Thursday, December 18, 2014

Arnon Milchan Pulls the Plug on North Korean Film

New Regency  Chairman, Arnon Milchan has ditched plans to produce a paranoid thriller starring Steve Carell  that was to be set in North Korea.
The decision came after hackers calling themselves the 'Guardians of Peace' threatened to attack theaters showing “The Interview,” which centers on an assassination attempt against dictator Kim Jong-un. The country has denied involvement but praised the hackers.

New Regency announced the project in October with plans for director Gore Verbinski  to start shooting in March. The untitled film was the first in a multiyear deal between Verbinski’s Blind Wink and New Regency. Steve Conrad (“The Secret Life of Walter Mitty”) was writing the screenplay.

New Regency had no comment. This news was first reported by 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Arnon Milchan Produces World's Top Hits 'Gone Girl' & 'Birdman'... Honored at The Israeli Film Festival...

As usual, Arnon Milchan's accomplishments come in waves... and once again he sits at the top of the cinematic world, however temporarily. With two tremendous, high-quality productions; Gone Girl and Birdman, Milchan's New Regency has moved firmly in the direction of Milchan's roots as an artsy risk-taker. Gone Girl has already passed $300,000,000 in world wide box office sales, making it currently the top grossing film in the world.

Mr. Milchan will also receive the 2014 Israel Film Festival Visionary Award in Los Angeles on October 23rd.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Arnon Milchan, the 2014 Honoree of the Los Angeles Police Department

Producer Arnon Milchan was the special Honoree for the Los Angeles Police Foundation's annual gala that was held this year at Fox Studios. Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, LAPD Chief Charlie Beck, and Los Angeles Police Foundation Chairman Jim Wiatt were all on hand to present Mr. Milchan with the award for his contributions to the community and support for Los Angeles law enforcement.

LAPD Chief Charlie Beck pins Mr. Milchan's lapel with a special LAPD insignia
The Los Angeles Police Foundation is the largest source of private support for the LAPD and funds equipment and technology upgrades, specialized training, community outreach and youth programs that are not provided by the city budget.

LA Mayor Eric Garcetti, Arnon Milchan and Los Angeles Police Foundation Chairman Jim Wiatt.
It is photo's like this that drive conspiratorial anti-Semites stark raving mad.


Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Packer-Murdoch-Milchan: A troubled triangle

The Packer and Murdoch families are the Hatfield and McCoy's of Australia's business world, and have been for many years. Arnon Milchan was the first person to bring the two family-businesses together when the billionaires, Kerry Packer and Rupert Murdoch, both invested in Mr. Milchan's New Regency film production company, which was established in 1991. The book Confidential describes how Mr. Milchan brought the antagonists together, on Pages 135-138... and Mr. Milchan prides himself on playing the peacemaker in that ongoing feud.

Kerry Packer passed away on December 26th of 2005. His son David Packer took over the family business, and eventually sold his 25% in New Regency in 2008. With Arnon Milchan's help, James Packer has recently reentered the Hollywood scene with a $450 million dollar investment in RatPac, a joint venture with Hollywood director Brett Ratner.

There is no word on Mr. Murdoch's attitude towards the growing business relationship between his New Regency partner, Mr. Milchan, and Mr. James Packer. But one strong indication might be a series of events that transpired only minutes after Mr. Packer returned to Australia from a business meeting with Mr. Milchan in Israel.

Upon disembarking from his flight from Israel, Mr. Packer headed to his home in the Bondi Beach neighborhood of Sydney. As he approached his home he was confronted by a longtime friend, Australian TV executive David Gyngell. Words were exchanged between the two, and within moments, a full blown brawl broke out. The two were eventually separated; no serious injuries were inflicted, short of bruised egos and Mr. Packer's black eye.

Boys will be boys.

The far more fascinating angle on this little event involves the role that Mr. Murdoch's media outlets in Australia have gleefully played in its aftermath. Murdoch's News Corporation was quick to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to purchase video and photo's of the physical confrontation, and to plaster the images all over the world... not forgetting of course to mention that Mr. Packer was just returning from a meeting with Mr. Milchan... and Packer's new Hollywood investments. The relevance of the Hollywood/Milchan newspaper side-note in this story is not at all clear... other than to perhaps to send a message.

Videos of the brawl have since gone viral world wide, but not before Mrudoch's News Corporation plastered water marks all over them so that everyone will know that: 'this James Packer brawl is brought to you courtesy of Mr. Mrudoch." ... and oh yeah, he [Packer] just came back from a meeting with Mr. Milchan.

As the world turns.

