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'Smaug' alert! Time Warner gets lean and mean. RIP Peter O'Toole.

After the coffee. Before arranging to have Aloe Blaac's "The Man" played every time I enter the office.

The Skinny: Yes, my beloved Redskins lost again, but at least we went down fighting. Now about that "Homeland" season finale: Well, if you can't say anything nice... I don't want to spoil it for anyone but a Twitter pal noted that the climatic moment looked like it was right out of the camp classic "Zorro: The Gay Blade." Monday's roundup includes the box office recap and a look at the holiday box office overall. Also, a deep dive into Time Warner and appreciations of Peter O'Toole.

The Daily Dose: Sunday morning news shows aren't usually a place where one sees movie ads. But 20th Century Fox is apparently sparing no outlet for "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty." An ad for the Ben Stiller movie showed up on "Media Buzz," the media analysis show that airs on Fox News. It looked out of place with all the ads for pharmaceuticals and would seem to indicate that the studio thinks its best bet is with an older audience curious to see Hollywood's interpretation of the James Thurber classic.

"Smaug" alert! "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug" took in about $74 million in its debut weekend, a big number but still a little under industry projections. Coming in second was "Frozen," which made an additional $22.2 million. The other new movie opening wide was "Tyler Perry's "A Madea Christmas." That also came in under expectations, taking in $16 million. Doing well in limited release was "American Hustle." Box-office recaps from the Los Angeles Times and the Hollywood Reporter

Holiday watching. There will be a slew of movies battling it out at the box office during the rest of the month. The Wall Street Journal says 12 major movies are opening, including "Anchorman 2," "Ronin 47" and "The Wolf of Wall Street." There are two reasons for the glut. A lot of Oscar hopefuls ("American Hustle," "The Wolf of Wall Street") are released this month as are blockbusters looking to capitalize on Christmas vacation. In other words, I have no excuse if I get bored during the holidays. More on the holiday box office from the Wall Street Journal.

Less is more. Over the past six years, Time Warner Chief Executive Jeff Bewkes has dismantled much of the media giant. At the same time, profits have grown and the stock price has soared. Next to go is publishing arm Time Inc. Meanwhile, Warner Bros., HBO and Turner dominate their respective businesses. Internally, Bewkes has new leadership at those key units. A look at the new Time Warner from the Los Angeles Times.

We don't need no stinking ratings. Al Jazeera America, the news channel that launched earlier this year, isn't exactly setting the world on fire. Whether it is the lack of size or the old perception that Al Jazeera has an anti-American bias, viewers are not embracing the channel. Fortunately for Al Jazeera, it has deep enough pockets and a commitment to old-school news (versus talking heads and car chases) that it can stick to its vision. More on Al Jazeera America from BuzzFeed.

Show me the money. Hollywood talent agency WME was expected to submit the biggest bid for IMG, a sports marketing and representation firm. According to the New York Times, WME's bid -- due last Friday -- was north of $2 billion. Also bidding were Peter Chernin's investment company and talent agency ICM. The New York Post notes that all the bids were below the $2.7 billion minimum IMG was seeking.

Inside the Los Angeles Times: Legendary actor Peter O'Toole died at the age of 81. An appreciation of O'Toole from Kenneth Turan. Chris Lee spends a fun afternoon with "Her" star Joaquin Phoenix. A look at advertising executive Carisa Bianchi.

Follow me on Twitter because I'm the man. @JBFlint.


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