George C. Scott

Denny Hatch is the author of six books on marketing and four novels, and is a direct marketing writer, designer and consultant. His latest book is “Write Everything Right!” Visit him at dennyhatch.com.

Producer Pierre-Ange Le Gogam and mogul Harvey Weinstein are having a battle royal of the new biopic about Grace Kelly scheduled for a first-night showing at the Cannes film festival. The star, Kelly look-alike Nicole Kidman was scheduled to fly in from Australia to lend her presence. Weinstein, who put up the money, went ballistic. The New York Times story by Michel Cieply never give a reason for the stinky-poo.

We signed up for a six-day cruise from New York to Nassau, Bahamas, over Labor Day. Normally we are not cruise people unless the itinerary is fascinating. But a good offer came from Norwegian Cruise Line, and my wife, Peggy, took it. We knew it would be hurricane season, but we figured if a storm hit, the ship would go somewhere else. We could take a train to New York and avoid the hassle of flying (for a change).

On Aug. 13 and 14 we received a phone call and e-mail announcing a revision in the itinerary:

Due to unscheduled maintenance on the ship's propulsion system, Norwegian Spirit will cancel the call to Grand Bahama Island, Bahamas and instead overnight in Nassau, Bahamas. Please be assured that our technical issue in no way impacts the safe operation of the vessel.

We were given the option of canceling the cruise with no penalty. Those who opted to remain would receive a $50-per-cabin credit for any expenditure on shipboard excluding service charges and casino. OK.

On Aug. 29, two days before we sailed, word came via phone and e-mail that Tropical Storm Hanna was headed for the Bahamas and we would be detoured to Bermuda. OK.

What does this have to do with PR, pricing and marketing?

Plenty.

“Whoever you are, I have always depended on the kindness of strangers.” —Blanche DuBois, Tennessee Williams’s, “A Streetcar Named Desire.” “Dreamgirls” is boffo. My wife, Peggy, and I saw it in a neighborhood movie house where the audience is often restless, rattles popcorn bags and talks back to the screen. For the entire duration of this film the theater was dead silent. At the end of the Jennifer Hudson love song that devolved into a heart-wrenching soliloquy, we all applauded. The drama within this magical musical is all the more poignant when you discover that Jennifer Hudson was bounced from “American Idol.”

The Bush Administration is being terribly hurt by the media. The Government Accountability Office issued a report in January 2006 stating that the current administration in Washington spent $1.6 billion on public relations over 2-1/2 years. Of that, $1.1 billion was for military recruitment. That leaves $500 million for image building. Yet the president’s job approval rating is in the mid- to low 30s. What’s gone wrong? Dwight Eisenhower, Master of PR If you saw George C. Scott in “Patton,” you will recall the slapping scene. Patton, visiting grievously wounded and dying soldiers in a field hospital in Sicily, came upon Pvt. Charles H. Kuhl of the 26th Infantry

George Patton and his sublime moment May 11, 2006: Vol. 2, Issue No. 37 IN THE NEWS One Man's Crusade Stan Wojtusik's tireless effort has paved the way for Battle of the Bulge veterans to be honored. ARLINGTON, Va. — As a 19-year-old in World War II, Stan Wojtusik was forced to surrender to the Germans along with his entire regiment. That might have been the last time he ever gave up in anything. The former private first class, now 80, has been on a personal mission for years to build monuments—here, there and, it seems, everywhere—to the Battle of

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