Stay tuned.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Roll Call: US Intelligence Authorities Resist adding Israel to US Visa Waiver Program... Sites Arnon Milchan case.


Washington DC - The capital hill publication Roll Call reported on the 16th that “The U.S. intelligence community is concerned that adding Israel to the US visa waiver program would make it easier for Israeli spies to enter the country." That's a new one.

As part of that article, Mr. Milchan's name was mentioned specifically. Roll Call's Senior Editor Jonathan Broder, was asked by investigative journalist Joseph Gelman if Mr. Milchan's name was in fact actually mentioned to him by anyone in the intelligence community:

In response to Mr. Gelman's inquiry. Mr. Broder stated in writing the following: "Arnon Milchan's name was not mentioned when congressional aides told me of the US intelligence community's concerns about Israeli spying with regard to the US Visa Waiver Program. I mentioned him and the others as past examples of Israeli spying in the United States."

Other than Mr. Milchan, all of the others sited by Mr. Broder in the article were people with US citizenship and of no need for a visa to the United States.

In his article, Mr. Broder stated that: "Several congressional aides said that members of the intelligence community, as well as officials from the State and Homeland Security departments, expressed those concerns in a classified briefing to lawmakers and staffers on the House Judiciary Committee, which has jurisdiction over visa issues."

Mr. Broder's article has made quite the stir internationally, but as is often the case with articles such as these, it relies heavily upon unconfirmable anonymous "sources", and has the whiff of a planted story by someone with an agenda other than just honestly conveying the news.


Monday, March 31, 2014

CONFIRMED: Arnon Milchan's 'Noah' Shoots to the Top of Worldwide Box Office Recipts. Update: Tops $300 Million

Arnon Milchan and his good friend,
Australian Billionaire James Packer, at the
Opening of Milchan's Noah in NYC.
March 26th 2014.
UPDATE: Noah tops $300 million world wide. Arnon Milchan and Paramount's Noah stormed to the very top of worldwide box office receipts on opening weekend...raining on the cinematic competition... flooding theaters with moviegoers... sailing to success...and every other cheesy Noah metaphor that headline writers could compose. Noah's success will undoubtedly further fatten Mr. Milchan's wallet.

It's been a busy few weeks for Arnon Milchan. After his film 12 Years a Slave won Best Picture at the 2014 Academy Awards, he hosted a private party for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and a cadre of A-list stars and senior Hollywood executives at his Malibu estate. A few weeks later, his production of Noah hit the big screen, shooting to the top of worldwide ticket sales, including in the United States. Hard to imagine what the encore will be.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Arnon Milchan's 'Noah' Gaining Momentum for Strong Opening on March 28th

Arnon Milchan's Darren Aronofsky extravaganza, Noah, is gaining momentum towards a strong opening on Friday, March 28. Many in the faith community have begun to rally around the message of the movie, despite some naysaying by conservative commentators. With less than one week until the release, a new promotional video has been released featuring Christian leaders who have nothing but high praise for the feature film. Paramount has asked Phil Cooke, a Christian who has publicly touted the film, to produce an explanatory video. This is the result:

NOAH FEATURETTE with Quotes from Cooke Pictures on Vimeo.

The film has story, action and special effects qualities that should be appealing to a wide audience. However, if the Evangelical communities rally behind movie, and there is a good possibility that they will, Noah has all the makings of a real blockbuster. Stay tuned. 

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Daily Telegraph: Is there anyone in Hollywood you respect, I wonder? Terry Gilliam: “I had a great time on Brazil with Arnon Milchan,” he says, “the world’s favourite Israeli spy.”

Director Terry Gilliam left the United States and renounced his US citizenship. Today he resides in the United Kingdom. Back in the 80's he had a massive falling out with Arnon Milchan following the production of Brazil. Almost 30 years later, Gilliam describes his appreciation for Mr. Milchan:

Is there anyone in Hollywood he respects, I wonder? “I had a great time on Brazil with Arnon Milchan,” he says, “the world’s favourite Israeli spy.” He’s not joking: Milchan, the head of New Regency, whose hundreds of production credits include 12 Years a Slave, LA Confidential and Once Upon a Time in America, recently admitted in an interview that he’d been a spy in an earlier life. “He was actually in the arms business,” says Gilliam, cheerfully. “I don’t care where the money comes from. It’s all dirty money as far as I’m concerned!”

