Gossip Girl Insiders Pay Tribute to — and Quibble With — the Reality Index

As many of you know, this week saw the end of an era — the culmination of our work on our Reality Index, in which we followed each episode of Gossip Girl like an army of headband-wearing, undermining minions, slavishly collecting details in service of … a special scientific experiment, the details of which can never be revealed. Over the past five-plus years, we (Chris Rovzar, Chris’s Boyfriend, the Commenter Formerly Known as Jessica’s Husband, and I, accompanied by a mostly merry band of commenters) have spent hours questioning the decisions of the creators of the Greatest Show of Our Time, alternately praising them for their sensitivity and chiding them for their crazy-ass plotting and seeming inability to control certain actors’ irrepressible hair and cleavage. Now that the Reality Index has come to an end, It seemed only fair to give the people on the, er, “Inside” of Gossip Girl a chance to talk back. Herewith, their comments on theGossip Girl Reality Index.

More Real Than Mayor Bloomberg’s Gossip Girl Fandom

Stephanie Savage, writer/co-creator: I heard the writers talking about it in the room after the pilot aired. Josh Safran sent me a link. I remember reading, thinking it was clever and funny — cooler than a recap! obsessed with New York, just like us! — but I didn’t really lock in until I got to: “Dancing on tables at Bungalow.“ After its steady decline in recent years, the high-school crowd is right about where that place is at these days. +8. And that was exactly our rationale for picking it! Literally, Josh Schwartz and I were musing aloud about who was letting in the hot high school girls and we were like, Bungalow!  Hahaha. And you guys got it completely. But then came: Formal invitations — on paper — are issued for the "Kissing on the Lips Party." -2. Real kids use Evite. Evite??? You had me, then you lost me. But you immediately (re-)got me with your self-deprecating retraction/correction: "Update: A very alert (and very correct) young reader e-mailed us to point out: "Evite? Please. Real kids use Facebook.” So true! We have never felt more old or irrelevant.“ And thus reading the Index and the comments became a Tuesday-morning ritual.

Zuzanna Sadowski, a.k.a. Dorota: I have actually been known to get to the NYMag site too early on a Tuesday and to have to refresh, refresh, refresh until the recap comes up. I know perfection can’t be rushed.

Eric Daman, costume designer: My team and I read it aloud every Tuesday morning, almost religiously, usually with giggles and smirks, sometimes with scowls as our fabulous fashions were scrutinized.

Brittany Griffin, assistant costume designer: Cleavage Rhombus was all of a sudden a term we used with frequency.

Eric Daman: The Cleavage Rhombus really had a mind of its own and would show up unexpectedly, but definitely gained more attention once NYMag named it. We totally tried to push the Rhombus Index beyond its original Herve Leger traffic-stopping appearance to the ultimate, "can’t-go-any further-without-an-R-rating,” perfectly framed in a Maxime Simoens cut-out tux jacket.

Jessica Queller, writer/producer: I can’t remember which episode the pierogies were in — I think it was Handmaiden’s Tale — but they gave negative points about the veracity of Vanessa going all the way to the East Village to Veselka to get pierogies and then BACK to Brooklyn. They are totally right!! The Veselka reference was so true to my experience of being young in NYC in the early nineties. But that was before everyone I knew migrated to Brooklyn. Totally unrealistic that Vanessa would have schlepped to the East Village.

Amanda Lasher, writer/producer: Graham Collins was the name of my real-life unrequited crush in high school. Awesome getting it into the script, weirdly more awesome seeing it in the Reality Index: “Eric knows Graham Collins because he went to Camp Suisse with him. Plus 2, because there’s even a hot-dog ski tube on the homepage for this camp, which apparently Graham and Eric both spent some time riding. (“What happens at Camp Suisse doesn’t stay at Camp Suisse!”)” P.S.: I wound up stalking Graham on Facebook when I wrote this episode and learned that he is still crazy hot. If we are giving out points out, then Plus 10 to Graham for staying so hot and Minus 20 because he never even gave me a drunken pity make-out session in high school and I was cute enough for at least that. Also, I had a lot of fun researching Camp Suisse. It’s real! I want to go!

