Do We Really Need Another Movie Network on Cable?
While I chuckled at PaidContent’s headline (Movielink Redux), my initial reaction to the Paramount-MGM-Lion’s Gate JV was that it felt old-fashioned. From the announcement and coverage, it sounds like they’re planning to do a Pay-TV movie network, and throwing in on-demand and Internet distribution (supposedly not ad-supported) almost as an afterthought. Variety’s coverage tells Showtime’s story best (they wouldn’t pony up for high renewal fees, and so are going to get jilted.)
Viacom chief Philippe Dauman tells the Journal “We have a once-in a lifetime opportunity to think about reinventing the pay window for theatrical movies,” but the only window the startup will break is Pay-TV (Internet availability will be simultaneous with Pay TV, apparently). No talk of DVDs or theatrical.
In the press, there’s lots of talk of former Viacom properties (Viacom owns Paramount, CBS owns Showtime) sniping at one another. There’s not so much on how the venture will crack an already crowded cable market or whether it will share revenues aggressively with carriers. Just that MTV Networks may do some marketing. Or is that negotiating?
Jupiter likes ad-supported Internet video a lot better than fee-based services. We’re projecting $2.3B in 2012 online video ad revenues, and $600M in 2012 online video consumer fees.