Certainly, we would agree that Mr. Milchan is "the world's favorite Israeli spy". He is also probably the best known and most fascinating Israeli spy in history, with a story worthy of a film franchise alas James Bond. Gilliam himself would have a role. While Gilliam and Milchan worked together, unbeknownst to Gilliam, Mr. Milchan was an extremely active agent during that period, on a number of covert fronts, including nuclear... and yes, as an "arms dealer", for a lack of a better term. Brazil itself was financed through such activities unbeknownst to Mr. Gilliam at the time... but certainly he had his suspicions.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Images: Arnon Milchan Hosts Prime Minister Netanyahu & Hollywood Elite at his Malibu Estate

From left to right: Yair Netanyahu (son of the Sara and PM Netanyahu), Benjamin Netanyahu, actress Kate Hudson and Arnon Milchan. Above the shoulder of Yair Netanyahu on the left, looking at the camera from a distance is Gary Ginsberg, Executive Vice President of Corporate Marketing and Communications at Time Warner Inc.  
Prime Minister Netanyahu with Keanu Reeves. To the right of Mr. Netanyahu in the distance is the United States ambassador to Israel, Dan Shapiro. An interesting addition to this selective gathering in California.

Keanu Reeves looks on as Kate Hudson and Mrs. Sara Netanyahu share a moment. Sometimes in pictures like these, the more interesting captures are the people in the background. For example, in this photo, multi-billionair and mega-casino mogul Sheldon Adelson is seen sitting in the background between Sara Netanyahu and Keanu Reeves. Mr. Adelson is currently ranked the 8th richest person in the world by Forbes. He is also the single largest contributor to the Republican Party.   
In a testament to the bipartisan nature of the gathering, At the same table as Mr. Adelson is staunch partisan Democrat Barbara Streisand in conversation with Prime Minister Netanyahu. Arnon Milchan is probably the only person in the world who could get Sheldon Adelson and Barbara Streisand in the same room together... and at the same table, without a fight braking out.

Barbara Streisand and Sheldon Adelson at the head table with Milchan and the Netanyahu's.

 Barbara Streisand and Sara Netanyahu in a warm greeting/hug
 The Prime Minister and wife Sara Netanyahu chat with mega-star Leonardo DiCaprio.

James Caan and Mr. and Mrs Netanyahu.

The Milchan seaside estate is the former home of legendary Director John Frankenheimer, who directed such classics as the Manchurian Candidate and Birdman of Alcatraz. It is also the house where Robert Kennedy spent his last night before his assassination by Sirhan Sirhan in 1968 at the Ambassador Hotel the next day.

Liberal-Libertarian Comedian Bill Maher, host of HBO's Real Time With Bill Maher was also in attendance at the event.

Mr. Milchan's evening hosting Prime Minister Netanyau and the who's who of Hollywood included massive Secret Service and Israeli security arrangements that involved serious traffic deviations, rooftop snipers, an armored vehicle and off-shore patrol boats. Mr. Netanyahu and some guests stayed well into the night. According one source, until around 3:00 AM. Word has it that cigars and scotch were involved. The horrendous traffic situation on Malibu's Pacific Coast Highway that resulted from the tough security measures surrounding this event, has caused a minor scandal in the upscale beach community.  

Arnon Milchan's New Regency, Penguin Books and the National School Board Assoiciation to Distribute 12 Years a Slave to High Schools Thoughout America

The National School Boards Association (NSBA) is partnering with Arnon Milchan's New Regency and Penguin Books to distribute copies of the acclaimed film, book, and study guide of 12 Years a Slave to America's public high schools.
The initiative, coordinated by Montel Williams, will start to distribute 12 Years a Slave nationwide in September 2014 in concert with the new school year.
NSBA President David A. Pickler stated that; "We believe that providing America's public high school students the opportunity to bear witness to such an unrelenting view of the evils of slavery is essential toward ensuring that this history is never forgotten and must never be repeated."
12 Years a Slave director Steve McQueen stated that; "Since first reading 12 Years a Slave, it has been my dream that this book be taught in schools.  I am immensely grateful to Montel Williams and the National School Boards Association for making this dream a reality and for sharing Solomon Northup's story with today's generation."

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Arnon Milchan to Host a Gathering With Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and Top Hollywood Talant and Executives at His Malibu Estate

Fresh off of his Academy Awards success with Best Picture 12 Years a Slave, Arnon Milchan will be hosting a low profile dinner-gathering of Hollywood's top talent and executives at his Malibu estate this week. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will be the guest of honor and the press is not invited. The exclusive, intimate gathering will consist of about 75 of Hollywood's a-list talent and studio executives. Among the invitees are director James Cameron, Barbara Streisand, Robert De Niro, Leonardo DiCaprio, Clint Eastwood, Anthony Hopkins,  Ben Affleck, Billy Crystal, Warren Beatty, Annette Bening, Jeremy Renner, James Caan, Kate Hudson, and all of the top studio executives.

