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Khan Manka, Jr. - The Chairman's Blog: January 2010 Archives

January 2010 Archives

[Manka Bros. Studios Chairman & CEO Khan Manka, Jr. gave a keynote address today at the Davos World Economic Forum in Switzerland.  He wanted me to post a transcript of his speech for everyone at the studio to read.  It is posted, unedited, below. -- Vicky Adler-Modry - Senior Executive Assistant to Khan Manka, Jr.]


Khan Manka, Jr.:  Thank you very much President Sarkozy for that incredible introduction.  I had no idea of the impact I and my company have had on you throughout your life.  I was genuinely moved by your words.  Give my love to your smoking hot wife.

[French President Nicolas Sarkozy embraces Khan Manka, Jr. and exits the stage.]

Khan Manka, Jr.:  Thanks to the World Economic Forum Committee - or as I like to call them "The Drunken Dozen" - for choosing me to address this conference.  It's not often that an ex-hippie song plugger from the Laurel Canyon neighborhood of Los Angeles gets this kind of an opportunity.  But it's not often that a hippie song plugger from Laurel Canyon becomes the head of the World's Largest Media Company.  I can thank my bastard dad (legendary Hollywood mogul and Manka Bros. founding brother Harry Manka) for dying 35 years ago and sticking me with this suck ass job.

[Khan Manka, Jr. has to hold while the audience laughs uproariously.]

Khan Manka, Jr.:  Let me get right to it.  You bankers with your ski resort conferences and presentations looking for answers on what went wrong is such a joke to me. 

[A few audible hisses and one very loud "bull shit" is heard from the crowd.]

khan_manka_davos_speech_2.jpgKhan Manka, Jr.:  Fuck you guys.  The global economy is not a difficult thing to figure out.  Make shit that people want to buy and sell it for a price that people can pay.  There is a reason Manka Bros. is the World's Largest Media Company.  It's simple.  It's because we are the biggest and we are not stupid.  When Jimmy Cameron came to me and said he wanted to make a $400 million dollar movie about blue people set on a distant planet, I passed.  No fucking way am I shooting a movie on another planet.  It's expensive enough in California! 


Khan Manka, Jr.: 
I then asked him if he had any teenage Frankenstein movies.  Actually, he did.  I'm happy to say Manka Bros. has started production on James Cameron's "Frankie Stein" - for a budget that is almost half of what it cost to make "Avatar"THAT'S good business.  That's why we're still IN business.


Khan Manka, Jr.:  The media world is especially easy to figure out.  Everybody is trying to come up with new business models, new gadgets, new ways for people to experience the crappy shit we all produce.  Translation:  We've got to exploit this horrible movie or TV series on multiple platforms so we can get our money back.  MAKE GOOD CONTENT AND PEOPLE WILL BUY IT.  If you want to stick it on an iPad or a Lieberscanner 3000, go right ahead.  But first, find writers who can write, directors who can direct, actors who can act, and producers who can produce.   Everything else will take care of itself.

Nazi_gold.jpg[Applause and a few shouts of approval.]

Khan Manka, Jr.:  You international bankers are a real freaky bunch.  You love to find ways not to give me money for my movies.  It's not like you're strapped for cash.  You recovered and kept all that gold the Nazi's stole, for Christ's sake! 

[There is gasp from the audience.]

Khan Manka, Jr.:  But you'll all be sorry.  We've got a great film slate.  I thought you idiots liked Will Ferrell.  We've got three movies with him ready to go:  "Gregory Lopez: Excellent Plumber", "Ray Edwards: African Explorer", and, my favorite, "Mud Jenkins:  County Assessor".  We're going to make billions with or without your precious money... that you stole!

[A red light flashes in Khan Manka, Jr.'s face.]

hotel_eden_bar.jpgKhan Manka, Jr.:  I'm being told to wrap it up.  So I will end with these words from my Uncle - the great Khan Manka, Sr. - "Hollywood is a town where everybody is desperate for success and nearly everyone fails.  But if you are a mogul and you make movies, you will get laid... a lot."  Thank you.  I'll be drinking tonight with the Money Honey at the Hotel Eden bar if anyone would like to come over and get drunk with me.

[Khan Manka, Jr. exits the stage.]

