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» Film-Tech Forum   » Operations   » Ground Level   » Will The Real David Manning Please Stand Up?

   
Author Topic: Will The Real David Manning Please Stand Up?
Jonathan M. Crist
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 522
From: Hershey, PA, USA
Registered: Apr 2000


 - posted 06-05-2001 09:13 AM      Profile for Jonathan M. Crist   Email Jonathan M. Crist   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
In what is being termed a 'shocking discovery', Sony Pictures has admitted (only after being outted by Newsweek magazine) that many of the glowing reviews by one David Manning used in the print ads for several of their recent pictures (Animal, Knight's Tale, Veritical Limit and Hollow Man) are fakes. Seems that movie reviewer David Manning does not really exist and was really an employee in their publicity department.

The small weekly Conneticut newspaper which allegedly employed Manning is real but that is as far as the reality went. Sony has promised to take "appropiate action" (in other words the fellow who thought this up will get a hefty promotion!)

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John Pytlak
Film God

Posts: 9987
From: Rochester, NY 14650-1922
Registered: Jan 2000


 - posted 06-05-2001 09:24 AM      Profile for John Pytlak   Author's Homepage   Email John Pytlak   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Here's a link to the MSNBC/Newsweek article:
http://www.msnbc.com/news/581770.asp

------------------
John P. Pytlak, Senior Technical Specialist
Worldwide Technical Services, Entertainment Imaging
Eastman Kodak Company
Research Labs, Building 69, Room 7419
Rochester, New York, 14650-1922 USA
Tel: 716-477-5325 Cell: 716-781-4036 Fax: 716-722-7243
E-Mail: john.pytlak@kodak.com
Web site: http://www.kodak.com/go/motion

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Charles Everett
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1470
From: New Jersey
Registered: May 2001


 - posted 06-06-2001 02:27 PM      Profile for Charles Everett   Email Charles Everett   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Turns out there IS a David Manning who's a movie critic. He's an expat American, lives in New Zealand, writes reviews for a small country paper.

Found this nifty tidbit on the New Zealand Herald website. To get the story visit www.nzherald.co.nz and search for "David Manning" or "Sony".

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John Pytlak
Film God

Posts: 9987
From: Rochester, NY 14650-1922
Registered: Jan 2000


 - posted 06-06-2001 03:29 PM      Profile for John Pytlak   Author's Homepage   Email John Pytlak   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
What a coincidence. LOL!

Here's the specific link to the New Zealand Herald story of the real David Manning:
New Zealand Herald Article About Real David Manning

------------------
John P. Pytlak, Senior Technical Specialist
Worldwide Technical Services, Entertainment Imaging
Eastman Kodak Company
Research Labs, Building 69, Room 7419
Rochester, New York, 14650-1922 USA
Tel: 716-477-5325 Cell: 716-781-4036 Fax: 716-722-7243
E-Mail: john.pytlak@kodak.com
Web site: http://www.kodak.com/go/motion


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Dave Bird
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 737
From: Perth, Ontario, Canada
Registered: Jun 2000


 - posted 06-06-2001 10:09 PM      Profile for Dave Bird   Author's Homepage   Email Dave Bird   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I vaguely recall the CBC here in Canada doing a story on something like this. Basically tracking down the guys that give those little snipes like "best comedy this summer" or "if you see one movie this year...." to any crap movie of the week. They actually interviewed one guy who seems to pop up often in national ads even though he's from some tiny little paper, he fully admitted that he gives glowing reviews of EVERY movie because he likes seeing his name and there were perks (if not payment) when the studios used it. Wish I could remember what show, think it was "Undercurrents" with the lovely Wendy Mesley for any of you Canucks......

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Steven Pickles
Film Handler

Posts: 81
From: Gainesville, FL, USA
Registered: Mar 2001


 - posted 06-07-2001 11:11 AM      Profile for Steven Pickles   Email Steven Pickles   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Do you all think what Sony did is completely wrong? Sure, deceiving the public may not be the smartest marketing campaign… but its no surprise either. In reality, who pays attention to the blurbs and quotes thrown about in TV and print ads for films? Sony just got smart and instead of going out and finding someone to enjoy their movie, they made someone up who enjoys their movie. Its no different than making someone believe when one buys a can of beer that a beautiful woman would be at one’s beck and call, or even that a gorgeous model would be smoking a pack of cigarettes. I wouldn’t say that Newsweek outsmarted Sony… I think Newsweek is making a mountain out of a molehill. It is no big deal… it’s that simple.

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John Pytlak
Film God

Posts: 9987
From: Rochester, NY 14650-1922
Registered: Jan 2000


 - posted 06-07-2001 12:07 PM      Profile for John Pytlak   Author's Homepage   Email John Pytlak   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Steven said: "Sure, deceiving the public may not be the smartest marketing campaign… but its no surprise either."

"There's a sucker born every minute".

Unfortunately, untruths perpetuate themselves and take on a life of their own. Even the famous quote attributed to PT Barnum may never have actually been said by him!:

Link to origin of PT Barnum quote

____________________________________________
"There's a sucker born every minute"
------------------------------------

Those of P. T. Barnum's acquaintances who mentioned the
subject were unanimous in insisting that he never said this. The
closest thing to it that can be found in Barnum's writings is:
"I said that the people like to be humbugged when, as in my case,
there is no humbuggery except that which consists in throwing up
sky-rockets and issuing flaming bills and advertisements to attract
public attention to shows which all acknowledge are always clean,
moral, instructive, elevating, and give back to their patrons in
every case several times their money's worth" (the Bridgeport
Standard, 2 Oct. 1885).

