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Forum event - update

INGLEWOOD SWINGIN', UPDATE: As we told you yesterday, Irving Azoff will co-host a press event and luncheon later today announcing the renovation and re-opening of L.A.'s Fabulous Forum. Azoff and MSG and Cablevision chief Jim Dolan will hail MSG's revamp of the storied Inglewood venue and former home of the Lakers and Kings, which the company hopes will give arenas like downtown's Staples Center a run for its money. The L.A. Times confirms our suggestion that The Eagles will play the first several dates, in January, following the re-opening, and that Azoff (who describes himself as "head cheerleader" of the venue) and Forum GM Nick Spampanato (formerly of Universal Amhpitheatre and The Wiltern) will inform key decisions on bookings, with an "open" policy enabling all comers to mount events there. Super-manager Jim Guerinot also offers a quote, praising the look and sound of the restored Forum and describing it as "cozy" compared to other arenas. The paper also notes that the venue's metal panels been painted "California Sunset Red" to match the theater-style seats as part of a restoration that has cost more than three times what MSG paid Faithful Central Baptist Church for the property in 2000. Its total investment, the paper quotes Dolan as saying, is in the neighborhood of $100 million. Chase has signed on as sponsor but will have "presenting" rather than naming rights. (7/30a)

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