Showbiz Sandbox 169: How TV Networks Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The DVR

Major networks used to bemoan the use of DVRs out of fear that audiences would use them to skip over commercials. However, with DVRs in almost half of all US homes, they have begun touting the big audience increases some of their shows get after factoring in time shifted viewing. Scott Collins, a television reporter with the Los Angeles Times, discusses modern-day TV ratings and how the industry is coping as viewing habits change.

And if you thought television networks were in trouble, they’ve got nothing on the film industry. If you were to believe folks like film critic David Denby and a recent New York Times article, movies may not even be relevant anymore.

Talent agencies aren’t immune from all the changes affecting the industry. Last week the longtime head of ICM Partners, one of the world’s largest ten percenteries, announced he’d be leaving to start a new agency.

Of course, we also cover the week’s top entertainment news including how a child sex abuse scandal at the BBC, the merger of publishing giants Penguin and Random House, and an Amy Winehouse musical.

Continue reading Showbiz Sandbox 169: How TV Networks Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The DVR

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Showbiz Sandbox 3: Award Season Redux

Star Trek

“Star Trek” cleans up at the box office earning $76 million in North America over the weekend while “Wolverine” pulled in another $27 million. Fox sets release dates for its blockbusters in Mexico, though actors may not start kissing on telenovelas for a while. “Billy Elliot” heads up the Tony Award nominations. Bono and the Edge are headed to Broadway with a Spider-Man musical, but Andrew Lloyd Weber is falling behind on his sequel to “Phantom of the Opera”.

“Slumdog Millionaire” and “Twilight” lead the MTV Movie Award nominations, but does anyone care. Big media and celebrities top the Webby awards. NBC announces its primetime schedule and there are rumors about a few CW shows. Looks like the “Gossip Girl” spinoff is a no-go. As scripted television looks to shrink their writing staffs, CBS debates whether they should bring back such game shows as “The Dating Game” and “Let’s Make A Deal”. A computer bug delayed nearly three days of Nielsen television ratings, however advertisers may want to start using more effective “engagement” ratings anyway.

Disney CEO Bob Iger discusses Hulu and informs everyone that new media is here to stay. The MPAA teaches everyone how to pirate DVD’s using a camcorder, in fact they prefer the method over the ripping of content off DVD’s. Revenue at Warner Music plumets as do satellite radio subscribers at Sirius XM. Looks like Roman Polanski isn’t going to return to see if a court will drop his 30-year-old rape charges. Finally, now that the William Morris/Endeavor merger has been announced, clients have started jumping ship in all directions.

“Star Trek” Draws $72.5 Million
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118003414.html?categoryid=19&cs=1

Swine Flu Curbs Telenovela Kissing
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118003390.html?categoryid=14&cs=1

Billy Elliot Leads Tony Nominations
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/06/theater/theaterspecial/06tony.html

Bono, The Edge Team Up For “Spider-Man” Musicalhttp://www.spin.com/articles/bono-edge-team-spider-man-musical

“Phantom” Sequel Delayed Until 2010
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118003402.html?categoryid=15&cs=1

“Twilight”, “Slumdog” Lead MTV Kudos
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118003151.html?categoryid=16&cs=1

MTV Movie Awards Ballot
http://www.mtv.com/ontv/movieawards/2009/

Celebrities Win Madeup Webbys, Big Media Wins Some Real Ones
http://weblogs.variety.com/technotainment/2009/05/celebrities-win-madeup-webbys-big-media-wins-some-real-ones.html

NBC Announces 2009/2010 Primetime Schedule
http://www.deadlinehollywooddaily.com/nbc-announces-20092010-primetime-sked/

Fox Orders Second Season of Fringe
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118003158.html?categoryId=14&cs=1

Nikki Finke On CW Upfront Rumors
http://www.deadlinehollywooddaily.com/that-gossip-girl-spinoff-dead-at-cw/

Shows To Scrimp On Scribes
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118003411.html?categoryid=14&cs=1

Networks Fume Over Nielsen Delay

http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118003280.html?categoryid=14&cs=1

TV Ads That Measure Viewer Engagement
http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/09_20/b4131056581434.htm

Disney’s Bob Iger On YouTube Hulu: “New Media Isn’t Going Away” Planning Movie Subscription Service
http://www.paidcontent.org/entry/419-disneys-iger-on-hulu-youtube-deals-new-media-isnt-going-away/