Captain Alexander Williams, a New York City police inspector
at the time, attributed "There's a sucker born every minute, but
none of them ever die" to Joseph Bessimer, a notorious confidence
trickster of the early 1880s known to the police as "Paper Collar
Joe". See _P. T. Barnum: the Legend and the Man_, by A. H. Saxon
(Columbia University Press, 1989).

"There is a Sucker Born Every Minute" is the title of one of
the songs in the 1980 Broadway musical _Barnum_ by Jim Dale.
____________________________________________

------------------
John P. Pytlak, Senior Technical Specialist
Worldwide Technical Services, Entertainment Imaging
Eastman Kodak Company
Research Labs, Building 69, Room 7419
Rochester, New York, 14650-1922 USA
Tel: 716-477-5325 Cell: 716-781-4036 Fax: 716-722-7243
E-Mail: john.pytlak@kodak.com
Web site: http://www.kodak.com/go/motion


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Charles Everett
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1470
From: New Jersey
Registered: May 2001


 - posted 06-12-2001 06:01 PM      Profile for Charles Everett   Email Charles Everett   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
"No big deal" that Sony dreamed up phony pullquotes? Two VPs got suspended 30 days without pay. Where I work they would have been fired!

Also, Sony is facing a nice big "false advertising" lawsuit because of the phony pullquotes. Heads should roll over this crap.


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Charles Everett
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1470
From: New Jersey
Registered: May 2001


 - posted 01-19-2002 12:34 PM      Profile for Charles Everett   Email Charles Everett   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Bumping this back up since I found this quote in the Village Voice's "year in film" roundup:

"If readers are wondering why weekly publications like the Voice sometimes end up reviewing a studio film a week or two late, it's because the studios are often less than thrilled that their movies get reviewed at all. Spearheading a media movement, Paramount officially decided this year that no publication will publish a review of their films even a minute before opening day--which leaves the out-on-Wednesday Voice uninvited to the prom. It remains something of a wonder that the studios allow even half of their product—-brainless action films, hollow star vehicles, goofball teen comedies, etc.—-to be reviewed at all, but Paramount, with a docket dominated this year by Tomb Raider, Domestic Disturbance, Down to Earth, Enemy at the Gates, Rat Race, and Vanilla Sky, has serious reason to keep its cards close. Any review beyond a David Manning-style blurb can only beat horses already butchered for dog food. The studio's major triumph over unlikeliness—-Pootie Tang—-suffered the scantest marketing and least trumpeted press screening of the year."—-Michael Atkinson

Such a policy should affect not only a metro weekly (such as the Village Voice) but also the likes of Newsweek and Time. On the other hand the latest Paramount release, Orange County, had pre-release ads filled with pull quotes from "critics" nobody has ever heard of.

For the record, Michael Atkinson is the No. 3 movie critic at the Village Voice (behind J. Hoberman and Amy Taubin).


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Heyward Garner
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 101
From: Winston-Salem, NC, USA
Registered: Jan 2001


 - posted 01-21-2002 02:40 AM      Profile for Heyward Garner   Email Heyward Garner   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
John,
I am so astounded by your wealth of knowledge that I must request a personal audience such that you will enlighten me to the meaning of life!

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System Notices
Forum Watchdog / Soup Nazi

Posts: 215

Registered: Apr 2004


 - posted 08-03-2005 12:11 PM      Profile for System Notices         Edit/Delete Post 

It has been 1290 days since the last post.


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Ron Keillor
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 166
From: Vancouver, B.C. Canada
Registered: Jul 2003


 - posted 08-03-2005 12:11 PM      Profile for Ron Keillor   Email Ron Keillor   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
and do your ticket printers issue tickets that can still be read after four years?

quote: was the last to post

Last Updated: Wednesday, 3 August 2005, 15:57 GMT 16:57 UK

Sony pays $1.5m over fake critic
Heath Ledger in 2001's A Knight's Tale
Manning supposedly called Heath Ledger "this year's hottest new star"
A judge has finalised a settlement in which film studio Sony will pay $1.5m (£850,000) to film fans after using a fake critic to praise its movies.

In 2001, ads for films including Hollow Man and A Knight's Tale quoted praise from a reviewer called David Manning, who was exposed as being invented.

People who saw the films can now get a $5 (£2.80) refund from Sony's pay-out, lawyer Norman Blumenthal said.

Sony did not admit liability in the settlement and declined to comment.

The studio reached the out-of-court agreement to settle the case and avoid the cost and uncertainty of litigation, according to a court notice.

The settlement was agreed last year but has only just been approved by Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Carolyn Kuhl.

If the full $1.5m is not claimed, any money left over will go to charity, Mr Blumenthal said.

'Fabricated quotes'

Promotional material for other films including The Patriot, Vertical Limit and The Animal also carried quotes from "David Manning of The Ridgefield Press".

He supposedly called Heath Ledger "this year's hottest new star" for his role in A Knight's Tale, said The Animal was "another winner" and Hollow Man was "one hell of a scary ride".

But The Ridgefield Press, a small paper in Connecticut, said David Manning had never worked for them.

Sony temporarily suspended two employees following an internal investigation into "fabricated quotes on four movie ads".

[url= Http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/film/4741259.stm]Http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/film/4741259.stm[/url]

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