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by Keith Barber

News and views from inside the media bubble

KILLING A BAD MOVIE REVIEW

In honor of the 82nd annual Academy Awards, which will air Sunday night at 8 p.m., we turn to the Hollywood press for this week’s media item. Gawker.com is reporting that Brian Gott, the publisher of Variety, pulled a lackluster review of the film Iron Cross after the film’s producers called to complain. According to the Los Angeles Times, the producers had paid Variety $400,000 in a failed Oscar campaign. Variety freelance critic Robert Koehler panned the film in a review published in January. Helmed by British indie film director Joshua Newton, Iron Cross is described as a “Holocaust revenge fantasy.” It has the distinction of being Roy Scheider’s last film. The legendary actor passed away during production. Shortly after Koehler’s review hit the newsstands, Variety pulled the review from its website, according to Gawker.com. The only article about Iron Cross on Variety’s website now is Peter Caranica’s “First Look” feature story published on Jan. 1. Caranica’s story begins, “A World War II revenge drama has hit the screens with hopes of awards.” It’s a basic fluff piece about Newton’s quest to get Scheider a posthumous Oscar. They say you can buy anything in Hollywood. I guess that applies to movie reviews, too. — KTB

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