Thursday, January 20, 2022

Sponsors

Westport COVID-19 Cases Up 1, Deaths Unchanged

“We’re committed to moving forward with initiatives that keep testing available in the state to protect our residents, maintain the progress of our safe reopening, and get children back to school.”

“We’re committed to moving forward with initiatives that keep testing available in the state to protect our residents, maintain the progress of our safe reopening, and get children back to school.”

Wednesday, Aug. 19, 2020


Westport Town Offices, Schools, & Senior Center are closed.
10 a.m. – via Zoom – Westport Senior Center SWCAA Caregiver Support Group
Noon – 4 p.m. – MoCA Westport – “Helmut Lang: 41.1595° N, 73.3882° W”
2 p.m. – 6 p.m. – Westport Library – Open for limited services
7 p.m. – 646-876-9923 ID:  820 4794 6215 – Historic District Commission

Westport Senior Center YouTube Channel
Westport Library Event Calendar
Westport Library YouTube Page
Earthplace YouTube Channel
Virtual Westport Museum for History & Culture
See more events: Celebrate Westport Calendar

Kimberly C. Groglio, 61

For almost the next 20 years, while raising her own children and volunteering, Kim taught many happy preschoolers at the Darien Nature Center. She enjoyed her days there in the wonderful natural outdoor environment.

Kim was happiest spending time with her family in and around the water (or ocean) especially her favorite spots in Maine and Charleston, South Carolina. She loved to travel and was always planning the next trip.

She was an enthusiastic animal lover and always enjoyed rescuing cats throughout her life. She loved summer days at the beach, riding the waves and treating herself to favorite homemade ice creams.

Survivors, in addition to her husband and children include her sisters, Suzanne Nixon of Maine, Kristine Castay of Massachusetts, Kyle Smith of New Hampshire, their families, her parents and her in-laws.

Kim was a wonderful wife, mother, daughter, sister, colleague, teacher and friend. She will be missed by all those whose lives she touched. She and her family are forever grateful to those who stuck by her and helped during her deadly illness, including the excellent staff and friends at Whittingham Cancer Center.

A private celebration of life will be held at her favorite spot in Maine.

Donations in Kim’s memory may be made to Metavivor, an organization devoted to the advancement of research to find cures for Metastatic Breast Cancer, of which there are currently none, or the Metastatic Breast Cancer Project (a research collaborative between MIT’s Broad Institute and Harvard and MBC patients).

For almost the next 20 years, while raising her own children and volunteering, Kim taught many happy preschoolers at the Darien Nature Center. She enjoyed her days there in the wonderful natural outdoor environment.

Kim was happiest spending time with her family in and around the water (or ocean) especially her favorite spots in Maine and Charleston, South Carolina. She loved to travel and was always planning the next trip.

She was an enthusiastic animal lover and always enjoyed rescuing cats throughout her life. She loved summer days at the beach, riding the waves and treating herself to favorite homemade ice creams.

Survivors, in addition to her husband and children include her sisters, Suzanne Nixon of Maine, Kristine Castay of Massachusetts, Kyle Smith of New Hampshire, their families, her parents and her in-laws.

Kim was a wonderful wife, mother, daughter, sister, colleague, teacher and friend. She will be missed by all those whose lives she touched. She and her family are forever grateful to those who stuck by her and helped during her deadly illness, including the excellent staff and friends at Whittingham Cancer Center.

A private celebration of life will be held at her favorite spot in Maine.

Donations in Kim’s memory may be made to Metavivor, an organization devoted to the advancement of research to find cures for Metastatic Breast Cancer, of which there are currently none, or the Metastatic Breast Cancer Project (a research collaborative between MIT’s Broad Institute and Harvard and MBC patients).

Granger at the Movies: Tectonic Twists in the Movie Industry

Now “Mulan,” Disney’s live-action version of the original animated film, following a young woman in China who poses as a man to take her father’s place in the war against the Huns, will make its debut on Friday, Sept. 4.

To watch “Mulan” you will not only need a subscription to Disney Plus, but you’ll also have to pay an additional $30 to rent it; for this video-on-demand, you can either use the payment card you have on file or choose the option to pay with a different card. As long as you maintain your Disney Plus subscription, you only have to pay $30 once to watch it as many times as you like.

