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Khan Manka, Jr. - The Chairman's Blog: November 2009 Archives

November 2009 Archives

twilight_saga_New_Moon_poster.jpgGood morning.  Last night at about midnight, after a few minutes of pathetic begging by my 12-year old daughter Connie (who is also a newly-minted Manka Bros. Board member), I had my driver, Leif Garrett (yes, former child star) drop her off at the line of freaks waiting to get tickets to The Twilight Saga: New Moon.  She told me she was going to meet her (punk ass) friends Jenny and Skylark and wouldn't be back until she has seen the movie - and then added... "it might take days".

This got me thinking:  When was the last time Manka Bros. had a film that people wanted to see so bad that they lined up days in advance to see the first showings. 

The answer?  Never.  Fucking never.  It's an embarrassment.

We've had people show up to block the theater - as they did in 1989 after we made a film based on "Piss Christ", the controversial photograph by Andres Serrano, but never anyone camping out because they couldn't wait to see it.

This has to change.  I called Robin Rafe (President of the Manka Bros. Theatrical Group) at around 3:00a.m. this morning and told her to get right on it.  I want movies made by Manka Bros. that generate excitement, and buzz, and long lines at the theaters.  In short, I want mega-blockbusters! 

I don't believe I am being unreasonable here.  I only want four or five of these types of films every year - year-after-year.  And this will fit nicely into our BIG CONTENT STRATEGY launched a few months ago.

I would like a list of these big ideas before Thanksgiving.  If you don't think this is possible, please cancel any Thanksgiving plans you may have and stay at the studio until I have my list.

khan_jr1_small.jpgKhan Manka, Jr. - Chairman & CEO - Manka Bros. Studios - The World's Largest Media Company

P.S. - I will be in Aspen for Thanksgiving with Mariska Hargitay - so please send the list to my house there if it's not ready by Monday (November 23).

harvey weinstein.jpgLast night, I received a somewhat desperate call from Harvey Weinstein.  He said he wanted to take me out to dinner and discuss something that could be incredibly beneficial to both our companies.  I could tell this was going to be a disastrous meeting.

Since Harvey wanted to pay, he chose a restaurant that he could afford - the Sizzler on Hollywood Blvd.  He told me not worry about what it costs, he was paying for "all I could eat".  We sat at his normal booth and the waitress, Maria, brought us some Texas ToastHarvey folded his piece and took a healthy double-bite.

"Let me get right to the point, Khan.  I want to take Manka Bros. off your hands.  Based on your '09 Theatrical and TV slates, I can see your struggling.  All I would need is a $10 million dollar upfront payment."

I barely heard what he was saying because the Texas Toast was surprisingly excellent. 

"Khan, did you hear what I said?  Maria, more toast over here - chop chop."

"You want me to pay you $10 million to take my company away from me.  Ten million for the world's largest media company - which my father and uncles founded and built from the ground up nearly 100 years ago?"

sizzler_texas_toast.jpgMaria brought another basket of Texas Toast - our hands bumped reaching for it.

"Fuckin' losers those guys, Khan.  No offense.  I'll turn your goddamned dinosaur of a business into a cash cow in... oh, I don't know... three weeks!  I'll fuckin' get Tina Brown to run your books division.  I'll fuckin' get Rob Zombie to do some kind of movie shit, asshole.  Think about it."

Harvey got up to go to the salad bar.  "Do you want me to get you some cantaloupe?"

I nodded my head and made a call to Lloyd Grohl (Manka Bros. President and COO) to see if there was anything we could or should do for poor Harvey.  Lloyd quickly told me to turn him down nicely and get out of the Sizzler as fast as I could - that my life was in danger!

harvey_weinstein_2.jpgHarvey returned and saw me clicking off the phone.  "Who the fuck was that?"

"Nobody, Harvey.  Look, I have to turn you down.  Manka Bros. isn't for sale and will never be for sale.  Manka Bros. is a giant media conglomerate.  The biggest in the world.  You don't buy us - we buy you.  And, from what I hear about your current financial situation, I don't want to buy you."

"OK, Khan.  I understand."

I paused, expecting one of his signature tirades.  It didn't come.  He was just staring at his Texas Toast.

"Harvey?  You're OK with that?"

"Yes, Khan... but, one night when you're sleeping, I will enter your bedroom and skull fuck you to death."

