TheWrap Staff Picks Its Favorite Stories From 2013

Editor-in-Chief Sharon Waxman and Executive Editor Joseph Kapsch asked the staff to pick the stories this year that they were most proud of. We decided to share their picks with our readers.

The year 2013 was one of transition and change in our newsroom, as well as of tremendous growth and excitement. We bid farewell to longtime managing editor, Lew Harris, who retired, and welcomed back to the fold Wrap alumni, including Josh Dickey, Diane Garrett and Jeff Sneider. The site underwent an extensive visual redesign and expansion, as well as a back-end platform overhaul. We grew our newsroom staff with new faces including Jethro Nededog, Tony Maglio and L.A. Ross. And most exciting, TheWrap is poised to close the year with the highest traffic ever in the site’s history with over 6 million unique visitors in Dec. 2013.

But with all that change, the constant in our world is our focus on delivering the best possible entertainment business journalism to the decision-makers of the Hollywood industry, with exclusive news breaks and analysis that informs their daily lives.

Also read: Best & Worst of 2013: TheWrap’s Year-End Review

To that end, we asked our reporters to pick their favorite stories in 2013. There was no specific criteria for their picks and as you’ll see below, the stories range from big breaking news reports to in-depth analysis to just plain fun stories. Who says content has become a commodity?

We’re extremely thankful to our team for their hard work this past year and equally thankful to our readers for their loyalty. TheWrap looks forward to continuing our exciting journey with you in 2014, which will mark our 5-year anniversary. (Exciting plans for that so stay tuned).

Without further ado, here are TheWrap staff’s individual story picks:

Brent Lang, Senior Film Writer @BrentALang

Who Has Greenlight Power in Hollywood? A Studio-by-Studio Guide

After Rhythm & Hues, Visual-Effects Community Asks: What Now?

Why A La Carte Cable Could Kill TV’s Golden Age

The Great American Film Era Is Back: Here’s What’s Driving the Boom

How ‘Gravity’ Revolutionized Visual Effects and Blasted Sandra Bullock Into Space

Tim Molloy
, TV Editor @TimAMolloy

Why Does Rush Limbaugh Even Want to Use the N-Word?

‘Duck Dynasty’ Defenders: Have You Committed the Sin of Gluttony? (Opinion)

Art by Killer, Serial Sex Offender Used in ‘Rectify’ Golden Globes Campaign (Exclusive)

Matthew Weiner Has Already Heard Your ‘Mad Men’ Ending

‘Breaking Bad’: Vince Gilligan Shares 5 Alternate Endings


Lucas Shaw, Film Reporter @Lucas_Shaw

How Fox Searchlight Made the Biggest Deal at Sundance: $9.75M on an Egg Sandwich

J.J. Abrams Set to Direct Next ‘Star Wars’ Film (Exclusive)

Hollywood Studios’ Message to Executives: Embrace Digital or Die

Who Has Greenlight Power in Hollywood? A Studio-by-Studio Guide

Who’s Afraid to Leave CAA? Surprising String of Departures at Top Agency in Town

Jethro Nededog, Senior TV Writer @TheRealJethro

‘American Idol’ Chaos: Producers Nigel Lythgoe, Ken Warwick Out (Exclusive)

Inside Bravo’s ‘Real Housewives of New York’ Standoff: What Went Wrong? What Went Right?

Contentious ‘Scandal’ Fan Blogger Exposed as ABC Sales Director (Exclusive)

5 Reasons OWN Is Up – Including Black Viewers, Spirituality, and Lots of Oprah

Emmys: Kerry Washington Makes History One ‘Scandal’ Episode at a Time


Jeff Sneider, Film Reporter @TheInSneider

‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ Eyes ‘Social Network’ Scene-Stealer Dakota Johnson (Exclusive)
and Inside Charlie Hunnam and Dakota Johnson’s ’50 Shades of Grey’ Casting: Chemistry Tests to the Dotted Line

‘Kick-Ass’ Star Aaron Taylor-Johnson Frontrunner to Play Quicksilver in ‘Avengers 2’ (Exclusive)

