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Spielberg And Scorsese Having "Emergency Call" With WB Discovery CEO After Latest Move

The Hollywood icons have joined forces to help turn the tide regarding recent layoffs at Turner Classic Movies.


According to a report from IndieWire, Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese, and Paul Thomas Anderson have come together for an "emergency call" to address the recent layoffs at Turner Classic Movies in an emergency call with Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav.

The leadership team at TCM underwent significant cuts, including the dismissal of Pola Changnon, Charles Tabesh, Dexter Fedor, Genevieve McGillicuddy, and Anne Wilson. These individuals held crucial roles in curating lineups, creating original shows and documentaries, and shooting intros and outros for the network.

IndieWire further reports that Scorsese, known for his deep love of classic cinema, has often had TCM playing in the background while working on his films. Spielberg and Anderson have also actively participated in TCM events, such as film festivals and documentaries. Notable figures such as Mel Brooks, Francis Ford Coppola, Ryan Reynolds, Bill Hader, and Patton Oswalt are among the passionate fans of TCM. Ben Mankiewicz, the network's host, is highly respected for his extensive knowledge of Hollywood's golden age.

TCM has made significant contributions to film preservation, featuring interviews with legendary stars like Robert Mitchum and Jane Russell, and producing original content, including innovative short-form videos. The potential closure or neglect of TCM would undoubtedly be a substantial loss to cinema culture and may raise questions about Warner Bros.' commitment to valuing film history.

David Zaslav, the CEO of Warner Bros. Discovery, has expressed his desire to transform Warner Bros. into a filmmaker-friendly studio and repair strained relationships resulting from past decisions. However, the decision to lay off key personnel at TCM, the only network dedicated solely to celebrating cinematic history, might appear contradictory to this goal.

TCM has successfully transitioned to a non-linear format with the Watch TCM app, and its live TCM Film Festival has become a beloved event for film enthusiasts. The potential discontinuation of TCM would not only impact cinema culture but also diminish Warner Bros.' own legacy.

The urgency of the call between Spielberg, Scorsese, Anderson, and Zaslav highlights the importance of preserving TCM's crucial role in showcasing film history and inspiring future generations of filmmakers. The outcome of their discussions will determine--or at least play a crucial in--whether TCM receives the necessary support to continue its invaluable contribution to the industry.

Image credit: Getty Images/Jon Kopaloff/Stringer

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