Here's everything you need to know about the world of television for Thursday, April 1st, 2021. I'm writing this from the Twin Cities suburbs, where AllYourScreens HQ is powered by iced tea and a bucket of Tums.
AMC NETWORKS CEO JOSH SAPAN ON STREAMING
Sapan was recently interviewed by The Hollywood Reporter and he discusses a number of issues, including whether or not AMC's strategy for AMC+ is a good idea:
Last year, you also launched, for $8.99 monthly, or $6.99 for people who have AMC as part of a pay TV subscription, AMC+, which includes such ratings hits as The Walking Dead. Is AMC+ your way into offering a more broad-based streamer?
AMC+ is a bit of a "best of." You get Shudder and Sundance Now and select material from AMC, BBC America, IFC and you get new material. So it is focused ultimately on two things: prestige drama and epic worlds. So it is really quite focused. So you won't see kids programming, you won't see sports programming, you won't see news programming, you won't see nonfiction programming. It's a very clear proposition. You know what that AMC material is like, and it gets served up to you. "I like AMC-type shows that are character-driven dramas." It's very focused.
So you can buy Shudder and Sundance Now, and they'll cost you $11 or $12. Or you can buy AMC+ for $8.99. So it is a very great deal if you're predisposed toward that material. So we're doing essentially our own bundling. There are many bundles that are alive, and we have one, and people are liking it and buying it. And if you're a subscriber to those services on Amazon, Amazon will say "convert to this and you'll save money."
THE ONE MEDIA-RELATED APRIL FOOL'S JOKE I WISH WAS TRUE
A few media companies attempted some sort of April Fool's Day joke today on social media and to be honest, while there weren't any huge public relations disasters, most of the ideas also weren't very funny.
One joke that did make me chuckle a bit was Philo's black-and-white April Fool's Day makeover as a classic television service. It also reminded me how much I wish this existed in real life. You can see the entire makeover here.
WAS 'ZACK SNYDER'S JUSTICE LEAGUE" A HIT FOR HBO?
The Observer's Brandon Katz takes a look at all of the third-party analytics available in hopes discovering whether the four-hour film was a success for the new-ish streaming service:
WarnerMedia is sacrificing an estimated $1.2 billion in revenue by moving its 2021 theatrical film slate to a day-and-date release on HBO Max, per Variety. According to Stratechery, HBO Max generates a monthly average revenue per user (ARPU) of $12, which equates to $144 in annual ARPU. So to cover the estimated $1.2 billion in lost theatrical film revenue in 2021, HBO Max would likely need to add around 8.3 million new subscribers. The upside benefit of a subscription-based model, however, is the potential for recurring revenue, which is one reason why Wall Street gives tech-based streaming services so much more leeway than traditional media stocks.
Not to be a spoiler, but the ultimate answer is...maybe?
SO DID NETFLIX OVERPAY FOR THE 'KNIVES OUT' DEAL?
When news broke yesterday that Netflix had paid a reported $450 million for the rights to the movies Knives Out 2 and 3, there was a lot of eye-rolling by analysts who were sure that it was insanely high prices for two films. I certainly wondered how the streamer was going to make the numbers work.
Michael Rifkin is the Head of Operations and Business Development and Sony Pictures Int’l Productions and he posted a breakdown on Twitter of some of the factors to consider about the deal. And to be honest, he makes a pretty good case that the deal might make financial sense and he lays out a number of factors I hadn't considered - including whether Netflix was able to make localized versions of the films. Here is the entire thread and it's really worth reading the entire thing.
1) Expedition Deep Ocean (Discovery+)
Explorer and entrepreneur Victor Vescovo and his Five Deeps Expedition team made up of scientists and vessel experts set off on an expedition to the bottom of the five oceans.
2) Irul (Netflix)
A romantic escape just became a deadly trap. But just who can she trust-the man she came with, or the man she just met?
3) Law & Order Organized Crime Series Premiere (NBC)
Christopher Meloni, reprising his role as Elliot Stabler, returns to the NYPD to battle organized crime after a devastating personal loss. However, the city and police department have changed dramatically in the decade he's been away and he must adapt to a criminal justice system in the midst of its own moment of reckoning. Stabler will aim to find absolution and rebuild his life while leading a new elite task force that is taking apart the city's most powerful criminal syndicates one by one.
4) Made For Love Series Premiere (HBO Max)
Based on the novel by Alissa Nutting, the comedy series is a darkly absurd and cynically poignant story of love and divorce following Hazel Green (Cristin Milioti), a thirty-something woman on the run after 10 years in a suffocating marriage to Byron Gogol (Billy Magnussen), a controlling tech billionaire. Soon she discovers that her husband has implanted a monitoring device – the Made for Love chip – in her brain, allowing him to track her, watch her, and know her "emotional data" as she tries to regain her independence. Through the chip, Byron's able to watch Hazel's every move as she flees to her desert hometown to take refuge with her aging widower father Herbert (Ray Romano) and his synthetic partner, Diane.
5) Magical Andes Season Two Premiere (Netflix)
Crossing and uniting seven countries in South America, the Andes always have another landscape, adventure and story to tell. Discover them all.
6) Manifest Season Premiere (NBC)
Over a year has passed since the miraculous homecoming of Flight 828 and the discovery of others who have mysteriously returned. While the Stone family endeavors to keep their friends safe and make their enemies believe the unbelievable, new challenges will test their trust of the callings and each other. But sticking together is more important than ever, because no matter what happens, it’s all connected.
7) Prank Encounters Season Two Premiere (Netflix)
Host Gaten Matarazzo pulls the strings on a new season of elaborate pranks involving everything from haunted mansions to ancient burial grounds. Yikes!
8) Tersanjung: The Movie (Netflix)
After growing up in a tumultuous household, Yura finds herself in a love triangle with two close friends as she faces a personal and financial crisis.
9) Wipeout Reboot Series Premiere (TBS)
The big balls are back, albeit with new hosts on a new network.
10) Worn Stories Series Premiere (Netflix)
In this funny, heartfelt and moving docuseries, real people unpack the fascinating and quirky stories around their most meaningful pieces of clothing.
This newsletter is called "Too Much TV" because....well, it's hard to keep track of all the new television premiering everyday. To help you prioritize your viewing, click here to see our list of more than 400 upcoming television premieres, movies and finales. You'll find listings from more than 70 networks, as well as streaming services and web shows.
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