FRI Feb 5: QUESTLOVE Sundance doc sold, HARRY STYLES doing Amazon movie and more
Plus more new subscriber/user info at SNAP, WSJ, PINTEREST... Renee Zelwegger doing NBC mini-series, and more news to know Friday morning.
Mornin! It’s FRIDAY February 5th 2021. Where… Oh boy where to start. Well first - Here’s your SAG AWARDS nominations list if ya still need. Also my apologies on yesterday’s email - some of you got a bum link on the NY TIMES revenue/sub #s. Here ya go.
Otherwise Hollywood musta gotten a group rate on deals yesterday cuz… we got plenty.
🎧 MUSIC TO READ BY
New FOO FIGHTERS song “Making a Fire” Apple Music / Spotify / YouTube
From their brand new album “Medicine at Midnight” out today. 9 songs, 36 minutes. That’s tight.
And 🙏 share the Newsletter with a co-worker. I mean, Finally an email they’ll want to get from you! I probably shouldn’t insult you when asking for a favor huh. #UnorthodoxGrowthTactics
Email me (Sean - hi!) at Wakeupodcast@gmail.com to say hey or with any feedback to make this email work better for ya.
📽 THE SILVER SCREEN
SEARCHLIGHT & HULU buy Questlove SUNDANCE winning doc “Summer of Soul”. (VARIETY)
Centers on previously little known, week-long 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival with talent like Stevie Wonder, Nina Simone, Sly & the Family Stone.
SEARCHLIGHT putting in theaters, HULU streaming in US, and STAR streams internationally. No price disclosed.
Michelle Williams as Peggy Lee in Todd Haynes biopic “Fever” (Deadline)
Reese Witherspoon, Marc Platt & Christine Vachon/KILLER FILMS producing.
MGM may distribute. Billie Eilish may come on as an EP.
ALSO IN MOVIES
AMAZON PRIME + Harry Styles + Emma Corrin (“The Crown”) for romantic drama called “My Policeman”. Centers on a couple whose relationship is rocked when the husband’s old male lover re-appears.
WB giving “Father of the Bride” a LatinX reboot. PlanB producing, director attached, script being written.
UNIVERSAL + “Nomadland” director Chloe Zhao for a futuristic, Sci-Fi Western version of “Dracula”. She’ll write and direct.
LIONSGATE gives greenlight to “creative companion” movie to “Wonder”, with Gillian Anderson & director Marc Forster. WW2-set film is called “White Bird: A Wonder Story” - shoots next month.
Founders of REDDIT/WallStreetBets sell movie life rights to Brett Ratner (RAT PAC Ent). Wallstreetbets is where the whole GAME STOP thing started. You’re welcome.
FOCUS FEATURES promotes Kiska Higgs to Prez of Production/Acquisitions.
Aaaaand… UNO. TheMovie. Yah. Gotta say did not see that one coming MATTEL. 🕵️♂️
📺 THE TV SET
NBC + Renee Zelwegger for “Dateline” based, 6 episode limited series (THR)
Called “The Thing About Pam”. Centers on 2011 murder of Betsey Faria. Husband was convicted but later overturned. Apparently it involved a scheme led by a woman… named Pam, who’s been featured in many “Dateline” episodes.
STARZ streaming adds 900k subscribers globally from Oct thru Dec (300k US, 600k Intl), for 14.6 mil total (THR)
Now has a presence in 55 different countries (under a few different brand names)
Streaming subscribers now beat US Cable Subscribers (13.4 mil), and will surpass linear-business revenue by this Summer.
STARZ also ordered period series “The Serpent Queen” based around a former Queen of France. 3Arts producing.
STARZ is now the biggest revenue center for parent company LIONSGATE, whose TV division is now producing 13 series for STARZ.
LGF stock up 50% since Christmas.