Jessica Queller: In the “Age of Dissonance,” they subtracted points for Blair’s Chekhov line: “I’m an actress. No, I’m a seagull.”!! They wrote: “Holy crap. Jessica Queller was clearly a double drama major in college. As in drama and DRA-ma. Minus 2.” They nailed me perfectly!!!

Dawn Ostroffformer CW president and namesake of the Ostroff Center: You changed our life, I want you to know that. You put us on the map in a lot of ways. I can honestly tell you that you had a huge influence on that show being a success. And I always thought you were very fair. There weren’t many times I thought you were that far off. But Stephanie and Josh will have things to say. They’re so particular, and they have excellent memories. Good or bad, they’ll carry the grudge.”

Natalie Krinsky, writer/producer: They are a gossip girl to our gossip girl and it’s just so STRESSFUL (as Serena might say) to have them follow our every move and report on what we’re doing right and what we’re doing wrong. It just feels like someone is ALWAYS watching us … waiting, looking over our shoulder … judging us! (Sarcastically/tongue in cheek of course … but … that’s kind of who they are — hiding behind their computers — commenting! Encouraging others to send in THEIR comments) … 

Faker Than Our Knowledge of Vietnamese

Stephanie Savage: As much as we loved when the Index or commenters mentioned something we felt the same way about, it was incredibly vexing when something we’d done was misinterpreted or didn’t come across. There were a zillion times I wanted to explain or clarify, to defend with documentation or at least narrate the process as to why we made a certain choice. The Dumbo-Williamsburg debate of 2007 (a.k.a. the Most Obnoxious Real-Estate Conundrum of Our Time) made me so ashamed that couldn’t keep silent, and I broke down and wrote a lengthy, sweaty reply to your query about the location of the Humphrey loft. Because it wasn’t like we didn’t talk about this stuff. We had giant fights in the scout van about Dan Humphrey’s transit route to St. Jude’s. We made the writer’s assistant call a marina to find out how people get their mail delivered when they are traveling around the world on a yacht. Asked a doctor what a bullet wound would look after a year of healing. And debated the characters’ astrological signs (B is a Scorpio, S is a Leo; which is why we always got to see B’s birthday but never S’s, which happened over the show’s summer hiatus). It is totally realistic that Chuck Bass would take the bus like he does in the pilot (weekday mornings, all the real-life CB’s gather in front of the Ralph Lauren store on Madison, waiting to ride to the Nineties). But we also kind of loved that somehow a 16-year-old being chauffeured around in his own stretch limo ended up seeming more realistic, because of who Chuck became as a character. 

Zuzanna Sadowski, a.k.a. Dorota: Often the writers of GG would give me, as an actor, a tremendous gift. I would have something particularly funny to do, a spy mission, some high-level meddling, or even a new piece of wardrobe. On these occasions I would check the recap hoping to see this highlighted and sometimes Jessica and Chris would leave me sadly wanting! Thank goodness for the army of astute commenters who would never let me down. If I was ever in need of Dorota love I just had to scroll down.

Stephanie Savage: Most of the time, the commenters would catch and correct stuff themselves. (I did think quite a bit about creating a false persona so I could log on and do it myself, but the best names were already taken. I’m talking to you, FEED_THE_DUCKS, CHUCKISMYPUPPY, GINSOAKEDCECE, MACARONSANDSCOTCH and SCHEMINGWITHSCONES. Plus you guys are really hard on each other’s spelling.)

Zuzanna Sadowski, a.k.a. Dorota: I want to give a plus 100 to my favorite commentator often featured in the recap of the recap — Nikole0602. Just always funny. More importantly for me, a plus 100000 goes to the two commentators with the best names by far — IamDorota and Feed_the_Ducks. Plus 500 goes to runner-up Monkeyandmacarons. I love you guys.