MPAA To Teachers: Don’t Rip DVDs, Just Record Your Television With A Camcorder
http://www.boingboing.net/2009/05/07/mpaa-to-teachers-don.html

Warner Music Hits Online Slump
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118003337.html?categoryid=16&cs=1

Sirius XM’s Subscriber Drain
http://www.businessweek.com/technology/content/may2009/tc2009057_956955.htm?chan=top+news_top+news+index+-+temp_technology

Polanski won’t appear in U.S Court
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118003182.html?categoryId=22&cs=1

Endeavor Spins Recent Client Exodus
http://www.deadlinehollywooddaily.com/endeavor-spins-recent-client-exodus/

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Showbiz Sandbox 2: Disney Hearts Hulu, Endeavor Hearts William Morris

Disney Hulu“Wolverine” opens big with $87 million in North American box office, Disney joins online video site Hulu.com, meanwhile Sony streams movies on Crackle.com.  An advance look at NBC’s uprfront announcement about which of their television shows are being picked up and which are dumped.  Scrubs may be back on ABC next season after all.  Hasbro and Discovery are putting together a cable network. Obama’s ratings drop and McCain hosts a movie marathon.  Oliver Stone will make “Wall Street 2” with Shia LeBeouf, Chris Noth signs on to “Sex and the City 2”, Universal remakes “Drop Dead Fred” and Don Johnson will play a porn director.  Theatre chain National Amusements is up for sale and studios stop paying for 3D glasses.  Finally, it’s official – talent agencies Endeavor and William Morris will be merging.

“Wolverine” A Hero At The Box Office
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/content_display/film/news/e3i06056b3e434534846b7ff5e99f2211b9

Disney’s Anne Sweeney Talks Hulu: It’s All About Casual Viewers
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/05/01/AR2009050100374.html

Disney’s Hulu Deal Raises Question About YouTube Model
http://online.wsj.com/article/BT-CO-20090430-726930.html

Denis Leary goes Hulu, mocks your ‘Tweety-pages’ and your ‘Faceyspaces’
http://watching-tv.ew.com/2009/05/denis-leary-goe.html

“TV Everywhere”: Pay your cable bill, watch Entorage online
http://arstechnica.com/media/news/2009/03/tv-everywhere-pay-your-cable-bill-watch-entourage-online.ars

Sony Offers Free Films On Crackle
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118002988.html?categoryid=13&cs=1

NBC Gets Rolling Before Its Upfronts
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/content_display/news/e3i06056b3e43453484c9327754ccee4248

NBC Exec Dies On “Parenthood” Set
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118003057.html?categoryid=14&cs=1

Chuck Decision Delayed For A Week Or More
http://www.eonline.com/uberblog/watch_with_kristin/b121695_chuck_decision_delayed_week_more.html

Talks Continue For “Scrubs” Return
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118002915.html?categoryid=14&cs=1

Hasbro and Discovery Plan Channel Based On Toy Brands
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/01/business/media/01hasbro.html?ref=business

Full Orchestra Puts “Lost” Audience On Edge
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118002951.html?categoryid=16&cs=1

Obama Presser Audience Slides But Still Beats Idol
http://blog.newsweek.com/blogs/thegaggle/archive/2009/05/01/ratings-slide-for-obama-s-presser-but-he-still-beats-idol.aspx

McCain To Host AMC Movie Marathon
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118003028.html?categoryid=14&cs=1

Stone To Walk “Wall Street” Again
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118002934.html?categoryId=13&cs=1

Mr. Big To Return In “Sex and the City 2”
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118002957.html?categoryId=13&cs=1

Universal remaking “Drop Dead Fred”
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/content_display/film/news/e3i6832227f5a72401e04337dda02eb1b4b

Don Johnson set to play porn director
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/content_display/news/e3i6832227f5a72401efa73da45a9169527

Bruce Willis Is Living Hard
http://www.riskybusinessblog.com/2009/04/bruce-willis-is-living-hard.html

Relativity reaches deal with Lionsgate

http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118002881.html?categoryId=13&cs=1

Viacom Profit Veers Down
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118003020.html?categoryid=13&cs=1

National Amusements Ups Ante On Auction
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/content_display/news/e3if87cf911cde7b6e932294cdc836335a5

Biz Balks At Cost Of 3D Glasses
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118003092.html?categoryid=18&cs=1&ref=ssp