Jon Stewart Casts Gael Garcia Bernal as Lead in His Directorial Debut ‘Rosewater’ (Exclusive)

Why Autism Documentary ‘Best Kept Secret’ May Be the Best Kept Secret of the Year

James Cameron Recruits ‘Terminator’ Series Creator Josh Friedman For ‘Avatar 2’ (Exclusive)


Steve Pond, Awards Editor @StevePond

How the Producers Guild Convinced Hollywood Studios to Let It Overhaul Movie Credits (Exclusive)

Why the Coen Brothers Wanted to Folk It Up on ‘Inside Llewyn Davis’

How Bruce Dern Found Redemption With Alexander Payne in ‘Nebraska’

Is It Time to Expose the Academy’s Secret Committees?

The Oscars Endgame: An Expensive Way to Make a Last Impression

Greg Gilman
, Blogger/Reporter @GregAtTheWrap

Hollywood’s Disabled Actors Protest NBC’s ‘Ironside’ Casting – When Is It Their Turn?

Hollywood’s Zombie Overload: Why Flesh-Eater Pitches Are a Tough Sell

The Year in James Franco: Everything He Did in 2013 That You Didn’t

6 Movies Ideas for Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone After ‘Escape Plan’

Oscar Winner Kickstarts Documentary to Expose U.S. Military’s Role in International Sex Trafficking

Tony Maglio
, TV Reporter @AnthonyMaglio

The Richest and Poorest Shows on Network TV – From ‘Modern Family’ to ‘Bob’s Burgers’

Why A La Carte Cable Could Kill TV’s Golden Age

10 Things You Didn’t See on the American Music Awards Broadcast

‘Sound of Music Live’ Is a Hit: 10 More Dream Musicals We Want to Hate-Watch on NBC

Whoops: New York’s Gun Law Omits Hollywood Exception

Alonso Duralde
, Film Critic/Reviews Editor @ADuralde

Alonso Duralde: How Roger Ebert Influenced My Life

Johnny Depp, Don’t Shoot the Messenger for ‘Lone Ranger’ Flop

Ben Affleck as Batman: Hey, Bat-Fans, Calm the *%!& Down!

‘Frozen’ Review: Disney’s Best Animated Musical Since ‘Beauty and the Beast’ (Video)

‘The Great Gatsby’ Review: How Many Flappers Make a Flop?


Todd Cunnigham, Box Office Reporter @toddcnnghm

Why Hollywood Is Setting Movie Release Dates 5 Years in Advance

How Social Media Is Revolutionizing the Flailing Movie Tracking Industry

If PG-13 Is the Moneymaker, Why Is Hollywood Cranking Out So Many R-Rated Movies?

5 Reasons Hollywood Isn’t Celebrating a Record Summer Box Office

How Matthew McConaughey’s ‘Mud’ Became a Breakout Indie Hit


L.A. Ross, Blogger/Reporter @Newsielady

Writers Guild Accuses Reality TV Shows of ‘Stealing’ $40M From Writer-Producers

Magnolia Pictures Responds to Report Claiming ‘Nymphomaniac’ Trailer Played Before ‘Frozen’ Screening

TheWrap Screening Series: How ‘The Butterfly’s Dream’ Turned Forgotten Turkish Poets Into Bestsellers

Iran Expert: Showtime’s ‘Homeland’ Creates Tension for American Diplomacy

The Year in Cable News Series: Fox, CNN, MSNBC


Mikey Glazer, TheWrap’s Party Report @celebsightings

How Do You Pronounce Quvenzhane Wallis? (Exclusive Video)

10 Secrets of the Oscar Envelope: ‘It’s Engineered like a German Car’

George Clooney Photobombs Jerry Seinfeld, Steven Spielberg During USC Gala (Photos)

Ousted Exec Adam Fogelson Dines With Replacement Jeff Shell, Comcast Brass

Usher at Clive Davis Party: L.A. Reid Talked Me Out of the Name ‘Cha-Cha’ (Photos)