Amanda Lasher: I gave you guys Blair masturbating. You gave me this“Blair would have never referenced having to “finish something” to Dorota after her interrupted sex dream. That’s way too embarrassing. Minus 2. An additional minus 2 for Dorota reminding her that “God is always watching.” Dorota would never be that judgy — or perceptive. She’s a nun, isn’t she?” I expected more from you. 

Stephanie Savage: Come on:Gossip Girl never said that Blair shopped at Tally Weijl or Printemps in Paris. Just that it’s “chic and cheerful up on Boulevard Haussmann” (which it is)!  And we did try to observe the time difference between Paris and New York! The sun rises earlier and sets later in Paris than in New York! The Bart Bass event in The Revengers wasn’t at the Empire Hotel (it doesn’t look anything like the Empire!!), and we really did shoot on the roof of that building — our “Batman backdrop“ was the city where you live! Why did none of the characters have iPhones? Because we had a deal with Verizon, who did not have a deal with iPhone until 2011 (after that, they had iPhones). Serena’s tranny talons in "The Last Days of Disco Stick” and Dan’s mushroom hair at the beginning of season five were both courtesy of movies they were shooting at the time. Why did you never see Scott again? Did you honestly want to see Scott??   

Eric Daman: It was mostly fun and cheeky, except when comparing one of Blair’s Oscar de la Renta gowns to curtain and couch tapestry … just jealous I guess. :)

Brittany Griffin, assistant costume designer: That gown was awesome, it did not look like curtains!

Stephanie Savage: Woke up in the middle of the night and realized: We did end up saying that B and S went into those stores on Haussmann!!  It wasn’t in the original script (which is what I remember), but it changed before it aired. So apologies for my outrage and kudos to whoever picked that up. Because yes.

In Total:

Stephanie Savage: The last Recap of the Recap is the final GG ritual. After it’s posted, the show will be officially over for us. As will the unique relationship — equal parts narcissism and masochism (I want to see what they said! … So I can feel bad about myself!) — we got to experience with our very own Greek chorus of snark. Many thanks for the years of vigilance and vigilantism, and for keeping us real with your weekly index. A bittersweet farewell to the Humfro, the cleavage rhombus, the NJBC acronym, and tarantula sex.

Dorota/Suzanna: I am so sad to see this show end. I am eternally grateful for the opportunity to play Dorota and to be a part of the zeitgeist of the UES. Thank you guys for pulling the show apart down to its very fibers, pointing up the detail, ultimately championing the whole and making it even more fun! I will miss you dearly. XOXO!

Brittany Griffin: P.S.: If you watch Carrie Diaries you’ll know why Vanessa was standing in a vintage-looking kitchen. Good eye.

Stephanie Savage: Oh, and also? That your own Vulture did not name you one of its Top 25 Most Devoted Fan Bases? We were all robbed.

Visionary Women’s “Women at the Forefront of Technology” Salon

Victor Hugo once said, “There is one thing stronger than all the armies in the world, and that is an idea whose time has come.” I wholeheartedly agree.

An idea, a focus, and an energy to build a community of visionary and empowered women is something that has been stirring in me for many years now.  I’ve always been fascinated by the stories of women who have broken ground in their fields – and shared a passion to know and educate others on what is it exactly that gives some that spark to create change.

For me, February 26, 2015, marks a special moment in my life. Together with the help of my talented co-founders and executive board members: Mayor Lili Bosse, Veronica Smiley, and Ambassador Nicole Avant, and committee, we launched Visionary Women into the stratosphere with the “Women at the Forefront of Technology” Salon.

Three hundred and twenty inspired women leaders and fifteen girls from Communities in Schools Los Angeles’ Ladies First program joined us for a panel discussion at the SLS Hotel in Beverly Hills to hear some of the top women leading technology today. Our panel lineup featured Dawn Ostroff, President of Condé Nast Entertainment (CNÉ), Pauline Fischer, Vice President, Original Content at Netflix, Julie Uhrman, Founder and CEO of OUYA and Doris Kim Sung, Founder of do| SU Studio Architecture.  Five-time Emmy Award winning journalist, Giselle Fernandez moderated the discussion and the attention from the audience was palpable.

