A daily newsletter guide to what is happening on your screens - TV, streaming, movies, games, VR, AR
Dan Barrett is an industry commentator & TV critic. He does radio - 4BC & ABC GC and co-hosts the Screen Watching podcast. He's a former Mediaweek deputy editor and content creator for SBS.
HBO Max for Australia! The future of Foxtel! And Creative Emmy Wins!
Always Be Watching is written by Dan Barrett... Max.
The Creative Arts Emmys were held over the weekend. Not to be confused with the Primetime Emmy Awards, these celebrate artistic and technical achievement in a variety of television genres, guest performances in weekly series, as well as exceptional work in the animation, reality and documentary categories. They’re held over two days with awards still yet to be handed out.
Among the winners:
The Simpsons, which won Emmy for Outstanding Animated Program in its 30th season.
Free Solo, which won for Outstanding Directing for a Documentary/Nonfiction Program.
Leaving Neverland, which won for Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Special.
Hannah Gadsby: Nanette, which won for Outstanding Writing for a Variety Special.
The full list can be fount at Deadline. The Primetime Emmy Awards will be held in the US on September 22.
Want an incredibly deep dive that links the perception of value to demand when it comes to streaming services as we near the so-called ‘Streaming Wars’? Parrot Analytics has published the first chapter of its multi-part report:
The other finite resource, of course, is the value perception – audiences’ willingness to subscribe and pay for their monthly subscription. Paul Bond reports that a Hollywood Reporter/Morning Consult poll finds that most American households are willing to pay a maximum of $21 in streaming subscriptions per month. Elsewhere, one of our research studies conducted in 2018 revealed that 35% of Americans are willing to pay for more than one streaming service, a percentage likely to rise sharply as cable subscriptions continue to nose dive.
Something I forgot to mention last week: The BBC has opened up an online archive with almost 2000 clips from its vaults.
A 1974 report on Deke Duncan’s garden shed radio station, which thanks to its revival by BBC Archive led to him getting his big break on the BBC 44 years later, is also available to view, as well as Blue Peter presenter John Noakes’s terrifying ascent of Nelson’s column in 1977.
More Blue Peter favourites to revisit include that infamous incident with the incontinent elephant and a DIY Dalek straight from Doctor Who.
Other historical resources will be made available, including news reports from major historical events such as the outbreak of the Second World War and the fall of the Berlin Wall.
Light entertainment is also available on the archive, with the BBC’s former interlude clips including the famous potter’s wheel or a kitten playing with a ball of wool – reminiscent of the ‘slow TV’ trend which is now seen a resurgence in popularity.
Is HBO Max launching in Australia? Well, it has filed a local trademark. Foxtel currently holds the rights to HBO content in Australia, however the trademark application, lodged last week, indicates that WarnerMedia has plans for the service in Australia.
With HBO cancelling the nightly Vice news show, the youth media company plans to bring Vice News Tonight to its VICELAND channel for what is being seen as its third pivot. In the US, its primetime 8-11pm slot will be dedicated to Vice News Tonight content.
Angelo said the new plan would require “a lot more people,” while deflecting a question about who would pay for it all. According to multiple people with knowledge of the show’s budget, HBO had spent $42 million a year on VNT, while A&E, which co-owns Viceland, is planning to allocate roughly $56 million for the new three-hour block. While VNT employees admit that the show was sometimes more expensive than it needed to be, it was unclear how a 33 percent bump in resources would cover a 500 percent increase in airtime. “Even in some Mxyzptlk alternate universe where AT&T didn’t buy Time Warner, and Richard was still running HBO, and the show was renewed on HBO, here’s a newsflash for everybody: It was gonna be renewed at a much lower price point. Period,” Angelo told the staff. “There is no universe where the Willy Wonka Golden Ticket that was given to this newsroom was ever gonna happen again.”
Bonus points to Jesse Angelo for conjuring Mxyzptlk.
One would assume that this is not what the many international VICELAND channels around the world signed up for.
Speaking of Foxtel, the Australian subscription TV company has been building a team of about 40 people to build a streaming service. Currently titled Project Ares, the service will use the content already negotiated for Foxtel, with live linear streams incorporated into the platform to enable it to maintain the on-demand content rights.