Battle Brews Over 3D Glasses In Europe
http://celluloidjunkie.com/2009/03/26/battle-brews-over-3d-glasses-in-europe/

WMA, Endeavor Approve Merger
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118002879.html?categoryId=18&cs=1

As Willliam Morris and Endeavor Near a Merger, a New Book May Cause Discomfort
http://carpetbagger.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/04/22/as-william-morris-and-endeavor-prepare-to-merge-a-new-book-may-cause-discomfort/

Paradigm Makes a Move of Its Own
http://carpetbagger.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/04/22/with-all-eyes-on-endeavor-and-william-morris-paradigm-makes-some-moves-of-its-own/

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Showbiz Sandbox 1: The Replicability Podcast

SAG President Alan Rosenberg

Talks to merge the William Morris and Endeavor talent agencies continue, while the Screen Actors Guild and the Association of Motion Picture and Television Producers may have finally reached an agreement on a new contract.  Critically acclaimed movies tank at the box office.  Fox closes Atomic, reshuffles release dates and hires Angelina Jolie for a biopic.  David Slade is selected for the third “Twilight” film.

MPAA visits Washington D.C., script doctors are kept busy writing for Tom Cruise.  Cannes unveils it’s festival lineup and Francis Ford Coppola is not in it (though he is down the street at the Fortnight).  Jay Leno visits the hospital and Rod Blagojevich visits Hollywood (but not Costa Rica like he wanted).

A classic Pedro Almodovar film gets remade for the small screen, PBS goes online with its content and Oprah learns Twitter etiquette.

WMA Finds Devil In The Details
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118002694.html?categoryid=29&cs=1

SAG National Board of Directors Approves Tentative Television and Motion Picture Contacts
http://www.sag.org/press-releases/april-19-2009/sag-national-board-of-directors-approves-tentative-television-and-motio

Flush times for theatrical movies? Don’t tell A.O. Scott
http://www.riskybusinessblog.com/2009/04/good-movies-struggle-at-box-office.html

Down Economy = Dumbed Down Movies/TV? Stop the Inanity!
http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,20269754,00.html

Fox Folding Atomic Label
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118002584.html?categoryid=13&cs=1

http://www.deadlinehollywooddaily.com/exclusive-fox-atomic-shutting-down/

Fox Shuffles Film Schedule
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118002645.html?categoryid=13&cs=1

Angelina Jolie Teams With Fox 2000
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118002704.html?categoryid=1238&cs=1

Slade Slated For Third Twilight
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118002751

MPAA Reaches Out To Lawmakers
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118002688.html?categoryid=18&cs=1

Script Doctor’s In For Tom Cruise
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118002702.html?categoryid=1236&cs=1

Digital Governator Set For Termininator
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118002743.html?categoryid=13&cs=1

Robert Rodriguez Wields “Machete”
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118002792.html?categoryid=1237&cs=1

Cannes Unveils Lineup
http://www.variety.com/index.asp?layout=festivals&jump=story&id=1061&articleid=VR1118002762&cs=1

Coppola’s Thinking Outside The Cannes
http://www.riskybusinessblog.com/2009/04/by-steven-zeitchik-we-remember-interviewing-francis-ford-coppola-last-year-upon-the-release-of-his-slightly-lugubrious-you.html

Coppola’s “Tetro” To Open Fortnight
http://www.variety.com/index.asp?layout=festivals&jump=story&id=1061&articleid=VR1118002806&cs=1

Leno Misses First Tonight Show in 17 Years
http://www.reuters.com/article/newsOne/idUSTRE53N0BE20090424

Blagojevich Says Still Wants Piece Of Reality Show
http://weblogs.redeyechicago.com/showpatrol/2009/04/blago-to-be-part-of-im-a-celebrity-.html

Pedro Almodovar On “Verge” Of TV Series
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/content_display/news/e3i360cdd62fc9ca5a8db5e24f4b2b51779?imw=Y

ABC Announces Several Renewals
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/content_display/television/news/e3i202b681b4f137513e078e67f0d29aa46

Watch PBS Online? You Can If You Visit Its New Video Portal
http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/news/tv/la-fi-ct-pbs22-2009apr22,0,56403.story

Oprah Gets Pwned By Shaq On Twitter
http://news.cnet.com/oprah-gets-pwned-by-shaq-on-twitter/?part=rss

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