Show Business: The Movie TV Hates and Loves

In Los Angeles, network executives watching a screening of the movie were on the edge of their seats, almost clawing at the armrests with indignation. In New York City, the film was a three-martini lunch topic along Sixth Avenue —"Network Row"—and NBC angrily barred Director Sidney Lumet from a screening of one of its own TV movies. "It's a piece of crap," huffed an NBC vice president. "It had nothing to do with our business." ABC's Barbara Walters was more delicate. She said that while the movie was entertaining, she was afraid audiences would think the movie was not satire but...

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