Originally, “Mulan” was projected to bring in more than $1 billion at the box-office, so Disney executives are eager to see what kind of money it will generate — both in film rentals and subscriber growth.

While some drive-in theaters have popped up, drawing eager moviegoers by showing popular older releases or independent, pre-Coronavirus films, how long they will continue to draw crowds depends on when the weather cools off.

On Aug. 20, AMC will reopen more than 100 U.S. theaters. The world’s largest movie chain is celebrating its centennial at 1920 prices — 15 cents on opening day — implementing new health and safety measures that include wearing masks, lowering theater capacity and upgrading ventilation systems.

In the long run perhaps the most significant change in the entire industry occurred late in July, when AMC Theaters and Universal agreed to shorten the theatrical ‘window’ (the length of time that a movie has to play in a theater). Previously, it was 90 days. Obviously, studios will keep their biggest blockbusters in theaters as long as they’re attracting customers.

But now, Universal can transfer its less-lucrative films to rental platforms, like iTunes or Amazon, after 17 days. Other studios, like Warner Bros. are moving some of its titles to digital-only exclusives, while Paramount and Sony are selling off a portion of their movies directly to Netflix and Amazon.

It’s a business model that’s never really been tried before. When Hollywood’s motion picture industry began, studios like Warner Bros, Paramount, Universal, 20th Century-Fox and M.G.M. owned their own theaters; they had complete control over their distribution of their films.

Then in 1948, an antitrust law banned this practice in what was called the Paramount Consent Decree, forcing the studios to sell off their theater chains, ending what was known as vertical integration. That soon gave birth to the multiplex.

Just recently, a New York judge granted the U.S. Justice Department’s motion to terminate the Paramount Consent Decree, meaning that studios could, once again, own their own movie theaters. In her 17-page opinion, US District Court Judge Analisa Torres explained that the possibility of studios colluding to shut out independent features or other theater chains seems unlikely.

Besides, Disney already owns the El Capitan Theater in Hollywood, where it plays its own movies, and Netflix owns Hollywood’s Egyptian Theater, along with Manhattan’s Paris Theater.

As a result, it seems inevitable that several of the major theatrical multiplex chains will probably go into bankruptcy and/or get smaller. They’ve already furloughed staff, applied for federal assistance and raised money through debt offerings, but they still have to pay rent and honor lease obligations.

Last-but-not-least, what will happen to the Academy Awards?

In the past, high-prestige movies launched in the fall festivals, hoping to get a good audience reaction, buyers and media recognition. Those that played well hired publicists and began their marketing campaigns, aimed at critic recognition which would, ultimately, lead to Oscar nominations.

But that’s all changed. Most film festivals, like Telluride and Comic-Con, have been canceled; others will be digital only.

When Academy has pushed back the Oscar telecast by two months — from Feb. 28 to April 25, 2021 — the Hollywood Foreign Press Association grabbed the Feb. 28 date for their 78th Golden Globes ceremony, hosted by Tina Fey and Amy Poehler.

The date changes extended the eligibility period, giving many films more time to finish production and reach audiences without sacrificing their chances for Oscar contention. Precedents for changing Oscar broadcasts include a flood delay in Los Angeles in 1938, the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. in 1968, and the attempted assassination of President Ronald Reagan in 1981.

But the motion picture industry has never suffered anything like this 2020 pandemic. Even during the 1918 Spanish Flu, Hollywood production continued and most theaters remained open.

One can only wonder what will happen next …


Susan Granger

(Editor’s Note: Westport resident Susan Granger grew up in Hollywood, studied journalism with Pierre Salinger at Mills College, and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with highest honors in journalism. In addition to writing for newspapers and magazines, she has been on radio/television as an anchorwoman and movie/drama critic for many years. See her reviews at www.susangranger.com.)

Now “Mulan,” Disney’s live-action version of the original animated film, following a young woman in China who poses as a man to take her father’s place in the war against the Huns, will make its debut on Friday, Sept. 4.

To watch “Mulan” you will not only need a subscription to Disney Plus, but you’ll also have to pay an additional $30 to rent it; for this video-on-demand, you can either use the payment card you have on file or choose the option to pay with a different card. As long as you maintain your Disney Plus subscription, you only have to pay $30 once to watch it as many times as you like.

