☀️ DISNEY Reveals ESPN Revenue & (declining) Profitability
NETFLIX's huge animation move / new NBA TV deal tactic murmurs / SONY seals huge China remake rights
Mornin! This is Sean McNulty (connect with me on LinkedIn here if ya like), and here’s the Hollywood + Media news to know on THURSDAY Oct. 19, 2023.
Where on top of health insurance for a U.S. family now costing employers an average of $24k in 2024 (with worker 💰 contributions +19% in five years 🤬)… GIRL SCOUT cookies are now going to be $6 a box instead of $5 this season. Is nothing sacred?
But hey, on top of student loan payments returning & gov’t subsidized child care ending this month for tens of millions of Americans… almost every streaming service hiking prices in either Q3 or Q4… and home & auto loan costs at 20+ year highs - I’m sure CHRISTMAS consumer spending and Q1 numbers will be just fine.
BUT: Don’t worry, CHATGPT is now scanning the current internet to add a new function as an up to the minute search engine (👋 GOOGLE) vs. its previous cap at scraping information slightly more vetted from info up to Sept. 2021. Can’t wait to see what it outputs about ISRAEL and HAMAS queries.
HMM 👀: The world’s largest music label UNIVERSAL MUSIC is suing the AI company that AMAZON just invested billions 💰 in, ANTHROPIC, for infringement on its music in building its AI product, and is looking to tens of millions 💰 in damages.
PLUS: No more Colbert this week at CBS - taking time off to recover from Covid.
ALSO: Just a whopping number from a Variety read on the financial toll of the strikes:
As of Oct. 9, more than 4,500 workers from below-the-line unions had applied for “hardship withdrawals” from their individual retirement accounts, for a total $68 million.
An average of over $15k per worker.
Money, btw, that you can’t pay back into the IRA at a later date (except for your usual annual allowance of how much you’re allowed to pay in each year). But please, think of the sake of the stock buybacks folks.
AND: NETFLIX will re-open the EGYPTIAN theater on Nov. 9, with a showing of Fincher’s The Killer. It’ll also remain the home of the AMERICAN CINEMATEHQUE, who will independently program the theater Fri. to Sun. each week (with select exceptions).
CONGRATS 🍾: To A’ja Wilson and the LAS VEGAS ACES on winning the WNBA Championship last night over the NY LIBERTY with a one-point victory, 70-69, and the first back-to-back WNBA champion since 2001-2002.
REST IN PEACE goes out to OSCAR-nominated actor Burt Young, aka “Paulie” from the Rocky franchise (and of course “Lou” in Back to School), who died at age 83 this week.
WAKEUP BOX OFFICE POLL
Marty, you’re on deck! All 3hr 26min of you… as Killers of the Flower Moon has been tracking around $20 mil to $25 mil in 3600 theaters (including IMAX).
His last major film in theaters was 2013’s The Wolf of Wall Street… and however you categorize Silence in 2016, so Marty comps are kinda useless.
Leo’s last theatrical pic had the Tarantino factor with Once Upon a Time in Hollywood ($41 mil opening in July 2019). Pic before that was 2015 (The Revenant).
IN TODAY’S EDITION:
At long last… ESPN $$ numbers! DISNEY broke them out for the past few years, and last 3 quarters in a new SEC form, and it’s like CHRISTMAS came early for #medianerd🤓.
How profitable is DISNEY’s TV & Streaming biz vs. the ESPN biz
How much of an albatross has INDIA Cricket become
Revenue trends for ESPN this year and more.
NETFLIX’s makes big strategy shift to fix Animated Film problem with SKYDANCE (aka John Lasseter).
New NBA deal murmurs about, and much more.
CORRECTION: To my NETFLIX Q3 breakdown yesterday - the new price for the NETFLIX Basic tier in the US is now $12 a month, not $11. My left ring finger apologizes profusely for being a key off.
Either way - NETFLIX would really like you Basic folks to go either $7 ad tier or $15.50 Standard plans please.
AND A SMALL CLARIFICATION: NETFLIX is the world’s most popular subscription video streaming service (well, that also occasionally goes live). YOUTUBE and SPOTIFY naturally beat it in the overall ‘world’s most popular streaming service’ designation.
FINALLY: For anyone needing a little boost of hope this morning that people still do good things in this world (it’s a trailer for a new short film SEARCHLIGHT is backing, produced by the LA Times)