Posts Tagged ‘people’

Acquisitions on the Agenda as AMC / Sundance Looks for More Int’l Expansion

October 29, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

President Bruce Tuchman 'regrets' so many AMC shows on other people's channels outside the U.S.

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You’ll Be Able to Get HBO Go Without a Cable Subscription Next Year

October 15, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

HBO Go has finally done what subscribers have been begging for since the announcement of the streaming service: it's going cable-sub-free. The over-the-top streaming network will be available without a cable package starting next year, HBO CEO Richard Plepler announced at Time Warner's investor day on Wednesday morning. This has been in the air for a while—HBO Go has been available on progressively smaller and smaller cable pacakges over recent months, but never totally subscription-free. But there's a fairly large burden of proof on Time Warner today, as it fends off angry stakeholders still sore over the company's rejection of 21st Century Fox's $85-a-share offer for the company (the stock sits at $71.85 at the time of this writing, down from a high of $87 and change just before the Fox deal collapsed). The goal today is to give investors a sense that the company has strong growth prospects without consolidation; HBO remains the companys most lucrative single asset outside its movie studio division and is a point of focus during the proceedings; also at issue (though less pleasant for Time Warner) is the problem of declining ratings at Turner. The subdivision is in the midst of a major round of layoffs during which 10 percent of its workforce is expected to leave. “It is time to remove all barriers to those who want HBO, " Plepler told investors. "So, in 2015, we will launch a stand-alone, over-the-top, HBO service in the United States. We will work with our current partners, and we will explore models with new partners. All in all, there are 80 million homes that do not have HBO and we will use all means at our disposal to go after them.” Much of this territory has been colonized by Netflix and it remains to be seen whether people will want another streaming service on top of their current offerings; but HBO Go has been very popular and is frequently spread across users without cable subs through password sharing. This gives HBO a chance to monetize some of that spread, and to clamp down on pirates while providing an alternative

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Beyond ‘The Walking Dead’: Mining Darker Comics to Find a Hit

September 17, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Contrary to what broadcast television’s fall schedules might suggest, the revamped trend of using comicbooks as source material for TV shows has been hot for a while — even if the brains behind the networks’ programming slates have a hard time remembering that. “It’s funny — if you talk to the people at the networks,... Read more

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Eight O’Clock Coffee Is Bringing to Life the Central Perk Coffee Shop From Friends

August 29, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Rejoice, Friends enthusiasts! Your dream of sipping coffee at the iconic Central Perk will soon become a reality. It's been 20 years since Ross, Phoebe, Monica, Joey, Chandler and Rachel first graced our TV screens, and the love for the gang remains strong, if all of the people on my Facebook feed are to be trusted. To celebrate two decades of shouting "Pivot!" every time a friend announces he's moving, Warner Bros. Television Group, Warner Bros. Consumer Products and Eight O'Clock Coffee are partnering to create a Central Perk pop-up in Manhattan. It'll be short-lived—the shop, created with help from agency Source Marketing, will open Sept. 17 at the corner of Lafayette and Broome Streets, and close Oct. 18—but fans can hang out on the weird orange couch, listen to a rendition of Smelly Cat, see some special guests (Gunther will be there) and maybe, I don't know, try to figure out how Rachel afforded to live in a sprawling Manhattan apartment on a barista's salary. It's a brilliant partnership for Eight O'Clock, which will also be adding a special Central Perk blend to its coffee line next month, if you want to K-Cup your way to a Friends-in-your-travel-mug experience.

