PEACOCK hits 42 Mil signups, gets Josh Gad + Isla Fisher comedy series
VERIZON looks to sell AOL, YAHOO / NETFLIX sets Noah Centineo spy series / ENDEAVOR going public...today
Mornin! This is Sean McNulty and here’s the Hollywood + Media news to know on THURSDAY April 29, 2021.
Where in today’s edition of “I didn’t think you’d notice that…” - Michael Rapino, the CEO of the country’s largest concert promoter LIVE NATION said last April that he was forgoing his salary for the rest 2020. A nice move of solidarity at a company whose workforce suffered massive layoffs and hardships.
Turns out Michael Rapino meant more like the rest… of Spring 2020 - his full salary (quietly) returned in June and he made almost $2 Million last year per internal filings reported by BILLBOARD.
Also Ted Cruz brought a… well, let’s call it stick of butter to a gun fight, taking on Trevor Noah on TWITTER yesterday. Funny, Ted usually shows such great judgement.
And just putting this handy button here in case helpful:
📽 THE SILVER SCREEN
The algorithm will pick something at “random” for you to watch based on your tastes. Can’t wait to see what it picks for someone who’s watched “Derry Girls” 50 times 🙋♂️. Initially only avail in the TV app. /Variety
Jurnee plays a woman whose daughter is kidnapped. Teams up with Janney’s mysterious woman next door to pursue the kidnapper, exposing dark secrets… which gotta say isn’t much of a surprise when child kidnapping is involved.
Anna Foerster (”Westworld”) directing, no production timeline given. /THR
ALSO IN MOVIES
LIONSGATE sets Aug 13 release for spy movie “The Protege” starring Maggie Q as a contract killer who takes on Michael Keaton’s… regular killer (🤷♂️) when her mentor played by Sam Jackson is put in danger.
Thuso Mbedu (AMAZON’s upcoming “Underground Railroad”) set to co-star with Viola Davis in SONY/TRI-STAR’s “The Woman King” directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood (“The Old Guard”, “Love and Basketball”). Based on true story from 19th Century Africa about an all-female military unit in the Kingdom of Dahomey. /Deadline
WB Pictures sets new head of Publicity - Alissa Grayson joining from STX as EVP of Global Publicity. She had a long run at UNIVERSAL prior to STX. Reports into WB President of Marketing Josh Goldstine (also formerly of UNI) and Head of Comms Johanna Fuentes. /Variety
📺 THE TV SET
Untitled show is created by Alexi Hawley (ABC’s “The Rookie”). Noah playing a CIA lawyer drawn into international power politics when a former asset threatens to expose secrets unless they exonerate her of a crime.
8 episode order, no timeline given (Noah currently shooting DC movie “Black Adam” with The Rock). /Deadline
Josh plays an emotional wreck widower struggling to provide for his daughter who meets Isla’s character, who holds a secret she can’t bring herself to share. Comedy ensues. At least for 6 episodes. No production timeline given. /Variety
Down on their luck group attempts to change their lives by doing a… potentially disastrous reality dance show around a live production of “Swan Lake”.
Inspired by a UK docuseries. No episode count indicated. /Variety
ALSO: FOX orders another… wait for it… music based competition show. This one is “Don’t Forget the Lyrics” hosted by Niecy Nash. A glorified karaoke show where contestants must finish lyrics to a song mid-way thru, which apparently had a run back in the mid 2000s with Wayne Brady as host. /Variety
ALSO IN TV
PARAMOUNT+ close to signing talk show deal with John Mayer. To be loosely based on UK show “Later with Jools Holland”… but basically a talk show with live music performances. /Variety
NETFLIX picks up Bo Burnham musical comedy special “Inside” shot over the course of the pandemic. No audience… or crew. Premiere TBD. /Variety
SONY’s Keith LeGoy promoted to Chairman of Worldwide Distriubution & Networks. One of 3 Chairmen at SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT (Alongside movie head Tom Rothman and TV studio head Ravi Ahuja). /Variety
💻 THE MEDIA BIZ
Well that was fast. Priced at $24/share to value the company near $10 Billion as expected. Stock ticker is EDR in case you wanna get in on it.
We’ll now see how investors react to the company’s almost $6 Billion worth of debt and annual losses in the hundreds of millions of dollars.
Then again, never underestimate the UFC halo on Wall Street. /THR
I guess we call this “The Office” Smackdown effect? Although WWE content didn’t really hit full throttle on PEACOCK until April.
Again… these are only account signups - no indication how many are using it, and how often. Or, how many are paying for it/have access to PEACOCK PREMIUM.
Otherwise at COMCAST, revenue hit $27 Billion for the first 3 months of the year, 60% of which comes from the COMCAST cable/internet operations. /Deadline
They added 460k broadband customers to hit 31 Million, but looks like they lost another 60k cable TV subscribers, which still keeps them around 19 Million - the country’s largest TV bundle service provider. /CNBC
I… did not. They added 400k daily users to hit 1.88 Billion worldwide.
Added about 500k monthly users to hit 2.85 Billion served. Monthly FACEBOOK users are up 10% vs this time last year.
US & Canada have about 256 Million Monthly Active Users (MAUs), an increase of 8 million from a year ago. Europe has 40% more MAUs, and Asia has about 5X more. /Deadline
FACEBOOK made $9.6 Billion in profit in the first 3 months of this year alone. FB stock +6% in after hours trading.
$73 Billion comes from selling hardware ($47 Billion was iPhone sales alone); $17 Billion from services (streaming services, iCloud etc). 2/3rds of total revenue came from international markets.
Not much else here, but they did give us a…. pretty much completely meaningless stat that they now have 660 Million paid subscriptions across all of their offerings (MUSIC, TV+, GAMES, NEWS etc). Otherwise nothing to see here.
For a company that puts on one a hell of a new products show every year… their earnings calls could use some work. /THR
APPLE made $24 Billion in profit in the first 3 months of the year. But just wait until the 30% of subscription revenue that they’re taking from podcasters starts rolling in…
But hopefully they’re holding onto Lycos because hey, ya never know. Plans are in Very early stages, they could be valued at $4-5 Billion. Which would be great… if VERIZON hadn’t paid about $9 Billion to acquire the brands in the mid 2010’s. (VERIZON already wrote off $4.6 Billion from their value in 2018). /WSJ
ALSO IN MEDIA
Florence of FLORENCE + THE MACHINE scoring new Broadway show (loosely?) based on “The Great Gatsby”. No timeline indicated. /Variety
🏦 STOCK NOTES:
SPOTIFY took a 12% hit on their low Q1 subscriber add news.
PINTEREST took a bigger hit, down 14.5% on flat US audience growth #s.
DISCOVERY didn’t have a great day either but ended up only down 4%.
🎥 TRAILER HOUSE
AMAZON PRIME - “The Tomorrow War” teaser trailer. Emphasis on Teaser. Chris Pratt fighting aliens in the future movie. Drops Fri July 2
HBO “Betty” Season 2 teaser trailer. Premieres in June TBD
HBOMAX “Hacks” series trailer. Jean Smart as a “legendary” Vegas Comedian paired with a struggling GenY writer to freshen up her material.
This looks fun! The 10 Episode series Premieres Thu May 13
👩💻 NEW TO WATCH:
ABC - NFL DRAFT begins at 8p, goes thru Sat.
FOX “Let’s Be Real” - Puppet based sketch show from Robert Smigel. Airs at 8:30p
HBO MAX “The Big Shot With Bethenny” - 7 part reality show ripoff of “The Apprentice” with contestants competing for a slot on Frankel’s executive team. Watch or add to your list here
NETFLIX “Things Heard and Seen” - Married couple moves into a haunted house in Upstate NY movie starring Amanda Seyfried. Note how this never happens in Jersey. Just sayin. Watch or add to your list here
AMAZON and TWITTER report earnings after the bell.
🎧 PLAYING ME OFF
CELESTE “The Promise” - ok yes I posted a song from her early in the week, but I’ve been pretty much listening to her album all week, so this is another favorite to chill with.
If you need new tunes:
Have a great day ya’ll! Email me anytime - just reply to this email, or connect here on LINKED IN.