Posts Tagged ‘year’

Ratings Plummet for NCAA Championship After Its Move to Cable

April 5, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

At the beginning of the 2016 NCAA Tournament, Turner Broadcasting president David Levy claimed the difference between broadcast and cable "is almost non existent anymore." However, despite a National Championship game that will go down as a classic—Villanova defeated North Carolina on Kris Jenkins' three-pointer as the clock expired—the NCAA title game averaged 10 million fewer viewers than last year. This was also the first year the title game aired on cable TV. Monday night's game averaged 17.8 million across TBS, TNT and truTV, down 37 percent from the 28.3 million that watched Duke beat Wisconsin last April on CBS. In terms of household rating—the metric by which sports ad sales are sold— Monday's game notched a 13.2, down 38 percent. It was the lowest-rated National Championship game ever. From now until the end of the rights deal—through 2024—CBS and TBS will alternate airing the Championships and Final Four. But attributing the steep drop to moving the game from broadcast to cable only tells part of the story

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A Year After Rebranding as Pop, the Old TV Guide Network Has Added Almost 100 New Advertisers

March 21, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

A year after rising from the ashes of the TV Guide Network, Pop is still making noise with viewers and advertisers—and the network is entering this year's upfront with a lot of confidence for a network that just turned 1. As Michael DuPont, evp of ad sales, and his team hold upfront meetings—this year's theme is "Shift to Pop"—with clients, agencies and media planners around the country, Pop has announced a new slate of shows that represent 400 hours of original programming. TV Guide Network relaunched as Pop in January 2015 , with the new network targeting "modern grown-ups" who are pop culture enthusiasts. While last year's upfront, which took place shortly after the rebrand, featured "a lot of showmanship," said Pop president Brad Schwartz, this year, "There's no more selling any hype. We get to go into this upfront confident that what we built is working." While ratings have been down across the industry, Pop—and TVGN before it—has experienced nine consecutive quarters of year-over-year growth. In Q4 of 2015, its "core sales demo" of women 25-54 was up 30 percent in total day viewers and 27 percent in prime time versus the previous year. In the 18-49 demo during the same quarter, Pop was up 27 percent in total day and 15 percent in prime time. Its main competitors, including Lifetime, Oxygen and Bravo, were down or flat in those demos during that same timeframe, said Schwartz

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China to Introduce Film Law This Year

March 10, 2016  |  Variety  |  No Comments

China says that it will introduce a film law this year. Confirmation comes at a time when box office reporting is being questioned again.

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Why GSN Will Do ‘More of the Same’ as Other Networks Scramble for New Ideas

March 8, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

During this upfront season, several networks will brag about their exciting new directions and evolutions. In fact, a couple of them have already done that . But not the Game Show Network, which held its upfront presentation Tuesday morning. Its ratings are rising, and the network is slowly but surely getting younger thanks to a brand refresh several years ago, which resulted in GSN doubling its original programming output over the past three years. "I'm proud to announce that we're going to be doing more of the same," said David Goldhill, president and CEO, of GSN, which airs a mix of original and classic game programming. "Our little niche television network is now a top 30 television network, up from the mid-40s a couple of years ago," said Goldhill, speaking with buyers at New York's Paley Center for Media. The statistic refers to total day ratings and total viewers, but excludes news and sports networks. "We are growing at a very difficult time," said Goldhill of the network, which is owned by AT&T Entertainment Group and Sony Pictures Entertainment. While linear ratings are falling for many broadcast and cable networks, GSN sees growth during prime time with original programming. "We have double-digit growth across all key demos," said Goldhill, adding that 60 percent of the network's new viewers last year were under the age of 50.

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Chris Rock Is Funny, Poignant and Doesn’t Hold Back During Oscars Opening Monologue

February 29, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Chris Rock had stayed silent throughout the #OscarsSoWhite controversy, but the Academy Awards host wasted no time addressing the elephant in the room tonight. "I'm here at the Academy Awards, otherwise known as the white People's Choice Awards," said Rock almost immediately after walking out on stage. "You realize if they nominated hosts, I wouldn't even get this job. You would all be watching Neil Patrick Harris right now." Rock devoted his entire monologue to the controversy, hitting the right balance between finding humor in an uncomfortable situation while not losing sight of its importance. "You're damn right Hollywood is racist," Rock said, adding that the clubby nature of the Academy was "sorority racist" not "burning cross racist." Rock's most politically charged barb came when he briefly touched on the #BlackLivesMatter movement, drawing the most nervous response from the crowd, which largely applauded throughout. "This year in the In Memoriam package, it's just going to be black people that were shot by the cops on the way to the movies." In a more lighthearted moment, Rock said they should just have separate acting categories for minorities: "Just have black categories like Best Black Friend." Rock also took aim at some in the African American community, especially Jada Pinkett Smith, one of the stars boycotting the awards tonight. He implied Pinkett Smith was upset because her husband, Will Smith, wasn't nominated for his role in Concussion. "It's also not fair that Will was paid $20 million for Wild Wild West," came the punch line. Rock said he considered whether or not to boycott, but reasoned the show would go on with or without him as host

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To Keep Children Engaged During Prime Time, PBS Will Launch a 24/7 Kids Network

February 23, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Viewers might have wondered if PBS was rethinking its commitment to children's programming after it allowed HBO to snap up Sesame Street last summer. But today the network announced a big play to keep kids watching its shows around the clock. Later this year, the network will launch a free, 24-hour network for children's programming called PBS Kids. This will let children watch during prime time and other hours when PBS doesn't air kid-centric content. The channel will be available as a digital subchannel on PBS stations nationwide (joining other PBS digital subchannels like Create and World). The network will also stream it online at and via the PBS Kids Video app, which is available on iOS and Android devices, as well as Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, Android TV and Xbox One. The livestream will join the on-demand full episodes and clips that are currently available on the app and online. PBS will continue to air its PBS Kids programming blocks on the primary network during the morning and afternoon. "Parents know that PBS Kids makes a difference in their children's lives, which is why so many have said they would value having access to our content throughout the day. Television continues to be the most widely used platform for children's educational content, especially among low-income families," said Paula Kerger, PBS president and CEO, in a statement.

