If you want more Media Market Journal content, be sure to visit my new site Screen Fury (screenfury.com.) For the time being, MMJ has been put in a proverbial stasis as I figure out what to do with it; however, most people will find no difference aside from aesthetics when visiting the new location. Coverage is still of television and movie content with talk show interviews, trailers, and clips with about 10-20 posts per weekday.
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Nintendo: A core brand in video gaming that played a key role in its migration to the home entertain format. No one will ever forget their contributions as that is now part of history. Having said that, they are now a dead in the water company flailing in the water as the Wii U continues to flop in its first half-year of release. Even the once prominent handheld market is having a bit of a hiccup for them, and that is cause for concern. Yes, they are making a slight profit, but that is due to shrewd business practices and not a continued wave of support.
Naturally, the heads of the company are searching for any way possible to make up for lost revenue and the sort as a way of padding the balance sheet by time the next quarterly statement comes around. We see this a lot in the corporate world (particularly when a company’s leadership wants to maximize earnings before resigning–why else do you think the CEO of EA released SimCity before it was ready?) thus introducing a bit of a problem. The tactic is typically short-term in spirit which is exemplified in the Kyoto-based group’s most recent move. Continue Reading
It is official. Iron Man 3 has become a billion-dollar movie thanks in part to the coattails it rode off The Avengers one year ago. The standalone franchise has grown in popularity by leaps and bounds on both the domestic and foreign fronts, creating a double-edged sword of expanding box office dollars. Its budget came in at around $200 million the last two trips out, but with the most-recent success it would seem that attempts to lower the costs of production going forward would prove trivial. Marvel Studios actually wanted to cut this one down to $140 million for fear Iron Man 2 crippled the series’ potential, only to change their minds once their ensemble piece changed the equation. It was a hasty call that proved to be well made.
The next trip out for the Disney-owned studio will be Thor: The Dark World in November which nobody truly believes is capable of this size gross. Its first installment only made $450 million; however, Iron Man 2 only ended up at $600 million. Who are we to speculate that Chris Hemsworth’s next blockbuster would perform worse than Skyfall did in the previous November. Its competition will be just as tough as the foes Iron Man 3 is facing this May as Ender’s Game and The Hunger Games: Catching Fire will bookend the Alan Taylor feature’s release.
About a week from now, Todd Phillips’ The Hangover trilogy will come to an end with the release of its third installment. Promotion has been pretty lax so far given the huge turn out for the sequel two years ago, but that might actually be because the thing promotes itself. Also, the good stuff to show is rated R which can be rather difficult to promote. Not to worry though because that is what red-band trailers for for. Continue Reading
Last but not least, here is the full television lineup for CBS come Fall 2013. This follows reveals earlier in the week for ABC, NBC, and FOX. Interestingly enough, today’s announcement was a bit anticlimactic as we were warned months ago the schedule would look the same. That fooled me though because what I am seeing here is a revamped comedy lineup on Monday, and an expansion of Thursday’s turn at the genre much to the dismay of NBC who long had a monopoly on the date. Where is Mike & Molly? It appears the Melissa McCarthy sitcom is on backup duty which once belonged to the now cancelled Rules of Engagement. That is okay though because its leading lady has all sorts of more important work to do on the big screen. Continue Reading
Coming to ABC Tuesday’s this fall will be the Joss Whedon-created Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD. Sure, it may not fit the network’s brand, but its an Avengers spin-off show which means tons of viewers. The full-length trailer finally hit the web today, showing off a deep cast to help tell a procedural crime story capable of week-to-week delivery. We expect to hear more on the show shortly, but for now there is this. Continue Reading
Tuesday afternoon featured the rollout of ABC’s television schedule for next fall along with announcements for their new programs. The takeaway here is they loaded up their new shows on Tuesday in favor of some level of consistency everywhere else. Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD looks to be the prized stallion, so the network feels confident it could anchor a night by itself despite being a first-year show. Whether that is the case, we will find out soon enough. The other newbies are the Modern Family sandwich comedies on Wednesday night and Thursday’s Once Upon a Time Wonderland-set spin-off. Continue Reading
For those who were thinking next week’s Saturday Night Live would be all about saying goodbye to Jason Sudeikis, guess again. Also leaving the program after an eight-year stint will be fan favorite Bill Hader whose trademark impersonations and Weekend Update character Stefon will be sourly missed. In speaking with the New York Times, he had this to say:
“It was a hard decision, but it has to happen at some point. It got to a point where I said, ‘Maybe it’s just time to go.’”
That said, remember to check back tomorrow for the finale night promos with Ben Affleck. Since this will be the last episode for both Hader and Sudeikis who are moving on to bigger and better things, expect a pretty big show by their standards. It also helps that Affleck will be joining the five-timers’ club.
Yes, it is true. The half-dead, critically-mired series that is 24 is making its way back to broadcast television in the form of a limited series. After much prodding from former showrunner Howard Gordon, Fox has decided to bring back the long-running action series in a different format, much to surprise of the drama’s fans. The shock of course is the circumstances that lie with this revival as the program ended on a pretty ugly foot.
