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Buffett will rake in dough on casinoville

Nevada gambling regulators have approved a license that will let singer-songwriter Jimmy Buffett share in the gambling revenues from his Margaritaville casino in Las Vegas.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports the Nevada Gaming Commission unanimously approved a gambling license Thursday for Palm Beach, Fla.-based Margaritaville Holdings and its famous chairman Buffett.

The casino, located inside the Flamingo on the Las Vegas Strip, opened in October. Buffett has had a presence in Sin City since 2003 through his Margaritaville restaurant.

Buffett told commissioners he never imagined the laid-back beach tune he released in 1977 would eventually become a valuable piece of intellectual property.

NBC renews ‘Smash’ for next season

NBC’s theatrical drama “Smash,” which follows the production of a musical about the life of Marilyn Monroe, has been renewed for a second season.

“Smash” made its debut in early February and is averaging about 7.7 million viewers. It is the network’s highest-rated drama among adults 18-49 and attracts a desirable audience for advertisers.

The show’s stars include Debra Messing, Katharine McPhee and Jack Davenport.

Given that the show’s producers include Steven Spielberg and that it is a pet project of NBC Entertainment chief Bob Greenblatt, the renewal was not really a surprise.

Layoffs, new leadership at OWN

Oprah Winfrey and Discovery – the cable programming giant that has already pumped over $300 million into the struggling startup – have in the last several days announced a round of layoffs, a new executive structure and the cancellation of the pricey and low-rated talk show starring Rosie O’Donnell.

Now a top media analyst casts more clouds on OWN. In a report released Wednesday, analyst Derek Baine of influential consulting firm SNL Kagan projected that OWN could lose $142.9 million in 2012.

A top Discovery executive questioned the validity of Baine’s report.

“The report is riddled with inaccuracies and bad information,” said Discovery Senior Executive Vice President David Leavy. “The venture is on more solid ground with more business momentum than ever before.”

The birthday bunch

Comedian Marty Allen is 90. Sir Roger Bannister, the runner who broke the 4-minute mile in 1954, is 83. Movie director Mark Rydell is 78. Singer Chaka Khan is 59. Actress Catherine Keener is 53. Actress Keri Russell is 36.


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