Category: Analysis

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Is Antitrust the New Deregulation?: The Strategic Implications of Ending the Paramount Consent Decrees…and What Comes Next

In his very good book Good Strategy/Bad Strategy, professor and globe trotting strategy consultant Richard Rumelt makes a key point about how evolving industry trends impact strategy. After describing why military strategy is obsessed with “the high ground”, and how companies often focus on the technological high ground, he makes this point: The other way ...

Who Will Win the Battle for the next “Game of Thrones”? : Where We’ve Been

  (This is another entry to a multi-part series answering the question: “Who will win the battle to make the next Game of Thrones?” Previous articles are here: Part I: The Introduction and POCD Framework Appendix: Licensed, Co-Productions and Wholly-Owned Television Shows…Explained! Appendix: TV Series Business Models…Explained! Part 1 Appendix: TV Series Business Models…Explained Part 2 ...

HBO U.S. Subscribers Over Time – Visual of the Week

Inspired by AT&T’s release of HBO Max “activations” and total HBO subscribers, here’s a timeline of HBO subscribers and HBO+Cinemax subscribers over time: If you’d like to see that in table form, along with some financial numbers, here you go: What about total subscribers? Again, we only have data from 2011-2017, but here you go: ...

The 2019 Star Wars Business Report – Theme Parks

This is part III in a multi-part series estimating how much money Disney made off “Star Wars” in 2019. Go here for my larger series on Disney purchasing Lucasfilm in 2012.) – Introduction and Feature Films – Television – Toys As a tremendous Star Wars fan, I couldn’t shake the feeling that Star Wars had ...

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An Aggressively Moderate Take on Coronavirus and Sports

On Wednesday sports in America made their triumphant return! “The MLS Is Back” tournament declared that, well, the MLS is back. This follows the June return for most of European soccer, starting with the Bundesliga and continuing to the English Premier League, the most popular global sports league. Yet not all is sunshine and roses. ...

Should You Release Your Movie Straight to Netflix? Part II: The Streaming (nee Netflix) Counter-Arguments

Last December, I started a series whose goal was to valiantly defend the theatrical distribution model. This doesn’t come (only) from some soft spot in my heart for theaters, but from the economics of making movies. Studios can earn a lot more money by releasing their films theatrically. I’ve taken to calling this the “Booksmart ...

Is Disney Is Throwing Away Its Money Generating Machine? Thinking Critically About Deficit-Financed Business Units

(Welcome to my series on an “Intelligence Preparation of the “Streaming Wars” Battlefield”. Combining my experience as a former Army intelligence officer and streaming video strategy planner, I’m applying a military planning framework to the “streaming wars” to explain where entertainment is right now, and where I think it is going. Read the rest of ...

Read My Latest at The Ankler (Paywall): Are Superhero Movies Doomed?

If you don’t follow me on social or subscribe to my newsletter, you may have missed my latest guest article at The Ankler (behind a paywall). It’s a short one, but a goody.  In it I compared Netflix’s recent Hard R action films, and their “datecdotes”, to Netflix’s other big swings, like Bird Box and ...

The Flywheel Is a Lie! Distinguishing Between Ecosystems, Business Models, & Network Effects and How They All Impact the Streaming Wars

(Welcome to my series on an “Intelligence Preparation of the “Streaming Wars” Battlefield”. Combining my experience as a former Army intelligence officer and streaming video strategy planner, I’m applying a military planning framework to the “streaming wars” to explain where entertainment is right now, and where I think it is going. Read the rest of ...

AT&T Really is Going All In, Amazon is the New Standard Oil, and Extra Thoughts on the HBO Max Launch

HBO Max launched last week! A $4 billion endeavor that required a monumental merger to make it happen. Can one measly column capture all my thoughts on HBO Max’s launch?  Of course not. So here are my extra thoughts, strategic insights and, in a first, a mail bag of questions/comments from folks on Twitter. (Be ...