It was said in such a kind, light-hearted way, it almost seemed like a compliment. 

Harvey took bite of a taco, the juice dribbling down his chin.

"Hey, Khan... you wanna buy some shoes?"

By the end of the night, I agreed to buy his shoes for $15. 

I think I like poor Harvey better than rich Harvey.

khan_jr1_small.jpgKhan Manka, Jr. - Chairman & CEO - Manka Bros. Studios - The World's Largest Media Company

strauss_zelnick.jpgGood afternoon from New York. 

Due to the ongoing $5 million renovation of my Burbank studio office, I have been in New York since last week staying at my usual suite at the Sherry Netherland Hotel

I don't like to come to New York that often because everyone is such an asshole, but I felt it was time to check in on the Manka Bros. East Coast operations and take a peak at the rehearsals for our upcoming Broadway Manka musical "Rampage Of The Stegosaur".

Last night, I received a very nice invitation from my old friend Strauss ZelnickZelnickMedia has a very nice collection of assets including Take-Two Interactive and Columbia MusicStrauss and I used to butt heads quite a bit during his whacked out BMG Entertainment days (the asshole wouldn't let me buy him out!). 

Apparently, he has a rooftop salon every couple of months for "heavy-hitters" in the New Media world (which means "small-time punks" to us in the Old Media world).  He heard I was in town and asked me to come by.  He knew that Manka Bros. had recently committed $1 billion to the production of online short-form content and thought I would bring an interesting large media company point of view. 

Thinking this was going to be quite the event, I quickly canceled my dinner (Masa) and show plans (Billy Elliot) with Mariska Hargitay and headed over to one of Strauss' magnificent midtown Manhattan office buildings for his amazing rooftop salon!  However, all that glitters is not gold.  As soon as I walked onto that God-awful rooftop, I knew I chose the wrong event. 

el_diablo_taco_truck.jpgFirst of all, for such a rich guy, I would have expected more in the area of food. 

While the El Diablo Taco Cart does make a pretty decent taco, Strauss really should have served something a little more high-end for such an "elite" group of New Media freaks (though you won't get any complaints from Jeremy Phillips at News Corp.  He had at least four fully-loaded grande beef tacos before I even got to the front of the line).  That's another thing, I really shouldn't have had to wait in line.  It was a fucking embarrassment, Strauss!

[Another thing, Strauss, you should have said it was BYOB.  Surely, you have at least enough money for a couple of cases of PBR.  Jesus Christ.  I had to call my New York assistant, Ramon, and have a couple of bottles of Slivovitz delivered.  I would have had more sent if I knew Malcolm Gladwell was such a cheap drunk.]

So... as for the event... it was a complete disappointment and waste of time.  One after another, different "experts" in the shallow world of New Media got up and talked and talked and talked... and didn't say shit.  I was expecting nothing and it still sucked.

malcolm_gladwell.jpgMalcolm Gladwell (The New Yorker) basically said we were all full of ourselves if we think for one minute that we're changing the world in any way.  He said it in such a "Fuck you, I'm totally full of myself "kind of way that I really wanted to throw him off the rooftop.  But then I become the jerk.  Assholes.

Next came another New Yorker writer, David Remnick, who started talking about some bullshit thing. 

At this point, I had trouble paying attention as I began to sweat and shake violently and really needed to find a bathroom (thank you, El Diablo Tacos!).

I spent the next hour in the rooftop Port-a-Potty going in and out of consciousness.  

The next thing I knew, I was in Strauss Zelnick's office on a blow up mattress.  Strauss said the taco cart really put a damper on the evening's agenda.  Several people, including Heather Harde of TechCrunch required on-site medical attention.

Strauss said the only positive to come out of the salon was that Malcolm Gladwell promised to never come back.

We then laughed and did a shot of Slivovitz.  Before I left, I invited Strauss to L.A. where the real media people play. 

khan_jr1_small.jpgKhan Manka, Jr. - Chairman & CEO - Manka Bros. Studios

About Khan Manka, Jr.

Khan Manka, Jr. - Chairman & CEO - Manka Bros. StudiosKhan Manka, Jr. assumed the title of Chairman of the Board of Manka Bros. Studios - The World's Largest Media Company - following his father Harry Manka's death in 1976. Before that he was the member of several Southern California rock bands.

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