Nikki Finke is likely the most feared, despised and uncompromising journalist in Hollywood. She’s also one of the most respected, with a rolodex full of the industry’s most connected players and a penchant for breaking stories before they happen. Her website, Deadline Hollywood Daily is one of the industry’s most trafficked blogs, with a daily string of juicy insider-scoop and a hungry, opinionated audience. Earlier this week, Finke announced that Mail.com Media Corporation purchased her site for an undisclosed sum—later reported to be $14 million.
When The Wrap asked Finke to reveal details of the sale, Finke was either cagey or hyperbolic. “I don’t have to tell you anything,” Finke said to Sharon Waxman when asked how many visitors read her website. She had previously cited “50 million unique users,” but Waxman said faulty methods of tabulation could disprove her claim.
Finke is famously controlling and reclusive; she’s fussy about minutiae when she’s on the hot seat and rarely gives interviews, reigning over her enterprise from a secluded spot at home. It’s well known that Finke gets her scoops over the phone, not on the town, in a strange turn for a woman once thought a socialite. Her preference to remain home bound fuels rumors she has health issues, but if anyone can deflect attention to more tantalizing information, Finke can.
For better or worse, Finke is a legend in Hollywood and even though the town is full of Finke-haters, they all read her blog.