A little over three weeks ago, or on February 4th, former N.Y. Times critic Elvis Mitchell returned to National Public Radio’s “Weekend Edition Saturday” for the first time since…well, it gets complicated from here on. In February ’05 an announcement came down about an acqusitions gig Mitchell had supposedly landed with Columbia Pictures in Manhattan…which he apparently never performed. Maynard Institute columnnist Richard Prince referenced a 2.1.5.05 Daily News story about the Columbia gig, and also a column written last year by the New York Observer‘s 2.27 piece that Jake Brooks saying that Mitchell had “been assigned the welcome task…of trolling film festivals for potential acquisitions and evaluating the Columbia library for potential remakes.” Mitchell has a reputation of being a bit erratic when it comes to fulfilling gigs and assignments. (“In the early ’90s, it wasn’t hard to find an editor who had assigned Mitchell a piece — and it wasn’t hard to find an editor who wished he hadn’t,” Sean Elder wrote in Salon seven years ago. “Deadlines were often missed.”) And here we have Prince running a statement from an NPR spokesperson saying that Mitchell “never actually took the job with Columbia so there is no conflict of interest” with being an NPR commentator. Mitchell began on NPR as host of “The Treatment” on Santa Monica’s KCRW.