Rehashed storylines had crushed what used to be a perennial Emmy contender by time the eighth run was done. Ratings had caught up to that subtle fact, prompting a cancellation on the network’s terms rather than the show’s producers. It was a costly production with one of the highest paid talents in television behind the camera. That said, it still found over a 2.0 in the 18-49 demographic which has been tough to find for any drama this past year on the network.
Let’s be honest though and acknowledge matching those ‘last seen’ ratings are not the prize. Fox likely desires more for going out on a limb, and that all starts with the change from 24 episodes to half that amount. Essentially, Howard Gordon had pitched the idea that they halve the story because usually it was the stretched order that got to the viewers. Well, the fans are still there so as long as this does not destroy a once prized series even further, there appears to be room for an attempt at bringing back a once great series.
24: Live Another Day is on target for a May 2014 premiere.
Next year’s broadcast lineup is going to look a heck of a lot more different over at NBC as we found out last night, but what about Fox? The broadcaster behind American Idol is in danger of becoming the new Peacock after years of losing top shows in addition to widespread ratings declines. Well, apparently they have remedied that problem with something called the ‘limited run series’ which is code for half-season orders. What they have ‘discovered’ is that the allure of basic cable dramas (or at least part of it) is the condensed story which allows for the bookends of an arc to be placed at more favorable times in the series’ run.
It worked for The Following, and now there are a few other shows that are trying it including 24 which is coming back next May with a 12-episode season subtitled Live Another Day. They do have an original as well from M. Night Shyamalan called Wayward Pines. That is all mid-season talk though, let’s keep our eyes on the ball and start to shoot down the network’s fall offerings instead. After all, the second season does look far brighter. Continue Reading
Revolution has been removed from its warm lead-in The Voice as of next television season. That is the major headline tonight out of The Peacock’s reveal of their forward slate. A lot of people will be watching to see if viewership continues to stay in the 2.0 18-49 range without the network’s top program to help anchor it. Other than that, there are no surprises here even as the fall and midseason schedule appears to be completely redone outside of The Voice, Grimm, and Law & Order: SVU. Continue Reading
The Great Gatsby is overperforming this weekend. Baz Luhrmann’s 3D reinterpretation of the American classic is playing big with theater goers after a $19.4 million Friday (that includes $3 million from late night Thursday.) Estimates for the entire weekend are north of $50 million at this time, +33% what box office analysts expected going into the three-day.
While that does remain the top story, it is not a number one opening by any means. Iron Man 3 is in the midst of its second domestic weekend here in the US which is presumed to end around $70 million. Friday found only $19.8 million, suggesting Saturday and Sunday will continue to play large for the superhero flick. The movie is on its way to the billion-dollar mark which could be hit sooner rather than later.
- IRON MAN 3 – $19.8 M / $232.2 M
- GREAT GATSBY – $19.4 M / $19.4 M
- PAIN & GAIN – $1.3 M / $37.9 M
- PEEPLES – $1.2 M / $1.2 M
- 42 – $1.1 M / $81.2 M
- OBLIVION – $1 M / $78.8 M
- CROODS – $0.7 M / $170.3 M
- MUD – $0.6 M / $6.7 M
- BIG WEDDING – $0.6 M / $16.4 M
These past few months have been rather interesting to say the least when it came to broadcast streaming. Apparently, there is a small company called Aereo making waves, charging about $10 a month to stream local affiliate channels. Interestingly enough, it turns out the practice is 100% legal and the broadcast networks (FOX, ABC, CBS, NBC) are furious that someone besides them are making money off of their programming.
The most vocal critic of its legality seems to have been CBS’s Les Moonves who went out on a limb and said they would take the network to pay television overnight if they did not get their way. Beyond that, he threatened legal action in every market Aereo entered so the barrier to entry would be even higher. When that was not enough, the network’s President implied they would lobby hard to rewrite the laws in their favor. Continue Reading
It might be worth mentioning what the trades are all bullshitting their way through this week. They are all running stories about the imminent Avengers sequel negotiations and how many are unhappy with how they were treated the last time out. Naturally, this is all because agents went whining to reporters in an attempt to land sympathy from fans. Perhaps an angry letter suggesting Disney give Robert Downey, Jr. $500 billion would help put things in perspective.
What I want to say is the world needs to calm down on this topic. A lot of these stars are absolutely 100% optioned up through several film. Samuel L. Jackson, Scarlet Johansson, Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, Cobie Smulders, Mark Ruffalo, and Jeremy Renner should all be locks to return even though they could ‘hold out’ for a bigger share of the proceeds. Considering these characters are co-anchoring the film at about 20-30 minutes of screen time each, it would appear the $2-3 million salary is sufficient. Continue Reading
The trailer has finally made it to the web for Edgar Wright’s third Simon Pegg-Nick Frost partnership, The World’s End. This is the director’s last movie before he goes off to work on Ant-Man, so we will paying close attention to the release. The idea of another Pegg-Frost joint might be good at the box office, but the man’s talent behind the camera is really what draws us in. Its plot follows five friends reuniting two decades later to re-experience an epic pub crawl and in the process, they unwittingly become the only hope for humanity’s survival. Continue Reading