Roundup: Barry Humphries memorial, SAS Australia, Disney

Barry Humphries

Lisa Wilkinson, James Wan, AI chatbots, Andrew Bolt, Triple J, The Crown

Business of Media

Wilkinson denies ‘pride and ego’ drove Logies speech praising Higgins

Lisa Wilkinson has defended her reporting of Brittany Higgins’ rape claim, clashing in court with Bruce Lehrmann’s barrister over questions she said portrayed her as a “cheap tabloid journalist”, reports Nine Publishing’s Sam Buckingham-Jones.

Wilkinson, 63, took to the witness box in a Federal Court in Sydney on Thursday, rejecting allegations she deliberately gave a speech accepting an award at the Logies in 2022 that put her “pride and ego” ahead of Lehrmann’s right to fair hearing at an upcoming criminal trial.

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Stars to feature in memorial for Barry Humphries and running order of service revealed

King Charles will lead a megastar line up of musicians, comedians, film directors and theatre producers honouring the legendary Barry Humphries at a state memorial on Friday, reports News Corp’s Nui Te Koha.

Sir Elton John, Little Britain co-creator David Walliams, British funnyman Rob Brydon, stage giants Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber and Sir Cameron Mackintosh, and media mogul Rupert Murdoch will also pay tribute at the ceremony being held at the Sydney Opera House.

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His films have earned nearly $4 billion at the box office. Can this Aussie director strike gold again?

James Wan’s name is synonymous with horror cinema. He directed the razor-sharp Saw and co-executive produced its sequels. He directed The Conjuring and its sequel and produced an assortment of things that go bump in the night, including Annabelle and Lights Out. He’s turned nuns into horror movie poster girls. He’s the reason you’re mortally afraid of dolls, and leave the hallway light on at night, reports Nine Publishing’s Michael Idato.

But in 2015, Wan stepped into the action mainstream with Furious 7, the seventh instalment of the Fast & Furious franchise, which brought in about $US1 billion at the box office. It won him the right to take on DC’s Aquaman, the second chapter of which, Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, is released this month. Wan pushed the once-wet superhero out of the comic book sidestream and onto DC’s main stage, alongside Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman. Oh, and it also brought in about $US1 billion at the box office.

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Disney prepares for bitter battle as activist Peltz seeks two board seats

Walt Disney is bracing for a bitter proxy battle as activist investor Nelson Peltz is seeking two board seats at Disney, his firm Trian Fund Management said on Thursday, pressing ahead with his second board challenge this year, report Reuters’ Dawn Chmielewski and Svea Herbst-Bayliss.

Trian, which owns roughly $3 billion worth of Disney shares, abandoned an earlier bid for one board seat in February when the media conglomerate outlined a sweeping restructuring plan that addressed his criticisms.

The firm nominated Peltz and former Disney Chief Financial Officer James “Jay” Rasulo.

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How publishers are using AI chatbots to boost engagement

Chatbots based on publishers’ own content archives pose “a lot of revenue opportunities” according to the chief digital and information officer at Forbes, reports Press Gazette’s Charlotte Tobitt.

Forbes is among the publishers trying out generative AI tools trained on their own archives, having launched AI-powered search tool Adelaide at the end of October.

Both Google and ChatGPT owner OpenAI have this year made technology available to allow people create their own generative AI tools using their proprietary content and data, mitigating the copyright issues – although hallucinations and other inaccuracies may still pose a risk.

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News Brands

Chris Bowen calls on News Corp to sack Andrew Bolt for column saying Australians sick of ‘kowtowing to the primitive’

Chris Bowen has called on News Corp to sack Andrew Bolt after the controversial commentator penned a column suggesting Australians are “sick of kowtowing to the primitive”, report The Guardian’s Katharine Murphy and Tory Shepherd.

Bolt on Wednesday criticised the climate change minister for staging what he contended was “a one-man clown show at the United Nations’ global warming jamboree in Dubai” which included a “sermon” linking “the government’s disastrous race-based tribalism with its ruinous crusade against oil and gas”.

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Pro-Palestine statement on Triple J by hip hop artist Miss Kaninna breached ABC standards, broadcaster finds

A pro-Palestine outburst on ABC radio has been deleted from online platforms and a staff member has been disciplined after it was deemed the public broadcaster’s standards for impartiality had been breached, reports News Corp’s Benedict Brook.

On radio station Triple J, a presenter accused Israel of “genocide” and used the term “from the river to the sea,” a disputed phrase which some see as wanting peace for all the peoples in the region but others interpret as call for the eradication of the state of Israel.

Exacerbating matters, the controversial comments did not go out live but rather the entire show was prerecorded and then broadcast at a later date with the controversial comments left in.

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SAS star hits out at show for ‘editing out’ his horrific injury

Tim Robards has revealed he suffered a horrific injury while filming SAS Australia earlier this year but viewers were left completely unaware after producers decided to edit the incident out, reports News Corp’s Joshua Haigh.

The TV star said he was struck down by an injury to his leg while filming the reality show, tearing his abductor while taking part in one of the gruelling tasks.

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So, farewell to The Crown. All of it was true, apart from the bits that weren’t

After seven years, six seasons, 60 episodes and enough airtime to last you continuously from now to next Sunday, Netflix’s mammoth, popular and sort-of acclaimed series The Crown ends with the release of the last four episodes today, reports The Guardian’s Stephen Bates.

That takes the saga up to 2005, so the reign of Queen Elizabeth II still had another 17 years to run, but writer Peter Morgan and the series’ makers have decided enough is enough. Discretion has shrouded the final years, though they do give Her 80-year-old Maj, played by Imelda Staunton, intimations of mortality, and even visitations by her younger self in the shape of Claire Foy, the young queen in seasons one and two, and Olivia Colman’s mother of the nation from seasons three and four.

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See Also: Netflix engagement report reveals the shows Aussies are watching

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