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This Is How the NFL Is Getting Butts Back in the Bleachers

August 26, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Atlanta Falcons CMO Jim Smith is rewarding loyal season ticket holders with the kind of stadium “memories” they can’t get from watching on TV at home. For the second year, Smith is offering season-long fans game-day “experiences” such as a visit from team cheerleaders to their seat. Or a spot on the field during player introductions at the Georgia Dome. Illustration: Kyle Fewell It’s not like some drunk up in the nosebleed seats can simply request a cheerleader like he’s ordering a beer. Using the free Experience app , season ticket holders must redeem “memory points” on the Thursday before a home game. Security guards are on hand just in case—but are rarely needed. “We never put our cheerleaders in danger. That sensational crap is so unfair to the cheerleaders—and the fans who request it,” says Smith, who adds that most of the visits are ordered by parents for their cheerleader daughters. “It’s truly about an experience that a parent, or a bunch of friends, want to have.” So goes the NFL’s marketing game plan to get its fans off the couch—and back into stadiums. High ticket prices, personal seat licenses (PSLs) and rowdy fans have led some die-hards to give up live games in favor of watching for free from home. The $10 billion league wants these couch potatoes back. And it wants season ticket holders—the lifeblood of the league—to keep coming, explains Brian Lafemina, the NFL’s svp of club business development. The league and its 32 franchises are pushing the marketing envelope to do it. The NFL is in some ways a victim of its own success and innovation. As its TV networks add more coverage, more camera angles and more replays, the gap between the at-home and in-stadium viewing experiences has grown wider. Throw in the two RedZone Channels (which whip viewers around to potential scoring plays) offered by the league and DirecTV, and it’s a wonder fantasy players and bettors ever leave the Barcalounger. “TV has fundamentally changed the way people watch our game—and that’s a great thing,” says Lafemina. “We have to do the same inside the stadium.

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Film Review: ‘The Fool’

August 9, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Frank Capra would approve of “The Fool,” a forceful Russian drama in which a lone plumber stands up to a corrupt system on behalf of the people living in a squalid apartment building.

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This Is How Your Financial Data Is Being Used to Serve You Ads

July 10, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Wait, who sees my credit card bill, again? We've done a lot of work

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Inside ESPN’s Social Media War Room During the Most Tweeted Sporting Event Ever

July 9, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

I arrive late to the Germany-Brazil World Cup game on the assumption that I have plenty of time before the match really heats up. This turns out to be completely wrong, and I've in fact arrived amid the most tweeted single sports game—of any kind, ever. "Our banked Brazil content will probably not be seeing the light of day," Bryan McAleer, ESPN's associate manager of social media, says ruefully as soon as he's done shaking my hand and introducing himself. He's an energetic guy, upbeat and attentive, with long reddish hair and a thick beard. A few of the others sitting close by—clean-shaven, friendly guys with short hair—say hello, too. There is John Twomey, associate manager of social media, Tomas Ferraro, marketing coordinator, and Brendan Gillen, marketing manager. If any of them is a day over 28, it would be a surprise to me. McAleer, himself a senior director of sports marketing, is pacing back and forth between ends of the table, soliciting opinions and offering feedback

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‘Transformers 4′ Tops Foreign Box Office Thanks to Huge China Weekend

July 6, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Transformers: Age of Extinction” dominated the international box office for the second week in a row, picking up $95.8 million in foreign markets, according to studio estimates. The giant robots sequel played better in China than it did in the United States, earning $50.9 million from the People’s Republic compared with $36.4 million stateside. Overall,... Read more

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Neil Gaiman’s American Gods Finds a Home at Starz

July 1, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

It's been rumored for years and now it's one step closer to small-screen life: Neil Gaiman's beloved fantasy novel American Gods has a network ready to pilot to its long-rumored TV adaptation. Now the show is headed to independent premium network Starz, which has had a hit recently with Michael Bay-produced pirate drama Black Sails and managed a brief Renaissance a few years ago shortly after the installation of CEO Chris Albrecht, who had the foresight to put several of the network's flagship shows—notably ancient war drama Spartacus—on Netflix. That's not the same as a full series order, but it's certainly a step closer than it's ever been. FreemantleMedia picked up the rights to the series back in February, but no network was attached. Michael Lombardo of HBO confirmed to Vulture in June that the network where the series eventually landed wouldn't be his. Hannibal showrunner Bryan Fuller will write the pilot for Starz with Michael Green, who is used to tricky adaptations: he created NBC drama Kings, which retold and modernized the Biblical story of David.

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