A Hollywood legend returned from a long absence with guns blazing Thursday.
Late last year, infamous columnist Nikki Finke parted ways with the site she founded, Deadline Hollywood. For months, Finke, who is known for rarely being photographed and for publishing no-holds-barred, gossipy scoops that terrify studio executives, remained silent as rumors swirled of a potential reconciliation with her old bosses along with reports they had her under a contract that would prevent her from working anywhere else until 2016.
Finke first began to stir last month when she posted a note on her personal website indicating the webpage would go "live" on June 2. However, when that date came and went with nothing but a message from Finke blaming delays on "late-breaking developments," it seemed her absence from Tinseltown might really last.
However, Finke finally returned Thursday rising from the ashes like a foul-mouthed phoenix with an R-rated verbal barrage slamming her former colleagues, her competitors, the Hollywood power structure, and her own commenters.
Finke began her glorious return with a note on her personal site that included an explanation of her exile from Tinseltown.
"I’m posting on my own website after sitting out my non-compete for 7 soul-crushing months. And that’s why I designed my new logo to look the way it does – gritty and bullet-riddled with a fiery palm tree shooting sparks into the night sky more dramatically than any fancy klieg light," Finke explained. "Let those wimpy Hollywood websites do glossy or garish or rewrite press releases or post stenography instead of sturm und drang. I’m all about this town’s gritty reality exposed through the harsh glare of my reporting."
She went on to offer some choice words for those other "wimpy Hollywood websites." Armed with an arsenal of incredible puns, Finke doled out sick burns to the current team at Deadline Hollywood and her other major competitors. She referred to Deadline, Variety, The Wrap, and The Hollywood Reporter as "Deadlame," "Valiety," "The Hollywood Unreported," and "The Crap."
Finke had especially harsh words for Deadline. She promised she would have "much more to say over the next few days about Little Lord Fauntleroy and Mike Phlegming," an apparent reference to Penske Corporation heir Jay Penske, who purchased Deadline from her in 2009, and the site's film editor, Mike Fleming. Finke did not respond to a request from Business Insider asking to clarify the references. She wrote that she would delay discussing them because, "I don’t fuck on the first date."
In addition to trashing the competition and promising to be the "cruel and quirky alternative," Finke outlined "a few rules of the road" for her readers.
"Just like I can’t be silenced or intimidated here, your comments won’t get sanitized. (Even the inevitable four-letter words about my genitals.) I’ll monitor your comments but never alter them," she said.
Overall, Finke said her "new website is not for the easily offended or ridiculously naïve." That seems abundantly clear.
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