“CNN’s ‘Moneyline’ really required me to stretch – I was learning about new companies that were emerging during the first tech boom, many of which had funny names,” she said, noting that she was the first female co-anchor on the financial news program.
The Pen Center, founded in 1943 to support freedom of expression and literary arts programming, raised more than $40,000 at the event.
TheWrap’s TheGrill media leadership conference, an annual gathering of entertainment professionals, took place last month at the Montage Beverly Hills. Its participants spent much of the time discussing the ways technology has forced media companies to shift their business models, with topics including the rapid evolution of virtual reality, cord-cutting in television, and the future of moviegoing, among others.
Founded and curated by Sharon Waxman, chief executive and editor-in-chief of the online entertainment trade publication, the event featured one-on-one conversations and panel discussions with show business industry leaders over the course of two days.
Waxman kicked off the conference with a conversation with Michael Lynton, chief executive of Sony Entertainment Inc. The pair discussed a number of issues including the 2014 cyberattack on the studio and the recent Chinese buying spree in Hollywood. (Sony last month struck a deal with Dalian Wanda Group that gave the studio a cash infusion and the Chinese company some creative input in the Sony slate.)
“Michael was very revealing,” said Waxman. “He shared the lessons he learned from the hack and was very candid about how it affected the studio.”
About 250 industry leaders attended the conference, which is a large source of revenue for TheWrap and an event that Waxman said helps the company differentiate itself in the competitive Hollywood trade publication space. Now in its seventh year, tickets range from $800 to $2,000.
“We’ve extended the conference by a half-day and added many more breakout sessions,” she said. “And while we’re all about embracing the new, what we’re really about is celebrating great content. That doesn’t mean throwing away the old.”
Staff reporter Kristin Marguerite Doidge can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (323) 549-5225, ext. 226.
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