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The Oscars Is Still an All-Star Destination for Advertisers

February 23, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Actors, directors and costume designers aren't the only ones poised to score on Hollywood's biggest night. The Oscars remains one of the most important events of the year for advertisers. The average cost of a 30-second spot in this year's three-hour-plus telecast Feb. 28 is expected to be $1.9 million to $2 million, a double-digit bump versus last year and an all-time record, per Kantar Media figures. (The Los Angeles Times reported that a spot could go for as high as $2.2 million.) Past sponsors expected to return this year include AT&T, General Motors, Samsung and Coca-Cola. While not on the scale of the Super Bowl, brands still see ABC's Oscars telecast as a key venue due to its massive reach and prestige. Advertisers that broke campaigns in last year's show include American Express (which has participated in every Oscars since 1993), Dove and Cadillac. The Oscars is also a platform for some of agencies' most memorable creative work and breakthrough brand integrations.

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How Big Cable Is Stemming the Cord Cutting Tide

February 4, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

A funny thing happened this week on the way to that big cable box in the sky: three of the largest U.S. cable operators actually added subscribers. In releasing their fourth quarter and full-year earnings for 2015, Time Warner Cable, Comcast and Charter Communications all posted subscriber gains for the past quarter. While it's common for cable operators to see a bump in subscribers at the end of the year, both Time Warner Cable and Charter– which are planning to merge –posted full year subscriber gains, ending years of declines. Time Warner Cable added +54,000 subs in the fourth quarter, after it lost more than -300,000 during the same period last year. For the full year, TWC added +32,000 subscribers for its first full year of growth since 2006. Charter, which released earnings this morning, had its best full year in more than a decade by adding +11,000 subscribers, including +33,000 during the fourth quarter. Meanwhile, Comcast had its strongest fourth quarter in eight years by adding +89,000 subscribers, though it posted an overall decline in 2015 of -36,000. That is a huge improvement vs. 2014, when the nation's largest carrier lost 194,000 subscribers. The gains by the three cable operators come amidst the worst year for the overall pay-TV sector; MoffettNathanson predicted cords would be cut in -514,000 homes in 2015, down from 1.2 million in 2014. And it appears the slowing of cord-cutting among cable operators is hurting the satellite and Telco services. Telco growth, including Verizon FiOS and AT&T U-verse, dipped from 1.06 million new subscribers in 2014 to just 118,000 in 2015. Satellite, including DirecTV and DISH, was projected to lose -560,000 subscribers for the year, more than cable. Last week, AT&T reported a loss of -26,000 subscribers between its DirecTV and U-Verse services for the fourth quarter.

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Step Aside, Cord Cutters and Cord-Nevers. Showtime Is Targeting ‘Cord Cobblers’

January 13, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

We've heard about cord cutters, cord shavers and cord-nevers . Now, Showtime has a new term to add to the growing vernacular: cord cobblers. That's how Showtime's president and CEO, David Nevins, referred to his subscribers while discussing the evolution of his premium cable network at the Television Critics Association's winter press tour. "2016 is going to be the year of customized viewing," Nevins said. "Today's audiences are cord cobblers, individuals and households who creatively manage their content consumption with an assortment of subscriptions that work uniquely for their needs." Because of the availability of its stand-alone streaming service on iTunes, Roku and Android devices, and as add-on subscriptions for Hulu, Amazon Prime and PlayStation Vue, Showtime has "availability and visibility wherever those cord cobblers reside," he said.

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Despite Losing Mad Men and Breaking Bad, AMC Is More Popular Than Ever

January 9, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

AMC's president and general manager, Charlie Collier, knows that many competitors and onlookers were expecting his network to stumble after losing its two signature shows—Mad Men and Breaking Bad—in a year. But instead of imploding, AMC has just wrapped its most successful year ever. "We faced an important transition over the last two years, with both Breaking Bad and Mad Men coming to a close, and many looked at 2015 as a sort of, what's next here for the network? And we're very proud of what we've accomplished," Collier said at the Television Critics Association's winter press tour. Before presenting the network's upcoming new shows for 2016, Collier noted that three of AMC's four premieres in 2015—Fear the Walking Dead, Into the Badlands and Better Call Saul—are the top three cable series launches of all time among adults 18-49 and 25-54. "At a time when many are focused on too much TV or measurement challenges and the impact of time-shifting, it's remarkable that viewership records can even be set anymore," said Collier, who added that AMC also ended last year "as the no. 1 destination for original programming in prime time, including broadcast, averaging nearly 4 million viewers in adults 18-49 and 25-54 all original episodes in live-plus-three." The network also became a top 5 cable network in primetime for the first time, in both the 18-49 and 25-54 demos. AMC has 14 original shows set to roll out this year, Collier noted. "We head into 2016 confident and optimistic about the future, and that's largely because we believe in the vision of the creative talent that's at the heart of our network," said the exec, who has so many shows in the pipeline that he is adding a fourth night of original programming: Tuesdays, alongside Sundays, Mondays and Saturdays. Among AMC's other TCA announcements: Fear the Walking Dead, AMC's Walking Dead prequel, will return on April 10 for Season 2. The 15-episode season will be split in two parts: seven episodes airing in the spring; the remaining eight later in the year

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