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Briefs

FXX to air 552-episode ‘Simpsons’ marathon

The FXX network plans a marathon telecast this summer of episodes of “The Simpsons” – all 552 of them consecutively.

The network said Wednesday the marathon will start Aug. 21 and continue into Labor Day. FXX programming chief Chuck Saftler said it coincides with the network’s purchase of rerun rights and the development of an app that gives access to every episode of the long-running animated series.

Saftler said FXX will show four hours of episodes every Sunday this fall, up until the time a new episode is aired in prime time on Fox.

NBC contest seeks comedy writers

NBC is launching a national talent search for comedy writers.

The initiative dubbed “NBC Comedy Playground” will give up to 10 finalists the chance to create pilots and a formal presentation.

NBC said Tuesday that two winners will be chosen to create half-hour comedies to air on the network in summer 2015.

The top two ideas will be picked by a celebrity advisory board including Eva Longoria, Sean Hayes, Mindy Kaling and Seth Meyers. Another prize, the chance to create an online comedy, will be decided by a public vote.

Application videos can be submitted online at www.nbccomedyplayground.com starting May 1.

USC student wins Whitman Award

A young Korean-American poet has received a $5,000 award for first-time writers that also ensures the publication and thousands of sales of her debut collection.

Hannah Sanghee Park has won the Walt Whitman Award, the Academy of American Poets announced Wednesday. Her book, “The Same-Different,” will be released next year by Louisiana State University. The poetry academy will purchase thousands of copies and distribute them to its members. Pulitzer Prize winner Rae Armantrout chose Park for the award and praised “Same-Different” as a “literally dazzling debut.”

The 27-year-old Park was born in Tacoma, Wash., and now lives in Los Angeles, where she is a student at the Writing for Screen & Television Division of the USC School of Cinematic Arts. She is a graduate of the University of Iowa’s Writers Workshop.

Partnerships boost Rhapsody numbers

Music subscription service Rhapsody International says the number of paying subscribers has grown 63 percent to 1.7 million over the past year.

The gains came primarily from partnerships with mobile phone carriers abroad, according to Chief Financial Officer Ethan Rudin.

Rhapsody remains far behind Spotify, the world leader with more than 6 million paying subscribers.

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