Rupert Murdoch Not Going To Let The Strike Ruin His Xmas Party Plans

· Tom Cruise's career as a studio mogul is off to an inauspicious start, as poor box office results for Lions for Lambs suggest he hasn't quite cultivated the hitmaking instincts MGM believed he had when they handed him United Artists. Next up: Tom tries to kill Hitler! [Variety]
· Entertainment companies are facing a difficult choice as the year draws to a close: Should they continue on with their holiday party plans despite the presence of nearby striking writers, pelting them with cocktail weenies and cups of eggnog purchased with money they're saving on internet residual payments? Or should they shut down their galas, recognizing the economic hardships brought about by the work stoppage? For its part, Fox will continue on with a somewhat scaled-down version of the weenie-and-eggnog assault plans, as Rupert Murdoch was especially looking forward to drenching a couple of strikers himself. [THR]

· Sundance's high-profile "Premieres" titles have been revealed, including Jack Black/Mos Def/Michel Gondry project Be Kind Rewind and Alan Ball's directorial debut, Towelhead. [Variety]
· Running out of new episodes of its scripted series, NBC is cramming three extra hours of reality shows onto its early 2008 schedule, with American Gladiators, The Biggest Loser and 1 vs. 100 filling timeslot holes caused by the strike. "We're kicking off the New Year with a craptastic, writer-free bang!" crows NBC's head of alternative programming. [Variety]
· Cameron Diaz's Christmas wish is granted as Shrek the Halls puts up "socko" (translation: huge) Nielsens Wednesday night, ensuring that future generations of children will be spending the holidays with their favorite Santa-ogre. [Variety]