A Personal Note On Nikki Finke From Mike Fleming

Earlier today, I got an urgent e-mail blast from The Wrap about Michael Douglas contracting throat cancer from cunnilingus. It was presented with the same traffic-pandering, classless urgency as similar blasts I’ve gotten from the same publication on health issues faced bravely by Angelina Jolie, again presented in an utterly sensationalized classless manner, and all based on the reporting of others. So to me, that’s The Wrap. Now, The Wrap is writing that Nikki Finke has been fired, and I don’t believe it for a moment. Nobody fires Nikki Finke. I was copied on this email that Jay Penske wrote to Wrap editrix Sharon Waxman: “Sharon, your story isn’t true and all of the ‘facts’ that you mention are completely erroneous.” As for me, I can only say this: Nikki convinced me to leave Daily Variety after 20 years, and it was the right move and I have never enjoyed collaborating with a journalist more than I have with her. I love what the reporters and editors here have built here with her guidance, it feels memorable and important, and I think we have a lot more to say and do together. Internal stuff happens from time to time and it gets worked out, despite the sensationalized reporting that amounts to wishful thinking on the part of The Wrap, which couldn’t carry Deadline’s jockstrap.

Here is an official response just sent internally:

Dear PMC Team,

As you may be aware, Sharon Waxman at TheWrap has just published a libelous, false, and defamatory story on her blog, in which she claims amongst other things that PMC has fired Nikki Finke from Deadline.

This is a complete fabrication, with not an ounce of truth to it. Just to be clear, Nikki Finke has a multi-year contract with the Company, and it is the Company’s absolute intention to continue its obligations under the agreement.

It is sad when a rival business feels the need to fabricate stories to create traffic and notoriety. Due to the defamatory and disparaging nature of some of the completely innaccurate statements made by Waxman, PMC has turned this matter over to our attorneys. Contact me with any questions.


Lauren Gullion
Head of Communications–PMC

Comments (93)

  • No offense but that letter leaves out the key issue here. Will Nikki be writing anymore here, or, will she be on “gardening leave” while the time runs out on her contract? The text above just says she wasn’t fired, which can often be a mere technicality when someone is pushed out of a position in other ways.

    Comment by X — Sunday June 2, 2013 @ 7:52pm PDT  
    • Toldja!!

      Comment by Anonymous — Sunday June 2, 2013 @ 9:45pm PDT  
    • Beyond her weekly box office posts, I don’t see as many of Nikki’s impassioned write-ups as I used to. Anyone out there remember her juicy attacks on Ben Silverman, Jeff Zucker, and other bigwigs? Even when you think she’s going too far, it can be a lot more entertaining than most movies. I haven’t seen those kinds of posts in a while. I always figured it meant she was devoting more time to the behind-the-scenes work to expand Deadline since Penske took over. The addition of Fleming, Andreeva, etc. has been fantastic, but sometimes I miss seeing more of Nikki’s unhinged take on this industry.

      Comment by Reggie Van Luster — Sunday June 2, 2013 @ 11:29pm PDT  
      • Don’t forget when she “Live-Snark’s” an Awards Show.

        Comment by JK — Monday June 3, 2013 @ 3:36am PDT  
      • I would miss Nikki terribly…here’s the only place we get an honest POV! We can’t let her “garden”…tell her you love her and she’s too young, vibrant, with so much to say…she can’t roll over!

        Comment by Sondra — Saturday June 8, 2013 @ 2:40pm PDT  
    • absolutely agree with you!! Wait and see, in a couple of months, Nikki will say she’s off to get rest or that she’s taking up a more behind-the-scenes role. Until her contract is up, which is next year.

      Comment by nina — Monday June 3, 2013 @ 3:07am PDT  
    • Non denial denial.

      WHY didn’t Nikki write a response?

      Comment by DJT — Monday June 3, 2013 @ 3:08am PDT  
  • Why would Sharon risk a big lawsuit for libel? Is she that jealous?
    I love Nikki and she founded Deadline so I hope she sticks with it but if Penske really wants to fire her he can do that he bought this site.

    Comment by Save Nikki Finke! — Sunday June 2, 2013 @ 7:54pm PDT  
  • The Wrap is like some sort of copy machine. Ewwww.

    Comment by XYZ — Sunday June 2, 2013 @ 7:55pm PDT  
  • I love Nikki and i think she is the best part of the internets. She’s funny, honest and smart. She has great taste and I love reading her Oscar updates.

    Thank G-d she’s not leaving and I look forward to many more years of reading her site.

    Comment by Romeo — Sunday June 2, 2013 @ 7:56pm PDT  
    • They’d better not fire her, if they do most readers will leave the ship with her. All she has to do is set up another website (I guess with her connections it shouldn’t be an issue) and kick Deadline’s ass!

      Nikki Finke doesn’t need Deadline but Deadline sure needs Nikki!

      Comment by Christophe — Monday June 3, 2013 @ 5:06am PDT  
  • Nikki,

    Honestly, this must get a little annoying after awhile.
    However, on the other hand, as The Wrap seems to be suffering from a massive and ongoing, inferiority complex hanks to your skills, at the end of day their utter lameness does takes a comedic turn.

    (walks away giggling.)

    Comment by Bonnie Russell — Sunday June 2, 2013 @ 7:56pm PDT  
  • So is everything business as usual?

    Comment by Alex — Sunday June 2, 2013 @ 7:57pm PDT  
  • No offense Deadline, but she wouldn’t be missed that much if she was actually canned. She’s not bigger than this blog. Nobody is.

    I wouldn’t be shocked if her “multi-year contract” wasn’t renewed when it comes up.

    Please don’t sue me.

    Comment by Dave Miami — Sunday June 2, 2013 @ 7:59pm PDT  
    • without Nikki, deadline would be ‘variety’ or ‘hollywood reporter’ – another boring, toothless copy machine for press releases trying to hawk handbags. yawn. without Nikki, the traffic to this site will slow to a crawl. no-one else comes close to having the balls she has when it comes to nailing the truth (though she sometimes displays bias). Mike is showing small signs of improvement, i have to say.

      Comment by Anonymous — Sunday June 2, 2013 @ 9:14pm PDT  
  • Wow this is getting out of hand and funnier.

    Comment by Ida — Sunday June 2, 2013 @ 7:59pm PDT  
  • Holy shit. There is not enough popcorn in the world for what Nikki’s response to this will be.

    Comment by Michelle — Sunday June 2, 2013 @ 8:04pm PDT  
  • Mrowr! Ffffft!

    Comment by rfk — Sunday June 2, 2013 @ 8:05pm PDT  
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