In the United States alone, the television broadcasting sector generated nearly $157 billion in revenue in 2017. This is a significant increase over even 2010’s revenue of around $110 billion. Netflix, the most well-known streaming service, continues to grow in market share, with the firm earning an incredible $11.7 billion last year.
Meanwhile, despite obstacles such as the emergence of streaming services eroding theatre attendance, the film industry is holding its own. Global box office revenues are expected to increase to $50 billion by 2020, up from $38 billion in 2016.
Three 2018 films set box office records, with Black Panther earning $1.344 billion and Avengers: Infinity War earning over $2 billion. In other words, the apocalyptic nature of theatrical releases has been grossly overblown.
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Crowdfunding in Film and Television
However, some advancements in financial availability and creative control have had little effect on Hollywood’s most prominent finance models. While the number of independent filmmakers has increased in the last decade, it usually takes upwards of $200 million to sell blockbusters properly. These budgets are critical, especially given that indie films, despite their increased production, often earn less than 45 cents on the dollar.
Independent films are more affordable; according to a 2014 report, the typical independent film costs only $750,000 to produce. While a small budget may allow for greater creative freedom, it frequently results in a loss of quality. On the other hand, blockbuster-level finance frequently results in unwelcome expectations from studios.
Piracy is widely regarded as one of the most serious dangers to the motion picture and television industries’ futures, if not the most serious. By 2022, it is estimated that piracy will cost the sectors a total of $51.6 billion.
This forecast is based on an increasing rate of illicit streaming and downloading, which cost the industry $6.7 billion in 2010 but skyrocketed to $31.8 billion in 2016. While the FBI warning that flashes on DVD and cinema displays has scared many Americans straight, pirating films and television shows is common in other countries.
Streaming Services Linked to Cryptocurrencies
Amazon Prime Video exemplifies the disadvantage of the digital revolution in movies and television. According to industry estimates, Amazon spent $3.2 billion on video content in 2016, compared to $2.52 billion on non-retail services such as Prime Video, implying a loss of at least $700 million on its video business.
While Amazon is one of the only players capable of sustaining such losses, they most certainly do not wish to. Despite consumer expenditure on home entertainment increasing by an average of $18 billion per year since 2011 and 67 percent of US homes using in-home video streaming services, profits continue to be difficult to come by.
Contract disputes have existed in Hollywood since the film industry’s beginning. Olivia de Havilland has been dubbed “the actress who defeated the studio system” after the 27-year-old, who lived on a series of $500 contracts, fought for more important roles while undergoing unpaid suspensions during an era when studios essentially owned the rights to actors.
Since de Havilland’s peak in the 1930s and 1940s, little has changed. In 1997, Sylvester Stallone and FM Productions were embroiled in a back-and-forth $20 million for $50 million legal battle over mutual claims of contract breach. The parties eventually agreed to settle. And James Gandolfini, a.k.a. Tony Soprano, sued HBO, alleging that they breached their contract by failing to pay him $1–2 million every episode.
HBO swiftly countersued for $100 million but ultimately agreed to pay Tony the money he was “asking,” as is customary.
The point is that contracts have not always been contractual across time, and some see the blockchain as a way to avoid at least some of these costly contract disputes. Smart contracts can help the entertainment business reduce moving elements and variables, ensuring that all parties receive what they agree on.