Originally, “Mulan” was projected to bring in more than $1 billion at the box-office, so Disney executives are eager to see what kind of money it will generate — both in film rentals and subscriber growth.

While some drive-in theaters have popped up, drawing eager moviegoers by showing popular older releases or independent, pre-Coronavirus films, how long they will continue to draw crowds depends on when the weather cools off.

On Aug. 20, AMC will reopen more than 100 U.S. theaters. The world’s largest movie chain is celebrating its centennial at 1920 prices — 15 cents on opening day — implementing new health and safety measures that include wearing masks, lowering theater capacity and upgrading ventilation systems.

In the long run perhaps the most significant change in the entire industry occurred late in July, when AMC Theaters and Universal agreed to shorten the theatrical ‘window’ (the length of time that a movie has to play in a theater). Previously, it was 90 days. Obviously, studios will keep their biggest blockbusters in theaters as long as they’re attracting customers.

But now, Universal can transfer its less-lucrative films to rental platforms, like iTunes or Amazon, after 17 days. Other studios, like Warner Bros. are moving some of its titles to digital-only exclusives, while Paramount and Sony are selling off a portion of their movies directly to Netflix and Amazon.

It’s a business model that’s never really been tried before. When Hollywood’s motion picture industry began, studios like Warner Bros, Paramount, Universal, 20th Century-Fox and M.G.M. owned their own theaters; they had complete control over their distribution of their films.

Then in 1948, an antitrust law banned this practice in what was called the Paramount Consent Decree, forcing the studios to sell off their theater chains, ending what was known as vertical integration. That soon gave birth to the multiplex.

Just recently, a New York judge granted the U.S. Justice Department’s motion to terminate the Paramount Consent Decree, meaning that studios could, once again, own their own movie theaters. In her 17-page opinion, US District Court Judge Analisa Torres explained that the possibility of studios colluding to shut out independent features or other theater chains seems unlikely.

Besides, Disney already owns the El Capitan Theater in Hollywood, where it plays its own movies, and Netflix owns Hollywood’s Egyptian Theater, along with Manhattan’s Paris Theater.

As a result, it seems inevitable that several of the major theatrical multiplex chains will probably go into bankruptcy and/or get smaller. They’ve already furloughed staff, applied for federal assistance and raised money through debt offerings, but they still have to pay rent and honor lease obligations.

Last-but-not-least, what will happen to the Academy Awards?

In the past, high-prestige movies launched in the fall festivals, hoping to get a good audience reaction, buyers and media recognition. Those that played well hired publicists and began their marketing campaigns, aimed at critic recognition which would, ultimately, lead to Oscar nominations.

But that’s all changed. Most film festivals, like Telluride and Comic-Con, have been canceled; others will be digital only.

When Academy has pushed back the Oscar telecast by two months — from Feb. 28 to April 25, 2021 — the Hollywood Foreign Press Association grabbed the Feb. 28 date for their 78th Golden Globes ceremony, hosted by Tina Fey and Amy Poehler.

The date changes extended the eligibility period, giving many films more time to finish production and reach audiences without sacrificing their chances for Oscar contention. Precedents for changing Oscar broadcasts include a flood delay in Los Angeles in 1938, the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. in 1968, and the attempted assassination of President Ronald Reagan in 1981.

But the motion picture industry has never suffered anything like this 2020 pandemic. Even during the 1918 Spanish Flu, Hollywood production continued and most theaters remained open.

One can only wonder what will happen next …


Susan Granger

(Editor’s Note: Westport resident Susan Granger grew up in Hollywood, studied journalism with Pierre Salinger at Mills College, and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with highest honors in journalism. In addition to writing for newspapers and magazines, she has been on radio/television as an anchorwoman and movie/drama critic for many years. See her reviews at www.susangranger.com.)

Diana W. Dunev, 46

A private mass of Christian Burial will take place Friday, Aug. 21 at 10 a.m. at the Church of the Assumption, 98 Riverside Ave., Westport. The Mass will be available for viewing by live-stream by visiting (http://www.AssumptionWestport.org).

