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.
Just how many people are streaming movies?
Are streamers blowing their money on big budget Chris Pratt movies?
Streaming services built their business on streaming TV shows, but you've likely noticed a rise in the number of movies recently and the large amounts of money spent making them/buying them for streaming services. The reason for this is reportedly that the metrics have shown that while TV shows are a great way to drive new subscriptions to a streaming service, retention of existing subscribers is best achieved through movies.
Which makes sense if you look at Netflix. Realistically, the Netflix service has almost reached the ceiling of new subscribers it can bring on board. So the game there is about keeping subscribers on the service, which is why we are seeing so many more films made by Netflix.
But what is the actual viewership of these films? It's one thing to keep subscribing to a service because you plan to watch a movie there, but it's another thing to actually get around to it.
This weekend saw the release of The Tomorrow War on Amazon Prime Video. Amazon bought the film from Skydance for roughly US$200 million. According to analytics firm 2.41M US households watched the film during the July 4, four-day holiday weekend. For a point of comparison, the recent Tom Clancy Without Remorse (starring Michael B Jordan) saw an opening weekend of 2.3M, while the second Borat film had 1.6M households. HBO Max streamed the new Steven Soderbergh film No Sudden Move to an audience of 567K U.S. households over the weekend. That's a quarter of the Tomorrow War audience, but also I'm sure that No Sudden Move didn't cost HBO Max $200 million to buy.
Of course, this is just opening weekends - these titles will live on for months/years to come on each of the services. And this only accounts for US viewership (Amazon will have strong success with The Tomorrow War globally). But I can't help but keep coming back to the idea that the viewership for these hugely pricey films is on par, if not less, than the viewership for your average episode of NCIS.
The value for that retention rate must be worth it.
The Seinfeld Mega Mix
Step aside Jive Bunny and the Mastermixers, Internet funsters Seinfeld2000 and The Hood Internet got together to produce this ridiculous mash-up of Seinfeld and music from all the years that Seinfeld was on the air (1989-98).
Greg Berlanti, who currently has 14 TV shows on the air, has just signed a deal with Netflix to produce movies for the streamer by way of his production company with Sara Schechter. Read: Deadline
Black Widow is out in cinemas later this week. It'll also be available to stream via Disney+ for subscribers willing to fork out extra money to watch it via it's Premier Access tier. But if you don't want to pay the premium price for it and aren't going to the cinema, you might be happy to know that the film will be on Disney+ as part of the regular package from Oct 6.
Fleabag: you've watched the show, now drink the gin
Phoebe Waller-Bridge has collaborated with Edinburgh Gin to design a limited edition Fleabaggin bottle that has acerbic lines from the show written across the bottle.
Ha ha ha - I'm laughing and drinking to excess just thinking about it.
Here's how they are selling Paramount+ down under
On Monday night apparently Australia's 10 Network aired a promo for the Aussie launch of Paramount+.
We already knew what some of the launch titles include. But, more interesting is what titles are being promoted in the trailer. The majority are titles that we either knew were coming to the service or could safely assume were going to be on platform. The title that jumped out at me was Evil, which will debut it's second season on Paramount+. The first season streamed in Australia on Stan.
Here's the list of titles showcased in the promo and the promo itself:
Movies: Transformers: Revenge of The Fallen Pulp Fiction Raiders of The Lost Ark Clueless The Godfather Part II Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues World War Z Mission: Impossible 2 Mission: Impossible 3 Any Given Sunday Top Gun Transformers: Age of Extinction
TV: Everyone is Doing Great Anne Boleyen Why Women Kill Leonardo Five Bedrooms Ray Donovan Key & Peele Kamp Koral: Spongebob's Under Years Geordie Shore Dexter (2021) Two Weeks To Live Coyote NCIS (every episode) Blue Bloods Rugrats Evil (New season) iCarly Paw Patrol
Sports: Westfield W League A League Socceroos
Succession returns on HBO later this year for it's third season.
My Unorthodox Life debuts on Netflix July 14.
Naomi Osaka debuts July 16 on Netflix.
How To Sell Drugs Online (Fast) returns for a third season July 27.
Documentary Val debuts August 6 on Amazon Prime Video.
Post Mortem: No One Dies in Skarnes debuts on Netflix August 25.
Aussie drama RFDS is coming soon to Channel 7 / 7Plus.
A Blair Witch VR game is out today for Oculus Rift and will launch on PSVR later this year.
Robocop: Rogue City is a game set for release in 2023.
What's next? Tomorrow.
Join the newsletter to receive the latest updates in your inbox.