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LA Times in bed with Black Dahlia?

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How LA Observed gets these LA Times internal memos is beyond us, but we love it. Today Kevin Roderick printed an email whose subject line was: "The Times' Innovative Pre-Awareness Promotional Campaign for 'The Black Dahlia'."

Now we realize the times they are a-changing but we feel a little creeped out with our local paper getting all giddy about being in bed with a movie studio over a summer movie. Isn't the job of the paper to review the films objectively, and let the studios worry about promotion?

From the email:

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To help promote the September 15 release of "The Black Dahlia," the Los Angeles Times and Universal Pictures launched the first integrated print, online and out-of-home campaign using actual news stories - pulled from the Los Angeles Times archives - about the notorious and still unsolved "Black Dahlia" murder that stunned Los Angeles in 1947. The Los Angeles Times, which maintains the most extensive archive of stories about the case, re-opened its Black Dahlia archive almost 60 years after the murder of aspiring actress Betty Ann Short, A.K.A, The Black Dahlia.

So are they doing this to show off their 50 reports on the case? And if so, shouldn't all archives of unsolved mysteries be "re-opened" in the name of public safety?
Are we to believe that the Times will be as excited to work with the studio who makes the OJ & Nicole film? Surely they have the biggest archive of news stories from that unsolved murder.

Surely they don't feel comfortable with a double-murderer running around free. And if they, like many, believe that OJ did it, then prove it and write it up. Surely thats a story that woud get read, and if it were true, it would probably get turned into a movie, and that movie would be ok for a paper to get giddy about.

We mean no disrespect to either the studio or the paper, we just question the practice of a summer movie and the largest paper west of the Mississip being in cahoots with Hollywood as Hollywood continues to fixate on Hollywood.

Certainly the Times has an extensive cadre of Charles Bukowski stories in their archive, why was there no microsite for Factotum?

Cross-promotion of skateboarding shoes and soft drinks is one thing, but LAist believes that if a studio wants to take out a bunch of full page ads in the papers, fine, but the papers should sorta stick to reporting on news and worry less about ways to unlock archives that probably should all be unlocked anyway.

Call us old-fashioned.

top photo by Buttersweet via flickr

photo of Scarlett Johansson at the Venice Film Fest in Italy by Luca Bruno via AP

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