A private mass of Christian Burial will take place Friday, Aug. 21 at 10 a.m. at the Church of the Assumption, 98 Riverside Ave., Westport. The Mass will be available for viewing by live-stream by visiting (http://www.AssumptionWestport.org).

Charles J. Kashetta, Sr., 95

He is survived by his sons Charles, Jr., Michael, Thomas (Sarah), and daughter-in-law Deirdre. He was predeceased by his son William. Grandchildren David, Daniel, Madison, Matthew, Olivia, three great grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.

A service will be held at a later date at the South Florida National Cemetery.

Donations may be made in his honor to the Disabled American Veterans dav.org or the Westport VFW Post 399.

He is survived by his sons Charles, Jr., Michael, Thomas (Sarah), and daughter-in-law Deirdre. He was predeceased by his son William. Grandchildren David, Daniel, Madison, Matthew, Olivia, three great grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.

A service will be held at a later date at the South Florida National Cemetery.

Donations may be made in his honor to the Disabled American Veterans dav.org or the Westport VFW Post 399.

Diane W. Cussimano, 75

Diane’s ashes were scattered by airplane over the Long Island Sound on July 18.

A special thank you and deep appreciation to Tina, caregiver at Griswold Home Care, whose kind and attentive care over the years was quite remarkable.

Contributions in memory of Diane may be made to the Huntington’s Disease Society of America.

Diane’s ashes were scattered by airplane over the Long Island Sound on July 18.

A special thank you and deep appreciation to Tina, caregiver at Griswold Home Care, whose kind and attentive care over the years was quite remarkable.

Contributions in memory of Diane may be made to the Huntington’s Disease Society of America.

Hybrid Plan Official, but Important Elementary Decision Remains

Many working parents said having to switch each week would be confusing and make it near impossible to find reliable child care.

To seek a solution, Scarice said he and his administration are going to survey parents over the next three days, and that will probably decide which plan they go with.

“We want kids for two hours and 45 minutes a day … We want them in a.m. and p.m.,” he said, but it didn’t matter to school officials how they arranged alternating mornings and afternoons among families.

“We will conduct a parent survey … We will just have the lingering question to answer of how to make it equitable,” he said.

“Is this a strict referendum?” asked BOE member Lee Goldstein. “Whatever gets the most votes — is what we’re doing?”

She said it was impossible to compare the problems that will face individual families with each respective scenario.

Chair Candice Savin couldn’t directly answer her question, but suggested, “There may be an obvious preference in the community” which the survey would reveal.

No one said what they would do if the results were split.

Comments poured in so fast Monday night following the discussion and preceding the vote that John Bayers, director of human resources and general administration, could hardly keep up with reading them aloud.

They ranged from several that kindly acknowledged the difficulty of achieving equity, to one that called the proceedings “the biggest waste of time, taxes and resources I’ve ever seen.”

Probably the two most noteworthy emails received by the BOE came from “Amanda Huggenkiss” and “I. M. Madnow,” but the latter was deemed too inappropriate to read aloud.

Many working parents said having to switch each week would be confusing and make it near impossible to find reliable child care.

To seek a solution, Scarice said he and his administration are going to survey parents over the next three days, and that will probably decide which plan they go with.

“We want kids for two hours and 45 minutes a day … We want them in a.m. and p.m.,” he said, but it didn’t matter to school officials how they arranged alternating mornings and afternoons among families.

“We will conduct a parent survey … We will just have the lingering question to answer of how to make it equitable,” he said.

“Is this a strict referendum?” asked BOE member Lee Goldstein. “Whatever gets the most votes — is what we’re doing?”

She said it was impossible to compare the problems that will face individual families with each respective scenario.

Chair Candice Savin couldn’t directly answer her question, but suggested, “There may be an obvious preference in the community” which the survey would reveal.

No one said what they would do if the results were split.

Comments poured in so fast Monday night following the discussion and preceding the vote that John Bayers, director of human resources and general administration, could hardly keep up with reading them aloud.

They ranged from several that kindly acknowledged the difficulty of achieving equity, to one that called the proceedings “the biggest waste of time, taxes and resources I’ve ever seen.”

Probably the two most noteworthy emails received by the BOE came from “Amanda Huggenkiss” and “I. M. Madnow,” but the latter was deemed too inappropriate to read aloud.