Here are two of my favorite quotes from the day – although there were many:

“Listen to your inner voice. Trust your intuition. It’s important to have the courage to trust yourself.” ‪- Dawn Ostroff

“Understand yourself enough to know what you are most passionate about. Don’t compromise on that because you are going to have to work hard no matter what.” – Julie Uhrman

I know that Visionary Women is an idea whose time has come, and I’m so grateful to have the support of so many friends, family and community members.

It’s an incredible feeling to be doing the work that you love with others whose heartbeat echoes your own.

I’m also grateful to our event sponsor NET-A-PORTER.COM, whose passion for empowering women mirrors our own.

Thank you to those of you who have supported me on all the twists and turns of this exciting journey.


Road to Muse: Missed the NYWIFT Muse Awards? We Got You Covered!

(L-R) NYWIFT 2014 Muse Award honorees Wanda Sykes, Abigail Disney, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Mary Bailey, and Dawn Ostroff, and Muse host Judy Gold. Photo courtesy of NYWIFT.

On December 11, 2014, New York Women in Film & Television held its annual Muse Awards, a fundraising gala luncheon that honors women of outstanding “vision and achievement," as well as presents the Loreen Arbus Changemaker Award. This year’s honorees were Maggie Gyllenhaal, Wanda Sykes, Condé Nast Entertainment President Dawn Ostroff and script supervisor Mary Bailey. The Changemaker Award went to philanthropist and documentary producer Abigail Disney.

#NYWIFTMuse Awards just starting at the Hilton in NYC w/ Maggie Gyllenhaal. pic.twitter.com/HsVW58HJnx

— Maura Kelly (@MauraKellyMedia)

December 11, 2014

Pre-luncheon, approximately a thousand industry professionals and friends and colleagues of the honorees mingled, taking photos and selfies—

#selfies at #NYWIFTMuse! Excited for the show to finally start :) pic.twitter.com/kUFEsua9iZ

— Katherine (@kay_fil)

December 11, 2014

—while the honorees as well as members of the cast of Orange is the New Black


Actor and NYWIFT member Alysia Reiner walks the Muse Awards red carpet. Photo courtesy of NYWIFT.

—other celebritieswalked the Red Carpet and gave interviews.

After opening remarks by NYWIFT Board President Alexis Alexanian, emcee Judy Gold brought the audience, and Maggie Gyllenhaal, to tears—

I think @JewdyGold is making @mgyllenhaal laugh so hard she’s crying…! #NYWIFTMuse @NYWIFT

— Claire M Shanley (@clairesville)

December 11, 2014

—with her jokes, including a very funny bit on being asked to audition as an "irritated vagina” for a commercial. A request for a hashtag for the term immediately came from Abigail Disney when she took the podium.

I am the THE #irritatedvagina

— Judy Gold (@JewdyGold)

December 11, 2014

Humor infused the event, but heartfelt speeches on the current inequality of women in Hollywood, the generational shift in feminism, and the power of women to create change were the main focus of the day.

Maggie Gyllenhaal, who earlier that day was honored with a Golden Globe nomination, recalled when during an interview she was asked to comment on Shailene Woodley’s declaration that she wasn’t a feminist, and how she felt she had dropped the ball with her reply. She said she was going to use her Muse Awards speech to fix that and discuss feminism:

“From my perspective, my mother’s generation was trying to do it all. And perfectly. I think the cultural threat was PROVE that you can have a career and a family. If you make a mistake or a misstep, you’re out. So the model was, "We can handle it! ALL of it! Watch this!”

Gyllenhaal went on to use the final scene in Baby Boom as a metaphor for how the generational feminist struggle has evolved. At the end of the film, Diane Keaton’s character changes her baby’s diaper upon her desk while conducting a business call on the phone. An example of a woman doing it all. Gyllenhaal exclaimed, “In 2014…I think we are allowed to say that sounds like hell, right?”

Diane Keaton in a promo shot for Baby Boom, 1987.