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

sundance_film_festival_image.jpgTo all the acquisition and distribution executives at Manka Highbrow, Manka Dogme and Manka Docs - due to budgetary constraints and the absolutely shitty year you all had in 2009, you will not be attending the Sundance Film Festival this year.  If you desperately feel the need to attend in order to bid on a movie about Native American pedophiles looking for redemption, then I suggest you quit your job and start a new company that specializes in distributing videos shot on camcorders.

When the economy was good, this was not an issue for us.  We loved to throw money away during the good times.  Sometimes we even got lucky - for instance, when we picked up the rights to Snuffing Out The Magic Fury (which will finally open next month after extensive recuts and reshoots and recasts). 

But, too bad, junior executives, there will be no more $600 a night rooms with $1,000 a night "entertainment" bar tabs while you try to sleep with 22-year-old "directors" who would do anything to get their $300 film about an autistic coal miner distributed by a major Hollywood studio.

I realize you've probably already purchased your $400 ski caps that you were planning on wearing throughout the festival because independent film makers are way too cool to shower (and, of course, you have to be just like them).  I guess you'll have to return those at lunch today.

We have a new theatrical policy here at Manka Bros. - WE WILL NOT PRODUCE OR DISTRIBUTE ANY FILM THAT DOES NOT MAKE MONEY!

harvey_weinstein_small.jpgSo for the young writers and directors of the world who make films about:
  • The various plights of high school geeks growing up in the 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s;
  • Immigrants trying to survive in modern day Mobile, Alabama;
  • Poets trying to break free from their oppressive capitalist "day jobs"
  • Cancer movies of every size and shape;
  • (and, my favorite) Movies about filmmakers trying to get their films made in Hollywood where everyone who works at a studio is some kind of idiot...
I'm sorry, you'll have to find some other sucker to distribute your story that MUST BE TOLD. 

I hear The Weinstein Company has about $200 left from their billion dollar war chest.  Go ahead and take your precious little film to Harvey Weinstein.  He's not hard to find - he'll be the one smoking.

khan_jr1_small.jpgKhan Manka, Jr. - Chairman & CEO - Manka Bros. Studios
The World's Largest Media Company
harry_manka.jpgNormally, I'm too busy to talk about my father's death but I have a little time this morning before a very important mogul-only lunch.  So I have a few minutes (and a very nice Bloody Mary - thank you Vicky) to talk about my dad.

Harry Manka was a real prick.  Not just to me but to all of my mothers (he had six wives - I've never really been sure which one was my real mother). 

But people outside the family loved Harry Manka.  He was called Hollywood's Dark Lord for his habit of holding certain actors and writers hostage in the attic of Building 23 on the studio lot (dubbed "The Tower") until they gave in to his demands. 

Harry Manka had an amazing ability to stay alive.  Most people thought he would die from his sixth heart attack in 1958 - but he would go on to have three more and two strokes over the next 18 years.  He drank a bottle of Crown Royal every day, smoked three packs of unfiltered Camel Turkish Gold cigarettes every day and smoked a box of cigars every day. 

Dad-Dad loved horrible movies and television shows because he was constantly making them.  During the early 1970s, he nearly bankrupt our family and the studio with such gems as Escape From Satan's Planet and Black Illiad.

manka bros studio_1918_small.jpgBut this is not a day to piss on my father's grave.  This is a day to remember a man who co-founded the World's Largest Media Company (though it wasn't the largest when I took over in 1976) with my two Uncles - the great Khan Manka (Sr.) who died tragically in 1937 before I was born; and crazy Simeon Manka (1882 - 1958) who died on Hollywood Blvd. wearing only a sandwich board that read "Benny's World of Beef"

I vaguely remember the day of Harry Manka's death.  I received a call from C.J. Siegal, my dad's personal assistant, who told me he was killed on the golf course after being hit with an errant tee shot.  We knew nothing could kill my dad and suddenly he dies after being hit with a golf ball?  It was crazy.  To this day, no one has confirmed who hit the ball that killed my dad.  But we know.  He was playing with Bob Hope, Joey Levitch and President of the U.S. - GERALD FORDWho do you think killed Harry Manka?

king khan_3.jpgC.J. was horrified when I told him I wouldn't be able to come to the house later to be with the family because my band - King Khan - was getting ready for a very important gig at the Starlite Room in North Hollywood.  Plus, later that night I had tickets for Jefferson Starship at the Forum.  Being the son of a movie mogul, I always got backstage passes and nothing was going to stop me from using them.

