Hollywood Crackpot of the Month: David Poland
David Poland upgraded to “Hollywood Crackpot of the Year”
On file at the Internal Revenue Service is a 2006 tax document submitted by the Broadcast Film Critics Association, a non-profit group that each year hosts the Critics Choice Awards on TV. Many of the country’s leading TV and radio critics are members.
In the IRS file, the BFCA lists a $27,600 interest-free loan to David Poland’s MCN (Movie City News). The date of the note is Jan. 21, 2005. [Click here to view the IRS documents]
Poland said MCN never received a loan from the broadcast critics. Joey Berlin, who heads the organization, said Poland paid back the money in full with two checks. There is no record in the subsequent year’s tax files that shows any money being repaid by Movie City News.
What’s going on?
Berlin said the “loan” may have been inaccurately reported on the IRS Form 990, which all nonprofits are required to submit each year. “What happened was, about five years ago we did the ‘Ten Best Fest,’” Berlin said. “We thought it would be a great idea to screen all the Critics Choice nominees for best picture 10 days leading up to the show. It worked out well, but we got a sense from the studios that they didn’t really love doing it.”
Berlin said the screenings were held at the Pacific Design Center. “In renting the theater, we had made arrangements with the PDC to do it again the next year,” he explained. Since Poland had his own screening series, Berlin said, the critics group decided to let him take over the theater for his own screenings the second year.
“We really didn’t give him any money,” Berlin said. “We let him assume the asset we had, the rent of the theater. We didn’t cut a check to him. He paid it back in two checks. I remember that was something we carried over (as a projected uncollected debt). I had it in the budget for 2006. It doesn’t appear after that. It took David a while to pay us back.”
HollywoodNews could find no specific reference in the 2007 IRS Form 990 showing that Movie City News repaid the nonprofit group. “David is David,” Berlin said, “but as far as I’m concerned he remains an honorable and trustworthy man.”
Poland told HollywoodNews neither he nor MCN received a loan from the broadcast film critics. “It never happened,” Poland said. “Movie City News never got anything from the Broadcast Film Critics. They did a film festival I was party to,” he recalled. “I helped the BFCA put together (the festival) at the Pacific Design Center. They secured space and then decided they didn’t want to proceed. I did want to proceed.” He added, “The entire thing was repaid.”
There are few more controversial figures in the Hollywood blogosphere than David Poland. He seems to relish conflict and has an opinion about everything. He gets a Crackpot Rating of 5 because, well, because he’s David Poland. “He’s just not a nice guy,” one showbiz blogger told HollywoodNews. “He’s a very arrogant, egotistical guy” If you look at The Hot Blog, he repeatedly focuses on the business side of the industry. I don’t know what his qualifications are. I think he just pretends he knows everyone. It’s a house built on cards. He survives based on the impression he’s created.”
“I don’t always agree with David,” said a Hollywood publicist. “Sometimes I’m ready to kill him because David is David, but this is a business. None of them are pretending to any objectivity.”
DAVID POLAND – MOVIE CITY NEWS
CRACKPOT RATING: 5 – Extreme Blogaholic
Excerpted from “Hollywood Blogger Wars Part 2: Crackpot Ratings – Nikki Finke, Sharon Waxman, David Poland, Jeffrey Wells…” by Robert W. Welkos
HollywoodNews’ Crackpot Ratings: 5=Extreme Blogaholic; 4=Media Blogaholic; 3=So-So Blogaholic; 2=Reel Blogaholic; 1=Empress Blogaholic: