Netflix AVoD, FAST Money and Cost of Living Reaches TV – Deadline

The first fully personal Mipcom in three years is coming to a close as thousands of tired, confused but happy delegates make their way to Nice airport or hop on a train to Paris. The market was set against a backdrop of an industry in a deep state of flux as new buyers settle in and more experienced buyers react and adapt. Below are just some of the key tips from three action-packed days on the Croisette. One thing’s for sure, while making TV isn’t the easiest thing to do, the 10,896 attendees who reportedly attended RX were simply delighted to be back together in person (last year’s Mipcom full of restrictions was hybrid and attendance figures relatively low) and the atmosphere was most buzzing for years, especially when the coffee machines were locked and the alcohol started flowing. Read more.

“Co-pros are back”

Before launching Mipcom, Deadline spoke with director Lucy Smith, who suggested the market move from selling direct from distributors to buyers and to co-productions. Boy was she prophetic. Deadline spoke to dozens of executives who agreed with Smith that the immensely complicated and expensive nature of TV making in its current state has meant that funding has to be sought in several places, and these conversations took place all over the Palais. . India took advantage of the new 1,000sqm Producers Hub to meet potential distributors and investors for financing, and many were looking for multiple buyers for shows in different areas. Gone are the days of dozens of traditional distributor-to-buyer deals being closed during the three-day period, according to multiple sources, and the number of sales releases reaching Deadline’s inboxes reflected that. Instead, “this has become the place where we take that deal one step further, or find the extra 10% we need from another buyer,” said one indie boss. Meanwhile, the new streamers tend to be more flexible about the position of their rights and try to make local deals instead of taking entire global rights. Amazon’s Prime Video executives would be in force, for example to hold talks about show pick-up for local territories, and the likes of Paramount + Australia’s buzzy Last King of the Cross was a topic of conversation in this vein. With a major marketing push and a swanky launch party Tuesday night, the Cineflix Rights-stored crime drama show presold to Sky in Europe on its first day. With prices still rising and new buyers settling in, this trend looks set to continue. “Co-productions are back,” could be heard about the Croisette. And while many distributors are stocking up on content for their own streaming services, Mipcom became somewhat of a celebration of agnosticism, with the likes of Cineflix and the recently launched Fox Entertainment Global celebrating their ability to sell to everyone. The latter was unveiled with a keynote and then cocktail party Monday, highlighting the newest player in the rapidly changing international distribution market.

Netflix’s next move

Princess Diana as depicted on 'The Crown'

The crown


Amazon executives may have been in force, but Netflix has been glaring in its absence, according to many. But what a week it has been for the ever-evolving streaming service. While The crownthe upcoming fifth season continues to stir controversy, interested parties had plenty to parse over Netflix’s AVoD strategy, rights position and, as of Tuesday morning, positive subscriber and revenue results that made Los Gatos executives heave deep sighs of relief. Initially sworn it would never succumb to advertising temptations, Netflix’s AVoD strategy raised eyebrows in Cannes. Delegates wondered how many subscribers are willing to advertise and still pay a significant $6.99 a month. Some may see it as the worst of both worlds. Elsewhere, Deadline understands lobbying is underway in certain areas, such as the Scandinavians, who fear the impact on the local ad market and smaller broadcasters’ slice of the pie once Netflix’s ad tier kicks off. “They can’t just come in and take this market share,” said a Scandinavian exec, close to these talks. Meanwhile, while Amazon, Paramount and others wanted to make local deals, Banijay CEO Marco Bassetti did nothing during his keynote address when he criticized Netflix’s persistent stance on taking global rights and IP — a feud that has been rumbling for many years. . “The financial market has decided that this is a golden age for content, but this is not the golden age for revenue sharing,” said the CEO, who was one of a number of keynote speakers from big names, including Fremantle bosses. Andrea Scrosati and Jennifer Mullin and Amazon Studios head Jennifer Salke. Bassetti’s speech was by far the most striking. All eyes are on Netflix’s next move.

FAST channel chatter

Netflix isn’t the only one thinking about advertising, mind you. Enter the FAST channel chat, a constant in conversations about where the next revenue streams come from. Every distributor was on it. Unlike Netflix’s AVoD service, FAST channels are free and a way to bring in extra cash while catering to fans’ desire for certain shows or genres. Companies like Banijay Rights, Fremantle and All3Media International will each have at least a dozen within a year. A super-indie exec claimed that the proliferation of FAST channels was a key factor in the M&A in the distribution market, where distributors needed content to keep their direct-to-consumer offerings in stock. Producers and distributors were also excited about the opportunities presented by ad services like Amazon Freevee and Roku, the latter of which is a major US player not yet quite yet to break into Europe, but recently signed high-profile Fox Entertainment CEO Charlie Collier, who was due to keynote at Mipcom before the news of his move was announced). Expect more on FAST next year as these platforms become more established. As one international exec told us, “Everyone is now making the move to AVoD.”

The cost of living and making shows

Europe is on the brink of recession and as the cost of living rises, so does the cost of making shows. Almost every keynote speaker was asked how their company is handling the coming crisis and the budget relationship between broadcaster and producer was examined. Banijay’s Bassetti was most candid when it came to tackling his powerhouse in France. He said the superindie labels are “squeezing out the time it takes to produce, finding the best places to take advantage of tax breaks, and filming in countries where costs are lower.” In times like these, scale pays off according to Bassetti, and indeed it was the bosses of smaller indies who spoke to Deadline who were most concerned. For these producers, the question of how much a broadcaster has to increase its budget to absorb the higher costs is a poignant question. “Some are much better at this than others,” one such European indie boss told Deadline. The issue will continue, with the full effects of the crisis likely to strike in the near future. Tough choices ahead for buyers.

The M&A train

Chloe Mam Toro


BBC/Mam Tor Productions/Luke Varley

A TV market would not be a TV market without rumors of mergers and acquisitions. Deadline kicked off Mipcom with the news of Banijay’s first UK acquisition since the deal with Endemol Shine Group, such as Chloe producer Mam Tor was thrown into the fold and came fresh from Banijay’s purchase of a very different offering: mythbusters actual distributor Beyond International. Both deals are a testament to the outfit’s desire to cover all bases. As journalists munched on croissants at ITV Studios’ annual breakfast on Monday morning, news broke in the Financial Times about a potential sale of ITV’s manufacturing and sales arm, turning some heads and making executives’ pulses race. . ITV Studios was quick to temper expectations, but the report certainly got people talking, and the rationale behind a sale makes sense. ITV CEO Carolyn McCall has been clear about her ambitious goals for the production arm, which now makes just a third of its turnover on the ITV network and has a vast international reach, along with her frustrations over the broadcaster’s share price. Both parties could be helped by a deal. Shares in ITV were up more than 10% early in the afternoon on Monday after the news. Several other M&A rumors spread like wildfire over the three days, some of which will disappear and some of which may turn out to be true. The major players clearly want economies of scale.

Additional reporting by Jesse Whittock

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