How Blockbusters Survive Netflix
The latest Bond flick, “No Time to Die,” and the Marvel movie “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” kindled hope for cinemas with blockbuster ticket sales. But Hollywood won’t return to pre-pandemic standards. For one thing, only action or horror movie franchises have performed, “particularly when they are offered exclusively and not simultaneously available to stream,” industry consultant David Gross tells The New York Times. Legacy studios can’t judge film releases without the easy benchmarks (box office and DVD sales). The Warner Media movie “The Suicide Squad” had stellar reviews, word-of-mouth and streaming pickup, but was a box-office flop. Did the movie generate HBO Max subscribers or create viewership loyalty that translates to lower churn at higher subscription rates? Those are difficult questions to answer, but are more important than box-office revenue. Disney is testing its model, with a relatively cheap Disney Plus subscription at $80 per year, but a $30 flat charge to watch a blockbuster movie a few months before it’s available on the app. Warner Media reportedly delayed committing to fund a sequel of its big release, “Dune,” until it sees how the film performs on HBO Max.
The Business of News
Many news editors and reporters have left the newsroom to start their own independent news or newsletter subscription businesses. Substack is an important player in the space, for instance, alongside podcast distribution networks....
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