The Fairytale That Was Bound To Be A Nightmare
A short history of a fast decade of destruction disguised as a delightful dream.
ICYMI This is what happened to the film business when you were sleeping:
We have always been stuck in the mud. Business generally thinks the status quo is a good thing; it’s predictable, sort of. Generally nothing happens fast and little changes significantly — even if it doesn’t feel that way. The wealthy and powerful have historically been slow to move from such practices that have been good to them.
Giant serpents with sharp teeth slither silently through the muck. So while Hollywood’s rich & powerful daydreamed they were eternal, The Digital Powerhouses (aka FAANG) lapped The Studios and set up global networks giving them what The Studios never could have — direct access to the customer — thus amassing more cash than Hollywood ever dreamed possible (not to mention a far better non-physical distribution network).
We pick the one who looks fit for the job to slay the beasts, but they are generally more beauty or bluster than bite. The business community convinces everyone that the more predictive and stable a process is, the more desirable it is (which is also why they convince otherwise freedom-loving human-rights-promoting politicians to support authoritarian dictators).
The emperor is ashamed at their own cowardice but are driven by envy and jealousy, leading to even more disastrous decisions. All Hollywood and media is deeply embarrassed that Netflix was (until recently) consistently so much better than they were in terms of stock performance, they all yearned to get themselves some of that, and most thus chose to step into those waters, bringing with them all of their legacy biases and practices. So those followers pivot out of what they did well and start flushing tons of cash down the drain convinced they have to all play the same game.
To keep the hordes at bay, we offer poetry, bread and circuses. The Global Streamers
Keep reading with a 7-day free trial
Subscribe to Hope For Film to keep reading this post and get 7 days of free access to the full post archives.