Post Secretary (2002), Gyllenhaal said that she was often asked about the “powerful women characters” that came before her. Her response: “What does that mean ‘powerful women?’ I feel powerful some very small percentage of the time. The rest of the time, I feel like a mix of all sorts of things…I think now, in 2014, if I played the scene I remember from Baby Boom, I might do it weeping.”

She concluded with saying that her mother’s generation (Naomi Foner Gyllenhaal was in attendance, as was Maggie’s husband, actor Peter Sarsargaard) fought “to have it all,” and her generation is fighting “to balance it all,” and Woodley’s generation is “raging” and finding their voice to overthrow previous generations’ notions and create their own path…“trying to move the conversation forward in her own way.”

@mgyllenhaal deserves every prize they got for @SundanceTV show #TheHonourableWoman #NYWIFTMuse @goldenglobes MY BABE pic.twitter.com/vlUWy76Vkt

— Peter Sarsgaard (@petersarsgaard)

December 12, 2014

Loreen Arbus introduced Abigail Disney by sharing the motivation behind the Changemaker Award: “Our greatest hope was that by honoring those who have made a real difference in women’s lives, we could inspire others to take action.” In her acceptance speech. Disney explained that she came to filmmaking late, when she was 46, originally snubbing documentary filmmaking, considering it a wasteful use of money and “just art." "What an asshole!” Disney exclaimed, causing laughter to erupt from the audience.

Abigail Disney accepting the Loreen Arbus Changemaker Award. Photo courtesy of NYWIFT.

Dawn Ostroff spoke to the future of the industry, pointing to her daughter in the audience and saying, “To my 11-year-old daughter, there is no difference between film, TV and online video. To her, it’s all just content.” Ostroff went on to say that she feels this shift creates opportunity for women in the industry, new ways to reach the audience, and levels the playing field.

2014 Muse Honoree Dawn Ostroff with her award. Photo courtesy of NYWIFT.

When Mary Bailey rose after the montage of clips showing the great expanse of her career, the audience’s applause was overwhelming. A true master of her trade, Bailey began her speech with:

“While preparing for this event, Executive Director Terry Lawler asked me if there was any footage of me at work on a movie set. After gently disabusing her of this idea—I believe I laughed rather loudly—I realized that I could give a demonstration of it today at this very moment.

So please imagine me seated next to the director. We’re looking at the set or the performance space and one or three monitors are in front of us. The director has called 'action’ and now I’m going to show you me at work right here.”

Bailey proceeded to demonstrate her work on set by silently twisting her head slowly back and forth and observing the audience as though they were the action on set. Everyone laughs.

She went on to knock the belief that script supervisors are “office workers who have wandered onto the set and now perform secretarial duties," and emphasized that the future of this position needs to be viewed as not a tech-savvy position only, but as the key person in charge of making sure the editing room has everything they need to make a film. She joked that Richard Pryor once told her she was the only "sane person on set.”

At the luncheon, Muse Award Honoree Mary Bailey speaks about her work. NYWIFT Board President Alexis Alexanian is seen seated to the left.

Wanda Sykes closed the event, once again bringing the audience to tears of laughter, joking she has a white wife and white children, and is a minority in her own home. She teased that after cooking and cleaning up after the kids, she realized that she was “the help”: My wife and my kids are my muses…but…I take care of white people all day. I went backwards!“

Congratulations to all our 2014 #NYWIFTMuse honorees, including @iamwandasykes, @mgyllenhaal, @abigaildisney & more! pic.twitter.com/SlFxgntL7A

— Women in Film & TV (@NYWIFT)

December 12, 2014

The Muse Awards concluded with a coffee reception and the announcement of the numerous raffle winners. Goodie bags filled with sponsors’ gifts went home with everyone, and a wonderful time was had by all!

Discover more Muse Awards photos and continue the discussion by searching #NYWIFTMuse on Twitter, Instagram and other social platforms.

