Watching Films and Television are two of two of the biggest pastimes in America and across the world. This form of entertainment is enjoyed in theaters, on primetime TV, and most recently on streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime and HBO GO. For now let’s call all movies and TV shows ‘content’.
How this ‘content’ is traditionally made in mainstream media
We All enjoy these forms of entertainment, but have you ever thought about what really goes into these shows and how they are made? It usually starts with passionate directors, screenwriters, producers, and actors/actresses. A writer or director will bring an idea for a film or a series to the traditional production houses. For Film, the big mainstream companies are 20th Century Fox, Columbia, MGM, Paramount Pictures, Universal Studios, and Warner Bros. For TV it is more spread out and depends on several big networks. The point being – there are a very limited number of places for TV and films to be produced and released in mainstream media. As a content creator, it is almost impossible to get a meeting with these companies without serious connections.
The costs to get content produced and released through mainstream media is often in the 100 millions, and the the time it takes to produce and get content out is usually 1-2 years. A large portion of shows and films never see the light of day, even if you get in the building and get a production company interested in making it. In addition- even if your content gets released, it will go through so many filters, and take so much time, that the original creator is often not satisfied with the final product.
So what am I trying to say with all of this? It is EXTREMELY DIFFICULT as a content creator to ever get a piece of content produced and released, and even if it is released, it is often greatly modified from the creator’s original vision.
How the Internet is Changing the Game for Content Creators
Due to the difficulty in producing and releasing content through traditional mainstream media, content creators have found new ways to release content using the internet. Thousands of creators release movies, short films, and series on Youtube, where they can upload and share videos for FREE. Social media has allowed Youtube videos to easily go viral, and good content often gets its shine!
But you probably already knew that… SO let’s talk about the coolest new trend in TV and Film –
Streaming Services Becoming Production Houses + Distributors for Content
As more and more kids these days “Netflix and Chill”, companies like Netflix are getting very very rich. So rich in fact, that they have started to allocate capital to making exclusive content for their Streaming services. For Netflix, these are called Netflix Original Series and Netflix Original Films. Popular examples of these are House of Cards, Narcos, and Daredevil. Netflix is very forward thinking in terms of content creation, and gives creative control to the creators. It is also not nearly as complicated as a Company like Warner Bros, and the wait time to put content out is also not as long.
Tying Social Influence into Netflix Original series
Netflix Original series are very good for both Netflix and the content creators. One of the best marketing techniques for Netflix is to partner up with influencers (ie Famous actors, directors, social figures) to create content. A prime example of this is Aziz Ansari’s Netflix original series “Master of None”. Aziz is a famous comedian, author, and actor with a social presence of 10.6 million Twitter Followers and 1.6 million Instagram followers. A figure like Aziz with such a huge following is the perfect figure to direct and star in a Netflix Original. The show pretty much markets itself. Aziz claims that working with Netflix has been the easiest entertainment experience he’s ever had, and it seems like a win-win for both parties involved. Partnerships between content creators and streaming services could be the future of entertainment and the death of mainstream media. What do you guys think?