ‘Transformers,’ ‘I Am Stan’ and More: Heat Vision’s Best Comics of 2023

After a brief explosion during the pandemic, the comics industry is undergoing an existential crisis. It faces tumultuous sales at local comic shops, and the creative malaise audiences felt this year in the superhero movie genre is well-reflected on the publishing side of Marvel and DC, the industry’s two biggest publishers. To say that most […]

A Big Year for Labor, But Not for Reality TV Workers

Of the many narratives that were sparked by the Writers Guild of America and SAG-AFTRA strikes this year, one idea briefly lit up headlines over the summer: Could the reality TV industry take a step closer to unionization? After many past unionizing attempts, this moment seemed like it was the best chance for reality show […]

Was This Hollywood’s Worst Year Ever?

A favorite parlor game for film buffs is to pick Hollywood’s greatest year and then argue. The obvious answer — 1939, the certified Golden Year — always gets the most votes, but a few eccentrics make the case for a dark horse. 1928 was Peter Bogdanovich’s choice, the year that saw the apotheosis of silent film […]