Once a week, Netflix updates its site that lists the most-watched shows and movies on its service across the globe. Its first live special Chris Rock: Selective Outrage ranked at #7 on the list of the most watched shows in the US. While #7 doesn't sound especially high, keep in mind that it is based on the number of minutes watched of a title, which means the special was at a disadvantage - at just an hour long, it really needs monster viewership to rank alongside TV shows and movies on the streamer - to get to #7 on the list is impressive.

It was the first live stream for Netflix on its platform and one would assume the streamer is very happy with the result. Why didn't it perform so well outside of the US? Multiple reasons:

1) Being live, foreign language translations are only being applied to the title this week.

2) The timezone difference - the reason to watch this was to experience a live show. It'll play just fine on time delay, but the gimmick to this was to see it in real time. It played here in Australia in the early afternoon on a Sunday and in the UK it ran at about 3am. Not exactly prime time viewing.

Netflix Top 10 - Global
Weekly Top 10 lists of the globally most-watched TV and films on Netflix.

This year Disney+ will be live streaming the Academy Awards in 5 countries: Hungary, India, Indonesia, Norway, and the Philippines. I would expect to see the streamer adding more countries in the next few years as broadcast deals expire - fewer people are watching these awards shows year on year, so it makes sense that a lot of local broadcasters will start to see them as an expense that can be jettisoned.

Confirmed: Disney+ to Stream 2023 Academy Awards in Five Countries, United States Will Not Be One of Them
Grab the popcorn and your Oscar-pool tally sheets, because the 95th Annual Academy Awards will emanate from Hollywood this Sunday, March 12, and will be broadcast on ABC beginning at 8 p.m. ET. ABC has been the …

The hidden costs of getting acting work in Hollywood

You really need to be a nepo baby in order to afford to get work in Hollywood these days.

Under fire this past week or two has been casting agencies who have continued to rely on Zoom or pre-taped auditions instead of doing it the old-fashioned way that involved individually seeing hundreds of actors who all mostly look the same for a role.

Mad Men star January Jones has called out the practice this past week, believing she is above it (she is).

Note to Hollywood: It’s time for casting directors to come back into the office like everyone else. To audition actors in person ... And if anyone asks for a FEE to audition please know that this is criminal and PATHETIC.”

A fee? What is she talking about? Casting agents like pre-taped auditions as it allows them to get through more auditions more quickly - but also many of them have set up paid production facilities for actors to record their auditions. You can imagine a lot of actors will feel pressure to use the production house of agencies believing it will be looked upon more favorably when it coes time to consider them for a role.

It is double dipping and incredibly gross. Plus it just makes it even more prohibitively expensive to be a jobbing actor in the industry.

January Jones Slams Paid Virtual Auditions as ‘Criminal’ and ‘Pathetic’
“I personally have had to self tape several times since the pandemic began and there is zero benefit to it for anyone involved,” Jones shared on Instagram Stories.

The HBO international pivot

A couple of weeks ago, Warner Bros Discovery announced it would interrupt its global roll-out strategy for HBO Max by signing an output deal with Australia's Foxtel Group. When looking at deals like this, it is worth keeping in mind that these sorts of deals don't happen ad hoc - it isn't just Australia where the HBO strategy has changed.

Here's news about Middle East pay company OSN signing a new output deal:

HBO Shows to Play Exclusively in Middle East on OSN Under Expanded Deal With Warner Bros. Discovery (EXCLUSIVE)
Middle East satellite and streaming platform OSN Group has extended its relationship with Warner Bros. Discovery forging a new multi-year licensing deal under which it will become the exclusiv…

And a deal with Japan's U-Next:

HBO Supply Deal With Japanese Streamer U-Next Renewed by Warner Bros. Discovery
Warner Bros. Discovery and Japan’s U-Next have announced an extension of their relationship with a renewed deal to supply content to the SVOD platform. The agreement sees U-Next continue as the str…
  • Yes, Ted Lasso will be ending with its third season, but it has been set up to allow spin-off shows. Read: The AV Club
  • Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio’s Devil in the White City series is no longer going forward at Hulu. Read: Indiewire
  • Ted Danson will star in Mike Schur's adaptation of The Mole Agent. The show has been picked up by Netflix. Read: Deadline
  • Jon Bernthal will return as The Punisher in the upcoming Disney+ Daredevil show. Read: THR
  • Are streaming boxes failing to live up to their potential? Read: The Verge
  • Old school pay TV penetration is expected to drop below 50% of US households this year. Read: nScreenMedia
  • Christina Izzo at The AV Club makes a case for TV shows ending at 4 seasons. Read: The AV Club
  • Boy Meets World star Ben Savage is officially running for US Congress. Read: TV Line
  • The Floor is Lava host Rutledge Wood will host a Hot Wheels car makeover competition show for NBC. Read: Deadline
  • The Eric Andre Show will return this June for season 6 on Adult Swim. It will have been almost three years since season 5. Read: Deadline

The 4th and final season of Barry debuts on HBO April 16.

Avatar: The Way of Water debuts on PVOD to buy from March 28. It will have 3 hours of bonus footage.

The Nurse debuts April 27 on Netflix.

Pernille Kurzmann quickly realizes that working a night shift with Christina Aistrup Hansen at the hospital in Lolland Falster is not like most shifts.

On a Wing and a Prayer debuts on Netflix April 7.

In this extraordinary true story of faith and survival, ON A WING AND A PRAYER follows passenger Doug White's (Dennis Quaid) harrowing journey to safely land a plane and save his entire family from insurmountable danger, after their pilot dies unexpectedly mid-flight.

Jury Duty debuts April 7 on Amazon Freevee. James Marsden stars - this isn't a revival of the Pauly Shore classic.

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