Condé Nast Entertainment And Twentieth Century Fox Partner Up

Condé Nast Entertainment And Twentieth Century Fox Partner Up

Are your favorite glossies bound to take over the silver screen? They just might: Twentieth Century Fox Television and Condé Nast Entertainment have finalized a partnership to develop and produce scripted TV shows in tandem. Twentieth’s cable production firm, Fox 21, will be responsible for developing and producing all cable-related content. This year alone, three series will hit the airwaves as…

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Conde Nast could be doomed

T:  Reading stories about Dawn Ostroff and her plans for this legendary magazine company makes me shiver in my boots (literally).  This is the woman that drove what was left of The WB into the ground after the merger with UPN.  And The CW can barely muster a 1 rating.  What a legacy.  Newhouses’, you’re in trouble.  I’d sure hate to lose Vanity Fair.

Whirlwind New York City Tour

It all started with a red eye flight to NY. “You must be out of your mind to start our such a busy week of book promotion with a red eye flight,” everyone warned me.  But for someone like m, who needs very little sleep and is always scrambling for more time, the red eye flight was the answer! No bloodshot eyes or energy drinks for me…I was ready to go!  Part of the excitement comes from not knowing how the week unfolds and but a big part of it is connecting with all of the wonderful people I had planned to see.

Diving right in, Monday was an important day. I met with my publishers at their big office in the city — Assouline — to sign three-hundred books in preparation for the two big upcoming events. 

I remember a few years back, before my first book was even an idea, going into Rizzoli’s and looking at all the beautiful books on display. I started to think back then how great it would be if I could one day write a book that would be sold in such a special place. Now here I am on my second book tour for “Pioneers of the Possible”, signing many books, prepping for parties, and am able to walk by Rizzoli’s see my own book in the window. It is such moments so personal that nobody sees that have such significance for me. These are the moments that make my heart full and remind me that anything is possible. The power of our dreams and of dedication is the magic that makes all the difference. 

Tuesday, March 6th in the evening there was a packed book signing event at the Leila Heller Gallery followed up by a special dinner at the Americano. The very talented Shirin Neshat, photographer and filmmaker, was there as were many wonderful friends and some new faces. 

Photo Courtesy: [Tory Burch, Jacqueline Novogratz, Dawn Ostroff, Angella Nazarian, Melissa Berkelhammer via BFA]

Wednesday was another huge day for me. That evening ( March 7th) Tory Burch & Dawn Ostroff co-hosted a glamorous Book Launch Party at Tory Burch’s Flagship store on Madison Avenue. What a delight for the senses! And what a turnout—250 people in attendance. One of the greatest gifts was that Jacqueline Novogratz, who is featured in the book, came and spoke. She is literally changing the face of philanthropy with her Acumen Fund. Featured on the Forbes cover in December 2011, she has created a new model for philanthropy, which combines venture capitalism in industries that support sustainable life in third world nations. For example, brining in clean water to a community, and electricity, etc.  It was nothing short of a magical event with some of the most inspirational people that work in media, philanthropy and women’s organizations all there in one room with the same heart beat — to make a difference in the world.

Thursday, March 8th, marked the eve of International Day of the Women. Tina Brown’s Women of the World Summit was in New York and drew in pioneering women from all around the world to speak. Among them, Meryl Streep, Hillary Clinton, Sheryl Sandberg, Diane Von Furstenberg, Leymah Gbowee, and Christine Lagarde. 

Hillary happened to speak on the importance of women to living fearlessly. This, yet another common thread weaved through the lives of inspiring women who have changed the world. 

I left New York full of inspiration. There were so many precious moments and seeds planted  that I know will tie into the greater message of my life… “We really can all pioneers, visionaries and accomplish great things in our own lives"…. But the first step is courage—developing that fearlessness inside of us!

Seven of my dearest friends came on this trip to support me and to celebrate the launch of my new book, which was so kind,  and I have to give them a public thank you for being what Arianna Huffington refers to as "my fearless tribe”. This is a group of women who all support one another in pursuit of our dreams, and are always there to celebrate one another’s achievements. Thank you my dear friends — you know who you are!

