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6:55 AM ET, July 27, 2021

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 Top News: 
Brooks Barnes / New York Times:
Sources: Universal Pictures has teamed up with Peacock on a $400M deal for a new Exorcist trilogy  —  The deal, expected to be announced this week, is for more than $400 million and is a direct response to the streaming giants who are upending the film industry's economics.
Wall Street Journal:
NBC says the opening ceremony of Tokyo Olympics drew a combined audience of 17M across broadcast and streaming in the US, down ~36% from the 2016 Games  —  Tokyo's kickoff came a year late and without fans because of the Covid-19 pandemic  —  The kickoff of the Summer Olympics in Tokyo drew …
The Daily Beast:
Futurism, the tech and culture outlet previously owned by Singularity University, is acquired by Recurrent Ventures, which bought MEL magazine last month  —  The buyer, Recurrent Ventures, has recently scooped up other popular niche outlets like MEL, Popular Science, Outdoor Life, and more.
Prospect:
Alan Rusbridger, the former EIC of the Guardian, has been appointed as the next editor of monthly current affairs magazine Prospect  —  The former editor-in-chief of the Guardian, Alan Rusbridger, has been appointed the next editor of Prospect, the monthly magazine which is a must-read …
Milly Martin / Journalism.co.uk:
Tortoise, the slow news publication started in 2019, says it now has 110,000 members, with half of new members coming from member referrals  —  The member-centred approach at Tortoise helped readers to feel connected and empowered against the backdrop of loneliness and gloom
Max Fisher / New York Times:
Analysts and US officials say the disinformation-for-hire industry is booming, as influencers get approached by back-alley firms to spread falsehoods  —  Back-alley firms meddle in elections and promote falsehoods on behalf of clients who can claim deniability, escalating our era of unreality.
Theo Wayt / New York Post:
Now-deleted job posts for neighborhood watch app Citizen showed it offered to pay people $25/hour in NYC and LA to livestream crime scenes and other emergencies  —  Want to make $200 a day in New York City?  Rush to the scene of a murder, a three-alarm fire or a traffic accident — then pull out your phone and start shooting.
Lucas Shaw / Bloomberg:
How Joe and Anthony Russo turned franchise development into a science, creating universes of film, TV, and more for paid streaming services' growing appetites  —  Joe and Anthony Russo went from making movies in the Marvel Cinematic Universe to creating their own worlds.  Amazon's Citadel will test their vision.
Discussion: @lucas_shaw and @lucas_shaw
 
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 More News: 
Alan Rusbridger / Daily Mail:
A new official secrets law proposed by UK government, led by the ex-journalist Boris Johnson, aims to criminalize journalism and undermine freedom of the media
Helen Davidson / The Guardian:
Foreign journalists, including from LA Times, DW, and BBC, have faced hostile confrontations in the streets while reporting on the aftermath of China's floods
 Earlier Picks: 
The Daily Beast:
Tanzina Vega, the host of a popular WNYC news show The Takeaway, leaves amid HR complaints against her; Melissa Harris Perry will take over as interim host
Helen Lewis / The Atlantic:
The rise of opinion and pushback on “objectivity” in US journalism may make politics a more common career path for journalists, like in the UK
Angela Fu / Poynter:
Analysis of 47 newsroom union units finds first contract negotiations average ~18 months and voluntary recognition doesn't seem to shorten negotiations