On the day of his death, I was named Chairman & CEO of Manka Bros. Studios.  I did not want this job.  I wanted to smoke dope and drop acid with my Hollywood friends.  I didn't want to wear shoes and go to an office.  I could feel that my band was really starting to take off.  But C.J. Siegal reasoned with me and said I could immediately sign my own band to the Manka Bros. Records label and record a real album.  This convinced me to take the job. 

But after two weeks in that giant office with movie stars and directors begging you to make their movies, I quickly dropped the band and never recorded that album.  I realized being a media mogul is so much more impressive than being in a garage band.  No matter how good our version of "Smoke On The Water" was. 

So, here we are, 34 years later, and Manka Bros. is the World's Largest Media Company

I'll leave you with one final thought - one of the last things my father ever said to me:  "If you're going to waste your life - go ahead and kill yourself.  I'll even give you the pills or the gun to do it!" - Harry Manka (1883-1976).

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

oren_aviv_bob_iger.jpgYesterday, I was shocked to learn that Oren Aviv was fired as President of Disney Motion Picture Productions.  While I have never met Mr. Aviv personally, I have heard that he is an excellent cribbage player (and you all know how much I admire good cribbage). 

I'm not really sure what Rich Ross has in mind for his executive team at Disney but it seems to me he's really fucking things up and creating a Colonel Kurtz-like environment of ultimate power.  Ultimate power over teenage girl media content... but still ultimate power.

Well, I say, good luck to him.  All I can hope is that my good friend Bob Iger has Mr. Ross on a short leash.  I get a creepy feeling whenever I drive past the Disney Studios as though those freakin' Dwarfs are watching my every move.  I wouldn't be surprised if the severed heads of middle managers start to appear on the Disney perimeter fence - stuck on top of the iron Micky Mouse ears - as a warning to those who don't fall in line.

(And please don't email me about the above comment.  I realize the severed head thing happened many years ago at Manka Bros. when my father, Harry Manka, ran the studio - but it was only that one time - and I heard the guy deserved it.)

Anyway, back to Oren AvivManka Bros., the world's largest media company, would like to offer Mr. Aviv a very high-level position at the studio.  Perhaps even President of the Manka Bros. Theatrical Group (especially considering how shitty a job Robin Rafe has been doing these last couple of years).  Even Disney's worse year is far better than our best year lately.

Whatever job you think you might like, Oren, just let me know.  I'm happy to push out anyone (with the exception of Lloyd Grohl) to give you a place here.  Things are looking up for Manka Bros. and we'd love to have you on our team.

And don't even think about going to Fox (Rupert Murdoch will make you clean the urinals) or Paramount (Sumner Redstone will make you wipe his ass).

Let me know, Oren, ASAP.

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

mary_parent_mgm.jpgGood afternoon. 

Last night, I called MGM CEO Mary Parent to inform her that Manka Bros. would not be bidding on MGM.  Many have speculated that Manka Bros. would be the most likely suitor of MGM (which includes the 4,000 film library) but I have decided that it would no longer be a strategic fit for our company (though if the bidding falls below $1 billion, I may have to rethink things). 

Manka Bros. is the world's largest media company with the world's largest film library and we simply don't need to add 4,000 more titles to it.  Manka Classic Movies, as it is, can only show about 3,500 movies a year (24x7 without commercials).  At that rate, it would take us at least four years to show every film in our library (and we don't want to show every film in our library as most of them are total crap). 

There was a time when I wanted to own all the copyrights of the world.  I think I may be changing my mind now that DVD is dead and pirates are stealing everything we produce.

So, sorry MGM, hopefully Time Warner or Fox will bail your asses out. 

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

P.S. - I would like to offer Mary Parent a job if the new owners foolishly don't keep her.  She seems really on top of things.
Good morning from the Wynn Encore in Vegas!

warren_lieberfarb.jpgYesterday, I received a call from my old friend and employee Warren Lieberfarb.  I was completely taken by surprise as I hadn't heard from him for a few years.  His ego had gotten so completely out of control after he was crowned the King of DVD that I really had no interest in talking to him or dealing with his bullshit. 

It seems that Warren has a new venture in which a large bio-mechanical chip (about the size of a playing card) is inserted under the skin of your arm.  Downloaded onto this chip is your entire library of movies, television shows, games and music (HD or standard def). 

Using the (patent pending) LieberScanner 8000, this library can be transferred to any TV, PC or mobile device with a simple scan of the barcode on the chip in your arm. 

