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jerryking : warner_bros.   4

The financiers who struck it rich on ‘Joker’
February 7, 2020 | Financial Times | by Anna Nicolaou in New York and Alex Barker in London

The movie "Joker" has been one of the most profitable comic book movies ever ($1.1bn in box-office sales on a modest $55m production budget).....Warner Bros was not the only one cashing in on the unlikely blockbuster. Other beneficiaries include: Canadian pension funds, mutual funds, insurance companies — and a pair of former investment bankers.....that external financiers were able to extract a lucrative share of the Joker’s profits underscores the timidity in parts of Hollywood, where major studios shy away from taking big risks — essentially anything that falls outside the universe of sequels and well-established franchise films. What Hollywood once derided as “dumb money” is, to an increasing extent, bankrolling some of Hollywood’s most daring creative bets.......Joker's director, Todd Phillips, was only able to gain Warner Bros' participation to back the film by signing on two co-financiers, Bron Creative and Village Roadshow, each chipping in about 20% of the production budget, thereby sharing the risk......Outside investors have been bankrolling films for a century, dating back to tycoon Howard Hughes in the 1920s. But within the business, are perceived as naive and spendthrift dupes, enamoured by Hollywood, who underestimate how unpredictable movie sales are......The major studios are making fewer movies, and even fewer ones that are not tied to existing franchises. They do not want to allow outside investors in on those movies, because they want to keep their expected riches. But for other films, such as adult dramas, studios are keen to hedge their risk.......Toronto-based, Jason Cloth, a former investment banker, runs Creative Wealth Media (CWM), which sources money from institutional investors such as pension funds and mutual funds.  CWM and production company Bron Studios, formed a joint venture in 2016 called Bron Creative.....who in turn, signed a $100m deal with Warner Bros in 2018 to finance a slate of films, which was how it got involved in Joker......Joker’s other financier, Village Roadshow, which has funded Warner Bros films for decades, is controlled by Vine Alternative Investments, a New York-based asset manager focused on the entertainment industry, and private equity group Falcon. Vine’s chief executive James Moore, a former investment banker for JPMorgan, said he noticed “there was a high correlation between how [entertainment] assets worked and how other assets in financial markets work”.........“They were long term durable cash flows that could be measured with a high degree of precision, and you could manage the risk if you managed them properly,”........Vine buys up libraries of old films and TV shows, which Mr Moore said are attractive because consumer demand for entertainment is “not terribly affected by recessions, capital market events or other exogenous factors”........the vast majority of the time when studios seek co-financing partners, sharing the risk is the right strategy......“Films based on new and unproven intellectual property carry significant financial risk that studios prudently share with outside financing partners,” Mr Ara said. “When it comes to predicting whether a picture will be a hit, as William Goldman famously said: ‘Nobody knows anything.’”.......James Cameron spent years trying to convince Fox to bankroll his futuristic science fiction movie featuring computer-generated aliens. Fox, which had been frustrated by Mr Cameron’s ballooning spending on their previous collaboration, Titanic, eventually agreed to finance Avatar. But only with the help of two private equity groups — Mr Mnuchin’s Dune Entertainment and Ingenious Media — which took on a reported 60 per cent of the financial risk. Avatar went on to break the record for global box-office sales.
asset_management  blockbusters  comic_books  entertainment_industry  films  filmmakers  financiers  financing  funding  Hollywood  investors  joint_ventures  movies  private_equity  producers  producer_mindset  risk-aversion  risk-sharing  sequels  Steven_Mnuchin  studios  timidity  Warner_Bros. 
5 weeks ago by jerryking
Why black filmmakers go broke
Why black filmmakers go broke?

They will sink 10's of thousands of dollars into a movie, make one really good project. Make a great film. Then go out and try to sell it. Living on a hope and a prayer "Hope Lions Gate buys this movie. hope Warner Bros Studios will buy this movie. Hope Netflix will buy this movie." What happens? No one buys the movie.