ALSO IN TV
Nick Cannon & VIACOM make up (“Wild N’ Out” production to resume once Nick is past Covid), and Morgan Wallen & WME break up (“don’t forget your mullet on the way out”).
“Impractical Jokers” guys sign 1st look deal at WB, get 10th season of the show.
Chris Albrecht will now lead all of LEGENDARY TV globally.
CAA revamping “mailroom”/training program.
Jenny Slate has a baby! It’s a girl.
💻 THE MEDIA BIZ
WSJ hits 2.5 mil paying digital subscribers (about half of main NYT digital subscriber base) (NYT)
WSJ print subs at 780k. (NY TIMES has 833k).
Elsewhere at NEWS CORP, The NY POST turned a profit (technically) for the first time in… ever? Famously lost tens of millions of dollars every year. Underwent major staff cuts over the past 2 years.
And folks are definitely reading more in 2020 - revenue +23% at HARPER COLLINS. NEWS CORP stock +8% in after hours trading.
SNAPCHAT now has 265 mil daily users WW, +16 mil from Oct thru Dec (ENGADGET)
Over 100 million users now use their TikTok ripoff feature “Spotlight” on a monthly basis.
But they issued Uncertain/weak Q1 ‘21 guidance, sends stock down 8% after hours.
PINTEREST now has 459mil WW monthly users, +17 mil from Oct thru Dec (CNBC)
They added 100 million monthly users in 2020. I mean… get a hobby people. (I’m here all week ladies & gentlemen… thankfully for you, it’s Friday).
4Q revenue +76 percent year-over-year. 83% of all revenue comes from the US market, but all 4Q user growth came from International markets.
Stock +10% in after hours trading.
ALSO IN MEDIA
Jeff Zucker (likely) leaving CNN at the end of the year.
Electronic voting systems company SMARTMATIC sues FOX NEWS in $2.7 bil defamation suit. Dobbs, Pirro, and Bartoromo named in suit. Well. So much for those NY POST profits…
SEACREST Out… of most things E! No more Red Carpets after 14 years, and his hit KARDASHIANS show wraps up on E! this year too.
🎥 TRAILER HOUSE
None. This day is busy enough.
👩💻 THE FSS FEED:
(what to Watch + Read + Listen to this weekend)
“Malcolm & Marie” on NETFLIX. John David Washington, Zendaya, beautiful Black & White cinematography. Have at it here.
“Strip Down, Rise Up“ on NETFLIX. Documentary about the exploration of the life changing effects a pole dancing studio has had on the lives of a group of women. Watch here.
“The Snoopy Show” on APPLE TV+. Watch the 6 episodes here.
“Fallen” - Well reviewed movie starring & directed by Viggo Mortensen, playing a married gay military vet who is dealing with his mentally deteriorating father, played by Lance Heinriksen. Watch on iTunes here for $7.
NEW “SNL” : Dan Levy + Phoebe Bridgers
Maybe get some yardwork done? Oh right the SUPER BOWL. CBS, 6:30pm kickoff.
If you wanna get a jumpstart on the Ads, AD AGE has you covered here. And expect to see a LOT of PARAMOUNT+ (Preview their “mountain of entertainment” spots here). Odd that they’re waiting another 3 weeks before releasing the details for the service 🤔.
Plus last year Bill Murray, and this year it looks like Bruce Springsteen? Seriously who is your booker JEEP??? And where are you getting MERCEDES kinda money from?
Queen Latifah’s “Equilizer” debuts after the game. Err. After the post game show. And the trophy presentation. Colbert also doing a new show with Robert Downey Jr, Tiffany Haddish and Metallica.
Congrats! You’ve just finished this newsletter, which today is… kinda impressive. So - brag to your friends. Or - just help out a brotha named Sean.
Have a great weekend ya’ll! Predictions: Chiefs by 10, and tall newsletter writer totally buzzed by mid 2nd Quarter and asleep before “The Equilizer” - the Monday newsletter ain’t writin itself. See ya then!
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