November Entertainment Highlights

• Bringing more of the content audiences want onto one platform is a tried-and-true strategy, proven to be highly effective at capturing audience attention
• “Experiential” is at an all-time high, and the sky is the limit. Productions are looking for innovative ways to bring immersive experiences to their audience, and brands need to ride the wave along with them
• Hallmark is now available to stream on Peacock, proving the power of streaming as a necessary outlet for linear content to access a wider audience
• It’s no news that Disney leads the theatrical front, and its marketing strategy for theatrical tentpoles releases—from big to simple ideas—continues to set records
• Paramount+ goes global, expanding content distribution in Europe and creating a global presence for brands that are in the content

Warner Bros. Discovery Nears 95 Million Streaming Subscribers in Q3
Warner Bros. Discovery saw streaming subscriptions rise to nearly 95 million combined global customers across HBO, HBO Max and Discovery+ from July 1-Sept. 30 – the quarter during which the highly anticipated “Game of Thrones” prequel “House of the Dragon” took flight. As the David Zaslav-led company works toward unifying the streaming platforms into one service next summer, following its April acquisition of WarnerMedia, Warner Bros. Discovery again decided not to break out HBO and HBO Max subscribers in its quarterly earnings results. Instead, WBD revealed the new overall total along with its Q3 report. — READ MORE

‘Hercules’ Will Be ‘More Experimental’ and Inspired by TikTok
Through AGBO, filmmakers Joe and Anthony Russo are producing a live-action adaptation of Disney’s 1997 animated feature Hercules, with Guy Ritchie — who helmed the 2019 live-action remake of “Aladdin” — set to direct. Russo says the live-action Hercules will also be a musical — and share the original’s unconventional approach. “There are questions about how you translate it as a musical,” Russo says. “Audiences today have been trained by TikTok, right? What is their expectation of what that musical looks like and feels like? That can be a lot of fun and help us push the boundaries a little bit on how you execute a modern musical. — READ MORE

Peacock Will Start Streaming Hallmark Content
Peacock has closed a pact with Hallmark Media to stream live and on-demand programming from Hallmark Channel, Hallmark Movies & Mysteries and Hallmark Drama. It’s a first-of-its-kind linear plus SVOD deal for the network. The brand hub will be featured on Peacock’s home page. It will feature live simulcasts of all three channels with current-season programming available live and on-demand next day as well as a library of movies within the Hallmark library, which includes holiday titles. — READ MORE

Hocus Pocus 2 Becomes Disney+’s Most Streamed Movie Ever
Disney’s accurate reading of tea leaves resulted in Hocus Pocus 2 bewitching the masses, with the movie not only becoming the most-watched ever on Disney+ to date, but also notching a Nielsen record for a streaming movie in its first weekend with 2.7 billion minutes views. This success of Hocus Pocus 2 was propelled by a D-Day marketing campaign, not unlike that which Disney would execute for any of their theatrical tentpoles. “It was the simple idea of these three iconic characters returning,” says Disney Studios President of Marketing Asad Ayaz, “We started the campaign with the tagline ‘We’re Back, Witches.’ And that line served as the ultimate marketing hook of these three actresses coming back 29 years later.READ MORE

Paramount+ Sets Launch Dates For France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland
As the streamer pushes further into Europe, French rollout will take place December 1, followed by Germany, Austria, Switzerland on December 8. The streamer has a range of distribution platforms in the territories including Roku, Apple and Amazon. It will launch on Sky platforms in Germany and Austria and on Canal+ in France and French-speaking regions of Switzerland. This recent expansion shows how content is global and brands that choose to be the entertainment, not the interruption, reach audiences authentically with a shared experience that crosses borders. — READ MORE

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