The event is informal and will include a no-holds-bar discussion. Guests will be encouraged to asked any questions of the Prime Minister, no matter how controversial. Mr. Netanyahu will encourage those gathered to use Israel as a location for film and television productions, and will announce various financial incentives to attract Hollywood productions to Israel.

As revealed in the book Confidential, Arnon Milchan has over the years emerged as Israel's unofficial ambassador to Hollywood.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Arnon Milchan Takes Center Stage as New Regency's '12 Years a Slave' Wins Best Picture at the 2014 Academy Awards

New Regency's 12 Years a Slave wins the 2014 Academy Award for Best Motion Picture. Producer Arnon Milchan thus completes an amazing journey from his controversial role in South Africa of the 1970's to the very pinnacle of Hollywood success and recognition, with a film that depicts the evil of racial discrimination in the starkest possible form. Some will view all of this with cynicism, others will see a strong measure of redemption... either way, it is a hell of a story.    


Thursday, January 30, 2014

Milchan's 'Noah' to air Super Bowl ad

News Corp's Fox will be broadcasting the Super Bowl this year. Milchan's New Regency is a partner of Fox, which distributes New Regency productions. It is a little surprising that New Regency and Fox will be airing an ad on the largest and most expensive advertising platform in the world for a movie distributed by competitor Paramount. It will be interesting to see what kind of discount was offered. The ad will air between the national anthem and kick-off. Few films get this kind of pre-release promotion. Below is the ad to be aired:

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Arnon Milchan not Listed as Producer of '12 Years a Slave' by the Academy of Motions Pictures.

Lacarno Film Festival awards Milcahn with
The Best Independent Producer Award in 2013
The film 12 Years a Slave would likely not have been made without producer Arnon Milchan, who co-financed the movie and distributed the film through his distribution agreement with Fox. The Academy of Motion Pictures announced this year's Oscar nominations on March 16. Interestingly, the Academy nominated 12 Years a Slave for 'Best Picture', but failed to list Arnon Milchan as one of the producers up for the Oscar. The reason for Mr. Milchan's omission by the Academy is not yet clear. Updates to come.

Coincidentally or not, one day before the Academy Award nominations announcement, the UK Guardian ran a lengthy article titled The Truth About Israel's Secret Nuclear Arsenal, in which Mr. Milchan featured prominently. The Article, written by the Guardian's Diplomatic Editor, Julian Borger, described at length key exclusive elements from Milchan's biography Confidential.   

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Arnon Milchan...New Regency....'12 Years a Slave'....Golden Globe Best Drama...On track for 'Best Film' Academy Award?

“New Regency were the last people in, but I think it’s fair to say they are the reason the movie got made”
Arnon Milchan was in South Africa recently promoting 12 Years a Slave, which was co-produced and released by his company New Regency, and distributed by Fox under the Fox-New Regency distribution agreement. South Africa is a country he knows well and has special feelings for. 12 Years a Slave won the coveted Golden Globe 'Best Drama' of 2013. Oscar nominations are to be announced on Thursday, January 16th.

Brad Pitt’s Plan B Entertainment co-produced the film with Mr. Milchan. Plan B Entertainment President Dede Gardner explained in Screen Daily the partnership arrangement that could very well lead to Mr. Milchan's first Academy Award:

Heading into production a US distributor had yet to be attached. Summit was a potential candidate but its imminent acquisition by Lionsgate soon ruled out the company.

Paramount, which had an output deal with Plan B since 2005 and whose chairman Brad Grey co-founded Plan B with Pitt, was also a potential distributor but ultimately was not seen as the right fit.

Pitt’s outfit would instead turn to Los Angeles-based financier New Regency, whose chairman Arnon Milchan and CEO Brad Weston separately had long-term relationships with Pitt and his executives.

“We were repositioning ourselves,” says Weston of New Regency, which up to that point had focused on mainstream comedies and action fare. “We had a strategy for the company and Steve fell into that category of a wall-to-wall brilliant film-maker that we wanted to work with.”
For New Regency and all the backers, McQueen’s film represented the ultimate in highbrow but accessible film-making.

In April 2012, a few weeks before filming began, New Regency agreed to co-finance and distribute the picture via Fox Searchlight, per its output deal with Fox. In fact, the company committed less than 48 hours after reading the script.

“New Regency were the last people in, but I think it’s fair to say they are the reason the movie got made,” acknowledges Gardner."