Photo Courtesy: Nadia Mateen [Angela Nahai, Angella Nazarian, Nadia Mateen]

Road to Muse: Honorees Dawn Ostroff, Mary Bailey & Abigail Disney

Dawn Ostroff, president of Condé Nast Entertainment.

Tomorrow afternoon, New York Women in Film & Television will celebrate the achievements of Condé Nast Entertainment President Dawn Ostroff, script supervisor Mary Bailey, and actors Maggie Gyllenhaal and Wanda Sykes at the nonprofit’s annual Muse Awards, held at the New York Hilton. Filmmaker, philanthropist, and activist Abigail Disney will be honored with the Loreen Arbus Changemaker Award.

Dawn Ostroff, president of Condé Nast Entertainment, has held senior roles at 20th Century Fox Television, Michael Jacobs Productions, and the Kushner-Locke Company. Prior to joining Condé Nast Entertainment as president, Ostroff launched and led the new CW broadcast network, developing numerous groundbreaking hit series. She has also served as president of UPN Network. Before that, she was the Executive Vice President of Entertainment at Lifetime Television, where she oversaw programming and production, leading the network to rise to the No. 1-rated cable network in primetime.

Mary Bailey was the script supervisor on Rosewater, August: Osage County, Men In Black, and A League of Their Own, among other notable films. With a career spanning nearly 50 films and several TV projects, Bailey has worked with a range of producers, actors, and directors, including Mike Nichols. They first worked together in 1988 on Working Girl, and her next project with the director is the upcoming HBO feature Master Class. Bailey has also worked with Sofia Coppola, Nancy Meyers, Jonathan Demme, and Scott Rudin. 

Abigail Disney, a filmmaker, philanthropist, and activist based in NYC, produced the acclaimed documentary Pray the Devil Back to Hell, winner of Best Documentary at the 2008 Tribeca Film Festival. Along with Gini Reticker and Pamela Hogan, Disney created the five-part film series for PBS, Women, War & Peace. She is currently at work on a new film, also for PBS, highlighting the key role of women in the Arab Awakening. In partnership with Nobel Peace Prize recipient Leymah Gbowee, Disney is co-founder of the Gbowee Peace Foundation as well as the Daphne Foundation, a social change foundation that provides grants to grassroots organizations working with low-income communities in NYC.

Stay up to date with all things Muse Awards on Twitter and Instagram with #NYWIFTMuse and #RoadtoMuse. Check out our Facebook Page and return all week right here on the NYWIFT blog for behind-the-scenes action and updates!

(Ed. Note: Honorees’ bios adapted from nywift.org.)

Condé Nast Heads to a Television Screen Near You

Condé Nast, the powerhouse publisher behind many of your favorite glossies (think Lucky, Vanity Fair, Glamour, and Vogue), is planning to head to the silver screen.

According to a report released by the New York Times yesterday:

“developing television and online programming based on Condé Nast personalities, articles and general brands is the first priority, although movies are also a focus.”

Dawn Ostroff, the former president of the CW network, will head Condé Nast Entertainment.

It’s about time!

I can honestly sit here and say I can not look back and have any regrets [about canceling it]. I feel that we gave Veronica Mars every chance and as many of you here know, there was no stronger champion of that show than me. We gave it a better time slot to follow up every single year that it was on the air. And eventually, we just had to say how much longer do we go on without the show really catching on?

Dawn Ostroff, when asked whether she regret cancelling ‘Veronica Mars’ (She doesn’t)

anonymous asked:

Why the show wasn't on CBS? I'm sure it would do great!

The show was actually on CBS briefly because UPN was the sister network of CBS. The network aired 4 episodes from season one (the pilot and 3 closed-ended episodes).

It didn’t get the ratings they deserved, so CBS President Les Moonves, UPN, CW President Dawn Ostroff, and Executive Producer Joel Silver decided the show should be moved to CW (CBS + WB combined) because the show was “teen oriented” and UPN merged with WB.

Click HERE to view the news video when VM moved to CBS