Economic systems and markets are like a see-saw: to make a see-saw work, you need two people on the see-saw. Weight on both sides of the see-saw.....A consumer needs a producer and a producer needs a consumer. An investor needs an investee. An employee needs and employer. A renter needs a owner/landlord they can rent from....The black community has an oversupply of consumers, an oversupply of borrowers, an oversupply of spenders an oversupply of employees....We have an undersupply of producers, an undersupply of investors, an undersupply of owners. What effectively occurs is the you will have imbalanced markets.......we might have a lot of producers but not enough people who understands the distribution and monetization aspects of the entertainment industry.....black children aren't trained on distribution aspects, the financing aspects, creating all the different economies that are necessary, or the different markets that are necessary to build an economy: the market for capital, the market for contractors, the market for customers.......The black community has an oversupply of people who make films, but we have an undersupply of those who can provide the distribution and monetization.
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[JCK: this is about customer adoption...."[Reid ]Hoffman urges his followers to find their own levers and devices to encourage people to adopt their technologies. Entrepreneurs, he says, often spend too much time creating products and too little figuring out how to get people to use them."
African-Americans  bankruptcies  Boyce_Watkins  customer_adoption  filmmakers  producer_mindset  two-sided_markets  Warner_Bros. 
december 2019 by jerryking
LeBron James’s Media Empire Is Doing Way Better Than His Team - WSJ
By Ben Cohen
Updated June 7, 2017

Uninterrupted, is a media startup founded by Cleveland star LeBron James and his business partner Maverick Carter, and backed by more than $15 million from Time Warner Inc.’s Warner Bros. studio and Turner Sports unit......it's a way of connecting professional athletes with professional writers, producers and directors who could help them say what they wanted to say.......It’s the latest evolution of a movement in which athletes, celebrities and other public figures are using social media and other technology to control their images and communicate directly with the public. In the process, they are loosening traditional media’s grip on the way sports is delivered and consumed. James, Carter and their partners are betting some of the most compelling sports content in the shifting entertainment landscape will be created by the athletes themselves.....Uninterrupted’s multimedia offerings include full-length documentaries, web series and a growing podcast network. Some of its shows have been licensed by traditional media outlets such as Fox Sports, which broadcast an Uninterrupted documentary about a mixed martial-arts fighter. Shows also appear on YouTube, Instagram and Uninterrupted’s own website.
athletes_&_athletics  content  digital_media  documentaries  entertainment  entrepreneur  Fox_Sports  gatekeepers  Instagram  LeBron_James  mass_media  multiplatforms  personal_branding  podcasts  sports  user_generated  Warner_Bros.  YouTube 
june 2017 by jerryking
Five Studios’ Mission: Winning the Distribution Rights to James Bond -
APRIL 20, 2017 | The New York Times | By BROOKS BARNES.

On Tuesday, for instance, leaders at Sony spent an hour making their case. Kazuo Hirai, the chief executive, helped give the pitch, which emphasized the studio’s deep knowledge of Bond and its ideas for expanding the franchise’s reach. In true Hollywood fashion, Sony gave its presentation inside a sound stage on a recreated set from “Dr. No,” which was released in the United States in 1963 by United Artists and laid the foundation for the entire series.

Also vying for the Bond deal — even though it pays surprisingly little — are Warner Bros., Universal Pictures, 20th Century Fox and Annapurna, an ambitious upstart financed and led by the Oracle heiress Megan Ellison. (Not competing for the business are Paramount, which has been struggling and recently hired a new chairman, and Walt Disney Studios, which has been on a box office hot streak by focusing on its own family film labels.) .....The eagerness to land Bond underscores the continuing strength of the series but also the realities of the modern movie business. As competition for leisure time increases, studios have focused more intently on global blockbusters, and those are in short supply. In some ways, the Bond series was the first to go after a worldwide audience....Under its previous agreement, Sony paid 50 percent of the production costs for “Spectre” — which totaled some $250 million after accounting for government incentives — but received only 25 percent of certain profits, once costs were recouped. Sony also shouldered tens of millions of dollars in marketing and had to give MGM a piece of the profit from non-Bond films Sony had in its own pipeline, including “22 Jump Street.”...Why, then, do studios want to distribute Bond so badly? Bragging rights, mostly. Having a Bond movie on the schedule guarantees at least one hit in a business where there is almost no sure thing.

Bond is gargantuan: The 25 movies have taken in nearly $6 billion at the North American box office, after adjusting for inflation, according to Box Office Mojo. The series has generated billions more in overseas ticket sales, home entertainment revenue, television reruns, marketing partnerships (Omega watches, Aston Martin cars, Gillette razors) and video games.
Hollywood  films  movies  pitches  ideas  idea_generation  studios  blockbusters  product_pipelines  Sony  marketing  upstarts  Warner_Bros. 
april 2017 by jerryking

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