Hello Apple TV+, you have my attention.
Making his return to television, Kurt Russell will star in the new Godzilla TV series coming to the streamer. What more, he is being partnered on-screen with his actual son, Wyatt Russell.
In the show, following the thunderous battle between Godzilla and the Titans that leveled San Francisco and the shocking new reality that monsters are real, the series will explore one family’s journey to uncover its buried secrets and a legacy linking them to the secret organization known as Monarch.
Kurt Russell, who put in a lot of time in TV as a child actor, was last seen in a TV series on-screen in a 1977 episode of Hawaii Five-0.
Reed Hastings on the end of linear TV
During yesterday's Netflix earnings call, co-CEO Reed Hastings made this comment about linear TV:
“It’s definitely the end of linear TV over the next five to 10 years,”
This was in response to Netflix now accounting for 7.7% of all TV viewing in the US. A new high. Also, presumably he is talking about broadcast linear TV. Streaming linear is an increasingly hot streaming category thanks to services like Pluto TV.
There's probably something to what he has to say. At a certain stage the cost of broadcasting and the infrastructure involved stops being profitable enough when facing an audience that has declined.
I don't have a good read on whether 5-10 years is a realistic timeframe in the US, but here in Australia, it does seem like the audience numbers for broadcast are getting precariously low. 5-10 years sounds realistic for our local market. But, I would caution that there is a difference between Australia and the US - Australia has government supported TV networks like the ABC and SBS. Both of those networks will continue to broadcast longer than commercial counterparts as they have an obligation to support the older and marginalised viewers who will struggle to jump to the other side of the technological divide.
Two legs are good, four legs are better
Yes, Netflix will have an advertising tier. But not all shows will have advertising on it. For Netflix, it isn't simply a matter of flicking a switch. The way shows were licensed by the streamer will depend on whether they will be able to attach advertising to them. Was it an SVOD licensing deal, or AVOD? Almost all shows Netflix commissioned will be able to have advertising from day one, but there are questions hovering over shows the streamer has just licensed, like Seinfeld for example. Also, Netflix original series bought from other studios, like The Crown, may need to have deals re-negotiated.
It is expected that studios are likely to demand a 15 to 30 percent premium in these renegotiations.
Netflix's Ted Sarandos:
“The vast majority of what people watch on Netflix we can include in the ad-supported tier — today ... We will clear some additional content — but certainly not all of it.”
Worth keeping in mind that many of these licenced shows are better suited to handle advertising as they have ad break slots pre-built into them.
Best headline of the day
This is in no way 'news', but boy does it amuse me.
- The Jennifer Lawrence film Causeway has been purchased to serve as an Apple Original. Read: Deadline
- Chris Licht has announced his new executive team to run CNN. Read: THR
- RIP Sean Kelly. The early-era National Lampoon editor was 81. Read: NYT
- Netflix is ending customer support on Twitter after 13 years. I thought Netflix only used Twitter to post annoying memes are irksome engagement bait. Read: Variety
- Comic-Con is being held this weekend. Here is a guide to the biggest panels being staged. Read: THR
- A behind the scenes Doctor Who companion show will launch on BBC3 timed with the new episodes. Great news for Brit boys and girls who finish all their homework. Read: Radio Times
- HBO Max will add just under 30 A24 films to its library. Read: TheStreamable
Have you heard there is a new Game of Thrones series coming? House of The Dragon debuts August 21.
They/Them debuts on Peacock August 5.
Mike debuts on Hulu August 25.
Clusterf**k: Woodstock 99 debuts August 3 on Netflix. Hopefully this is better than that weak Ringer/HBO doco on the Woodstock 99 fiasco.
South Park The 25th Anniversary Concert premieres August 13 on Comedy Central and will be available to stream the next day on Paramount+.