The old guard stood down as maverick music, film and cable TV projects ascended - East Valley Tribune: Get Out

The old guard stood down as maverick music, film and cable TV projects ascended

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Posted: Sunday, December 26, 2004 8:05 am | Updated: 4:31 pm, Thu Oct 6, 2011.

December 26, 2004

Consider 2004 a victory for the little guy, a year when the best in entertainment — from movies to television to music — came not from the big studios and major networks, but often in spite of them.

With the exception of Pixar’s ‘‘The Incredibles,’’ most of the year’s best movies were made by documentarians (Michael Moore’s ‘‘Fahrenheit 9/11’’), independent studios (‘‘Touching the Void’’) or boutique subsidiaries, such as Fox Searchlight (‘‘Sideways’’) or Universal’s Focus (‘‘Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind’’).

And then, of course, there was Mel Gibson’s ‘‘The Passion of the Christ,’’ rejected by every studio before he financed it himself and raked in $370 million at the box office in the United States alone.

In television, HBO’s mob hit ‘‘The Sopranos’’ became the first cable show to win the Emmy for best drama. And with a lineup that also included ‘‘Sex and the City,’’ ‘‘Six Feet Under,’’ ‘‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’’ and ‘‘Deadwood,’’ HBO rolled to 124 Emmy nominations — nearly as many as the 173 of the four major broadcast networks combined.

In music, all the major record labels turned down country music veteran Loretta Lynn’s idea for a Jack White-produced album. So she paid for it herself, and the result — ‘‘Van Lear Rose’’ — landed near the top of nearly every music critic’s best-of-2004 list.

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