Morning Media Newsfeed: Bob Simon Killed | Malone Joins Lionsgate Board

60 Minutes correspondent Bob Simon killed in car crash. John Malone takes seat on Lionsgate board. These stories and more in today's Morning Media Newsfeed

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Bob Simon, 60 Minutes Correspondent, Killed in Crash on West Side Highway (New York Daily News)
60 Minutes correspondent Bob Simon was killed in a car crash on the West Side Highway in Manhattan on Wednesday night, sources said. The 73-year-old reporter was a passenger in a livery cab traveling south on 12th Avenue at W. 30th Street when it rear-ended a Mercedes-Benz driven by a 23-year-old man and then slammed into a median around 6:45 p.m., a police source said. TVNewser Simon reported for 60 Minutes this past weekend profiling Selma director Ava DuVernay. Mediaite Simon, who joined the network in 1967, was a longtime correspondent for 60 Minutes whose career spanned more than five decades. In 1991, while covering the Gulf War in Iraq, he was captured and imprisoned for 40 days. THR Simon won 27 Emmys for covering major stories including The Vietnam War, violence in Northern Ireland from 1969-1971, The Gulf War and The Olympics. In 1991, he spent 40 days in an Iraqi prison alongside three other members of the CBS News team, and turned the experience into the 1992 book Forty Days. Variety The New York native worked at 60 Minutes for nearly 20 years, where he won a total of six Emmy awards, most recently in 2012 for his work on the segment “Joy in The Congo.” Simon also won a Peabody award for international reporting on CBS News.

John Malone Takes Stake, Board Seat at Lionsgate (NYT / DealBook)
John C. Malone rarely strikes straightforward transactions. And his deal to take a seat on the board of the film studio Lionsgate is no exception. Lionsgate announced on Wednesday that Malone, the billionaire who controls the Liberty empire of media and telecommunications businesses, would swap stock in the Starz cable channel for Lionsgate shares and a board seat. THR Lionsgate unveiled a stock exchange deal with affiliates of Malone that will see the mini-studio exchange 3.43 percent of its common stock for 4.51 percent of stock in Starz. Lionsgate’s stake will carry 14.5 percent of the voting power at Starz. Malone will remain Starz’s largest voting shareholder, holding around 6.1 percent of equity and around 32.1 percent of the voting power. Variety It’s possible that Malone could end up making a play for Lionsgate or the studio behind The Hunger Games and Divergent could try to take control of Starz, a collection of 13 cable channels. Both possibilities have been speculated about for some time, although analysts caution that the media companies are still just dating. Deadline The terms suggest that Lionsgate puts a $140 million price on its 4.5 percent of Starz, Stifel analyst Benjamin Mogil says. “At first blush, this deal likely bodes well for Lionsgate’s TV production segment as Starz has been ramping up its original programming slate,” he says. Lionsgate shares surged 7.4 percent Wednesday morning, with Starz up 3.4 percent.

Netflix Pulls House of Cards Season 3 After Leak (THR)
The third season of House of Cards debuted early on Netflix Wednesday afternoon, becoming fully available for viewing, but was pulled minutes later. Variety A spokesman for Netflix called it a technical error. “Due to a technical glitch some Underwood fans got a sneak peak,” Cliff Edwards told Variety. “He’ll be back on Netflix on Feb 27. #no spoilers.” In a tongue-in-cheek tweet, the House of Cards Twitter handle characterized the upload as a “leak”: “This is Washington. There’s always a leak. All 13 episodes will launch Feb. 27.” Deadline According to user accounts, 10 episodes from Season 3 briefly were made available. The number of episodes created confusion, prompting Netflix to tweet that the new season will consist of 13 episodes. Mashable “President Underwood fights to secure his legacy,” Netflix says in the new season’s description. “Claire wants more than being First Lady. The biggest threat they face is contending with each other.”