Normally, I would have hung up on Warren right there (especially when he drones on and on about something as ridiculous as the LieberScanner 8000) but he mentioned that he was having a party in his suite at the Bellagio and I had nothing else to do last night (Terry Semel, the jerk, bailed on our dinner plans at the last minute for "something else he had to do").

warren_lieberfarb_suite_bellagio.jpgI arrived at Warren's suite via a private solid gold elevator.  He had quite a set up - similar to Marlon Brando in Apocalypse Now.  High-tech hangers on and home video geeks stood around the outer lobby of his suite just hoping to get a glimpse of the great man.  But only a privileged few (such as myself) were allowed inside.

Warren and I go back about 30 years to the beginnings of the home video boom.  When the VHS cassette was first introduced, I hired Warren to go from house-to-house to sell Manka Bros. film titles from the trunk of his 1974 Datsun.  He was so good at selling shitty copies of "Black Illiad" and "Mother Trucker" for $89.95 each that I offered him the chance to head up our new home video division - but he had already taken a job with Warners.

Things really fell apart between him and me when he was trying to get DVD off the ground and Manka Bros. was firmly in the DIVX camp (we still are today - though, reluctantly, we do offer our titles on DVD).  We're also still in the HD-DVD camp... Fuck Blu-ray!).

So... to continue... I entered the inner-sanctum of Warren's suite to see him holding court in front of a 75-inch plasma screen.  His right arm was exposed to show the giant chip embedded in his arm.  Surrounding him was a group of slackjawed lapdog executives all salivating at the thought of this new technology and what it can do for them. 

Now Warren doesn't actually have the funding yet for this new idea, so for his demonstration he was using a child's scanner from some Fisher-Price grocery store toy.  He continued:

Warren Lieberfarb:  ... As the LieberScanner 8000 rolls over the barcode, my entire library is now transferred to every device in the room - the television, the computer, the iPhone, etc.

Nothing really happened when he clicked the scanner, but people were impressed nonetheless.  It was only Lady Gaga that brought up any kind of criticism. 

ladygaga_pokerface.jpgLady Gaga:  Why does it have to be implanted in your arm?

Warren Lieberfarb:  Who the fuck are you?  Are you wearing butterfly wings?  And are they bleeding?

Lady Gaga:
  Just answer the question.

Warren Lieberfarb:  The chip is implanted in your arm so that you always have your intellectual property with you.  You won't lose it if it's sewn into your arm.  And, when you want to buy more movies and music, just scan the item and it's downloaded into the chip and charged to your credit card.

Lady Gaga:  Why not just put everything on a small storage device and put it in your wallet or purse?  This idea is so stupid.

Warren Lieberfarb: 
I want her out of here.  Throw her off the roof and see if she can fly.

A couple of MBA-types, who looked like they worked out, grabbed Lady Gaga by the wings and pulled her screaming out of the room.

I had seen enough and knew, like Strauss Zelnick's recent rooftop salon, that I probably shouldn't have come.  I decided to leave without even saying hello to Warren.  I'll send him a fruit basket and wish him well on his new venture.

Tonight, I'll be playing poker with Ben Silverman at the Palms.  If I survive, I'll write about it.

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

manka_fun_park_yemen_2.jpgGood morning and happy 2010! 

Because of all the recent terrorist activity going on in Yemen, I just wanted to give a quick update on the status of Manka Bros.' billion dollar Manka Fun Park Yemen

As many of you may remember, I went to Yeman last August for the groundbreaking ceremony.  After that, due to political turmoil and badly handled wire transfers, they never got around to actually starting construction.

Now, it seems that there are terrorists operating in and around the site for the future theme park

I just want to assure everyone involved that steps have been taken to ensure the safety of any future tourists to our theme park.  Metal detectors have been installed and intense cavity searches will be conducted on anyone entering the park.  So safety is not an issue and we are moving forward with the project as planned.

ali_abdullah_saleh.jpgEven though I thought the opening would have to be pushed back a few months to 2011, I was reassured by the Yemeni leader Ali Abdullah Saleh that since labor costs in that country are non-existent and there are no overtime rules, the scheduled opening later this year will easily be met. 

That's the beauty of a dictatorship!

This is great news for Manka Bros. because Yemen is a completely untapped market for Western-style entertainment.  Disney has been too busy concentrating on China to realize where the real money is.  Losers.  We will have the market to ourselves.

Now if we can only get a fucking movie that makes money we'll really be on a roll.

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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